'Fortnite' is now an Olympic esport
The first Olympic Esports Week starts June 22nd.
Ever wish your Fortnite skills could lead to Olympic glory? They can now. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has added Fortnite to the Olympic Esports Finals lineup. A dozen players from the Fortnite Champion Series will participate in an International Shooting Sport Federation-backed sharpshooting competition on a special Fortnite Creative Island. There won't be any last-one-standing battles or building demonstrations, then, but this will give you a chance to see some of the world's best virtual sport shooters in action.
Simultaneously, the IOC has opened up ticket sales for the Olympic Esports Week, which centers on the first in-person finals of the 2023 competition series. If you can make it to Singapore between June 22nd and June 25th, it will cost you 10 SGD (about $7.50) to attend one day or 20 SGD ($15) for the three days of competition starting June 23rd. The Fortnite sport shooting matches take place June 24th. You can stream the events through both Olympics.com and the Olympics' social media channels.
The Olympic Esports Series already included nine games that roughly line up with real-world sports run by international federations. The mix includes Just Dance, Gran Turismo racing, Zwift cycling and even web chess. It's a follow-up to the Olympic Virtual Series from 2021, which covered five digital sports. The IOC sees this as part of a broader effort to foster esports and connect with the video game community.
The addition of a Fortnite island is in step with the Committee's esports goals: this is a "peaceful competition" with a physical equivalent. You still aren't about to see a digital Olympics featuring Counter-Strike 2 or League of Legends. With that said, Fortnite is clearly the most popular game to reach the Esports Series. Theoretically, that could bring in audiences who would otherwise pass in favor of conventional esports tourneys.