Fortnite Battle Royale v8.51 update announced - release date & time, Shadow Bomb, and more

by Albert Petrosyan


The official release date and time for the v8.51 update in Fortnite Battle Royale has been announced, and we're here to make sure you're caught up on everything there is to know. 


Following the massive v8.50 patch release last week, v8.51 seems like it will be a smaller-sized followup patch, although new content and changes to gameplay are still expected once the update drops. 

You can find out everything there is to currently know about the update below, including its release date and time, any and all confirmed additions, what to expect, and more.


When does the v8.51 update go live?

Epic Games have confirmed that the v8.51 update will be releasing on Thursday, May 2, at 2 AM PT / 5 AM ET / 10 AM GMT. 

Although this is a game patch and not a Content Update, Epic have announced that there will not be any downtime required for it.

Shadow Bomb added

Judging by the heavy reference made to it in the tweet above, it's pretty much set in stone that the v8.51 update will introduce the brand new Shadow Bomb item to Fortnite BR.

While there isn't any confirmed information as to how it will work in the game, the official description from the in-game news feed does offer some clues: "Stealth and utility make for a surprise."

It comes as no surprise that a lot of details about the new item have been leaked prior to its release, including audio files and images.

Epic Games
Epic Games
The in-game news feed confirms that the Shadow Bomb will be added in the v8.51 update.

Loot Lake Runes and map changes

With the start of Season 9 rapidly approaching, the usual season-ending flurry of map changes has been well underway over the past few weeks, most notably involving mysterious Runes on Loot Lake.

As of May 1, all five Runes have been activated, and tremors from the Volcano have started to be felt across the map.

This suggests that there is a very good chance that we could see some map changes coming with the v8.51 update, or at least new info added to game files for data-miners to dig up and leak.

Epic Games
Epic Games
With all five Loot Lake Runes now active, we could see some major map changes start to unfold.

Voting for a weapon/item to be unvaulted

According to recently leaked game files, Epic are planning on bringing back a weapon or item from the vault, but will apparently be relying on the players' votes to decide what exactly to unvault.

Falling in line with these leaks is the fact that the Tactical SMG is now showing up on the bunker in Loot Lake, which suggests that the voting for what to unvault could begin following the v8.51 update.

Leaks hint that there will be six total weapons/items available to be voted upon: Tactical SMG, X-4 Stormwing plane, Infinity Blade sword, Bouncer, Drum Gun, and Grappler.

The Loot Lake bunker now shows the Tactical SMG, which suggests that the voting for what's to be unvaulted could be opened soon.

Make sure to check back here when the v8.51 update goes live, as we will have the full patch notes, first look at the Shadow Bomb in action, breakdown of all changes, any and all leaked content, and more!