Fortnite players travelled to a galaxy far, far away on Saturday, and it seems like they'll stay there for a while. A Star Wars event was hosted in the popular co-op shooter at 11pm on Saturday, December 14. Players rushed to Risky Reels – Fortnite's in-game movie theatre – for the event, where a never-before-seen clip of Star Wars IX: The Rise of Skywalker was premiered.
It was a unique location to promote the upcoming film, which will be released in the UAE later this week. The event began with the iconic Millennium Falcon flying into the Fortnite world amidst a dogfight with several TIE fighters and star destroyers. After eventually defeating the fighters, the Falcon landed next to the players. J J Abrams—in an in-game avatar that looked remarkably like the director— then appeared to introduce the new clip. Players got a chance to vote on what the scene was about before the clip aired.
The minute-long scene featured Rey, Finn and Poe sneaking into a star destroyer. Two Stormtroopers show up to stop them. Rey confronts them with a Jedi mind trick.
Players and Star Wars fans were expecting the clip to be debuted at the event, what followed next was a surprise. Players voted for their favorite lightsaber color. A precursor to the announcement that lightsabers were now available to equip in-game.
There was considerable promotion leading up to Saturday’s event. Posters were placed in various locations around the Fortnite island. Trucks were at Risky Reels, preparing the virtual stage for the event. In November, Stormtrooper skins became available in-game. Earlier this week, Epic Games—the developer behind Fortnite—added Rey, Finn and Sith trooper skins to the game.
Epic ran into some server issues during the event. Many players found that they were unable to log into the game. Despite these issues, the event could still be considered a hit with millions watching on Twitch and other streaming platforms. This is not the first time Epic has partnered with a blockbuster film franchise. Fortnite has previously featured skins and hosted events based on the Avengers and John Wick films. In February, electronic musician Marshmello performed a concert in Fortnite, with more than 10 million players attending in-game.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is the third installment of the Star Wars sequel trilogy. The film takes place a year after the events of The Last Jedi and is said to be a definitive end to the Skywalker saga. It is scheduled to be released across UAE cinemas on Friday, December 19.