Being a Jedi in Fortnite again has saved Season 2 for me

A Fortnite character holding a lightsaber
(Image credit: TechRadar)

For most of last year, I was enjoying the new Chapter of Fortnite, where you could web-sling and collect points to eventually obtain Spider-Man's many costumes. But once Season 2 arrived in March, it felt as though most of the fun was taken away.

There was a heavy military presence across the maps, and everything felt like a chore. I've already reached level 66, but I don't know how. I've been casually completing the daily tasks, but have no interest in obtaining the Doctor Strange costume that mark's the upcoming Marvel film coming out on May 6.

However, with May 4 being Star Wars day, Epic Games decided to bring back lightsabers. At first, I thought they were merely melee weapons, like the axes and bats that you can use to knock down structures and objects.

It wasn't until I accidentally found that I could deflect bullets and perform attack combos with lightsabers that I was hooked again. It took me right back to the days of playing Dark Forces: Jedi Outcast and other games from the laser-sword-wielding series.

Finally, I'm enjoying Fortnite again, and it took a lightsaber, not a new season, to achieve that.

An elegant weapon

Fortnite lightsabers

(Image credit: TechRadar)

When May 4 usually lands, I play some of my favorite Star Wars games across the years – from Jedi Power Battles on the Dreamcast, to Star Wars: Obi-Wan on the original Xbox. But for as long as Fortnite has lightsabers to use, I'll be playing this for the foreseeable future.

So far, I've found Obi-Wan's lightsaber and Luke's green lightsaber, first seen in Return of the Jedi.

Imagine my surprise when I first selected the weapon and it ignited, ready to be swung against enemies and objects. Playing on PC, you can left-click to swing the blade and string hits together into combos when enemies are in close proximity, Or, you can hold down right-click to raise the lightsaber and deflect incoming bullets.

While there's a bunch of special May the 4th challenges to complete using the lightsaber, I simply don't care if I get these or not.

This one change has made Fortnite fun again – for me, at least. Seeing black-suit Spider-Man or Lara Croft wielding a lightsaber is a strange but great image, and as soon as I begin a match, I find myself looking around for the weapon instead of chasing shields.

But while it looks as though lightsabers will be available for only a limited time, I'd rather see them last for the whole season, just as Spider-Mans web-slinging ability did in the previous season.

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I've been looking forward to the upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi Disney+ series ever since it was rumored to be a film back in 2016. If Fortnite introduces a way of playing as the Jedi Master, as well as a way of using his lightsaber across the entire Season, then I'll be happy to pay for another Battle Pass.

But in the meantime, this latest May the 4th event only shows how much of a misstep Fortnite's latest season has taken. Its military story has taken precedence over gameplay. But like Luke Skywalker coming to the rescue with his laser sword, Star Wars has helped me enjoy the game again.

I'll be playing Fortnite for as long as the lightsabers are in the game, but Epic Games should consider refining the fun of this misjudged Season by making them a permanent fixture, instead of just a gimmick to mark May 4.

Daryl Baxter
Software & Downloads Writer

Daryl had been freelancing for 3 years before joining TechRadar, now reporting on everything software-related. In his spare time he's written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', alongside podcasting and usually found playing games old and new on his PC and MacBook Pro. If you have a story about an updated app, one that's about to launch, or just anything Software-related, drop him a line.