The coronavirus pandemic has led to a number of cancellations around the video game industry. The latest such example is the Fortnite World Cup. While Epic Games has made efforts to move all other 2020 Fortnite events to an online format, the publisher does not feel that it can do so for the Fortnite World Cup. In a release on Twitter, the publisher stated that difficulties with hosting online competitions across different regions has made it necessary to cancel the event for this year. While the news will certainly come as a disappointment for some fans, it certainly makes sense with everything going on in the world, at the moment.
In a follow-up tweet, the publisher stated that they hope to hold in-person events starting again in 2021. Of course, that will depend on a number of different global factors, but online tournaments, including those held by third parties, will still continue. However, Epic has stated their intention to make sure that all third party events also remain exclusively online.
Last year's Fortnite World Cup was a major success for Epic Games, and for esports in general. The three-day event drew in 19,000 attendees, while 2.3 million viewers tuned in to watch the event streamed. This year's follow-up did not have an announced date, but it's still a big loss for the Fortnite competitive scene, as well as the game's publisher.
Physical Events - For the rest of 2020, all Fortnite competitions will be held online. Due to the limitations of cross region online competition, there will not be a Fortnite World Cup in 2020.— Fortnite Competitive (@FNCompetitive) April 30, 2020
At this time, it seems increasingly likely that the few remaining scheduled events for the video game industry will switch to an online format, or see cancellation altogether. The majority of these have already been moved, but there are a few that still remain, such as EVO, which is still scheduled to occur in Las Vegas this summer. While the pandemic has increased the profile of esports as an entertainment option, losses like the Fortnite World Cup serve to show just how disastrous the pandemic has been for the industry as a whole.
Were you looking forward to the Fortnite World Cup? Have you been viewing any of the game's online events? Let us know in the comments or share your thoughts directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk all things gaming!