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Learning to Lose: Advice for Fortnite, skill building, and life

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Modified 26 Aug 2020, 01:52 IST

If you want to get better at Fortnite or anything else, it’s time to start learning how to lose. In Fortnite, and in many things, learning to lose is perhaps the most useful skill. Learning to lose means learning how to try even though you might fail. It means accepting that you can’t succeed at everything you try. It means learning from your past mistakes and not letting them control you.

How to lose effectively in Fortnite

Quite literally anyone can lose. Start any game you like and do nothing; you’ll lose in record time. But losing is not the same as losing effectively.

In Fortnite, you can expect to lose quite often. In games with 100 players and only 1 winner it’s fair to say that winning just 1% of your games means that you’ve managed to achieve your fair share of wins.

But it also means that 99% of your Fortnite games should be losses, and losses are more valuable than any win.

Losing effectively means reviewing your losses. It means identifying why you lost and attempting to do better next time. In a game that has replays, if you lost a game, whether it was a close match or a crushing defeat, you should rewatch the game and identify why you could have earned that loss.

In Fortnite, it could be something as simple as poor aim, poor building, falling for tricks, or many other things. Sometimes it will be a mistake you made. Sometimes it will be your indecisiveness. Sometimes it will be your unfamiliarity with a situation.


And sometimes you’ll watch and watch and struggle to come up with a reason for the loss. Let’s take a look at those times when you aren’t sure why you lost.

Identifying your losses

Losses due to errors or unfamiliarity are easy to fix, either you resolve to stop making those mistakes again or attempt to familiarize yourself with the situation for the future. When you can’t tell why you lost, that’s when it becomes difficult to improve. Ultimately, there can be many reasons why you might have taken a loss in Fortnite, but if you can’t tell then here are a few ways to help see why.

1. You’re too rigid in your thinking.

Sometimes you’re too invested in your own gameplay to see that you actually made a mistake, or you might not even consider it a mistake. If you spent hours a week practicing Fortnite to develop some strategy, it can be hard to realize that the strategy you made isn’t that good.

But it is nonetheless important that you figure that out, so that you can improve your gameplay sooner rather than later.

2. You’re too predictable.


In games and situations that involve playing with opposition, even perfect play can result in highly predictable games. It can be enticing to break Fortnite down into mathematical components and relying on safe strategies, but predictability is a mistake in its own right. If you’re losing to players you don’t think you should be losing to, it might be because you’re attempting to play too perfectly, and being predicted as a result.

If you rely on the same tried and tested strategies, in Fortnite or anything else, then you might soon find that some players have already developed counterstrategies.

3. You lack control.

It can sometimes be hard to identify moments when you are no longer in control of a situation. In oppositional games, control isn’t something that can be measured in the moment, it’s only something that can be identified after the fact. If you were effectively conditioned, you may have felt in control but were actually playing into your opponent’s strategy.

4. Random chance.

Sometimes, a loss can be marked up to random chance. These losses are the least valuable and most unfortunate because there is little that can be learned from them. However, they are also the kind of loss that is most welcoming to the loser because it lessens their responsibility for the loss. Do not ascribe a loss to chance unless you have thoroughly exhausted all other reasons.

Random chance is not an excuse meant to protect your ego, it’s a rare occurrence that robs you of an opportunity to improve, Fortnite or otherwise.


Learning from losing and moving on

Once you’ve identified the cause of your defeat there are only two steps left, learn from it and then move on. Start up the next game of Fortnite and apply the skills you trained to the next situation.

Learning from a defeat in Fortnite will mean taking whatever action is necessary to avoid losing the same way again. Sometimes it is something very simple, in the same way that you should only need to stick your hand into a fire once to learn not to do it again.

Sometimes it is a process of developing skills and reproducing what you have learned in future situations. This can take much longer and require much more dedication.

There is a difference in dwelling on a loss and learning from it. Once you have learned, it is time to move on.

Published 26 Aug 2020, 01:52 IST
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