Fortnite Removes Cop Cars Due to Protests

Published: June 22, 2020 9:33 AM /


Some cars in Fortnite

Epic Games' wildly popular battle royale game Fortnite has had cop cars removed quietly from its map. There's been no official confirmation from Epic that this has happened. However, an anonymous developer quote has confirmed that the change is due to recent protests that began over the killing of an unarmed black man, George Floyd, by police.

Why were police cars removed from Fortnite?

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal (note that the full article is behind a paywall), the anonymous developer said that the change was not a political statement. Instead, the source says the decision represents Epic Games "being sensitive about the issues" people in Fortnite's audience are currently dealing with. As should probably be expected, the change appears to have been divisive. The Wall Street Journal reports that some social media users are decrying what they see as an "anti-cop sentiment", while others are supportive of the change.

This change happened last week, when Epic Games introduced Fortnite's Chapter 2 Season 3 update. As well as adding a number of new features to the map - most prominently, huge amounts of water - the update also quietly made changes to some of the game's vehicles. All of the civilian vehicles have remained, but the police vehicles have been replaced with civilian equivalents.

Are there any other reasons for Fortnite's police car removal?

As Fortnite currently stands, it's impossible to actually drive any of the vehicles on the map. A future update will add this functionality. It's likely that Epic Games has removed police cars from the game as players getting into them and driving them could lead to some troubling scenes, especially given recent unrest. Given that Epic hasn't issued an official statement about the removal of police cars, we're also not sure when we might see them again in the game, but don't expect this to happen any time soon.

This isn't the only change a major developer has made to a game to show solidarity with Black Lives Matter protesters. A little while back, Infinity Ward added a "Black Lives Matter" splash screen (thanks, The Verge) to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, while EA added a message to FIFA 20 (thanks, Eurogamer) to show solidarity with the movement. It's likely we'll see more gaming developers and publishers making moves to show support for the protesters in the coming weeks. We'll bring you more on this as we get it.

We've reached out to Epic Games for comment on this story, but at the time of publication, they have not responded. We'll update this article if they do.

You can read TechRaptor's official stance on the recent protests, what we're doing to help, and how you can get involved here.

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