Fortnite Battle Royale wasn't enough to take World Cup finals players by surprise, first footage will more than certainly do the trick. The new item looks as destructive as anything available in the game.
There have already been some suggestions from those interested in the Fortnite competitive scene that adding the new feature so soon might cause some backlash, especially with it being so close to the Fortnite World Cup finals - which takes place between July 26-28.
Esports consultant Rod Breslau, who goes by the name of @Slasher on Twitter, reacted to the news by tweeting "please kill me" moments after the news was announced by Epic, and he isn't the only one stunned by the new feature.
Epic about to add AIR STRIKES to Fortnite two weeks before players compete for 30 million dollars
very cool pic.twitter.com/Gk80ciwPfb
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) July 9, 2019
The initial promotional material for the new Air Strike feature showed an entire fortress blasted to smithereens using the item and Epic Games have already confirmed how much damage it will inflict.
Those caught up in an Air Strike will see explosions take 75 damage per hit to players and 200 damage to builds, making it a potentially effective tool for those who wield them.
It's fair to say that the reaction from the community has been split right down the middle, with some high profile players sharing footage of how deadly Air Strikes can be in-game along their opinions already.
BRUH MOMENT pic.twitter.com/t4hVZYyyEb
— dk (@dakotaz) July 9, 2019
We always think things are gonna be getting better after a few good patches but that feeling never lasts long. That's my main point.
— Myth (@TSM_Myth) July 9, 2019
New Item World Cup Ready pic.twitter.com/JZtV5sv1Fe
— Chap (@LiquidChap) July 9, 2019
Clearly, as the damage stats suggest, this is going to be a difficult one for builders to get around. The explosives aren't coming from the sides, front or back, but the air.
It will be interesting to see how the inclusion of Air Strikes will impact the late game in professional matches, but that - of course - will be a hurdle pros need to overcome in the finals of the $30million Fortnite World Cup tournament.