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Fortnite‘s latest patch, v5.21, introduces a new Heavy Sniper Rifle to the game’s Battle Royale mode. While update 5.21 isn’t loaded with new content like some other recent patches, it does feature a few notable changes in addition to the sniper content. Accompanying this new weapon is the relevant Sniper Shootout LTM as well as a new limited time mode, the Soaring 50’s LTM.
Furthermore, an update to the Minigun reduces their headshot damage multiplier. Instead of dealing 2.5 times more damage, the multiplier is now only 1.5. This change shifts the purpose of the Minigun, making it less dominant against players while maintaining its effectiveness against structures.
A new contender enters the Battle Royale: Heavy Sniper Rifle
Of course, the most significant inclusion in this patch is the Heavy Sniper Rifle. In a post on their blog, Epic describes the weapon as, “Deliver[ing] devastating damage to enemies and even more to structures with the newest weapon dropping into Battle Royale, the Heavy Sniper Rifle.” The Heavy Sniper is available at Epic and Legendary rarities. While the weapon deals significant damage, it suffers from a prolonged reload time. Per Epic, the stats are as follows:
- Deals 150/157 damage to players.
- These large rounds deal increased damage (1050/1100) to buildings.
- Projectiles fired from the Heavy Sniper have less bullet drop in comparison to other Snipers.
As seen in the video below, the Heavy Sniper is powerful enough to one-shot enemy players. More importantly, however, it also deals a significant amount of damage to structures. This change, along with the reduced bullet drop, is what really sets this weapon apart from the other sniper models.
It will be interesting to see how this weapon is adopted by the professional communities. Some players, such as Tfue and DrLupo, have already established themselves as top-tier snipers with the existing weapons. Adding a new variant that is both more accurate and more lethal could be a dangerous combination.
Limited Time Modes: Sniper Shootout and Soaring 50’s
Of the two limited time modes introduced this week, one is entirely new. This mode, titled Soaring 50’s, is a new variant on the traditional 50 vs 50 mode. While most of the mechanics remain the same, there is an added emphasis on mobility and verticality. Gliders can be re-deployed when falling from 10 meters or greater, and additional Impulse Grenades, Bounce Pads, and Launch Pads spawn. In fact, the spawn rate for Impulse Grenades has been doubled for chests, and they are also now available as floor loot. Lastly, Spike Traps spawn less often. While this mode is sure to be a fun distraction, note that profile stats are not tracked.
On the other hand, the Sniper Shootout LTM appropriately makes its return this week. However, unlike previous iterations, players can only use sniper rifles. Previously, players could also use Scoped Assault Rifles and Revolvers, but no longer. Instead, players must practice their aim with either the Bolt-action, Semi-automatic, and the new Heavy Snipers. Unlike with Soaring 50’s, profile stats are tracked in this mode.
Aside from some changes to Fortnite‘s PvE mode, Save the World, that’s it for patch 5.21. What do you think of the new Heavy Sniper Rifle? Personally, I’m curious to see how it fares in the Sniper Shootout. If you’ve had a chance to try it out, we’d love to hear your thoughts below!