Fortnite Season 5 Compact SMG Update – A week on.

In the second week of Fortnite Season 5, Epic released the Compact SMG (P90). Is the gun broken or balanced?

It has been one week since the Compact SMG, or P90 as we know it was released into Fortnite. Just like with the SMG last week, we’re going to look at how it has impacted the game. Also, like the SMG, it didn’t take long to find out how unbalanced the gun was. “Was” is the keyword here, that is no longer an issue.

It took an hour to get to a verdict. The fire rate, damage, and range were just too much. Before release, there was a leaked data-mine to say it was going to have 13-14 damage. However, this was actually false, as the damage total was actually 23-24 damage. That combined with the fire rate made the P90 a go-to gun for close range. There’s something even crazier though. There are actual clips of people running three P90s in their inventory. The drop rate was also rather high, so nearly everyone you faced had a P90.

There was an outcry on Reddit, with people questioning why you would run anything but a P90. Some even realized it was stronger than Thanos’ laser when he was an LTM. Epic Games clearly heard as they came out with a hotfix increasing the damage dropoff, decreasing the accuracy as well as decreasing damage and fire rate of both the P90 and the SMG. They also reduced the drop rate and spawn rate of the P90. Surprisingly, they also did the same nerf to the Suppressed SMG, but not the Drum Gun.


This change did help both guns become more balanced. I am happy because I actually said last week the SMG drop off and accuracy needed to be tweaked. This has made a difference and thus I do see some shotguns creeping back in. But just how much difference did it make?

This series is always going to be more based on my opinion. I am not a pro, nor do I intend to be. However, the “Spam meta” as some are calling it certainly suits me. I have gained more wins this season than I’ve ever had in Season two, three or four combined. Granted, I have also played a lot more and bush camped quite a lot too for the XP.

However, from the first time I got the P90 (Pre-nerf), I instantly knew it was broken. I ended up winning a 1v2 while both had higher ground than I with an RPG and a P90. The more they built, the more they took fall damage. It shredded them. Despite being tucked away until the top 15 and only getting a few kills in that time, I ended up getting half of the remaining kills to win a game I really shouldn’t have won.

Since the nerf, the P90 and SMG are still good, but shotguns are a little more viable now. However, I still feel I can easily drop the shotgun for either the Blue SMG or one of the P90’s. In fact, I still would take the P90 over any Shotgun, minus the legendary Heavy Shotgun. I still feel that the gun destroys buildings faster and does a lot of damage with how quick it shoots.

Now though, you have the Drum Gun. The Drum gun does the same as the P90, with less fire rate but more damage and more damage over distance. It makes both the P90 and Drum Gun viable, although the latter uses Medium bullets. Honestly, I find it is more based on your playstyle. If you shoot buildings from further away, the Drum Gun is the best to go. If you are playing in a duo match, I would likely prefer the Drum Gun. However, in Solo, if you are rather aggressive (like me), the P90 does it all and more.

In conclusion, the Compact SMG (P90) is a really good gun. It was broken for its initial release, but since the nerf, it has found its place within the game and meta. It is a great gun for close range, one that I personally would take over a Shotgun in most, if not all situations. However, it isn’t as good long range as it was at release and thus will not replace an AR as it once did. It is a gun that with a few more minor tweaks will be perfectly balanced.

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