Fortnite Competitive Rules Clarifications

4.20.2021
By The Fortnite Team

Competitive players,

With the start of Chapter 2 Season 6 FNCS on the horizon, we’d like to take this opportunity to reiterate our commitment to ensuring the integrity of competitive play of Fortnite. In order to make sure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to what is and what is not permissible in our tournaments, let’s take a deeper look into some of our most commonly violated competitive rules.

Intentional Disconnect

We established this rule to prevent teams from leaving a match as a defense against an opponent’s use of the Shakedown gameplay mechanic (which, if properly used, would allow that opponent to obtain that team’s positional information). Intentionally disconnecting from a match in an attempt to gain an unfair advantage goes against the spirit of Fortnite competition. Accordingly, all players must be sure not to disconnect from the game while in a knocked down, “Down-But-Not-Out” (DBNO) state. Note that this does not apply to players who intentionally disconnect while not in a DBNO state.

Illegal Restart

In December, we amended our rules to specify that players can only have one entry (using one Epic account) into a tournament for a given session. This means that once you start a tournament as part of a team, you are locked with that team for the entire tournament session. We established this rule to prevent players from restarting a tournament with a separate account or with a new team after a poor start.

Please note: any attempt by a player to restart a tournament with a different team will trigger an automatic disqualification (DQ) from that tournament. Players may also be subject to escalating penalties for any additional illegal restart. With that in mind, be careful not to switch parties or teammates when competing in a tournament.

Region Locking

Fortnite assigns each player to a regional server based on the response time between a player’s hardware and the Fortnite servers. Most players will play in tournaments based on their auto-assigned region for the best gaming experience. However, there are some players who are interested in playing some additional matches in a tournament, and so choose to switch regions and get a few more games in, even if it means a slower server response time.

Some of our tournaments are restricted to only one regional entry via a Region Lock, while other tournaments are open for full cross-regional participation. To make it easier to determine when a tournament has a Region Lock restriction, we’ve added the following bolded language to the existing Rule 3.7.4 for all such tournaments:

Players are expressly prohibited from having additional Event entries using additional or secondary Epic account(s), and/or participating from more than one (1) server region.  

Here are a couple of examples from recent tournaments to help clarify:

  • Cash Cups are NOT currently region locked. You may compete in the same Monday Cash Cup on the EU, NAE and NAW server regions.
  • FNCS IS currently region locked. You may only participate in a single region, and you will be locked to the first region that you select in your first Qualifier of that particular Season’s FNCS.

As noted above, some of our tournaments allow for this, others do not. You will need to be aware of which tournaments restrict play to a single region so you prioritize the region you wish to compete in.

Additional Competitive Reminders

Leaderboard Adjustments

After a tournament has ended, it may be necessary for us to adjust that tournament’s leaderboard. While there are many reasons for making a leaderboard adjustment, it is usually due to players or teams being DQ’d and removed from the leaderboard for breaking tournament rules.

Unfortunately, one limitation we currently face with adjusting the leaderboards is the time it takes to complete the process. Depending on the reason behind the adjustment, this process can take anywhere from several hours to several days or longer to complete.

This delay in finalizing official leaderboard standings is a primary reason why we may sometimes wait weeks before starting the process of awarding prizes to potential winners. 

For tournaments that award an advancement to play in a future round, (like the FNCS Qualifiers), we’re unable to guarantee finalized leaderboard updates in the short window of time before the next round starts. Therefore, at the end of the round, the leaderboard at that moment is snapshotted, and those advancements are immediately awarded and considered “final” for the purpose of player or team advancement only.

To summarize, for round-to-round advancement, we advance players/teams directly from a snapshot of the leaderboard at the conclusion of the round. For events with cash prizes, we delay distribution of those potential prizes until we’re confident the leaderboards are finalized.

Competitive Warning/Ban Implications

Players should always strive to stay within our rules, but they should also understand the consequences of falling out of line with those rules. Depending on the nature of the infraction, disciplinary actions can include, but not be limited to, a public warning, loss of session points, loss of prizes, or a DQ from a current or future tournament. Repeated or excessive rules infractions may result in increasing disciplinary action, up to and including permanent DQ from all future competitive play of Fortnite. 

Importantly, if a player on a team receives a DQ for a tournament due to a rules infraction, all players on that team will also receive a DQ for that tournament, so be sure to choose your teammates wisely and hold each other accountable.

Disciplinary action can also be imposed for certain player behavior outside of the game, including, but not limited to, harassment, toxic behavior, or promoting oneself as a banned or cheating player.

In all instances, the nature and extent of the disciplinary action taken by Epic pursuant to our competitive rules will be in the sole and absolute discretion of Epic.

Key Remappers

To be clear, key remappers are permitted within Fortnite. Players rely on these tools and certain hardware that apply the same effect in order to play the game. The spirit of our rules allow for players to reconfigure keybinds in a way that wouldn’t be possible inside the game, including double-movement on keyboards. Using these tools to automate multiple actions (e.g., mapping a single button to place multiple building structures), however, is not permitted.

Wagering

As a reminder, our competitive rules, along with the Epic Games Community Rules, prohibit any promotion-of or engagement-in betting, wagering, or gambling associated with Epic Games products. Betting, wagering, or gambling on any Fortnite match or game may result in one or more of the disciplinary actions discussed above – including, but not limited to, official warnings or an account ban.

This hopefully provides additional clarity surrounding our competitive rules, and in particular, permissible behavior in our tournaments. Thank you for competing in Fortnite and helping to keep Fortnite fun, fair, and safe for all players.