If you load up Fortnite Battle Royale today, you'll be greeted with a new gameplay mode. Infinity Gauntlet is a solo-only gameplay mode that changes up the ruleset a bit, but also allows players to become Thanos from Avengers: Infinity War. The limited-time mode will only be around for a week, but it's proving to be an enjoyable diversion.
Thanos and the Infinity Gauntlet are ever-present and it's clear that Epic Games worked to make both the focus here. Like a normal match, 100 players paraglide into Fortnite Battle Royale's single map, attempting to be the last man standing. The first major change is the smaller playable region is already highlighted as you drop in; normally, you have some time before the first highlighted area appears and then you receive a time limit for the incoming storm to shrink the playing area. Here, the first timer marks the storm shrink, and it moves very quickly.
Once that first storm shrink hits, the Infinity Gauntlet appears somewhere on the map. It's not hidden: every player gains a marker on their map where the fabled weapon is sitting and when you get close you'll see a multi-colored skybound beam that shows its location. If you pick up the Gauntlet, you become Thanos. It's a pretty epic entrance, teleporting high into the sky only to come slamming back down to Earth.
While you're Thanos, you have enhanced abilities, but you're also locked out of certain basic moves. Thanos cannot build structures or use any other weapons, as all that is frankly beneath him. You gain the ability to leap high in the sky, kill most players with a one-two punch, fire a focused laser at your enemies, or deliver a charging slam punch that absolutely shreds structures in its path. When you're Thanos, you feel pretty damn strong in contrast to the average player.
At the same time, the cards are stacked against Thanos. Many believed that Avengers: Infinity War amount to Marvel Studios throwing its entire cast of heroes at Thanos; Fortnite Battle Royale's Infinity Gauntlet mode pays off on that idea. Like the Gauntlet itself, Thanos is always marked on the map. Not only that, every player also has Thanos' shield and life bar on their UI, so they know if Thanos is at full health or weak.
This means every player on the map is constantly hunting down Thanos. Sure, the Mad Titan is mad strong, but even he can't stand up to everyone shooting him all at once. (Pump Shotgun beats Iron Man.) Your life is boosted to 800 and you're given a full 200-point shield, but remember Thanos can't use healing items. The only way to lengthen your lifespan is to kill other players: doing so fully regenerates your shield. Against one player, Thanos is a monster. Against 3 or more players, it's better to run. Epic Games has already nerfed Thanos since his launch this morning, so this idea of Thanos vs. 100 is probably intended.
If you're able to pick up the Infinity Gauntlet and become Thanos, you will also find that all of the existing Fortnite Battle Royale emotes work with the new player model. Players have already captured videos of Thanos dabbing, dancing, and doing other nonsense.
It's a blast, because to make some of these videos and clips happen, whoever is playing Thanos has to ignore the match to make a clip. You can see in the first linked clip that another player is trying to shoot him while he dabs. Alternatively, you could run into a player who's aim isn't all that great, allowing Thanos to be the imposing figure he is in the film. (Sort of.) Either way, Thanos doesn't get much in the way of downtime.
Like 50v50 mode, it feels like Epic Games has another winner on its hands. I don't want to see the Infinity Gauntlet stay around all the time, but I wouldn't be opposed to it popping up here and there. If Epic Games can keep coming up with new ways to extend Battle Royale, Fortnite could be a long life ahead. Especially if collaborations like Marvel Studios are going to be the norm moving forward.