A Fortnite Ranked Update During Season Zero

The Fortnite Team

Hey all!

Ranked Battle Royale and Zero Build launched only a few weeks ago and we saw a large portion of the community jump in and start their Ranked journey! Let’s dive into the launch on what went well and things we learned along the way.

Season Zero 

Season Zero is only the beginning for Ranked. We are — and will be — continuing to evaluate all of the topics below as we iterate throughout Season Zero to provide the best Ranked experience possible. As a reminder, Season Zero will span until the conclusion of Battle Royale Chapter 4 Season 3 and you may see changes to Ranked during this time.

Trios and Available Modes

We rolled out v24.40 with the goal of minimizing queue times and maintaining matchmaking quality for all players — not just those jumping into Ranked. To achieve this, we made the decision to remove Trios in Battle Royale and Zero Build when we launched Ranked. We soon realized that Trios fills a valuable place for the community and re-enabled it in non-Ranked Battle Royale and Zero Build on May 31 ET.

We feel confident that non-Ranked Trios will have minimal impact on queue times and matchmaking quality in the near-term. We’ll be evaluating different team sizes and their viability moving forward. As Fortnite continues to evolve, we’ll vault and unvault modes to maintain the same high standards of play for our players. 

Queue Times

One of our goals is to put players into matches against players of similar skill levels, all while minimizing queue times. Early on, some players who rapidly ranked up found themselves well above the initial matchmaking parameters we had set, resulting in longer wait times.

There were a few factors that led to this result:

  • Some players began with higher ranks than intended, placing them in ranks with very few other players. We quickly addressed this within a few hours of launch.

  • Our note from our original blog post“The ranks of the players you or your team eliminated will be taken into account” when it comes to how much your rank progress bar increases after a match — was not working as intended. Players performing well in matches where that was the expected outcome were being awarded too much. We’re actively working to fix this soon.

To mitigate long queue times, we began to loosen matchmaking parameters to ensure players were getting into matches in a timely manner. Although this solution has helped, it may result in some players getting into matches with other players above or below their own skill level. This is an area we will continue to refine and develop as we work towards creating fair matches for all players.

Rank Reset

As part of Season Zero, we plan on resetting everyone’s rank. This reset will be a test run of resetting ranks, as we would do during a Seasonal turnover, before we enter Chapter 4 Season 4 Ranked. It also gives us an opportunity to continue iterating on our systems at a fast pace.

Rest assured, your Ranked Urgent Quest completion will not be reset. However, this may update the appearance of your Burn Bright Emote to reflect your new rank. We’ll also be using your current rank at the time of reset to help determine your initial placement afterward, just as we would for a Seasonal turnover. We’re targeting v25.10 for the reset, and we’ll keep you updated as we get closer. 

Reaching Unreal

It has been exciting to watch players pursue the top rank, and you all met our expectations for how many great matches were needed from our top players to reach Unreal. That being said, we’ve heard your feedback that you’d like for the achievement to hold even greater meaning.

To address this, we will be making adjustments to the Elite and Champion ranks, increasing the threshold needed to rank up. This, combined with the adjustments mentioned previously, should make the journey to Unreal feel more rewarding. This change will occur alongside our rank reset.

Ranked Gameplay

We’re still evaluating the gameplay adjustments we made in Battle Royale/Zero Build to launch Ranked. These include lowering material caps, increasing harvesting rates, and making it so that players drop 50 of each material when eliminated. It also includes the decision to not include Siphon in Ranked. We know Siphon in particular is quite a game-changing mechanic, and we’re continuing to monitor the effect of its absence in Ranked.

Competitive Fortnite and Ranked

While Ranked is still in Season Zero, the Fortnite Competitive landscape is going through its own changes. Tournaments will have many of the same gameplay features as Ranked matches, though there will still typically be exceptions for performance reasons (Hired Characters, vehicles, or other features that may cause performance issues). We’ll continue to keep the competitive community updated on additional changes in the future.

We appreciate all of you who have jumped into Ranked and all the feedback you’ve shared along the way!