Servers for the popular Fortnite video game have been down since 4 a.m. ET this morning, as Epic Games conducts scheduled maintenance and rolls out new content at the same time, an unusual combination. It was a few days later that Playground mode returned to Fortnite, and now Epic has delivered an update on just went wrong with that launch. The fact that Fortnite refreshes its world and character themes every couple of months means that, so long as the game stays popular, there's probably going to be a lot more Funko Pops on the horizon.
"Our matchmaking is built on something called the Matchmaking Service (MMS), which is responsible for facilitating the "handshake" between players looking to join a match and an available dedicated server open to host that match. Players that connect to MMS request a server for their region, MMS assigns that player to a node, and the node picks a free server for the requested region from its list", Epic's post reads. Now we know, more specifically, that the issue is related to how many matches the Playground mode made versus the Battle Royale mode. That, by extension, meant that each node now had to manage a server list that was 15 times longer than it normally would be, increasing compute times dramatically.
To fix the limited time mode, Epic split the Playground's matchmaking service into its own service cluster. From there, Epic says that "the solution was to give the cluster the ability to bulk rebalance sessions from other nodes to ensure repeated lookups were not necessary".
Epic then tested the new process by hurling millions of theoretical players at the Playground mode, in a process they refer to as the "tweak-test-evaluate cycle" to be sure that the mode could withstand being relaunched. You'd best get saving.
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