SypherPK explains why skill-based matchmaking ruined Fortnite

Published: 2/Apr/2020 9:48 Updated: 2/Apr/2020 9:50

by Joe Craven


Twitch streamer and professional Fortnite player Ali ‘SypherPK’ Hassan has slammed the current meta of Epic Games’ building battle royale, explaining how skill-based matchmaking is ruining public matches.

As Fortnite approaches three years old, a host of its most prominent content creators are growing more critical of its current build. Among other things, Ninja has revealed he thinks it would benefit from incorporating CoD: Warzone features and bringing back the original Chapter One map.

The frustration has seen a number of Fortnite creators moving towards other games, such as Call of Duty’s acclaimed BR, Warzone. Going off comments made in his April 1 stream, it seems like SypherPK is among those being pushed towards other titles.

Warzone has already hit 30 million players, meaning it is a significant threat to Fortnite’s BR dominance.

After dying to an opponent in a Fortnite public match, Sypher continued to spectate the enemy that vanquished him. He quickly realized that the player was hoarding materials, as well as playing incredibly defensively to try and secure the win.

Prompted by his frustrations, Sypher began to criticize the current meta of Fortnite, facilitated by the controversial inclusion of skill-based matchmaking (SBMM): “With SBMM, if there’s not an aggressor in the game, aka someone who’s actually playing for kills, and not playing to win the World Cup, it always ends in a heal off.”

As he continued to spectate the player, Sypher’s frustrations grew. In a second clip, he blasted the inclusion of SBMM in public matches, and explained how it is affecting Fortnite.

“I hate SBMM so much,” he said. “I hate it so much. Not because of playing good players – because of the mentality and attitude that it promotes. Every pub game is like the World Cup qualifier.”

He went on to explain the boring and negative playstyles players use in order to win matches: “Just because I didn’t farm the entire game like this guy did,” he said. “For 999 metal, wood and brick, I get held against storm and get shot at by three or four different people – it’s f**king insane.”

After watching the player who killed him for a few minutes, the lobby did indeed finish in a ‘heal off’. However, the enemy that killed Sypher was then gunned down by the remaining player, whom Sypher cheered loudly and gifted subscribers to.

While undoubtedly a funny moment, it relays a serious issue that many think Fortnite is suffering from at the moment.

SBMM is a controversial topic in a number of games, but many argue it should not be in normal public matches, particularly if a game – like Fortnite does – also boasts a dedicated ranked playlist.


Fortnite players call for “unfair” pay-to-win superhero skin to be nerfed

Published: 7/Jan/2021 17:00

by Daniel Megarry


Fortnite players have discovered a major flaw with the customizable superhero skin, and now they want it nerfed or removed from the game entirely.

Epic Games’ popular battle royale has always offered some of the best downloadable skins in gaming, with recent additions including Master Chief from Halo, Michonne and Daryl from The Walking Dead, and of course The Mandalorian.

These skins – as well as the various other cosmetics like pickaxes and gliders – have always been included on the basis that they “grant no competitive advantage” in Fortnite, meaning they’re purely visual additions.

But the customizable superhero skin that was introduced in Season 4 has now been called out by fans for being ‘pay-to-win’, as turning the skin all-black means players can get an advantage by remaining hidden in shadows.

So do you guys think the black superhero skins need a nerf? from FortNiteBR

In a thread titled “So do you think the black superhero skins need a nerf?” on Reddit, user Pricytoaster highlighted the problem at hand with a simple screenshot.

The image was taken during a match where an opponent wearing the all-black superhero skin was hidden in the corner of a house. Because of the shadows, they were unable to be seen, giving them the perfect opportunity to sneakily take down other players.

The thread in question has drawn hundreds of complaints from fellow Fortnite players who have experienced the same problem, and many of them have been calling for Epic to nerf the skin to keep the game fair for everyone.

Fortnite Superhero Skin
Epic Games / Reddit
This image from Reddit shows the issue with Fortnite’s superhero skin.

“This is blatantly unfair and pay-to-win,” wrote one frustrated player. Another added: “Remove this immediately! Having the Superhero skins be all white or black ruins the fun of it, due to their camouflage potential.”

The issue is especially prevalent for those playing Fortnite on consoles, as they don’t have the option to turn off shadows in their graphics settings. All-white skins have also been a problem in snow-covered locations.

We’re assuming Epic will address this issue at some point, especially if players keep speaking out about it. Some have suggested that a different-colored outline could be applied to the skin, which would fit in with the superhero comic-book style.

Fortnite Superhero Skin
Epic Games
The superhero skin is one of the best in Fortnite, so we hope it gets fixed.

“They should just give it a white outline or something simple like that,” wrote one Fortnite player, to which another responded, “That would be pretty cool actually. I honestly think it would make the skin better to look at.”

Some fans had a more cynical view of why the skin hasn’t been changed yet, with one writing: “I think the main reason Epic is not nerfing the skin is because this black style makes them so much money.”

We’ll have to wait and see whether Epic nerfs the customizable superhero skin, or lets players carry on using it to their advantage. It would be a shame for it to be removed completely, so we’re hoping it gets adjusted slightly instead.