​The Fortnite Fall Skirmish Series recently concluded it's run at TwitchCon 2018, which was successful, but the weeks prior had similar issues like the Summer Skirmish Series.  

​​Just like the online tournaments held during the Summer Skirmish Series, the Fall Skirmish Series servers were not much better. If anything, they persisting issues of lag players got was the exact same for both Skirmish Series. These tournaments invite the best players from both, North America and Europe to compete for part of the $100 million prize pool. The biggest difference between these online tournaments and LAN events is, players are not restricted by peripherals and in-game settings. That means these competitors are playing well within their comfort zone, leading to the highest level of game play they can produce. Server issues essentially makes it all completely irrelevant.  

Server lag seems like a simple problem, but at this level of competition, every disadvantage is a game changer. This is especially true when an issue like lag is completely out of the players hands. During the last few circles of the storm, there can be a player count up to over 50, all attempting to move at the same time. Players will consistently seem like they're moving from one location to the other, but are forced back into the storm and take heavy damage. An issue that's even worse than the lag is the server completely freezing and nobody can move at all.

It's absolutely unacceptable for Epic to expect contestants to play in this type of environment. Since Fortnite is still in its early stages as an esport, formatting, and other logistical issues are sure to come along with it. Ever since the conclusion of the Summer Skirmish series, which was Epic's first official run at the weekly tournament style, the company has been attempting to fix server issues. Epic has invited select streamers and professional players to test out custom lobbies that are completely exclusive. The select custom games are supposed to provide the data Epic needs to host a server with more than 50 people at the endings of a game. As of now, it seems like the problem is much more difficult to fix, even with multiple custom games being hosted weekly. 

The Skirmish event is not only just for the players, but also for the spectators at home. Watching the Skirmish Series has been unfortunate as a viewer because the ending circles are the most interesting part of each match. The server issues are not as prevalent during the early game, but that's when most of the players are farming up as many materials as they can get. All of the action happens when the storm is constantly shifting and tons of structures are being built. Viewing through spectator mode has already been a bit uncomfortable because it's not the real players perspective. Adding lag and server freezes on top of that makes it much worse.

The Winter Skirmish Series should be an expected event that Epic Games will be hosting as their next major tournament. As of now, there has not been any news about when it will be hosted. Finding a solution to these problems should be on their top priority, even if it means the Skirmish Series is delayed until it's fixed. Doing so will make the matches much more enjoyable for the viewers, and competitive for the players. Right now, it seems like it's all luck based, with skill not meaning as much. 

Cover photo and video courtesy of Epic Games and ​Fortnite Master