With Chapter 3 Season 2 of Fortnite comes the Drum Shotgun, a powerful new weapon for dispatching enemies and attaining a Victory Royale. In Fortnite, where an ever-decreasing field of play makes close-quarters combat an inevitability, shotguns are invaluable for their high damage capacity at short range. Thusly, the new Drum Shotgun, with its immensely high rate of fire and impressive damage output, has attracted attention in the metagame, and with that attention comes controversy.
Twitch star Tyler Blevins, better known as Ninja, has returned to Fortnite to try out the new Zero Build Mode, with swathes of fans tuning in to see him play the game that made him famous. And while Blevins has praised Epic’s recent commitment to the battle royale, he has voiced some qualms about the state of the Drum Shotgun.
In a stream on May 13, Ninja faced up against a player aboard the Tiled Towers IO Airship. Equipped with full shields and a powerful SMG, he was quickly torn to shreds by the powerful Drum Shotgun. The streamer decried the weapon, stating that “It requires no skill” and begging Epic to “get it out of the game.” Elaborating, he says “It’s a broken-ass gun that needs to be removed because it’s an elo-inflator.” He concludes his rant by saying “A five-year-old with a fricken’ controller just jetpacks and locks on with whatever weapons he’s using, and it’s probably the Combat SMG or the Drum.”
It’s difficult to argue with Ninja’s logic here, as the Drum Shotgun has dominated the meta since its release. The Drum’s ability to melt shields at short range and its high fire rate make it a faster killer than any other weapon in the game.
Every other shotgun in Fortnite has its own set of drawbacks, like the Striker Pump Shotgun or the new Ranger Shotgun, which can deal large amounts of damage but have slow rates of fire. The Drum Shotgun, however, has no such obvious drawbacks other than suffering from the same damage falloff as every other shotgun. In the clip, Ninja is carrying a grey Auto Shotgun, another close-range weapon present in Chapter 3, Season 2. This gun, with its comparatively high rate of fire, is almost entirely redundant against the Drum which can easily outfire and outdamage it.
Over the five years since its release, Epic has made some historically questionable additions to the weapon roster, and while the game has remained fairly balanced throughout, calls for nerfs and removals have sometimes made an appearance with new additions. In Chapter 1 Season 10, streamer CouRageJD called for the removal of the BRUTE Mechs, leading to him rage-quitting a tournament. As weapons and items are frequently vaulted in Fortnite with the arrival of a new season, Loopers don’t have to wait long to see whether the Drum Shotgun will make the cut with the launch of Chapter 3 Season 3.
Fortnite is currently available for Android, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.
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