If you play Fortnite and you find your fights stall out too much, or if you struggle to close out a game where you have already taken a lead, then you might need to practice taking initiative. Taking initiative simply means acting before your opponent, taking control of a situation, and making them react to you.
We’ll be talking about Fortnite for this, but the lessons are applicable no matter what you play or do. Hopefully, this will help you play better.
Fortnite: Proactive vs. Reactive Gameplay
The dynamic between proactive gameplay and reactive gameplay is universal, Fortnite or otherwise. Proactive gameplay means acting earlier with less information, and reactive means acting slower but with greater information. When playing proactive, you need to consider which decisions limit your potential future decisions more or less, and learn to set the pace if battle to your own benefit.
In Fortnite, a proactive player will initiate a buildfight and make moves to lock their opponent down.
Playing proactively is for when you want to rely on moving too fast for your opponent, or when you notice they have made a mistake that you want to punish them for.
Playing With Initiative
When you have taken initiative, you are in control. This means you get to decide when to take a risk and when to play it safe, you get to make your opponent guess and strike when the odds are most in your favor. In Fortnite, this might mean capitalizing on a critical mistake your opponent made, or challenging them in a risky situation where you are confident in your ability to outplay them. It means setting the pace and tone of the match; should you retreat or advance? Do you want to approach your opponent from above or below? When you have initiative, you get to make these decisions.
Play theory is about thinking how and why you take certain actions, and how you expect or want your opponent to react. Developing a good theory of play is what can set you apart and help you play at a higher level, and it can help you improve quicker and more meaningfully than the competition.
If you prefer to play more reactively then feel free to check out the partner article to this one.