Fortnite is a stylish video game by Epic Games that was announced 6 years ago and has progressed tremendously in both visual design and gameplay over the years. The game is heavily influenced by Plants vs Zombies, Orcs Must Die! and Minecraft, mixing action combat, grinding, building and tower defense into one unified gameplay.
Despite just launching through a paid Early Access, Fortnite has a ton of content with many features, to the point where it can be overwhelming to browse through the game’s confusing menus. Here are some pieces of information about the game’s basics and a few tips and tricks that might come in handy while working your way through Fortnite’s many progression barriers.
What is Fortnite?
Over 90% of the population vanished when a purple storm came out of nowhere. Those who survived now have to face the husks, zombie-like creatures of different sizes and with different powers. The player takes the role of the commander, controlling various heroes divided into four different classes in a battle to reclaim Earth from the storm and save the remaining population.
Fortnite is a combination of survival, tower defense and horde mode shooter in which four players join together to gather materials, explore, complete secondary missions, craft items, build and ultimately fight the storm and its spawns.
The first thing players should do in each mission is to explore the map. Exploration can uncover many things ranging from hidden treasures, to rewarding secondary missions and rare materials required to craft more powerful items. Explore the map and fill your backpack with everything you can because you’ll need them.
Almost everything can be turned into basic materials
All the materials and items looted while exploring the map are carried on to the next mission. Sadly wood, stone and iron are capped at 999 units and while that sounds like a lot, they can run out fairly quickly when you are building defensive structures and crafting items. But do not despair, all the objects on the map that are not mission related can be salvaged for these materials. Small boxes, chairs, houses, you name it, all can fuel your construction and crafting needs.
Don’t move when looting
Time is precious if you want to get the extra bonus at the end of a mission. Looting through each map’s containers for rarer materials and hidden guns or traps is important, but don’t be impatient and don’t move even the slightest when loot channeling or you will have to start over.
Build your path
Some of the secondary missions and hidden treasures can be found in the oddest places that can’t be reached by normal means. Get creative and build a path to those locations, the materials spent in the process can be replenished in no time.
Don’t jump off the map
In many ways Fortnite is an arcade game but this doesn’t mean its world doesn’t share similar rules with ours. Gravity is still punishing and falling from great heights will cause significant damage but nothing is as deadly as jumping off the map. Don’t worry though, death is not the end as the respawn button prompts quickly, but it doesn’t come without a price.
Building and fighting
Building labyrinthine defensive structures filled with traps works as a way of slowing down and even killing the husks charging the objective. But at the end of the day, the best defense is offense. In both early and later stages of the game building and fighting work in synergy and both are required to succeed. So don’t forget to train your aiming skills while becoming a Fortnite architect and vice versa.
Fortnite has a huge variety of weapons which include multiple types for both melee and ranged combat. But those who like shooting husks from a safe distance should be aware of the fact that guns have a damage falloff point. The falloff point is based on the distance to the target and the type of gun used, with pistols and shotguns being the most ineffective at distance.
Aim for the head!
Headshots deal extra damage and are a good way to quickly get rid of some of the weaker enemies. But headshots can also stagger, which makes them extremely useful against bigger and tougher targets.
Weapons have durability
Weapons in Fortnite can be gained as rewards, looted or crafted based on a schematic. But no matter the way a weapon was obtained, it will have durability. Weapons cannot be stopped from decaying while using them which means at some point all weapons break. The best way to deal with this is by gaining schematics which can be used to craft a weapon with the same stats and upgrades over and over again.
Expand your backpack size
Scavenging for loot is essential in Fortnite and having a limited storage space makes it quite difficult at times. When the skill and research trees become available, search for the backpack storage upgrades and make your way to those nodes, they are a must!
Besides the secondary objectives that can be found by exploring the map of each new mission, Fortnite also has global quests including categories like story, tutorial or daily. These quests provide hefty rewards and should not be ignored.
Complete your collection!
Duplicates or unwanted items can be recycled for some extra materials or experience no matter if they are crafted weapons, schematics, a heroes etc. Progressing through the game will unlock the Collection Book where unwanted schematics, heroes and survivors can fill the pages of this album which grants extremely good rewards.
Prepare to grind!
There is no hiding that Fortnite is a grindy game. On top of the grinding for materials on each map, there is a tiered item, skill and research progression that requires quite some time to go through. Make sure you are aware of this before buying the game, but also know that fun can be had without rushing for the end-game content.
It’s Early Access
Fortnite has been in development for many years but it’s still not a complete game. The current version has been pegged by developers as Early Access targeting a full release in 2018 as a free to play game. This means that bugs are to be expected and that no mechanic or feature is set in stone in its current state. More importantly, the game’s content isn’t complete and future updates will add new elements which include a way for the players to compete with one another.
Fortnite is a vast and complex game, covering all its features and tricks could be a herculean task that would probably require even more gameplay hours from my side, as well as more pages devoted to this article. But I do hope that this article shed some light and helped you get past the scary menus. As usual, I will try to update this guide with new things that I find helpful and correct myself where I was wrong. In the meantime scavenge, build, fight and don’t let the storm take over the world!