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Fortnite’s new update proves that the rats actually do run this city

The rats run Tilted Towers

Three characters from Fortnite carefully walk through metallic goo. One is Spider Gwen from Spider-Man, one looks like a robot, and the other wears a hip outfit with bleached dreads. Image: Epic
Ana Diaz (she/her) is a culture writer at Polygon, covering internet culture, fandom, and video games. Her work has previously appeared at NPR, Wired, and The Verge.

Fortnite’s latest 22.40 update hits Tuesday, as part of the ongoing Season 4 event called Paradise. And it looks like developers will be releasing skins and cosmetic items themed around the 2022 FIFA World Cup and also, very importantly, rats.

Fortnite news Twitter account Hypex shared an image showing a data mine of future cosmetics and styles. A number of World Cup themed items appeared throughout, but a few new ratty additions really jumped out at us. There will be a skin named “Vermina,” and the image shows a goth girly with rat ears in a crouching position. “She always manages to squeak by,” the description reads.

Rats have become de facto celebrities in the past month. In the wake of an uptick in rat sightings across the city, New York City’s head of sanitation delivered the following line to the good people of NYC: “The rats are absolutely going to hate this announcement, but the rats don’t run this city, we do.”

The line felt more like it came out of a sitcom episode rather than a municipal press conference. But it was real! And audio clips of the speech became a major trend on TikTok and positioned rats to be the center of internet culture. I really want to believe that Fortnite is getting so many vermin-themed items because of that single speech.

It’s also looking like we’ll get a “Camille” skin with an alternate style that will just fully turn you into a rodent with blood red eyes. It’s lovely.

If rats aren’t your thing, the update also contains a bunch of aesthetic items themed around the 2022 FIFA World Cup, which starts in Qatar on Nov. 20. Or if you’d prefer Fast and Furious vibes, the game also has a special mode themed around the soccer car game, Rocket League.

I don’t know about you, but I’m hoping for a world where my rat girl can win it all and scurry off with a World Cup Trophy of her own.