There won't be any in-person Fortnite competitions this year (opens in new tab), which means no Fortnite World Cup. Carrying the load in the meantime is the Fortnite Competitive Series (FNCS), which holds various events for eye-watering amounts of money across the year (opens in new tab), and Epic's just detailed the year's big finish: the FNCS Grand Royale.
You know what they call a Grand Royale in Paris? Wait. This is the Chapter 2 Season 8 FNCS, for anyone who's keeping track, and Epic has as ever produced a unique format and ruleset for the competition (opens in new tab) which goes into great detail on how players can enter and assemble their Trios (the FNCS this year is focusing on squad trios rather than doubles and quads). The headline attraction as you've already seen is a total of just over $5 million being split across global regions: the lion's share of which, $2,250,300, is spread across Europe, because the region holds so many of the competitions.
The Grand Royale will take place across two weekends, the first November 11-14 for the qualifying stages, and the second November 19-21 for the Finals. When the event is ongoing, qualifying teams will enter an open 3-hour session where they can play up to 10 matches to earn as many points as possible: the higher your team's finish in the match, the more points. From there the top 33 teams go for a jaunt on the 'Victory Path' while those who didn't make the cut get another shot on the 'Reload Path'. The tournament rules at this stage descend into the various point-award schemes, so I'll spare you those, but gluttons for punishment can feast on the numbers here (opens in new tab).
Epic's done some pretty cool stuff with FNCS this year, and the publisher clearly realised it needs to put in extra effort when events lack the magic of a crowd and the spectacle they bring. This summer it started using creative mode as part of the competition (opens in new tab), and of course all this hums along in the background while the rest of us gawp at a giant Ariana Grande rocketing through the sky (opens in new tab).