Epic Games have released the third set of celebrity-streamer duos that will compete during the Fortnite: Battle Royale Pro-AM competition at E3 in June.
With $100 million in prize money set to be available between 2018 and 2019 for competitive Fortnite following a massive announcement by Epic Games in May, all eyes are on the developer to see what they have in store for the esports community.
Prior to the competitive season, Epic Games announced a Pro-AM Fortnite: Battle Royale charity tournament, which will feature some of the largest names in streaming and gaming entertainment paired with various celebrities.
A total of $3,000,000 being donated to charity over the course of the event, with the sum of money NOT coming from the $100m promised for esports events between 2018 and 2019.
On May 30th, Epic Games announce the third set of celebrity-streamer duos, including CDNThe3rd with professional wrestler Xavier Woods, NoahJ456 alongside American singer-songwriter Madilyn Bailey, and Jericho paired with DJ Dillion Francis.
Fortnite World Cup champion and Season 4 FNCS competitor, David ‘aqua’ Wang has been accused of stream-sniping and subsequently been punished by an alleged ban by Epic Games.
At 17 years old, aqua represented his home country of Austria to the fullest by winning the 2019 Fortnite World Cup’s Duos event with Norway’s Emil ‘Nyhrox’ Bergquist. With a smooth $1.5 million earned from the World Cup, he’s since signed with Cooler Esport and continued to win competitions across Europe.
Most recently, aqua’s trio (with Rezon and Noahreyli) have been participating in FNCS Europe and, following the Week 3 semis, have been accused of stream-sniping another popular trio: Benjy ‘Benjyfishy’ Fish, Martin ‘MrSavage’ Andersen, and Kevin ‘LeTsHe’ Fedjuschkin.
Although fans initially deemed aqua’s behavior suspicious, things quickly escalated. With Benjyfishy’s team unable to qualify for the Week 3 finals and the discovery that aqua was watching MrSavage’s stream during the competition, the controversy has spiraled.
A screenshot of MrSavage’s Twitch stream showing that aqua was watching during the event.
Following condemnations of the World Cup winner’s team, rumors began circulating that aqua, Rezon, and Noahreyli had been banned by Epic Games from participating past the first match of the Finals.
After the rumor mill buzzed with the reports that aqua’s team was banned from competing, he took to Twitter and gave a concise clarification denying those allegations: “We are not banned, we just don’t wanna play. It’s boring without early fighting Benjy.”
Given the difficulty inherent to confirming someone was in fact stream-sniping and didn’t coincidentally run into a fellow streamer, many believe it is unlikely that the World Cup winner has actually been exiled from the competition.
Additionally, some have noted that bans typically result in removal from the leaderboard, something that aqua’s team has not been hit with.
Don't think that is true tbh… Like every time players got the ingame ban they got removed from the leaderboard insta! Aqua and them are still on the leaderboard… My guess is that they got told not to play this finals by epic, so they still can play Heats pic.twitter.com/fCdX13OmGj
As for how the players are handling it, aqua and Benjyfishy have simply joked about the incident for hours. Neither side appears to be nearly as angry as some fans have been, instead, laughing at the drama and sharing memes.
While whatever’s going on behind the scenes may remain unclear, all players involved are more than good enough to qualify for the Season 4 FNCS Finals at some point, if they haven’t already, so it seems that no one’s really that bothered by the situation, ban or no ban.
We will continue to update this article with more details as they become available.