In order to mix up the standard Fortnite gameplay, Epic regularly introduces Limited Time Modes, or LTMs for short. These modes don’t last forever - you could even say they last for a limited amount of time - but they change up the core gameplay to the point where each game is vastly different from what you’d usually expect from Fortnite. There have been quite a number so far: 11 to be exact, not counting the Solo Showdown modes, which are just for competitions or Fortnite Playground Mode, which we don't really count as an LTM because it's basically a permanent, and peaceful, fixture nowadays. From worst to best, here are the best Fortnite LTMs ranked.
11. Final Fight
Final Fight was initially introduced with five teams of 20 players each, before being reduced to teams of 12. It played out in a similar fashion to a normal large team mode except the storm would stop after the third circle. When it closed in, a timer would begin. Whichever team had the most players left by the end of the timer would win the game.
It’s a simple concept, but each game resulted in the team with the most players just camping their way to the end. It became more like a game of hide and seek, which we doubt is what Epic were hoping for. So many players complained about the mode, Epic removed it from the game before too long, stating “we agree that the mode isn’t quite in a state where we want it to be”. Maybe the next iteration will be better?
- Fortnite Road Trip Challenges
- Fortnite building guide - how to build the best defences
- How to fall faster in Fortnite and land first
10. Sniper Shootout
A number of Fortnite LTMs change very little about the core gameplay, except for only making a certain pool of weapons and items available. Sniper Shootout is one of those, as each game was the same as a standard game but the only weapons available were the three types of sniper (bolt-action, semi-auto, hunting rifle) and the scoped assault rifle. The first iteration of the mode included the crossbow, but that has since been vaulted.
There’s very little to say about Sniper Shootout other than the fact it was just boring. Snipers-only has been a concept for years in shooters, especially in games like Call of Duty, but Fortnite’s sniping mechanics don’t lend themselves to quick-scoping and no-scoping so instead, most fights were two players sniping at each other head on, hoping to predict where the other would move to. Plus, the scoped assault rifle meant that it was instantly a better weapon to use as you could repeatedly hit more consistent shots repeatedly when it’s not even a sniper rifle.
9. Close Encounters
Close Encounters started off great: all players had were the varying types of shotguns, plus jetpacks. That sounds incredible right? Flying through the air, dodging shotgun blasts as you return fire before swooping back down to earth to collect your hard-fought loot.
Thing is, Fortnite’s main mechanic is building and jetpacks can only go so high before running out of fuel. Do you see where this is going? Players would abuse the mode by building an enormous sky base before the storm came in, then slowly built their way into the safe zone at the height limit. Players on the ground couldn’t shoot it down because they would only have shotguns, and the guys at the top could descend easily because the jetpack would negate any fall damage. Epic removed the mode saying it would be “evaluating the effects sky bases have on this LTM” but replaced it with Solid Gold. But more on that particular mode later.
8. High Explosives
There’s really nothing wrong with High Explosives at all, it was fun to play for a few games but that was it. The only weapons available were the rocket launcher, grenade launcher, guided missile, grenades and remote explosive so as you can expect, every single fight was a back and forth of explosions.
One great aspect about High Explosives was that materials were increased by 50%, so you could build much more freely. Of course, you had to be careful in case your structure was shot down by someone at the bottom as it’s much easier to do when all you have is explosives. Rocket riding was super fun in this mode too, especially with the guided missile.
7. Teams of 20
Having five enormous teams all dropping out of their own battle bus sounds like a great idea for a mode doesn’t it? Everyone working together to be the last team standing amidst epic battles that span entire locations… except it didn’t really work that way. You could only communicate with the three other players in your individual squad and you’d tend to find that some players would fly miles away from your flight path before being obliterated because they landed at a hot spot for another team.
Every match quickly became very one sided for one or two teams which meant that for the majority of players in the lobby, it was a waste of time. Very rarely would you experience solid, fair fights. You were either incredibly outnumbered or vice versa. It was a great mode to play if you wanted an even more difficult challenge than playing solo squads though - 1vs20 is about as hard as it gets!
6. Fly Explosives
Fly Explosives is the one of the most recent LTMs introduced to the game and it’s very similar to High Explosives but with one important difference: jetpacks. With explosive weapons, the issues with sky bases found in Close Encounters didn’t arise because they were much easier to take down and it made airborne fights the best part of the mode compared to the standard High Explosives.
Fights are more about predicting where your opponent is going to land with their jetpack, as shooting rockets with the goal of hitting them in mid-air isn’t a great strategy. It’s also one of the only modes that has been available with a duos playlist, something most Fortnite LTMs don’t include. On top of that, because it’s easier to find the loot you need, the storm timers are much faster and games end quicker.
