In a surprising change of policy, Epic has announced that Fortnite players will actually be able to acquire the game’s Season 8 Battle Pass for free. Instead of paying for the Battle Pass, players will have the option of completing a series of in-game challenges in order to access it.
Today’s Fortnite patch will introduce Overtime Challenges meant to bridge the gap between the current seventh season of in-game content and the upcoming eighth season. If you complete 13 of these Overtime Challenges, you’ll be able to access the Season 8 Battle Pass for free. That means that you’ll also gain access to the full range of cosmetics included with the release of the upcoming season. You’ll also gain access to two Season 8 outfits just by unlocking the Battle Pass.
This is quite the generous move from a company that seemingly relies on the appeal of Fortnite‘s Battle Pass for much of the game’s revenue. However, this move accomplishes a couple of things that might be more important to Epic than the quick cash. First off, it helps generate hype for Fortnite‘s upcoming season at a time when Apex Legends is stealing the show. While Fortnite is hardly in trouble, they no doubt want to remind everyone that they are still the genre leader.
Competition aside, this also helps ensure that Fortnite‘s players have something to do during that dreadful period when one season is ending and a new season is beginning. These extra challenges may not take the game’s most dedicated players that long to complete, but they will at least add some incentive to spend more time with the game as fans prepare for whatever changes the game’s eighth season brings.
Still, you have to believe that Apex Legends is the biggest reason for this surprising announcement. We have our concerns about whether or not EA is going to let the game be all that it can be in the long run, but consumer-friendly moves like this on behalf of the Fortnite team may just inspire them to dial back on aggressive microtransactions in the near future.
Of course, we all know that Tetris 99 is the sleeper king of the battle royale genre.
Matthew Byrd is a staff writer for Den of Geek. He spends most of his days trying to pitch deep-dive analytical pieces about Killer Klowns From Outer Space to an increasingly perturbed series of editors. You can read more of his work here or find him on Twitter at @SilverTuna014.