FNCS 2021 Chapter 2, Season 5 Starts Soon: Are You Ready? | EarlyGame
One of the most important tournaments of Fortnite is coming to us

FNCS 2021 Chapter 2, Season 5 Starts Soon – Are You Ready?

FNCS 2021
FNCS 2021 will kick off in early February! (Credit: Epic Games)

It's finally that time again! Epic announced the start of FNCS 2021 last night and players are excited! What prize pool will be fought for this year? In which format will the FNCS be played? We have all the details for you!

At the end of 2020, Epic already announced that the Fortnite Champion Series (FNCS) will be held in a trio format throughout 2021. And now, yesterday, they've revealed even more details about FNCS 2021 - it's all about the possible prizes, the format, broadcast plans, gameplay adjustments, and more tournament offerings. We've summarized the most important info for you.

FNCS 2021 Chapter 2, Season 5 Format

The FNCS format should be familiar to players. The scoring will continue to balance eliminations and general placement. However, the following changes have been announced: Players will compete in a single cross-platform player pool. This allows players on multiple platforms to play together as teammates.

  • Weekly Qualifiers will have an additional Round to pare down to the final lobby more gradually. See details below.
  • Once qualified to the Semi-Finals, teams will be locked and not be able to play in additional Qualifiers. This means if a team directly qualifies to the Semi-Finals in Week 1, that team won’t be able to influence Week 2 or Week 3’s Qualifiers.
  • Semi-Finals and Finals will be played out on separate weekends to better manage both player fatigue and tournament operations.
  • All prizes have been shifted to the Finals.
  • The top three teams from each region’s Finals will auto-qualify for the next season’s FNCS Finals. Note: This change requires that all three members of the team remain together during the next season.
  • FNCS Champions and other consistent top performers will earn the opportunity to be invited to the mid and end-of-year prize competitions.
  • Slightly different scoring formats for single lobby vs. multiple lobby gameplay, to account for increased level of competition and the increased challenge of obtaining eliminations in the later stages.

The fact that the players in this year's FNCS have to compete in a single cross-platform group has already been met with fierce criticism on Twitter. The difference in skill levels is too great. Even PC player and Fortnite world champion Bugha tweeted:

FNCS 2021 Chapter 2, Season 5 Schedule

The first FNCS will begin in early February with the first qualifying round and end in mid-March with the finals. The exact schedule is as follows:

  • Qualifier 1: February 4-7
  • Qualifier 2: February 11-14
  • Qualifier 3: February 18-21
  • Bye Week: February 25-28
  • Semi-Finals: March 5-7
  • Reboot Round: March 12 & 13
  • Finals: March 12-14

Epic Games has explained in detail the different phases of the FNCS on its website. It describes them as follows:


In each week, the best trios battle their way through multiple rounds, so in the end 33 trios compete in the final round. The top 10 trios in each region's final round advance to the semifinals. All trios that advance to Round 2 will receive Series Points.

Qualification FNCS
Example of the server region Europe. (Credit: Epic Games)

Additional opportunity to qualify:

After three weeks, the top 102 trios (based on their Series points) will also advance to the semifinals, for a total of 132 trios in each region.


Once teams advance to the Semi-Finals, they will be placed into four groups in their respective region. Each group consists of 33 unique teams. The top 8 teams from each group will advance to Finals. Teams that placed 9th-16th in each group will compete in the Reboot Round.

Reboot Round

Teams ranked 9th-16th in each Semi-Finals group will move to a special consolation round, the Reboot Round. The Reboot Round is a winners-take-all single match where the team that earns the Victory Royale will be awarded a qualifying ticket to the Finals.


With the competition down to the top 33 teams in each region, our Chapter 2 Season 5 FNCS winners (and new wielders of the Axe of Champions) will be determined across 12 total matches in two days (6 matches each day). Additionally, the top 3 teams from each region will automatically qualify for the Chapter 2 Season 6 FNCS Finals.

Axe of Champions Fortnite
Who'll take the Axe of Champions? (Credit: Epic Games)

FNCS Prize Pool

Let's get to the exciting part of the FNCS. The prize pool sits at $20 million for the entire year of 2021. (for comparison, in 2020 it was $17 million). Four FNCS seasons will be held throughout this entire year. Each season will award $3 million in prize money, bringing us to $12 million in FNCS prize money for the entire year of 2021. The regional distribution of the $3 million is based on the current number of players generally playing and competing in each region.

Competitions will also be held in the middle and end of the year in which the top FNCS players in each region will compete in multiple competition formats for an additional $8 million in prize money.

FNCS 2021 Fortnite prize distribution
The prize distribution per region for the current season. (Credit: Epic Games)

Gameplay Changes

With Season 5, we received new weapons and map changes in Fortnite. To align the gameplay of FNCS with this, Epic has announced the following changes for the tournament:

  • Addition of Lever Action Shotgun
  • Vaulted Rift Fish
  • Vaulted Shockwave Grenades
  • Removal of Elevators and IO Guards
  • Sand tunneling will remain in competitive playlists and tournaments as long as it remains in the core playlists, as it is a major feature of this Season’s map.
  • Adjustments to the number of Bars players start with in competitive playlists. Epic will continue to monitor how the Bars system fits in competitive and will make adjustments as necessary.

That was the summary of the most important details for the Fortnite Champion Series. You can read everything else in the official Fortnite competition section.

For everything else around the FNCS and other tournaments, we will keep you up to date in our Fortnite section where you can news like:

For everything else gaming and esports, feel free to check out EarlyGame or chat with us on our Discord server.

Original article by EarlyGame's Alisa Eiber.