Ninja speculated that Fortnite hasn’t actually introduced the change, instead arguing that players have improved across the board since the game’s release in 2017.
“I’m telling you, man, everyone’s just really good now,” Ninja said of the issue. “[TimTheTatMan] truly does believe that they added skill-based matchmaking, but I’m just not sure, yet.”
The streamer went on to claim that wait times for lobbies and queues would be much longer, were the change actually implemented, and noted that solos are becoming a popular haven for competitive play over squads and duos.
“I don’t think they did,” he continued. “Solos are sweatier, man. Duos and squads are the casual thing to do.”
Speculation arose as to a possible skill-based matchmaking system after Fortnite’s third v7.10 update went live in January, with players like Counter Logic Gaming’s ‘Wish’ claiming that every solo he played was a scrim lobby.
However, no mention of such a matchmaking system was found in the update’s patch notes – nor in the Season 8 update files.
There's been a hidden matchmaking update in the latest patch. Every solo i play today has been a scrim lobby.
I remember one company that did this with their game and killed it.
You guys ready for the same? @FortniteGame :clown_face:
— CLG Wish (@WishYaLuckk) January 9, 2019
Fortnite’s playerbase has historically been widely divided on the subject, with some pros feeling the change would “kill” the game (a la Bungie’s ‘Destiny’ debacle), while others argue that it would improve upon their experience exponentially.
Concern has since arisen of streamers quitting Fortnite due to its sudden rise in difficulty – although the release of battle royale Apex Legends could have something to do with such claims, as the two are often pitted against one another in popularity contests.