As of this morning, players eyeing loot llamas in Fortnite Save the World now know exactly what said llama will contain, before they spend v-bucks to purchase it. This new layer of consumer protection, which Epic is calling "X-Ray Llamas," replaces the old system of buying a llama and receiving a random assortment of goods and materials afterwards, which may or may not be what the player was hoping to receive.
With this new system, players can visit the X-Ray tab in the item shop and see what that day's llama has in store, including from gray items all the way up to how many times the llama may upgrade. If the llama's contents are of no use, the player can wait until the store refreshes at 7 p.m. Eastern, when a new llama will become available. Llama contents are still randomized for each specific player, and they still include the same duplicate protections as before -- the only difference is that players know what they're getting before they make the commitment.
The picture below shows my personal X-Ray tab as of press time, and you can see that this gold Super Hero Llama, if were I to purchase it, would grant me several new heroes and 1,000 event tickets. Since I know that none of the heroes included have particularly cute outfits, I can safely decline and save my v-bucks for something I actually want. Wild, right? Spending money on things I know I want, instead of a box that might have something I'm just okay with, sometimes?? Who ever could conceive of such a thing?
Of course, Epic probably isn't doing this out of the sheer goodness of its heart, despite this being an enormously beneficial change for players everywhere. You see, Epic (and by extension TenCent, which also owns this website), really, really wants Fortnite to go live in China, but has thus far been unable to make that happen. One of TenCent's main hurdles is that China has much stricter laws when it comes to loot boxes -- since 2017, China has required publishers to disclose the "draw probability of all virtual items and services" available in their games, according to Wikipedia. Today's change brings Fortnite Save the World in line with Chinese law, and since Creative Mode and Battle Royale don't have loot boxes, they're already good to go.
To Epic's credit, this new system does do a lot more than meet the bare minimum as required in China, and it should be commended for that. I sincerely hope Epic's example trickles down to other box-based games like Overwatch, which are explicitly designed to take advantage of people with addiction issues. Anyway, mini-llamas and event llamas will still be randomized since they can't be purchased with v-bucks, and therefore can't be purchased with real money.
This morning's update also swapped out last week's Frostnite challenge for a new one, in which players have no maps or mini-maps. Survive for 30 minutes in order to unlock the Spectral Blade Sword, which features a teleportation attack as its heavy strike, as opposed to the leaping attacking seen with last week's challenge sword.
And finally, last but not least, bringin' up the rear, it's Bulk Crafting. Players can now craft whole stacks of items at once, rather than waiting for 20 of the same item to queue up and be constructed, which is what we've had to endure until now. With this new system, the new stack of items only takes as long as one single item to craft, which can save literal minutes, and also means we don't have to listen to the new item sound dozens of times in a row. One might be tempted to ask why it took so long to implement a common sense feature like this, but we don't have the answer. We're sure it's probably ... something. There's definitely a reason.
That's all for this week, folks! If you're into bug fixes, UI changes, and that sorta thing, head on over to the full patch notes and go nuts.