There have been rumors for days that Epic Games was planning to add some kind of new way to play the game’s ranked mode, but it’s likely no one expected the actual announcement. According to the official Fortnite Twitter account, the Arena mode is being removed on Tuesday, May 13, and being replaced with a new system.
The news came as a surprise this morning, with the new Fortnite ranked system, which applies to Battle Royale and Zero Build, being as simple as a toggle in the main lobby before you start a match. There will be a range of new challenges to celebrate this monumental change to the game where players can earn free cosmetics starting in the 24.40 update on May 14.
A video was found shortly after the announcement by data miners, showcasing a closer look at the new ranked mode ahead of the update next week.
According to the official blog post, there will be eight rank categories, with 18 brackets being designated between them. The final three categories don’t have extra brackets, with their ranks being earned in succession.
The ranks are split up as follows, from lowest to highest:
- Bronze I, II, and III
- Silver I, II, and III
- Gold I, II, and III
- Platinum I, II, and III
- Diamond I, II, and III
Players will be able to progress through the ranks by playing the game as they normally would, with a toggle being available in the lobby. It’s unclear what the difference will be, but turning ranked on will likely match players with those who have similar skill levels. Players who reach Unreal rank will remain in that rank for the rest of that ranked season.
To celebrate the new changes, there will apparently be cosmetics available after the 24.40 update for players who play in ranked matches. These cosmetic-rewarding quests will be seasonal and provide players with unique rewards each season.
Epic also recognizes that players in the current Competitive season might be curious about how the new changes starting in the middle of the year will affect them. According to the blog, any remaining Fortnite tournaments will be subject to certain rank and game requirements put forward by the tournament holder. There are exceptions, such as the Console Champions Cup on May 23 only being available to those Platinum 1 or higher.
It will be interesting to see how the professional Fortnite players react to this news, with this being the biggest change to how Epic does Competitive since its inception.