The next season of Fortnite starts today, but while Apple and Epic Games are in litigation, iOS and macOS users will be left without an update patch. Besides, Apple platform players will be stuck on the old version of Fortnite, and they will only be able to play against each other in multiplayer.
Fortnite was removed from the App Store after Epic Games added direct purchases to the game, bypassing the App Store rules.
After that, Epic Games filed a lawsuit against Apple, which in response threatened to delete the developer's account, which would deprive the creators of other games for iOS and macOS of such a powerful tool as Unreal Engine. The game engine's licensees have expressed serious concern about Apple's actions, as their projects related to iOS and macOS may depend on them.
In court, Apple was banned from deleting the Epic Games developer account but allowed not to return Fortnite to the App Store.
This battle with Apple will split Fortnite into two categories of players. Players on PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, PC, and Android will have access to all the new content dedicated to the Marvel Universe. iOS and macOS users will be stuck with patch 13.40, released in August.
For now, Fortnite's status is entirely dependent on Epic Games' actions, as Apple has promised to bring the game back to the App Store if the developer adheres to the App Store rules. But Epic Games thinks differently:
"Apple is asking that Epic revert Fortnite to exclusively use Apple payments. Their proposal is an invitation for Epic to collude with Apple to maintain their monopoly over in-app payments on iOS, suppressing free market competition and inflating prices. As a matter of principle, we won't participate in this scheme. You, as a mobile device owner, have the right to install apps from sources of your choosing. Software makers have the right to freely express their ideas and to compete in a fair marketplace. Apple's policies take these freedoms away."