This afternoon, Epic Games unveiled its latest in-game event in Fortnite: a rocket launch that appears to have opened up a dimensional rift. The launch was a one-time event that saw thousands of players logging into the game to watch what would happen. While many people took in the spectacular sight, some people missed out when they were killed mid-event.
Now in its fourth season, Fortnite has exploded in popularity, which my colleague Nick Statt chalks up to its continually updated story in its vast shared world. Epic Games has conducted big, Earth-shattering events before, and in recent weeks, teased a mysterious event with a countdown that got fans excited to take part in.
This sort of one-time event feels special, because it gives players an unique experience that allows them to witness a new big change for the game’s story. But, given that Fortnite is also a battle royale game, not everyone was able to take part in the epic moment, seeing as they were dead at the time.
Most exciting thing that will probably happen this weekend, was at 10:30am watching the Rocket Launch in #fortnite it was cool for that moment no one killed each other, but then all hell broke lose & everyone went into game mode lol
— Brit Carrillo (@brittsterr) June 30, 2018
A number of players pointed out a sort of shared camaraderie with their fellow players: people enjoying the moment by watching the launch together, rather than killing one another. But with so many spectators looking up at the sky and not at their surroundings, it was open season for some players — one player racked up a new solo kill record when took out a ramp where 48 people were standing around watching the rocket launch into the sky.
A number of players voiced their frustrations on Twitter after they were killed. Reactions ranged from confusion to sadness to wishing mild pain or a bad night’s sleep on their attackers:
The Fortnite rocket launch was awesome and I can’t wait for the next season but whoever killed me I hope you stub your toe on a door.
— Hanna (@hannamflinders) June 30, 2018
What happened with the rocket in #Fortnite? I was too far away to see what happened then some idiot killed me
— Snorth (@Snorth93) June 30, 2018
I just got killed watching the rocket smh. Fortnite is trash
— carson. (@TheMarcantelio) June 30, 2018
To the person that killed me as the rocket was launching in Fortnite
— S (@SamanthaGGarcia) June 30, 2018
Big fuck you to whoever killed me during the middle of the fortnite rocket launch
— Ethan Hendricks (@HendricksEthan) June 30, 2018
To the idiot that killed me before I could see the rocket launch in Fortnite, I hope you have an awful night sleep for the next 5 years of your life.
— Ryan (@MiniZoid) June 30, 2018
It’s easy to understand the frustration here: a one-time event is, well, a one-time event, and missing out after getting hyped for a week is a huge letdown for those unlucky enough to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Fortunately, it seems like some of those players got what was coming to them.