Fortnite's volcano event: Here's everything we know so far

The island is getting hot and shaky.

Oscar Gonzalez Former staff reporter
Oscar Gonzalez is a Texas native who covered video games, conspiracy theories, misinformation and cryptocurrency.
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Oscar Gonzalez
2 min read

Lava is flowing from the Fortnite volcano.

Epic Games

When Epic released season 8 of Fortnite: Battle Royale in February, there was a new addition to the island: a volcano. 

Players of the popular online game noticed Wednesday that something was different when they landed. The area around the volcano was shaking and a rune -- a mysterious floating object displaying a symbol -- had appeared above it. 

Players began "feeding" the volcano items and materials, which caused a meter in the rune itself to fill and made the volcano more active. Later, the volcano stopped accepting items, which players assumed would be the end of the event, but it instead reset, requiring players to deposit even more items. 

Thanks to data miners -- people who dig through the game's data files for clues on what's coming up -- there's further evidence the volcano event might be right around the corner. 

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What time is the event?

One data miner found the time for an "Unvaulting Event" in the game's code on Thursday. The scheduled starting time for the event appears to be 3 p.m. ET/12 p.m. PT on May 4. 

On Friday, right at noon PT, Fortnite players noticed a countdown clock appeared over the vault on the island. It was counting down from 24 hours, thus adding more proof that an event will happen on Saturday.

Holding these events over the weekend allows for more players to log on. Last year, the in-game rocket launch event had many players logging in just to see what would happen. 

What happens when the volcano erupts?

One key to knowing what might happen at the event is to take note of what Epic named it: the Unvaulting Event. The countdown clock that appeared on Friday is right above a vault. What's in the vault is unknown. 

The name could also relate to the term "vaulting," which is what Epic calls when it removes a weapon or item from the game for various reasons.

As for the natural disaster side of the event, data miners discovered multiple assets found in the latest update to the game -- the v8.51 patch for those following things closely -- that may be linked to a volcano eruption. 

Some of the assets found were lava chunks, sounds for the event and a new in-game effect. One data miner also discovered what the volcano may look like when it erupts.

What happens next?

These in-game events tend to be segue from one season to the next. The game is currently in season 8, and the Fortnite season 9 release date is expected to be May 9. 

Whatever happens at the event will likely be the storyline catalyst for the changes made when the new season starts. This can include changes to the island, new skins and other additions to the gameplay. 

Epic didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. 

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Originally published May 1, 1:17 p.m. PT.
Update, May 2: Adds details about Fortnite's v8.51 patch and volcano event. May 3:  Adds more details about event.