This week I have decided to not address one particular build, but rather a build option/strategy that I do not see used very often: The Open Build.
I have been playing Fortnite: Save the World since it first came out, and while some of the game dynamics have changed, the basics still remain the same. In addition to that, as a former Marine, I do have some experience in strategy and tactics. Even though Fortnite: Save the World is not real combat, there are some concepts that remain constant in strategic combat (fictional or otherwise).
In The Art of War, Sun Tzu gives sounds advice along the lines of: “Appear weak when you are strong, and strong when you are weak.” With that in mind, on multiple occasions, I have used the “appear weak” idea to lure the husks into where I want them. This way my builds take little direct damage, as the husks walk around my constructs and directly into my trap designs.
Added to that strategy is the idea of funneling the mob into a smaller area. Make their numbers work against them. This makes the husks strength of numbers work against them and creates a weakness for you to exploit. This also is a long-standing military strategy. Make your opponent’s strength into their weakness.
Combined, many possible challenging defenses can be made easier with the addition of an indirect opening (or even a well guarded direct opening) to the target. A simple opening with carefully placed traps, can funnel the husks directly to you. That makes getting rid of them that much easier.
With a little thought and time, you can make a potentially difficult situation easy to handle. And this works great if you’re part of a team (in the background I’m hearing: Everything is Awesome from The Lego Movie). I have a group of friends I like to Save the World with. One of them likes to use Dire—as he is fast and still well balanced in powers—to run about the map collecting BluGlo and activating the boosts (defense, energy, build, etcetera), another just assists wherever is needed. They allow me to find the target, asses the situation and begin the build. That doesn’t mean they don’t/can’t help, but with each player focusing on one job the mission doesn’t drag on.
With assessment being done on the target at the same time side-jobs are being handled—multitasking—you get more done. And, if you go in with traps and weapons pre-built (assuming you have a basic idea of the mission), you save even more time. This last part has become a new favorite practice of mine.
So, back to my original point. Purposeful, well placed, and properly defended openings can make gameplay so much less stressful. While I do not always put an opening in every structure I build (due to map level/area/terrain), I have continually found them to be of great help. Understand, that at the higher levels, defending a direct opening is extremely challenging. Emphasis on the ‘direct opening’ part. Because I have had the target objective—at higher levels—set near a cliff or basement and still left an opening. The husks still walk toward it, leaving the structure relatively undamaged by direct attacks (there’s always something hitting it directly/purposely—it’s an A.I. thing).
Above are some examples of how to force the movements of husks (you don’t have to use a Jarich Frame) from short-cutting a corner directly into your build. But, still encouraging them to walk toward the spot of your choosing and decrease the likelihood of a direct attack to your structure. This type of mindset can open doors to easier victories. With a Defender Post set nearby these types of locations, you can let your A.I.’s do the work for you while you focus on more serious threats to your structure/target/objective. I see a lot of Battle Royale style quick builds of walls with a set of stairs on the defense side of the wall. And while these can be effective, I have noticed that they require more protection and upkeep. Players end up just trying to win through bullets being sent downrange. Which can be effective, but exhausting.
With just a “shoot-em’-up” approach there are lots of factors that could allow this to go wrong. Reload times, broken weapons, lack of ammo, gun not strong enough, limited range, rate of fire versus enemy count… The list goes on and on. Use builds to your advantage. Direct the husks into the places you want them to be. Simple, subtle adjustments. Fake weaknesses to entice the less intelligent husk hordes. With that done, you can focus on the Mist Monsters and make defending easier, and possibly more fun. I never get tired of watching the mass of enemy husks walk into my builds, almost make it, and then not, because of the surrounding traps. I can almost hear them say, “Just a few more steps. Almost th-AARRGH!!!” As they sizzle and pop, get impaled on spikes, launched into the air (off a cliff, into a pit, or just backward), or steamrolled by cannonballs.
Have fun. Try something new. Try leaving an opening (well defended with traps) and see what happens. Just edit the wall into an opening so in a pinch—if needed—you can quickly edit it into a solid wall (prepare for failure, expect success—it sounded better in my head). It may work wonders, it might blow up in your face. Who knows? But, after all it’s just a game. Have fun and Save the World!
Below are some trap designs that you may find useful in directing the husks. Give ’em a try. Let me know what you think. Happy gaming!