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Fortnite patch v9.21 adds a new Grenade Launcher and the new Horde Rush mode

Epic’s bringing a little bit of Save the World to Battle Royale

A Fortnite player with the new Proximity Grenade Launcher
A Fortnite player with the new Proximity Grenade Launcher
Epic Games via Polygon
Austen Goslin (he/him) is an entertainment editor. He writes about the latest TV shows and movies, and particularly loves all things horror.

Fortnite patch v9.21 is here and is bringing with it a new kind of Grenade Launcher. Epic’s also using this patch to add a new wave-based survival mode called Horde Rush.

The new Proximity Grenade Launcher is likely going to be one of Fortnite’s strangest weapons. While it may not seem odd on the surface, it fires grenades that detonate after a period of time, or when players get close to them, the gun has a few quirks. But these grenades are strange and extremely bouncy and often seem to have a mind of their own with where they do and don’t go. Thankfully, for all their strange behavior, the grenades don’t do too much damage — just 67 damage for Epic, 70 for Legendary rarities — so no one needs to be too worried.

The other big addition with this patch is the new Horde Rush mode, which is also a little strange. The mode takes a squad of up to four players and pits them against multiple stages of enemy zombies — called “Fiends” in-game. You can build defenses, scavenge materials and weapons and the game will keep score for every enemy you defeat. Finally, at the end of the several waves you’ll have to defeat a boss enemy. In other words, this mode is almost exactly Fortnite Save the World.

For a look at all the changes coming to Fortnite with this new patch you can view the full patch notes below.

Fortnite Patch v9.21 notes

Weapons and Items

Proximity Grenade Launcher

  • Fires an arcing, bouncing, explosive projectile that explodes when in proximity of an opponent.
  • Available in Epic and Legendary Rarities.
  • Found from Chests, Loot Carriers, Supply Drops, and Vending Machines.
  • Semi-Automatic.
  • Uses Rocket Ammo.
  • Holds 2 Explosive Rounds.
  • Rate of Fire: 0.65 shots per second.
  • Player Proximity Radius: 250 units (about half the width of a tile).
  • Explosion Radius: 300 units (about 60% of the width of a tile).
  • Explosion damage:

Player: 67/70

Environmental: 131/138

  • Reload Speed: 2.8s/3s
  • Projectiles explode automatically after 10s or if it has nearly come to a stop.

Shield Potion

  • Increased the availability from Chest loot from 11.3% to 12.09%

Small Shield Potion

  • Increased the availability from Chest loot from 16.95% to 18.13%

Comment from Epic: With items being added and removed, we’ve noticed that Shield Potions and Small Shields have been less available in Chests. So we’ve increased the chance to find Shields from Chests to compensate for that.


  • Increased the overall chance to find from Floor loot from 8.50% to 9.77%

Comment from Epic: After seeing the community’s feedback about Shotgun availability, we’ve increased the Shotgun availability from Floor Loot to make finding them in the early phases of the game easier.

Infantry Rifle Epic and Legendary variants

  • Increased the availability from Floor loot from .067% to .105%
  • Increased the availability from Chest loot from .414% to .645%

Heavy Assault Rifle Common variant

  • Decreased the availability from Floor loot from 2.04% to 1.715%
  • Decreased the availability from Chest loot from 12.47% to 10.46%

Mounted Turret

  • Decreased the availability from floor loot from .59% to .46%

Storm Flip

  • Adjusted Storm Flip to cause flat damage instead of being based on which Storm Phase is currently active.

Causes 5 damage every second.

This change may not be immediately available at the time of release. It requires a server update and will become active at some point later in the day.

Comment from Epic: We noticed with scaling damage that players held onto their Storm Flip later into matches, creating undesirable effects. This change gives players more value in using it earlier in matches.

  • Reduced the availability from Chests from 3.39% to 1.69%
  • Reduced the availability from Floor loot from 3.32% to 1.66%
  • Added back into the Arena and Tournament playlists.

Comment from Epic: We have visual effect changes coming in v9.30 that will help improve readability.

Limited Time Mode Rotation

One Shot Duos

Low Gravity. Every player has 50 health. Sniper weapons are the only weapon, Bandages are the only healing item. Jump high and aim well!

Horde Rush

Fortnite Fiends are back on the island and angrier than ever! Fight alongside your teammates to rack up your score by finding hidden score multipliers, opening special loot chests, and eliminating as many monsters as you can. Traverse across the map, survive all of the Defend locations and take down the Final Boss to win!

Mode Details

  • Four player Squad mode divided up into multiple stages.
  • Prepare to defend an area by searching for weapons & items, scavenging materials, and building defenses.
  • Rack up points by fighting Fiends, collecting score multipliers, and destroying Fiend Spawners.
  • Recover from the battle and search for more equipment.
  • Travel across the map to the next defense point.
  • Respawning is enabled until the last stage when players have to destroy a Boss Fiend and his horde of minions.
  • Keep an eye out for special loot chests, which contain powerful weapons & provide a scoring bonus.


Bug Fixes

  • Audio was sounding muffled due to a filter optimization issue.


Comment from Epic: We’ve noticed iOS patches have experienced delays appearing in the App Store recently. Apple has stated that any application can take up to 24 hours to appear in the App Store. If no update is available, be sure to check our social channels for more info.

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