16-year-old Bugha wins the US$3M Fortnite World Cup!
It has all led to this, the Fortnite World Cup Solos event. 100 of the best Fortnite players around the globe fighting it out in a massive battle arena across 6 matches. At the end of it all? A big old trophy and a stunning US$3 million (S$4.1 million) cash prize, the largest awarded to any single player in esports history.
Kyle ‘Bugha’ Giersdorf, a 16-year-old player from the US, won the Solos event triumphantly with 59 points in total — 26 points ahead of the second-place finisher. Bugha managed this by playing aggressively and placing highly in each of his matches. Let’s break how each of them went down.
In the beginning…
I think I speak for everyone when I say that at the start of Game 1, I expected Tfue to come out on top. Even the commentators were rooting for how gutsy he was playing, landing in Prudiz’s Block and planning to take out everyone who would dare to land with him. He even managed to pick up two legendary guns in the very first few minutes of the match.
Unfortunately, my hype was pretty misplaced as he went down off-screen fairly early. The real winner to keep an eye on was — surprise, surprise — Bugha. In a frantic late game fight with Kreo, Rhux and Psalm, Bugha managed to eliminate them all one after another.
Killing Kreo gave him a Victory Royale, with 9 entire kills! He shrugged at the camera at the end, utterly flustered and exhausted with no idea that the trophy would soon be his for the taking.
Obviously, Bugha was the most anticipated player for Game 2. Could he start a winning streak and earn another Victory Royale? Unfortunately, the answer was no. Bugha went down fairly early in the match, and the game carried on without missing a beat.
Game 2 ended in a frantic free-for-all that is typical of these matches. It didn’t last very long: Skite ended up beating Dubs just by staying in the playing circle. Poor Dubs fell off and died in the storm.
No one knew what to expect for Game 3; the win could go to anyone at that point. Bugha climbed into the top 10 but died at the hands of Peterpan, with just one kill under his belt. Peterpan didn’t fare much better, immediately dying to Wakie.
The top 6 struggled after that, with Riversan firing off missiles from above while the rest fought it out below. He ended up getting Skite after that, ending the latter’s hope for a winning streak as well. Just as it looked like Riversan might be clutching the win, Dubs came in to take the Victory Royale for himself.
With Game 4, we saw Tfue getting a rare kill. (Remember when I mentioned how he might come out on top? Yikes.) Mongraal killed him right after, which means he ends his fourth game with very, very little points in total.
Mongraal actually managed to get into the top 10 afterwards, fighting against the likes of Bugha, Nayte, Psalm and MrSavage. He went on to kill Nayte, Takamuramm and even Bugha, racking up a huge number of kills. Unfortunately, Psalm got him in the end, granting him his first Victory Royale in the Solos event.
The final stretch
By Game 5, Bugha was still in the lead by 8 points. Suddenly, that first place finish looks all too real, but he’s still going to have to work for it with two games to go. In a long running streak of disappointment, Tfue went down early by Aqua’s hand.
The final stretch saw 30 players chaotically battling it out in a circle that just wouldn’t stop moving. Bugha fought tooth and nail to get into the top 10, earning him more points in the lead. Unfortunately, Pzuhs got the drop on him, kicking him out of the top 5. Kreo won this time around, killing Pzuhs for the win.
Game 6! This is it, the final game of the Fortnite World Cup. Funk is the first to go, starting the match off with a bang. At this point, my mentions of Tfue border on bullying, but he actually did quite alright in this match! He hit top 30 and scored a couple eliminations before dying at the hands of Kurtz. No shame in that.
If you’ve been watching Fortnite games, you know that everything goes downhill in a matter of minutes once it’s down to the top 30 players. It was the same here, with players building forts at the speed of light, tossing grenades and bringing out the dreaded Flintlock pistol.
Bugha managed to stay in the top 10 for quite a while, only to be killed by Teeq, garnering some applause from the forthcoming winner. Crue beat out Stompy in the top 3, leaving him in a 1v1 fight against Tchub for the win. Unfortunately, the circle got Tchub in the end, leaving Crue with the Victory Royale.
Thanks to his aggression, Bugha still pulled ahead when it came time for the placements.
The champion, who was picked up by the Sentinels earlier this year, held nearly double the points of Psalm. No one else was even close to taking first place!
It’s the best of days for this 16-year-old, though he wasn’t the youngest at the Fortnite World Cup — funnily enough, the tournament’s average age was also 16. With US$3 million to his name, this is one competition he’s not likely to forget for a very long time.
– Reporting by Tim Augustin