Impenetrable turtling: Rethinking the Mounted Turret
Released in the v6.30 update, the mounted turret has all the makings of an excellent defensive structure for Fortnite players. Boasting immense accuracy and limitless ammo, the turret is accurate, fast, and powerful, becoming a formidable—almost game-breaking—tool in the defending player’s arsenal.
The one weakness of the turret is that it is not meant to be used continuously. Much like real world machine guns, mounted turrets have a cool down period, mitigating somewhat its potential to turn into a frustrating bullet hell. Or so they thought.
Players were never meant to turn this defensive structure into an impossibly impenetrable spamming tool. Top streamer Ninja, however, has discovered a rather easily abused exploit involving switching between two mounted turrets, allowing players to create an almost impermeable defense through a never-ending stream of bullets, earning the ire of players faster than you can say “OP please nerf.”
On the surface, you wouldn’t assume that gamers would say no to a device that lets you yell “more dakka” as you mow down your hapless opponents with an endless barrage of machine gun fire. To anyone with a passing knowledge of game balance, however, it becomes painfully clear how difficult it is to enjoy a game where a weapon gives the players a near-invincible advantage, which can kill an opponent’s enthusiasm and render the ordeal pointlessly boring for the defender.
The mounted turret was conceived as a means to mitigate early rushing tactics, providing defenders with an option to turtle their way through the early game. However, with its current stats, a turret cannot be faced head-on and need to be flanked, itself a difficult proposition.
What makes the mounted turret even more of a game breaker is its relative commonness, which makes acquiring more than one almost laughably easy. Although recent patches have attempted to stymie this overpowered structure by reducing its hit points, the turret remains fundamentally unbeatable (and thus broken) in the eyes of many players.
A vocal segment of Fortnite’s player base—led by 100 Thieves Fortnite pro Parallax—is calling for the shelving of the turret, seeing it as hopelessly imbalanced and unsalvageable. Players on Reddit have described it as completely ruining the endgame, with a few balking at the idea of even using it against other players.
Others have offered their views on rebalancing the mounted turret. One suggestion involves limiting the amount of turrets players are allowed to carry or making the cool down carry over across all the other turrets, preventing players from switching from one to the other. Other propositions, such as the one put forth by CouRageJD, involve making the turret smaller to make its user more vulnerable and adding a setup time to prevent players from immediately using one turret after another.
Balance issues are common in many initial releases, and games like Fortnite are no exception. Extreme cases of imbalance with new items such as these, however, can make or break a game. Time will tell if the dev team will rethink the stats and mechanics of the mounted turret or consign it to the vaults in favor of fair play.