World’s favourite video game holds first major competition, watched live in LA by 15,000 fans and millions more online
Under the unforgiving LA sun, in front of a crowd of thousands, the first ever pro/celebrity Fortnite tournament took place on Tuesday afternoon, and anyone still mystified by the success of this brashly colourful multiplayer shooter would perhaps have been a lot wiser by the end. It was a fun spectacle, put on by the developer, Epic Games, for fans who screamed their support throughout the hour-long contest.
The set-up was simple. Fifty well-known Fortnite players – young adults who play every night for countless fans on YouTube and Twitch – were teamed up with 50 celebrities from the worlds of wrestling, television and music, with each pair taking part in an all-or-nothing match of the world’s most popular video game. In Fortnite’s famed Battle Royale mode, 100 players land on a giant island and must fight until only one player – or team – is left standing. Usually the prize is simply kudos, but here there was a $3m (£2.2m) pot to aim for, the money to go to charities chosen by the top-finishing duos.