Happy Birthday Fortnite! (and Hello Summer Skirmish)

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Happy 25th July! If it’s your birthday, congratulations! But guess whose birthday it also is? It’s Fortnite’s, released exactly one year ago today! How are you celebrating? (If you’re not taking advantage of some super cool rewards, that is?)

Well, here at team Gankstars we’re busy cheering on our top pros Logan and Solo Nazgul in the Fortnite Summer Skirmish Series. There’s a lot on the line with two whole months of exciting competitive play to watch and a whopping $8 million total in prizes up for grabs. Epic Games really have spared no expense, inviting top players and content creators to face off against one another for a slice of some serious cash.

Kicking off on the 14th, our boys have already stamped the Gankstars mark on the contest, coming sixth in the opening duos competition and earning themselves just over $13k, followed by Nazgul duking it out in the first solos competition. And that’s just in the first two weeks. Is there much more to come? You bet, stay tuned!

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Whilst we’re waiting though, let’s ask ourselves a question. In a game that has 125 million players worldwide, how do you go from being no-one to getting a personal invite from Epic themselves to play against the best names on the globe?

Super enthusiastic Logan attributes his success to a dramatic shift in attitude. “I was a COD kid,” he laughs, “I was a jerk before.” Describing how one day he had scrolled back through comments he had made online and realised that he did not like the person he had become, Logan states that the only way to grow yourself is to create bridges and make a lot of friends and connections. “I wouldn’t have met Ceice or my girlfriend or joined Gankstars or anything if I hadn’t of changed.”

Making an effort to shift his personality nearly 180 degrees almost overnight, Logan says his game has improved incredibly and he strives to be as chill as completely possible, wanting Fortnite and esports to be an enjoyable place where he can go to relax - a place of happy memories and good times.

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As for the Summer Skirmish? Logan still feels that it was surreal to get an invite alongside big name players. “I love the TSM guys,” he says when asked about the competition, “and Cypher and TimTheTatman are heroes.” Moving forward, he says he’d like to play against or with them. “They’re pretty awesome people,” he adds, “I never thought I’d be anywhere near them in gaming.”

Solo Nazgul, on the other hand, is not as much of a wraith as his name would imply despite being shrouded in online mystery. Finding his gaming roots in MMOs like World of Warcraft and Maplestory, he switched to the MOBA genre after falling for Defense of the Ancients and now has a long list of competitively played titles to his name. These include Heroes of the Storm, Paragon, League of Legends, Halo 5 and several others. Phew! Where did he even find time for all those?

No stranger to esports, Nazgul discusses the day before the duos tournament. “Practice was very rough,” he mentions thoughtfully, “we were losing a lot.” Deciding not to let the losses play on their minds, the two decided to put it behind them for the night and resumed practice the next day. “We woke up and played normal duos for an hour and a half. We won every game and felt good,” he says, somewhat more chipper, “then we went over a simple game plan and did two practice games where we died, but it didn’t phase us.” Nazgul describes the pair as being very focused without the pressure of having high expectations of themselves; in the moment nothing could be changed and although it got stressful at times, they remembered what gaming was really about: having fun. “We had to think on the spot and about what to do when entering the final circles - we had to work around the lag,” he says when asked about problem solving on the fly, “but this means we put more thought into it and learned a lot.”

Knowing that they were up against some of the top players in Fortnite meant that Nazgul and Logan decided to play safe, a strategy he would take into the solos tournament later, but what does he want in the next few weeks of the Summer Skirmish? “I’m hoping to play more solos or squads - I want the whole team to play together.”

And speaking of the whole team, have you seen our special birthday message to Fortnite yet?

Anyway, if you haven’t already followed Solo Nazgul and Logan on Twitter yet, what are you waiting for? Want to wish Fortnite a happy level up day? Why not tweet them to say hi? And don’t forget to tell them that Gankstars sent you!

If you want to check out some VODs or watch the Summer Skirmish live, everything is being broadcast on the official Fortnite Twitch.tv stream. Click here to check your timezone and set your alarm so you don’t miss out on your favourite upcoming matches.

See you on the Battle Bus!

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