Fortnite Devs Respond to Complaints About Weapon Accuracy

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Fortnite has attracted quite a bit of attention for its Battle Royale mode, but some players have raised issues with the accuracy of some of the game's weapons.

Epic Games has listened to the concerns from players about the accuracy problems and looked to address the community about how their accuracy mechanic works. Beginning with an explanation about Fortnite's weapons operating on a hitscan system, they explored some of potential solutions for the accuracy problems.

"Almost all of our weapons are hitscan (Sniper Rifles are the exception)," the post from Epic Games reads. "That means when you fire, there is no travel time and the target is hit instantaneously. We initially started with very high accuracy on our weapons. This often led to being shot by someone who you couldn't see, making crossing open fields too risky. It led to more conservative play, and camping became dominant."

They also tested a damage fall-off system, but they encountered issues with the clarity of the fall-off; at what distances the damage would be reduced and visibility of who was shooting at you were two factors addressed when deciding how the weapons would work. Moving forward, they decided on two main goals when working on the accuracy of weapons as well as the distance from which they're effective:

  • Goal #1 – Pistol sniping at long range should not be possible.
  • Goal #2 – Our weapons should have characteristics that encourage a wide range of engagements based on: distance to target, target type, ammo availability, etc.
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The goals and their previous examinations of weapon accuracy helped lead to the inclusion of the Scoped Assault Rifle and the longer-ranged SMG that were added recently. Looking ahead, Epic Games has a couple of different areas that they hope to address:

  • Some weapons don't quite live up to their expectations. The biggest culprits are the Assault Rifles and the SMGs which were recently adjusted. We'll continue to evaluate and there may be more incremental improvements, not a radical adjustments.
  • It can be unclear what improves accuracy. Standing still, crouching, and aiming (instead of hip-firing) all have some form of impact on accuracy. We'll look into ways to improve usability on the reticle, including improved readability of your accuracy cone.
  • We'll be running prototypes using more recoil and reducing accuracy penalties. The idea behind this is that the first shot will have higher accuracy (but again, not perfect) and then subsequent shots will require slightly more skill. These will be incremental adjustments until we find the sweet spot.
  • Lastly, enabling projectiles for all weapons (not just the Sniper Rifle) is something we'd like to explore. Doing this would allow for tighter accuracy overall. We've run prototypes internally and it shows promise, but there are challenges preventing us from turning it on. Once those are sorted out, we'll consider running a broader test.

Fortnite is now available in early access on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.