The opening screen in Fortnite currently announces the upcoming arrival of a new heavy sniper rifle, and recent leaks indicate that it could radically shift the game’s basic strategy.
“New Epic and Legendary sniper rifle capable of dealing high damage to structures,” the in-game text explains. The Heavy Sniper is “coming soon,” which most likely means that we’ll see it in tomorrow’s weekly content update.
Fortnite: Battle Royale Leaks has posted what it claims are the gun’s stats, and they are beastly. The weapon had been known in the community for weeks now, due to players data mining the available version of the game:
Epic Heavy Sniper:— Fortnite: Battle Royale Leaks (@FNBRLeaks) August 12, 2018
150 Body Damage
342 Headshot Damage
Legendary Heavy Sniper
157 Body Damage
About 355 Headshot Damage
The account also has footage of the weapon in action:
Here's our first in-game look at the upcoming Heavy Sniper Rifle weapon via @FNBRLeaks: pic.twitter.com/R7lzLRhDi4— Fortnite Battle Royale News (@FortniteBR) August 12, 2018
The weapon’s stated purpose is to inflict heavy damage on structures, but a slow reload speed would mean that the player hiding behind the wall would have time to either build another structure, move out of the way or fire back.
This is a weapon that looks like it will be able to one-shot anyone in the game. But then again, a slow reload speed would mean that only the best snipers will be able to pull that off before immediately moving out of position to avoid a counterattack. Although the Heavy Sniper Rifle is going to be a powerful weapon on the battlefield, but so far it sounds like it will change basic strategies without breaking the game.
But who knows? We’ll have to wait to see how the community actually uses the Heavy Sniper; the pre-release reactions to every weapon and change often seem overblown compared to how players actually feel about them when the content is released.