Fortnite players roaming the popular battle royale game are reporting alien abductions ahead of what may be a UFO-themed season.
Multiple Fortnite bloggers and gamers are sharing their adventures on social media after an update from creator Epic Games on Tuesday (June 1). Epic is also reportedly posting teasers (opens in new tab) on TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube with the tagline "They're Coming" and some kind of garbled speech, along with the release date of Chapter 2, Season 7 on June 8.
A bright light appears in the view (opens in new tab) of YouTube vlogger Ali "SypherPK" Hassan, who recorded his abduction by a UFO at roughly the seven-minute mark of this video. "Is it because I'm looking at the stars?" he says, as the light flickers and pulses ominously.
"Oh shoot! I'm getting abducted — let's go!" SypherPK then cries. Moments later, his avatar flows through a green tunnel and then respawns, face down, with full health elsewhere on the map.
No one has yet caught sight of what the aliens look like or what kind of ship they are using, according to vloggers. It appears there is no specific trigger for this event, which generally takes place in central map areas such as Risky Reels and The Spire, according to Forbes (opens in new tab).
"It's possible this only happens a certain number of times a game, and you may not be 'chosen' to receive the blessing of full heals from the aliens," the Forbes report says.
Epic has been known to completely tear up the map at the end of a season, with past finales including seeing the entire thing being flooded or thrown into a black hole. In 2019, a volcano erupted (opens in new tab) and annihilated a popular landmark known as Tilted Towers.
The company has not yet said if the current season finale will have an event such as what they did six months ago; the end of Chapter 2, Season 4 saw players take control of the iconic Battle Bus — which drops gamers onto the map at the beginning of every day — to take on Galactus in an epic fight to save reality. Galactus had been approaching the map all season and the ensuing battle had some callbacks to "Star Wars: A New Hope" (1977).
Fortnite's rumored alien-themed season is a natural follow to other space content in the last year or so. Players got to chase down an ancient astronaut for several weeks during 2020's Chapter 2, Season 3. In December that year, the Mandalorian and Baby Yoda were the starring skins for Chapter 2, Season 5, which had players take on quests such as hunting down the bounty hunter at his ship, the Razor Crest.
Players also have the opportunity for periodic space-themed purchases in the shop, although Fortnite skipped its long-running tradition this May 4 of observing "Star Wars Day" with skins featuring characters like Finn, Rey or a stormtrooper.
Off-screen, Epic Games is in a battle of its own against Apple, relating to the tech giant's practices in it App Store, although none of the charges have been proven in court. Epic held a couple of in-game Fortnite events (opens in new tab) in 2020 protesting Apple; meanwhile, Fortnite has been unavailable in the App Store since last year. The Verge has a summary of the proceedings of recent weeks (opens in new tab) as the community waits for a verdict.
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