Fortnite esports returns with FNCS Invitational | EarlyGame
Who will take the Axe of Champions?

The Fortnite competitive scene flares to life with the FNCS Invitational

Fortnite
FNCS Week 1
The price for being the best is having to be the best (Image credit: Epic Games)

The first week of the Fortnite Champion Series Invitational, or FNCS for short, is the start of a new online competitive event.

A new FNCS

The Fortnite Champion Series, better known as the FNCS, continued last weekend with Week 1 of the new FNCS Invitational. Players who placed at the top spots in the Open Qualifiers earlier this month and some of the biggest names in Fortnite Esports competed in a two-day Arena Solos event, with the leaderboard adding the results for both days.

The event will take place over three weeks and boasts a prize pool of $2,000,000. The top 300 players from Week 1 in every region advanced to the tournament that will take place this weekend. The grand finals will take place on May 23-24 across all regions. The full rules and the schedule for the event are available here.

The weekend's winners

Several well-known players made their mark on the event: NRG’s Benjy "benjyfishy" David Fish and Shane "EpikWhale" Cotton ended first in EU and third in NA-West, while TL Stretch placed second in NA-East. The 2019 World Champion Kyle "Bugha" Giersdorf qualified as well, cementing his reputation for reliable high placings with a top 20 finish on the NA-East server.

However, the event showed that fame itself is no guarantee for success and several big-name players did not make the cut – do not expect to see Thomas "72hrs" Mulligan, Benjamin "Dr Lupo" Lupo or Ben "Edgey" Peterson in the next round. Meanwhile, multiple successful streamers sat the event out – most notably Tyler "Ninja" Blevins.

Golden Axe of Champions
The prize of the best: the golden Axe of Champions

What's next

The quest for the Axe of Champions – the unique axe given to the FNCS finals winners alongside the cash prize – continues next week. As Fortnite publisher Epic Games previously announced that this year’s events will all be played online, we can safely expect a lot more planned in the meantime as well.

In the meantime, check out our other Fortnite coverage here.