Fortnite Chapter 5 Season 1 — Boss battles, Lego, and everything else new

(Image credit: Epic Games)

Fortnite has been having one hell of a moment lately between the new season's highly anticipated release and this weekend's Big Bang live event, which culminated in the destruction of the Chapter 4 island and a virtual concert from Eminem. 

As part of the event, Epic announced three new games coming to the Fortnite experience, including a LEGO-themed survival/crafting adventure, Rocket Racing developed by the studio behind Rocket League, and Fortnite Festival, a music game from Harmonix, the creators of Rock Band, where you can play in bands solo or with friends.

And it all leads up to Epic rolling out Fortnite Chapter 5 Season 1 this week. Dubbed the Underground, the new season brings with it a number of new in-game locations and map redesigns, the addition of five powerful boss characters, and tons of other new features. 

You can check out the trailer for the new season below, featuring Family Guy’s Peter Griffin and Metal Gear’s Snake.

When does Fortnite Chapter 5 Season 1 begin?

Fortnite's servers went down late Saturday evening and into Sunday morning for a few hours as Epic pushed the update, but Chapter 5 Season 1 is now live. You should be able to install it right now (though you may still be looking at lengthy queue times with so many other players rushing to check it out too). 

Everything new with Fortnite Chapter 5 Season 1

The Fortnite Chapter 5 Season 1 update brings a new railway to the game complete with a train you can hop on to travel around the map as well as marinas, mansions, and new grassland and snowy areas. 

Five boss characters have also been scattered about the island. As part of The Underground, your mission is to take down The Society, a mysterious organization that's been pulling the strings behind the scenes and made off with Peely. 

Take down each of The Society's bosses, one of whom is Family Guy's Peter Griffin, to earn a medallion that unlocks a very handy feature: the ability to regenerate shields over time. With the drawback that the medallion works as a beacon to alert other players to your location on the map. The effect stacks too: “The more medallions you have, the more precise the radius of your exact location,” Epic explained in a press release.

Other additions include: a new Cars section in players' lockers to customize their vehicles with different bodies, decals and wheels; a weapon called the Ballistic Shield that let’s you “defend yourself with the shield while shooting the pistol at the same time;” the ability to move while healing or restoring shields; a new SUV vehicle; and the ability to mod weapons in certain areas around the island. When it comes to car customizations, certain cosmetics from Rocket League will also carry over for those who play both games. 

Looking ahead, Epic announced the upcoming Lego Fortnite experience, a collaboration between Epic and Lego that'll be available in-game starting on December 7. Details are pretty scarce at the moment, but it's being described as an "all new survival crafting adventure." You can check out the teaser trailer here.

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Alyse Stanley
News Editor

Alyse Stanley is a news editor at Tom’s Guide overseeing weekend coverage and writing about the latest in tech, gaming and entertainment. Prior to joining Tom’s Guide, Alyse worked as an editor for the Washington Post’s sunsetted video game section, Launcher. She previously led Gizmodo’s weekend news desk, where she covered breaking tech news — everything from the latest spec rumors and gadget launches to social media policy and cybersecurity threats.  She has also written game reviews and features as a freelance reporter for outlets like Polygon, Unwinnable, and Rock, Paper, Shotgun. She’s a big fan of horror movies, cartoons, and miniature painting.