Fortnite is one of the most popular games in the world today with over 300 million active players. First released in 2017, Fortnite has helped push gaming into the mainstream, with the game receiving coverage from international news outlets during the Fortnite World Cup and the legendary black hole event.
The game has gone through a lot of transformations from its humble beginnings as a tower defense game, with it now bearing similarities to games such as Minecraft in that, although it has its core modes, thanks to its Creative mode you can make the game to be whatever you want it to be. Despite its many changes and updates, one thing has remained constant throughout and that is building, with the mechanic making Fortnite what it is.
Why Fortnite Has Building
Fortnite began its development all the way back in 2011 and it was originally intended to be a PVE tower defense aim where the aim is to build a base to defend against hordes of zombies. When the game was released in July 2017, the reception wasn’t quite what Epic Games was hoping for. Fast forward two months to September 2017 and Epic Games released a new mode for the game, Battle Royale, taking inspiration from games such as PUBG and H1Z1. The building mechanic carried over from the original version of Fortnite, now known as Save The World, and it played a large part in the game finding the success it has because it added a new element to the game that no other Battle Royale game had.
Building Is An Essential Skill To Learn
Over the previous 20 seasons, at the time of this post, the skill gap has widened considerably as players have improved at the game. This means that learning to build and edit is as important as ever if you want to get ahead and earn a Victory Royale. But, this is what this post aims to help with, once you’ve read this you will have a greater understanding of how to build in Fortnite and all of the possibilities that you can learn and use in your own matches.
Every Build And Edit In Fortnite
Here is a list of every building and edit that can be made in Fortnite, as well as use cases for each one. Learning all of these will help get you one step ahead of the competition.
Currently, there are three different types of building materials available in Fortnite, these are;
- Wood – Typically found by harvesting trees, wooden furniture, fences, some houses, and bushes.
- Brick – Typically found by harvesting buildings and rocks.
- Metal – Typically found by harvesting vehicles and other metal objects found across the map.
Each building piece takes 10 materials to place, with the material limit being set at 999 each in public matches and 500 each in Arena and competitive tournaments. In Zero Build modes, players can harvest as usual but no materials are granted.
The Wall is one of the most important builds in Fortnite, with it being used for protection against gunfire, as well as being a key part of many buildings and techniques including boxes and “90s”.
The Stairs is another incredibly important build alongside the Wall, with it being used to traverse the map-making certain places accessible as well as making scaling buildings and hills much quicker at times. It can also be used as protection and piece control, as well as a key part of building towers and “cranking 90s”.
The Floor can be placed either flat on the ground or on top of a structure such as a Wall, which can be used to create boxes and bases for protection and to fight in.
The Cone was once thought of to be a useless building piece in Fortnite: Battle Royale, but it is more utilized in Save The World. But, as the seasons went on players began to realize its potential and now it is an important piece to use, especially for the more advanced building.
Players can use the Cone to block off opponent’s ramps, be played inside boxes as a form of piece control, and be used to add an extra layer of protection to the top of a box, with it adding as a second piece with a Floor that players need to destroy.
Editing has become a very important part of Fortnite, with it allowing players to alter the shapes of all four structures. This can be used in a variety of different ways from building bases and using them in combat in both defensive and offensive ways.
Players can begin editing by pressing the Edit bind on their controller or keyboard. On a controller, by default, this can be done by pressing Circle/B and to perform edits hold the button.
A window can be created in a Wall by selecting one tile in the middle row of the build, which will cut out that one tile creating a window. This works on any of the three tiles in the row and can even be done by clicking the tile on the left and right to create two windows, but you can’t create three windows, or create two with one of them being the middle tile.
This edit can be used to open a window to fire at opponents while in a box and behind a wall, and also to attack an opponent after taking their wall when they are playing defensive.
A door can be created in the Wall by editing out two tiles from the bottom and middle row. This doesn’t really have many offensive tactical uses, except if a player opens it then they can’t fire during the animation, which can be used to attack while they can’t defend, but it is rare that you will see this happen in a match.
Top Third Removed
The top row of tiles can be edited out to create a smaller wall. This doesn’t really have too many uses in Battle Royale, but it can be used to destroy layers above if this disconnects them. It can also be used to edit out of a box but it is not the most commonly used method as it can be awkward to jump through.
Like removing the top layer, by removing the next row of tiles you are left with an even smaller wall. Again, this doesn’t have too many uses in Battle Royale but it is used often in Save The World to create a path for Husks to walk, as well as being a wall that will block the Husks but allow the player to be able to fight them.
As with the previous two entries, this creates a very small wall which is just two tiles. This is mainly used in Save The World to create paths for Husks.
