NRG Zayt sparks debate after claiming controller Fortnite is cheating

NRG Zayt Xbox Controller Aim AssistXbox / YouTube: Sneak Energy

The latest in a long series of high-level players to criticize aim assist in Fortnite, NRG’s Williams ‘Zayt’ Aubin blasted using a controller as “cheating” and re-ignited the debate surrounding the strength of aim assist in the battle royale.

Since the earliest days of using controllers in competitive PC titles, arguments have raged across the gaming world over the differences between input devices. Some say mouse-and-keyboard reign supreme, while others prefer the more accessible controller playstyle.

In particular, Fortnite has been caught in this crossfire numerous times. In 2020, Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins blasted the aim assist in Fortnite when he compared it to using aimbot and voiced concerns that controllers give players an unfair advantage over their counterparts using KBM (keyboard and mouse).

While the aim assist in Fortnite has already been nerfed several times and the debate around the mechanic mostly settled down, pro player Zayt reignited the conversation when he labeled using a controller in Fortnite as cheating, echoing Ninja’s opinion from last year.

NRG Zayt Fortnite Tournament Winner TrophyEpic Games
Zayt has a long and successful history in competitive Fortnite, and is far from the first player to criticize the game’s aim assist.

In a tweet on February 28, the NRG player slammed the use of controller in the BR, and said “[using a] controller is still cheating, I don’t know why no one talks about it.” His criticism immediately sparked a furious debate, and players voiced strong support for both sides.

“It’s so annoying getting aimbotted by [controller] players with no bloom or missed bullets,” one user responded. Another countered Zayt’s opinion and referred to KBM players using scroll wheel reset (a key bind method that allows for much faster editing): “scroll wheel reset is much more broken than aim assist.”

Other players took a more neutral approach, and while they admitted the strength of aim assist was still up for debate they also pointed out that developer Epic Games reduced the mechanic’s efficiency in several patches last year. “I agree,” one user responded “but you can’t deny that it’s been taken down a notch in the past.”

While Zayt’s tweet created plenty of heated arguments, others took a more lighthearted approach in their replies. Hampus ‘beehive’ Johnsson — a former Fortnite pro for Luminosity and current social media manager at NRG — immediately turned Aubin’s statement into a meme.

Zayt’s tweet about aim assist is far from the first time streamers and pros have voiced concerns over its balancing in Fortnite. In addition to Ninja, other big-name creators like Tfue, NICKMERCS and SypherPK have all argued over the state of aim assist in the past.

Epic is just one of many developers whose games have come under fire for unbalanced aim assist. Activision and Respawn have faced similar outrage from their communities over aim assist in Call of Duty: Warzone and Apex Legends, respectively.

It remains to be seen how much discussion Zayt’s tweet on aim assist will ultimately spark, and if Epic will take action once again to reduce the strength of aim assist on PC. We will make sure to keep you updated on any further developments.