By Cody Perez
December 12, 2019
It’s another week of Fortnite battle royale and a strange one at that. There are no new weekly challenges to complete as those over for the first season of Chapter 2. On the bright side, Epic Games has released a new update that brings with it some key changes, including the Fortnite splitscreen multiplayer.
The long-awaited update 11.30 is available on all platforms, bringing with it the holiday event and wintery changes that players expected to happen relatively recently. It is finally here in an update on Thursday, December 12, a couple of days past the usual update date.
Typically, we see the weekly or bi-weekly update for the season on Tuesday, sometimes with the occasional delay to Wednesday. Very few times an update releases on a Thursday, especially since this is usually when the new weekly challenges happen.
But alas, here we are with the release patch 11.30. With it, the 14 Days of Fortnite event kicked off and holiday celebrations are in full swing in the game (more on that in a separate post). Players on mobile, console and PC can enjoy the new features and changes in this update.
The biggest new feature is the surprising release of Fortnite splitscreen multiplayer. We had no idea about this coming to the game soon, and even the dedicated data miners haven’t teased it.
Fortnite splitscreen multiplayer is mostly a relic of console gaming past. You can sit down and play splitscreen on your system.
You and a friend can join on the same couch, play in the same game, on the same system and the same screen. The game splits the screen, much like games in the past like Halo 2 where you could play multiplayer together in the same room.
All you need is one system and two controllers to Fortnite splitscreen multiplayer. Of course, there are a couple of noteworthy limitations and details you need to know about this feature.
The official patch notes say that you can play duos and squads together. It wouldn’t make sense for someone to play solo splitscreen but still worth mentioning, nonetheless. It also notes you can play “with a friend” so we take this to mean splitscreen only allows for two players.
We could have four-play splitscreen in the future, but that isn’t the case at this time. The final limitation is the fact that this feature is only available on PS4 and Xbox One for right now. Not being on mobile and PC makes sense, but, unfortunately, the Switch version doesn’t have this.
We hope that Fortnite splitscreen multiplayer comes to the Nintendo Switch version soon as Epic Games does note that this is an early release. The feature will continue to be improved over time, so the mode is liable to performance issues and bugs, so be prepared for that.
Beyond the surprising release of Fortnite splitscreen local multiplayer in the game, there are some other new features worth mentioning. Another important feature is the dedicated item shoppers. The item shop changes every single day in the game with different items.
This has resulted in numerous sites showcasing what the item shop offers. Players won’t have to pull up the game, update the game or anything else to see what is offered. Now, Epic Games is offering the chance to do this officially.
You can preview the current item shop using your mobile device. What you are going to need is the Party Hub. Head here and swipe right to see the menu option to preview items. You can preview current items in the shop without having to boot up the whole game.
Along with that preview item shop release, players can give more gifts each day as the daily item shop gifting limit increased from three to five. The visual ammo indicator has changed, too, to provide a visual representation of remaining ammo rather than a solid bar.
You can also choose when to transition from the eliminated by screen to the end of the match experience screen. It makes getting out of a match a quicker experience. Finally, in terms of new stuff, the update has laid the preparations for the Star Wars event this weekend.
As with any update, there are bug fixes with the release update 11.30. The first is fixing an issue where the safe zone setting on Xbox One would return to 1.00 after every login. There is a fix for some trees and metal fences in Arena not giving players the correct material increase.
The Magma weapon wrap now appears correctly on the bandage bazooka and the pistol weapons. There is also a fix for the Bandolette skin in the game, appearing like it has two different hairstyles merged. The skin should look correctly now in battle royale.
Speaking of appearing incorrectly, the Twin Turntables set has been fixed for the items in the set that appeared grainy and pixelated in the game. For mobile players, the social menu friends list shouldn’t auto-scroll back to the top anymore when the player is trying to scroll down.
Finally, mobile players shouldn’t have to deal with the quick bar being set to off by default for some odd reason.
Battle royale wasn’t the only mode in Fortnite that received new additions and changes in this update. The Creative mode got more bug fixes and overall changes than battle royale did. If you are a fan of creating your content, you will like these changes.
There are quite a few new items in Creative mode to enjoy when creating their maps and modes. The first of these items is the Trick Tile, which is a fascinating new item that can change up how players create their islands and maps.
The Trick Tile allows the user to create pitfalls and various passageways in an area. You can place this device to make the floor and/or wall in that area appear or disappear at will. It is a brilliant addition, especially those who make platforming and escape modes.
Another crazy addition to the Creative mode is the new Tracker item. This nifty little item allows you to create your quests and custom challenges with the new Tracker device. It is a fantastic option because it allows for so much more content in player-created modes than ever before.
We don’t have too many details about how much you can do with the Tracker. It is likely built around tracking certain tasks like getting kills, gathering materials, and so on. It is probably based around challenges where you can keep track of a certain number of items.
Players can use the Slurp Swamp gallery in Creative mode. There is a slew of new props and galleries based around the Slurpy Swamp location on the island that you can use in your maps. Another Chapter 2 addition to Creative mode is the archipelago island found near Sweaty Sands.
You can build and add your little island formations in a tropical setting.
There is a ton of bug fixes and other various gameplay changes in the Creative mode. This will make sure that the mode works a lot better than it did before. You can find some of the bug fixes below as there are a lot in this update.
Unfortunately, we were unable to cover all the bug fixes for the Creative mode as there are just too many in this update. If you are interested in checking out all of the major changes and fixes, check out the official Epic Games blog post here.