Epic released its next Fortnite season this week, introducing players to a slightly updated battle royale island, as well as a slew of new weapons, UFOs, and some new additions based on old items. If you haven’t had a chance to dig into the update extensively yet, here’s a list of the biggest changes you should know about to get started in Chapter 2 – Season 7 “They’re Coming.”
Vending Machines and Upgrade Benches return
Fortnite Chapter 2 – Season 7 brings back the upgrade benches and vending machines, enabling players to quickly update weapons and purchase new items. The upgrade benches don’t replace the crafting system that arrived with the previous season (more on that later), but rather offer the opportunity to upgrade weapons with gold bars sans the use of NPCs.
The NPCs in the current season don’t offer weapon upgrades as we saw in Season 6, but the upgrade benches effectively replace them. Similarly, the newly returned vending machines also offer purchases using gold bars, making them a good choice for players who don’t want to waste their bars on upgrading.
Battle Star system
The Battle Pass system has also been updated and it now features the Battle Star system. Rather than automatically unlocking the next item in line by leveling up in the game, players will be rewarded with stars they can save up and spend to unlock whichever Battle Pass reward they want.
The are some limitations in place; for example, you can’t skip straight to the end of the Battle Pass, and some items are locked until you make enough Battle Star purchases to unlock them. The Battle Stars are awarded freely — there are no extra charges beyond the Battle Pass fee.
UFOs as vehicles
You may have noticed that UFOs are now flying around the Fortnite island, but did you realize that humans can pilot them? These crafts can be commandeered by players who take over control of the saucer-shaped vessels, using their tools to abduct other players, pick up and transport items, and launch laser blasts at opponents on the ground.
Players can find the UFOs by looking for the Points of Interest (POIs) that are colored purple at the start of the game. The purple color means there are UFOs operating over the locations.
Cosmic Chests and Alien Artifacts
You’ll probably notice these bright glowing crystals around the map with a chest sealed inside. These are called Cosmis Crystals, and they require your full team to unlock. Players can retrieve the items in the chest by hitting the specific parts of the crystal when a circle appears on the target face. Enough hits will eventually cause the chest to burst open, providing enough items for the entire team.
Alien Artifacts, meanwhile, are similar to Battle Stars in the sense that you can collect them through gameplay. The artifact items are used to customize the Kymera styles included with the season, giving players the opportunity to make the skin look totally unique. Only so many artifacts are available to collect each week, so be careful to gather them all.
Crafting classic weapons
The crafting system remains in Chapter 7, but it is a bit different than what we saw with its introduction in Primal. This time around, players must collect ‘Nuts and Bolts’ leftover when the aliens arrived. These components can be used to turn ordinary assault rifles, SMGs, and shotguns into their favorite variants like burst ARs and rapid-fire submachine guns.
One of the most exciting changes this season is the arrival of new futuristic weapons brought by the alien species. Players can wield the Kymera Ray Gun to fire continuous beams, the Pulse Rifle, and the Recon Scanner, which is used to scan an area for resources and opponents. These items are joined by the Rail Gun, a futuristic sniper rifle that emits a target beam and can shoot through surfaces.
Many changes arrived on the island at launch, but they’re no doubt only the beginning of what Epic has planned for Fortnite Chapter 2 – Season 7.