'Fortnite' Weather and Flare Guns Update: Release Date and Time Revealed

Fortnite fans should take note: An imminent update will be adding flare guns and extreme weather (including tornadoes) to the island.

Chapter 3, Season 1 of the battle royale shooter began on Monday, December 6 and featured some pretty substantial additions. Among other things, this patch completely overhauled the map, refined the traversal mechanics, and debuted the ability to web-swing around using the Spider-Man mythic item.

Since then, there haven't been too many significant changes to Fortnite Chapter 3. The Winterfest event dominated the latter half of December and there was a New Year's celebration towards the end of 2021 but, other than that, things have been relatively quiet.

For comparison's sake, at this point in the 'Invasion' season from last summer, Epic Games had already introduced alien parasites and mothership abductions. Meanwhile, there were only a couple of weeks between the start of Fortnite Chapter 2, Season 8 and its v18.10 update in September.

In other words, it feels like the next big thing for Fortnite Chapter 3 is long overdue. Yet reputable data-miners — like @Shiina and @Hypex —are claiming that we will have to wait another week for V19.10 to roll out, as it is currently slated for Tuesday, January 18.

To tide you over until then, a smaller update will be launching later today (January 11). According to the data miners (who have taken a behind-the-scenes peek at the game's code) this will see the flare gun item being unvaulted and the implementation of dynamic weather.

It's worth noting that these leakers rarely get these things wrong, as they accurately reported details on the Naruto bundle, the Winterfest cabin, and the existence of Chapter 3 itself, long before any of these things were officially confirmed by Epic.

What Is in the New 'Fortnite' Update?

Anyone who saw the early promotional materials for Fortnite Chapter 3, Season 1 (aka "Flipped") will remember getting glimpses of tornadoes devastating the island.

These destructive tempests will form in the middle of battle royale matches and then move around the map. In terms of what they mean for gameplay, leaked challenges have confirmed that you will be able to jump inside the whirlwinds and then ride them, much like you already do in Battlefield 2042.

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Tornadoes aren't the only aspect of extreme weather coming to Fortnite, however, as data miners have uncovered that we will be getting lightning storms as well. If you are struck by an electrical bolt from one of these then you will take 10 damage but also gain a speed boost, similar to when you consume a chilli chug splash.

This should majorly shake up the dynamic of Fortnite matches, given that the weather is currently very samey across the game. It doesn't even rain outside of scripted events.

In addition to all of this, the new update will also be unvaulting the flare gun item, which is going to be needed for some upcoming quests.

When Is the Weather Update in 'Fortnite'?

Although there is currently no exact release time for today's update, many are anticipating that it will be rolled out sometime in the early hours of the morning (ET). This would match up with previous updates, which tend to arrive in the window between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m. ET.

@Hypex on Twitter has claimed that it will be a little later, launching at around 9 a.m. ET instead.

Either way, you certainly won't have to wait long to get stuck into the new content.

UPDATE 01/11/22, 5:17 a.m. ET: This article was updated to add the tweet from @Hypex, claiming that the Fortnite update will be launching at 9 a.m. ET.