After several complaints from the competitive Fortnite community, Epic Games have once again dedicated themselves to rewarding esports with a $20 million prize pool in the FNCS, alone.
The competitive Fortnite community has been outspoken on the topic of prize pools for over a year now. The 2020 FNCS prizes seemed to be a far cry from those awarded in 2019, and many of the top players weren’t happy about it.
The real culprit in all of this could have been Epic Games’ communication. They still offered a substantial amount of prize money to players, but it was divided among PC, console, and mobile platforms, separately.
This all came to a head in the early days of 2021, after Epic announced the Season 5 FNCS and competitive schedule. With tournaments that award players with Twitter shout-outs and free skins, the competitive players base wasn’t too happy.
Cross-platform FNCS prize pools
On January 19, Epic Games released a blog post that directly addressed these concerns and announced some major changes. They pledged to offer $20,000,000 over the course of 2021 in FNCS-related competitions, alone.
This change was amplified by Epic’s decision to unify all platforms into one bracket. Instead of console players competing for the same amount of prize money as PC players in a separate tournament, all platforms will compete for more money, together.
This, alone, fixed one of the major problems that so many pro Fortnite players had with recent competitive Fortnite history. Their stance was: why should console players get the same amount of money as PC players when all of the pros are on PC? Fortnite doesn’t even broadcast the console tournaments as they do for the PC platform.
Epic also outlined their plans for competitive Fortnite for the next year. They plan to host four FNCS tournaments worth $3,000,000 each, split across all regions. At the end of the year, the top performers in each region will be invited to a new tournament series, worth $8,000,000.
Prize pool splits
The separation of the prize pool was another area of disagreement for a lot of professional Fortnite players. The NA-East region competes for more than double the NA-West region, for example.
In the blog, Epic explained that “The distribution across all regions for the $3,000,000 prize pool is currently based on the most recent competitive participation and regional game population.”
Epic admitted that they will “continue to monitor and evaluate data before each season to make any necessary adjustments,” when it comes to evenly dividing the prize pool amongst these seven regions.
Regardless of region, this is great news for all Fortnite players. Epic offered $17,000,000 in prize money in 2020, but that was further split in each region by platform, significantly reducing the amount of money pro players make.
Even more, console players now have a larger stage to prove themselves. Now, if a console player truly has what it takes to compete against tier-one pros, they have the opportunity to prove it by qualifying and placing in the cross-platform FNCS.
We’ll continue to cover the Season 5 FNCS and beyond, so stay tuned for everything else you need to know to watch or compete in all upcoming open Fortnite tournaments.