The game's servers are now back online after a short downtime of several hours. According to the game's official Twitter account, gamers can hop into the Battle Royale game mode for free on PlayStation 4 and PC right now. The Xbox One version should be launching a few hours later.
The first major addition to Fortnite is Squads. Players can team up in groups of 2-4 and duke it out on the island to be the last squad standing. Squad members will not die instantly once their HP is reduced to zero; they will instead be "Down But Not Out" and able to be revived for a short period of time once their HP bar has been depleted. Players can add members to their squad from their friend list or fill them with randoms.
Supply Drops are a new mechanic where items will fall from the sky in a crate held aloft by a balloon. Shooting the balloon will cause it to make its way down to Earth just a bit faster. Alongside the Supply Drops are a few new guns added to the arsenal. The Scoped Assault Rifle is exactly what it says on the tin and should provide better accuracy for medium-to-long range engagements. The Zapotron fires electric blasts either as a short burst or a more powerful shot that has to be charged up. Finally, the Tactical Submachine Gun is effective at medium range but has a high rate of fire.
Finally, gamers who have purchased a Founder's Pack will receive free camo glider and umbrella skins for their short trip down to the ground from the Battle Bus. This is by no means an all-inclusive list of the changes the patch has made; click through to the full patch notes to read them all.
This patch has a heavy focus on the newly-released Battle Royale gameplay mode, but that's not to say that PvE is being entirely neglected, either. Executive Producer Zak Phelps took the game's forums a week ago laying out the plans for the PvE side of Fortnite for the next month, detailing upcoming events, new heroes, and new ways to acquire loot, which is presently only available via purchase of the founder's pack but will eventually be available for free as well.
What do you think of this latest patch for Fortnite? Are you worried that Battle Royale may overshadow the PvE side of the game? What updates or changes do you think need to be made to the game, either for the PvE or PvP gameplay? Let us know in the comments below!