5. Solid Gold
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly why Solid Gold was so much fun, as it didn't change much from the other than only legendary rarity weapons being available. Perhaps it was the fact that you would rarely land without a decent weapon to begin with and you knew every fight was fairer because nobody had better tier weapons.
When Solid Gold was available, it was during the heyday of double pumping and shotgun spam. Thankfully, the only legendary shotgun is the heavy shotgun and it didn’t spawn anywhere near as frequently as shotguns did in the regular modes, so this mode was a breath of fresh air from the standard shotgun spam. Either way, Solid Gold is one of the better Fortnite LTMs Epic has released and we welcome the day it comes back.
4. Infinity Gauntlet
To coincide with the launch of Avengers: Infinity War, Epic and Marvel joined forces to create the most unique LTM we’ve seen so far. Infinity Gauntlet started off as a normal solo game but after a minute or two, Thanos’ Infinity Gauntlet from the movie plummeted down to the island. The first player to reach it would become Thanos and obtain all of his powers such as a super-jump, mighty punch to knock enemies back, a devastating ground pound with area-of-effect damage and a laser beam that could be fired at range.
Whenever Thanos died, the Infinity Gauntlet would rest on the ground for the next player to obtain. He was incredibly difficult to kill however, with 500 health and 200 shield points, which was nerfed from 800/300. The idea was that the solo players would all focus on killing Thanos and not each other. While it sometimes worked, there’d always be a few solo players who would target the other players shooting at Thanos which kind of ruined the fun.
One of the best things to try in this mode was to boogie bomb Thanos - there’s nothing funnier than seeing the Mad Titan grooving and shaking his booty. Fingers crossed Epic creates something as unique and interesting as this in the future, whether it’s with Marvel or otherwise.
3. Steady Storm
Epic's ongoing quest to try and stop Fortnite becoming stale has seen numerous gameplay and weapon tweaks, or added gadgets to try and avoid the tower building stand offs that defined almost all of seasons 1-4. The new moving storm circles in the main game is a good example of that, and Steady Storm takes that idea into a full mode: there are no circles here, just one slowly shrinking, always moving, far more deadly storm.
It's an interesting twist to the usual match because the pressure and pace change completely. There's no longer a need to chase safe zones on the map or watch timers. Instead you just have to stay inside the storm as it shrinks. It's a slower burn initially as, depending on storm placement, you have far longer to loot and gather resources. But as the ring closes in, squads are pushed closer together, often with the storm at their back, meaning the pressure slowly rises. It only takes a second of not paying attention to get caught in the storm and with it's increased damage, that's far more devastating.
As modes go it's a nice way to experience something a little different and even freshen up your game - unlike other modes that radically introduce new ideas or weapons, this is basically the same game with a differently weighted pressure, giving your skills a shake up in a way you can take back to the main Battle Royale.
50v50 was the very first Fortnite LTM to be added to the game back in December 2017. It didn’t have a great start as the first iteration of the mode had all players diving from the same bus, so the entire game just played out with a lot of small 1v1 fights rather than the intense, huge scale fights Epic was hoping for.
When Epic re-implemented the mode for the second and third times, each team was given their own battle bus and there was a line across the map that marked each team’s respective region. That meant each team would mostly land with their teammates before congregating in the safe zone for the 50v50 battle. While the trailer for the mode shows two teams duking it out in epic structures, the reality isn’t quite so grandeur. Nevertheless, it’s one of the best modes there is to play when you want to relax and not be under so much pressure, or for those times you want to rattle through your Fortnite Battle Pass Challenges. Nothing beats hopping into an ATK and escorting teammates to the safe zone in your high speed golf buggy.
It may seem questionable to have the best Fortnite LTM so far be one that doesn’t really change anything about the concept of battle royale but Blitz is so good we wish this was the normal game experience. It’s essentially a normal game but at double the speed - the storm starts closing in straight away, chests and floor loot is more likely to spawn so you can get geared up quicker and material gathering is more than doubled.
Playing Blitz then going back to the normal modes makes everything feel so slow - even the battle bus flies lower so it doesn’t take as long to get into the action. That's especially true when it comes to the final circles, as each one takes less than a minute to close in compared to the lengthy wait times in a standard game. Blitz feels like the mode Epic should adopt for competitive play as it promotes action rather than camping, games are quicker and materials are so much easier to obtain, players don’t have to spend as long harvesting and resource gathering. It’s been a few months since we’ve seen Blitz in the game so here’s hoping it returns soon.
If you want more Fortnite tips, there's an extensive guide to the best Fortnite weapons, a breakdown of the best places to drop on the Fortnite map, and even a guide to the most likely Fortnite llama locations.