A new competitive preseason will help Epic Games decide what is best left in casual game modes.
For the last two years, the Arena playlist has been Fortnite’s core gateway into competitive play. It is used to gain access to cash prized tournaments, and is, much to the frustration of many, the closest thing we have to a ranked mode.
Aside from an adjustment to the divisions and points system in August 2019, very little has changed since Arena launched back in Chapter 1, Season 8. However, it seems that, at least, some minor modifications are on the way.
Previously, Arena Hype has been reset to 0 at the beginning of each new season. For Season 6 though, Epic has confirmed that this won’t happen straight away.
The Chapter 2 Season 5 FNCS Semi-Finals are just around the corner!
? FNCS Semi-Finals Seeding
? A look ahead at Chapter 2 Season 6 FNCS
Read more: https://t.co/Tq0GcfwqN7
— Fortnite Competitive (@FNCompetitive) February 26, 2021
In a recent update on the status of the FNCS, they explained that a “competitive preseason” will take place for one week, from March 16-23. After this period, points will reset as usual.
The preseason is intended to give players an opportunity to test out any new items, mechanics and gameplay features that may be introduced, and provide feedback to the developers.
Currently, it is unclear how exactly this feedback will be obtained. Potentially, Epic could open up a dialogue with a select group of pros and analysts, or they may simply use email or in-game surveys.
If executed correctly, this could help to avoid previous issues like overpowered Mythic loot and unnecessary AI characters making it into competitive matches. Regardless, it’s definitely a huge step in the right direction.
Additionally, earlier in the week, the @FNCompetitive Twitter account announced that “Arena Duos is no longer available in the OCE region”. The post also stated that they would continue to offer Arena Solos and Trios “for the time being”.
Arena Duos is no longer available in the OCE region. We’ll continue to offer Arena Solos and Arena Trios for the time being.
— Fortnite Competitive (@FNCompetitive) February 25, 2021
While this may appear insignificant to those outside of OCE, it is a sign that the devs are actively looking for ways to improve the Arena experience. Sure, it may just be an attempt to reduce queue times, but this could lead to bigger changes in the future.
Much of the community agrees that Arena is long overdue a complete rework. In the current system, an individual’s rank is hardly reflective of their true skill, and there is almost no incentive to play in the “proper competitive manner”.
This idea of a competitive preseason, along with the increased transparency and communication, is an indication of Epic’s commitment to the scene. Perhaps this means that there is hope for those fans wanting more from Arena.