The International Olympic Committee and the Singapore National Olympic Council have announced the inclusion of Fortnite into the upcoming Olympic Esports Week.
Fortnite will enter the series with the support of the International Shooting Sport Federation.
Although Fortnite is known for its battle royale mode, a staple of its international esports competitions, the Olympic Esports Week will not include this game mode. The Olympic Esports Week organisers have created the ‘ISSF sport shooting island’ in Fortnite, which is a custom-designed Fortnite Creative island focused on sport shooting.
According to the organisers, 12 players from the Fortnite Champion Series (FNCS), Fortnite esports’ top tier, will compete on the island in a variety of shooting challenges. The organisers explained that “the island is made to reflect sport shooting competition, and will put the target-aiming accuracy of sharpshooters to the test.”
The inclusion of Fortnite this close to the event is a relatively surprising one for the Olympic Esports Week, considering all other titles were announced in advance. Still, the inclusion of Fortnite brings the total tally of games to 10, with titles including racing games, archery, sailing and others.
Another surprising aspect is Fortnite’s inclusion at all, mostly because the game is not usually known for a realistic shooting experience. The Fortnite map creation tools are powerful, but it remains to be seen how well they can emulate the real sport. It is, however, very intriguing that Fortnite esports players will take part in the tournament.
Fortnite joins a lineup of games including Just Dance, Grand Turismo, Tennis Clash and Virtual Regatta. The selection of games included in the Olympic Esports Week received widespread criticism from the esports industry, with critics noting that the game choices are questionable at best.