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Building Buffs and SMG Nerfs in Surprise August 9 Balance Update

You continue to do it, Reddit.

Epic today pushed a surprise Fortnite Battle Royale hotfix, which aims to better balance the ongoing issues of building health and SMG effectiveness. Initial wall HP has been increased across the board, while the Compact SMG and Drum Gun both received changes, some more significant than others.

Before today, walls started with 80 health, regardless of whether they were wooden, stone, or metal. Walls now start with 90, 100, or 110 health, respectively. "By increasing initial wall health values based on material type," Epic said, "material strength should feel more intuitive when making decisions." Lately, players have been expressing their displeasure at how quickly walls are destroyed by rapid fire weapons like the Compact SMG and Drum Gun. This boost to initial health should give players a few more seconds of cover, while also respecting the time investment made when harvesting stone and metal.

Over in the gun zone, the Compact SMG now does 21/20 damage instead of 22/21, and its magazine now holds 40 rounds instead of 50. From where we sit, the magazine size reduction is a lot more important than the damage nerf -- even without the nerf, dropping magazine capacity by 10 lowers the total minimum damage of a full magazine from 1,050 damage to 840 damage. Adding the nerf onto that lowers it further, but just to 800.

The Drum Gun's base damage remains unchanged, but several other, arguably more important alterations were made in today's update. The gun now does 70% damage at a range of 3,500 units, down from 80%, and 55% damage beyond 5,000 units, down from 65%. Jumping and targeting accuracy were also decreased, by 5% and 10% respectively. The Drum Gun is also now 40% less likely to spawn from chests and floor loot. Most importantly, perhaps, Epic has made the weapon's environmental damage fall-off rates match its player damage fall-off rates. So! Not only is the Drum Gun now harder to find, it's also less accurate, and less effective at range, against both people and structures.

Hopefully these changes will quell the festering outrage recently seen amongst Reddit's most vocal users, so Epic can get back to fixing what really matters.