Fortnite is, to put it mildly, everywhere. Got skills? Why pwn the noobs from your couch when you could do it in front of an audience of hundreds at New York’s first-ever Fortnite In The Heights Tournament?
Coming on Saturday, Aug. 11 to the Armory New Balance Track & Field Center in Washington Heights, Fortnite In The Heights invites all gamers to bring their iOS device or Nintendo Switch to battle it out for a prize pool of $10,000. Tickets are $15, and anyone can sign up to play (limited only by the Armory’s capacity).
Organized by Silicon Harlem, The Armory Foundation, iHeartRadio and LinkNYC, the tournament will be livestreamed on The Armory’s Jumbotron and on Twitch. Doors open at 11 a.m., which also starts the clock on the two-hour preliminary round of games to qualify for the tournament. The top 400 players will move forward, with the winner decided at 5 p.m.
There is no age limit to participate, but players younger than 18 must have a parent or guardian accompany them or a permission slip allowing them to play. Spectator tickets are $15; a DJ and emcee will provide entertainment, and “healthy snacks” will be available for purchase.
Epic Games’ free-to-play video game Fortnite has become a global sensation, making $223 million in March alone. The premise of the game is simple: 100 players are dropped on an island and must fight to be the last man (or woman, but mostly teenage boy) standing.
The idea behind the event is at least in part to encourage taking part in what can legitimately be called sports here in the real world (which is reeling a bit because of Fortnite, ironically). Fortnite In The Heights is a “community-driven, family-friendly event, is designed to combine gaming, technology, and fitness for all,” according to the organizers. Early arrivals can even opt to run a few laps around the Armory track.
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“With more than 180,000 athlete visits each year to The Armory, many of whom are also eSports players, this will be a social competition for them,” says Armory Foundation Co-President Jonathan Schindel in a statement. “The seating configuration and technology at The Armory are ideal for eSports, and I expect we will also convert some of the gamers into trying out track and field.”