By removing three tiles in either of the top corners you will create a triangle on the bottom. Outside of Save The World, this is mainly used either to edit out of a box or to edit a wall when your opponent is trapped and then the triangle is used to block incoming shots to you while also giving you a peak angle to hit them.
Like the previous edit, do the same but this time on the bottom corners. This doesn’t really have many combat applications, but it can be used as an edit out of a box or done quickly during tunneling.
By editing a square on either of the bottom corners by editing four tiles, it creates a similar build to the top triangle, with the same applications too.
An arch can be created by editing out an upside-down T from the bottom of the Wall. This then opens a large gap in the Wall allowing players the walk through it. This can be used to open a Wall to move through it, but it is perhaps best known as being part of the design of SypherPK’s Trap Tower.
The Stair is the only build that can be rotated once placed. To do this, click the Edit button and then drag the build from the center of the bottom to the direction you want it to be in. This can be useful for changing the direction of a ramp in a box for when you’re peaking, or to turn the build backward to create a layer of protection for you.
The half stair edit can be done by selecting the Stair from the bottom of one of the sides and then moving the cursor up. This cuts the Stair in half and can be useful to be able to get passed the build and also to edit onto your opponent in a fight.
Half Curved Stairs
The Stairs can be curved round which can be useful for gaining height without using too many builds or moving tiles. When doing regular ramping you often end up many tiles away from where you started, as well as higher in the air with no protection below. The curved stairs can help with this and it is also much less noticeable.
Fully Curved Stairs
The fully curved stairs is the same as the half curve except it rotates on itself at a 180-degree angle and can be connected to another build on the next layer above to build height quickly.
Three Quarter Floor
The Floor edits are very simple, with one tile being able to be removed to remove a quarter of the floor. This can be done up to one tile remaining, as well as diagonally. Editing Floors is often used for peaking, such as being able to see and attack above or below you depending on when the Floor piece is placed.
By removing two tiles you create a half floor, which is often used for moving between layers as it provides more room to jump through.
The diagonal floor isn’t often used outside of Save The World and is much harder to do at speed, so this isn’t an edit you ever really find yourself using, but it is possible to do.
Finally, you can edit three tiles to create the quarter floor. Like the half floor, this is often done for movement rather than in fights as this would leave you a lot more exposed and not give you much room to take peak shots.
Like the Floor build, depending on how many corners you edit out will depend on what the build will look like. By editing one you get the triangle cone, which can be used to create a layer of protection between you and your opponent while allowing you to take peak shots while remaining covered.
During the early days of Fortnite, it was believed that the Cone didn’t serve many purposes in the game. Because of this, many players edited it to be a Ramp to serve as an alternative for Stairs. This edit would mainly be used if a player is wanting to use a ramp when the Cone is already placed, such as to be able to peak out of a box.
By editing three corners you get the corner curve. This doesn’t have many uses in the current era of Fortnite, but it can be used to stay more hidden as it can block you in depending on how it’s placed. During the early days of Fortnite, this was often used as part of building bases.
Finally is the Dorito Cone, nicknamed due to its resemblance to a taco. This doesn’t really have any practical uses and its only real application has been in meme-style videos where some YouTubers would use it as their only building piece.
Bases And Techniques
The 1×1 box is a basic base that you will find yourself using a lot as it provides a good level of protection when you aren’t moving, such as when you’re healing or waiting for the Storm to begin to move as well as any other periods of downtime.
To build a 1×1, you need to play four walls around you and then a Floor piece above you to act as a roof, you can also place a Cone on top of the Floor piece to provide two layers of protection from above.
You can also add a Cone inside the 1×1 to prevent piece control by your opponents. If your 1×1 isn’t on the ground you will also need to place a Floor piece below you.
A 2×1 is very similar to a 1×1 except it is two boxes wide instead of one, typically with the connecting Wall edited to allow for movement between boxes. This can then be closed for protection if an opponent breaks into one of the 1×1 boxes. You could also create a 2×2 and even start building a 1×2 or 2×2 by having the base two or more layers high.
An open box is the same as a 1×1 but it doesn’t have a roof. Players usually place a Stair or Cone inside the box to allow for shooting other players. This is another common build you will use a lot as it provides protection to you while also letting you shoot at your opponents. But, be careful because your head is exposed and you could end up getting sniped.
Ramp peaking is when you peak your head and body over the top of a ramp to shoot at opponents, as described above.
