Happy 5th Birthday Fortnite: Free rewards & a walk down history cover image

Happy 5th Birthday Fortnite: Free rewards & a walk down history

Fortnite celebrates its fifth birthday on September 26. Here is a rundown about the rewards available and a look back at the last five years.

It’s been quite the run for Epic Games. As a result of the annual Fortnite birthday celebration, the developers have introduced some new in-game quests for players to complete. Those who finish the quests will receive a free Back Bling, Pickaxe, and Emoticon. While it’s a relatively minor way to honor Fortnite’s five-year adventure, there’s no denying how far the game has come since 2017.

Today, you’ll learn about the quests you must complete to acquire Fortnite’s birthday rewards. Also, we’ll provide you with a brief history lesson about the iconic Battle Royale game and how it has evolved over the last five years.

Fortnite 5th Birthday Quests: how to unlock free items

Epic Games has yet to release the quests, but Fortnite leaker iFireMonkey revealed the information. According to his tweet, players will have three challenges to complete. Upon completion, you will unlock all three Fortnite Birthday rewards.

Here is a list of the challenges:

  • Use Balloons in a single match (0/5) – Unlocks the Pickaxe
  • Consume Birthday Cake in different matches (0/5) – Unlocks the Back Bling
  • Throw Birthday Presents (0/5) – Unlocks the Emoticon

Epic’s blog post regarding this celebration indicates Balloons and Presents will return for a limited time. So, once those items are in the game, you can work toward finishing the challenges above. Furthermore, players can expect to see the usual birthday celebration Battle Bus to honor five years of Fortnite Battle Royale. Lastly, the birthday event will happen between September 23 and September 27.

Five years of Fortnite Battle Royale

On Fortnite’s fifth birthday, it’s essential to reflect on how it became a titan of the industry. Fortnite’s journey over the last five years has been spectacular. The game arrived in 2017, and few knew what to expect until its popularity increased exponentially. Fortnite eventually gained a following and reached websites such as Twitch and YouTube, where Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, Turner “Tfue” Tenney, Ali “Myth” Kabbani, Ben “DrLupo” Lupo, and countless others pioneered the movement that helped Fortnite reach a broader audience. 

Since then, Epic Games has pushed Fortnite to the moon. In May 2018, Epic Games landed its first major Fortnite partnership with Marvel. As a result, a Fortnite x Avengers: Infinity War collaboration came to life, where players could pilot Thanos in a limited-time mode. That tweet received nearly 250,000 likes, making it one of the most prominent in Fortnite history. 

Collaborations as far as the eye can see

Fortnite continued to collaborate over the last four years with other popular video game franchises, movies, television shows, musical artists, content creators, and much more. Those crossovers include Star Wars, Marshmello, the National Football League (NFL), DC Comics, Halo, God of War, Terminator, Street Fighter, Ariana Grande, J Balvin, and so many more.

Recently, Epic Games inked deals with anime programs Naruto Shippuden and Dragon Ball Super. Subsequently, these two crossovers usurped the Fortnite x Avengers partnership in 2017, making them the two most popular in Fortnite’s history. Epic Games’ recent success shows that the game is still monumental despite some believing it’s a "dead game.”

Celebrating gameplay improvements & storytelling on Fortnite’s 5th birthday

Beyond collaborations, Fortnite revolutionized Battle Royale gameplay and storytelling. The game’s building mechanic set it apart from every other title on the market, which helped grow the audience. Players have certainly pushed the levels of what is possible in Fortnite. The recent inclusions of sliding, sprinting, and mantling are perfect examples of how a minor change heavily influences how Fortnite plays.

Also, let’s not forget the introduction of Zero Build–a game type that removed Fortnite’s fundamental mechanic. This change breathed life into a group of players who enjoy the gane but cannot keep up with the editing and building advancements. 

From a storytelling perspective, Fortnite is unquestionably a bit of a mess. In any case, the season-ending events from 2017 and 2018 aided the its notoriety. Millions of players would tune in on streaming websites or in-game to see which part of the map would change. Additionally, Epic Games continued these cinematic events to market and build anticipation ahead of a new season. According to The Verge, Fortnite’s “The End” event in October 2019 pulled 1.4 million concurrent viewers. 

Epic's questionable decisions over the years

It’s safe to say that, while the plot is a bit murky at times, Epic Games knows how to deliver an experience. Now the last five years have not been all positive. The mech suits from Season X, Infinity Blade, Boom Box, and the removal of Siphon from public matches are a few blunders. The community rarely shies away from its criticism when a season is objectively underperforming or the developers make an ill-advised decision.

Over time, the developers have been more receptive to feedback. The improved communication has allowed Fortnite to flourish continuously for five years,

It’s been an interesting five years for Fortnite ahead of the game’s fifth birthday. While it does not enjoy the same success as it did back in 2018 and 2019, it remains atop the gaming stratosphere. Somehow, a game that began as primarily a PvE game with a Battle Royale attached ultimately became one of the most popular titles in history. That achievement is worth celebrating.

Stay tuned to esports.gg for more Fortnite news and updates!