A week-and-a-half ago, the Fortnite community groaned as Epic Games revealed that they would be re-introducing the Guided Missile. Only a select few wanted it back, as seen by the “Is the Guided Missile coming back?” and “Is the Guided Missile still in Fortnite?” Google searches. Previously, the rocket lasted three days before being removed due to public outcry. The suppression rate, the speed of the rocket, and damage were too hard to deal with. It often meant that the first person to pull it out in the safety of their 1×1 would win the fight (and sometimes the game). With tweaks to all three, the Guided Missile is back, and it has (so far) lasted longer than before, but why is that? As always, we’ll be looking at the impact it has had on the game, one week on. Make sure to check out my breakdown on the new SMG and Compact SMG before this if you haven’t already.
So what exactly did Epic Games change on the Guided Missile? Well, they decreased the damage to players significantly and slowed down the speed of the rocket, as well as how quick you can turn it. Small changes, but surprisingly enough. For the first time in Season 5, I think this “new” weapon is actually balanced straight from the box, as they would say. Unlike the previous one, I think that this Guided Missile can stay. In fact, I would somewhat argue it may even be underpowered!
For a start, with the speed of the rocket, it means that you as the player are more vulnerable to other people. There is also a large bang when used so if you’re close to someone while using it, expect to die as soon as, or before you have even finished using the rocket. Secondly, with the decrease in turn speed, it means that if there is a player who is building to save themselves, they won’t die or get hit because they missed one piece of their 1×1. Finally, if they are a slow builder, they will take less than 90 damage, which is rather fair.
On the flipside though, this makes me wonder why exactly you would use the Guided Missile. It takes up a slot of your already minute inventory, one that you could use for a Grenade Launcher or RPG that does more damage, and in a way is better than the Guided Missile. Then you have to take into account your vulnerability when using it. The only way I see this being used is if you are in a 1×1 late game and are scouting for people to find. Before top five, however? I think it’s pretty much useless.
In addition, there also seems to be a low drop rate of the Guided Missile. I play pretty much four-five hours a day and since it has been re-introduced I have had it once. I have also only ever seen other players have it twice. Three times in a week. That is really low. This could be due to players like me not valuing the Guided Missile, but it also could be a low drop rate.
Overall, I see the Guided Missile as balanced, if not underpowered. I think that the only reason you would use it is in a top five situation for scouting, or else you are a sitting duck, and it’s not worth the risk. Tune in next week where we will be looking at the new Double-Barreled Shotgun and seeing what impact that makes to the game and the SMG-heavy meta.