This is a great method to get the lay of the land without exposing yourself to taking damage. If you are underneath a Cone you can press the Edit button on it and not remove any tiles and you will be able to see through the build and see what is going on around you. This can be a great technique when you’re in your 1×1 to be able to see if it is safe to rotate or whether an opponent is exposed that you can attack.
The “90” is a building technique to gain height quickly while remaining in the same tile location. A 90 is performed by placing a Wall with a Stair against it, and then once you’re at the top of the ramp, place a Wall in front of you, rotate 90 degrees, and place another Wall, followed by a Floor and Stair piece. It gets its name due to the 90-degree angle you rotate with each 90 built.
Cranking 90s is the action of building many 90s in quick succession to gain height fast. In build battling or when you’re trying to take high ground, this is something you will do, or see other players do, to gain the high ground advantage in a fight.
A tower is similar to a 90 except you build a full 1×1 box on each layer. This consists of building four Walls around you and placing a Stair piece, then moving to the top of the ramp and building another box and repeating that until you’re at the desired height.
Ramp Rush Edit
When rushing toward opponents that are higher than you, it often leaves you exposed to taking damage from above. One way to counter this is to place a build above your head as you run and then quickly editing it to allow yourself to get through. This prevents the opponent from being able to attack you and if done fast enough it can provide enough protection to get on the same layer as them.
A double edit is the same as what is described above, except you place both a Cone and Floor piece above you while running up a ramp to provide two layers of protection. Then you edit both pieces before moving up a layer. This offers more protection but is more difficult to do since you need to be able to edit faster to do this without having to slow down or stop.
Piece control is having control of all, or at least most, of the building pieces while in a fight with your opponent. This could be the act of building a 1×1 around your opponent so you have control of all angles, or by taking the building piece that is in between you and them. Another form of piece control is to place a Cone inside their box to prevent them from placing a Cone or Stair in their box to provide a layer of protection from you.
Once you piece control your opponent you are able to edit the walls and gain an advantage on your opponent.
High ground is incredibly important in Fortnite, with it often being the difference-maker in fights. By having the high ground, it is easier to hit shots on your opponent’s head, which typically does 1.5-2x damage, while it is more difficult for your opponent to see your head.
But, be warned, high ground isn’t the be-all and end-all and you aren’t guaranteed to win the fight, and if knocked down from height you will take fall damage if you are higher than three tiles above the ground.
Tunneling is a more advanced building technique that you will usually find performed in competitive tournaments. By tunneling, you create many 1×1 boxes in very quick succession, usually without stopping your forward movement. This is done by placing a Floor piece below and above you, followed by three walls to the side and in front of you. This creates the next box, and then you quickly edit the Wall in front of you and then repeat the process.
This is usually done during rotations in the latter stages of competitive matches, but it can be very useful to use in other matches when rotating in smaller circles, especially if you don’t have the high ground advantage.
Building And Editing Courses
Here are some of the best building and editing courses that can be played in Fortnite’s Creative mode to help practice your building and editing freely.
- Edit Piece Control and Aim Warm Up: 3917-0476-8838
- Warm up | Aims, Edits, Builds: 3925-1383-1933
- 1v1 Edit Race: 9124-5509-6253
- Star’s Ultimate Edit Course: 1356-0099-8570
Question: How Important Is Building In Fortnite?
Answer: The original version of Fortnite, now known as Save The World, that was released two months prior to the popular Battle Royale mode, is a PVE tower defense game. The goal of the missions is typically to defend an object against an endless horde of Husks (these could be likened to the zombies in Plants vs Zombies). To do this, you need to build a base full of traps to stop the undead, hence the ‘Fort’ in Fortnite. The building mechanic carried over the Battle Royale and it really is what sets the game apart from every other Battle Royale on the market.
Question: What Is The Best Way To Improve At Building And Editing?
Answer: They do say practice makes perfect and that phrase certainly applies to Fortnite. There is no quick fix to becoming a good builder and editor, you just have to do it over and over until your skill improves. However, to improve at a faster rate you need to optimize your practice.
I suggest using a blank Creative island to free build and practice building and editing in an open space. Building and editing courses in Creative are a great way to practice and learn new mechanics. Then it is just a case of actually fighting other players whether that’s in Creative or the Battle Royale mode and keep fighting until you start winning.
Question: Can I Play Fortnite Without Building?
Answer: Although many people thought we would never see Fortnite without building, it has now happened. Chapter 3 Season 2 saw building removed from Fortnite for a short period of time, but due to the overwhelmingly positive feedback from the community, Epic Games has now made ‘Zero Build’ modes permanent in the game.
Now that you’ve got building now, check out this article on how to get into Fortnite competitive and play in Arena and online tournaments for cash prizes.