If you log in to “Fortnite: Battle Royale” right now, you’ll notice what looks like a large crack in the sky above the center of the island. This crack is a result of the one-time event on Saturday that launched a rocket into the sky, and then mysteriously opened up several inter-dimensional “rifts.”
The event was viewed by millions of Fortnite fans who are now left to wonder what this could mean for the game’s future, as the end of Season 4 approaches this week.
Here’s what went down:
At exactly 1:30 p.m. EST, the huge rocket embedded into the side of the mountain just northeast of Snobby Shores — which many, including this reporter, previously believed to be a missile — launched into the sky.
- YouTube channel iStealth
While we don’t know exactly how many how many players were watching the launch, the wait times to enter a new match were noticeably longer than normal right around 1:30, so we know that the game was adjusting to an influx of players.
The rocket shot straight up into the sky, leaving a long trail of steam. Suddenly, the rocket’s thrusters broke off and the rocket stopped accelerating.
Despite the matchmaking traffic, the launch went off without a hitch.
The in-game event came just a week after over-crowded servers crashed the whole game during the launch of Fortnite’s first non-competitive mode last week. As a result, “Playground Mode” was taken offline shortly after being introduced to the game, and has yet to be restored.
From the rocket shot four red beams, which all converged on the rocket’s apparent target …
… Tilted Towers, the game’s most densely-populated area.
- YouTube channel
Luckily, Tilted Towers was spared by an apparent “rift” in time and space, which swallowed up the rocket just before impact.
Tilted Towers has been the recurring almost-target of many island-threatening phenomena, including last season’s meteor shower, which actually resulted in the decimating of what was once was Dusty Depot, giving rise to Dusty Divot.
Another rift opened up across the map shortly after, spitting the rocket back into the sky at a new angle.
- YouTube channel iStealth
The rocket zoomed through the air, as millions of confused players looked on.
After traveling in and out through a few more rifts in the space-time continuum, the rocket eventually careened into an invisible dome above the center of the map, causing a large crack to form in the sky. The sun rose shortly afterward, and the rocket was gone.
Today, the crack is still there, and a few other rifts have been spotted across the island, but the rocket hasn’t resurfaced … yet.
- Screenshot / Business Insider
The launch was a one-time event, meaning those who weren’t in a match at the exact right moment couldn’t experience it first-hand, but thousands of players were generous enough to record and post the spectacle on social media for those of us who weren’t online Saturday.
What does this mean for Season 5 of “Fortnite: Battle Royale,” and the future of the island?
At this point, only time will tell.
Season 4 is supposed to come to an end on July 12, according to the Battle Pass schedule on the Fortnite website, but the games’s creators at Epic Games are known to make last-minute changes and push back their own deadlines, so the exact start of Season 5 will be difficult to predict.
You can watch a full cinematic-style recording of the launch, recorded and edited by YouTube filmmaker Enzait Films here: