If you’ve ever played a first-person shooter online, chances are you know how it feels to get wrecked. Whether it’s down to missing shots or getting hit too easily, FPS games are a playground to get completely destroyed by other players.
But don’t worry, there are plenty of ways you can up your game to become the MVP. Here are eight of the most important tips to improve your aim and overall experience in any FPS.
Best Ways to Improve at FPS Games
- Identify Your Weaknesses
- Aim Training
- Movement Training
- Assess Your Gameplay
- Learn Maps
- Stick to a Role
- Consider Synergies and Counters
- Improved Hardware
Before trying to improve, you first have to identify what’s holding you back. That means getting reflective for a moment, and really considering how you play.
The easiest way to go about this is by watching a replay of a recent game. Most modern games make this easy for you by having match replays baked into their systems.
When reviewing any moment of gameplay footage, ask yourself three questions: What am I doing right here? What am I doing wrong here? Why did that just happen? And remember, this applies to both when you are doing well and poorly. So, you would want to analyze your clutch victories just as much as you want to analyze your pathetic insta-losses.
Then, with your key weaknesses identified, you can get into training those parts of gameplay.
FPS games are about shooting, so having good aim is required to win. And to be a good shooter, you need to be accurate — no ifs or buts.
Getting a perfect aim takes time, dedication, and plenty of settings tweaks. While you’d need a whole article to get into how to perfect your aim, you can get started by finding the right sensitivity and DPI, learning how to aim your crosshair at a target, and spending time on the practice range or in aim-training games like “Aim Lab”.
Every FPS game has in-game training and maximizing it can do wonders for your ability to shoot in different conditions and ranges. Aside from aim-training games, you may also enter AI battles to simulate how it feels to play the real game.
While shooting your shots is important, your movement can be even more important as good movement keeps you out of harm’s way while putting you in a better position to dish out damage yourself.
Generally speaking, you need to get the hang of how to use cover, how to strafe unpredictably, how to use the high ground to your advantage, how to maximize accuracy while moving, and how to know when to stop moving altogether to take that all-important shot.
Alright, you got us. Technically, we already said this as it’s how you best identify your weaknesses, but assessing your gameplay is far more important than assessing your initial weaknesses. If you’re seriously looking to improve, you should consider reviewing a good proportion of your gameplay — anything from 1-in-10 games to every single game. This will not only clue you in on specific improvements, which may be map, matchup, or weapon-specific; it will also let you know in which ways your gameplay is improving.
So, while you’re waiting for your next match, make it a habit to review a previous match and take some notes on your gameplay. It may uber-charge your progress.
“How did they get up there?” “What, where did they come from?” “What the heck was that?!”
We’ve all said things to this effect, and, for the most part, they come from players pulling off interesting map-specific tricks.
While learning maps may initially seem easy, learning the layout and all the possible movement options goes much deeper. Take a hero shooter like Overwatch for example. In Overwatch, each part of each map provides a unique utility for each player. Perhaps there’s a particularly good line of sight for Widowmaker, lots of walls for Lucio to ride through, or some tight corners for Reaper to exploit. Learning all of these will let you get the upper hand on players, while also avoiding unfavorable matchups in particular parts of the map.
Moreover, getting down to the finest details, many players also choose to learn specific methods for game-changing plays. For example, learning an exact way to throw a grenade so it lands in the middle of the objective.
All this learning takes practice, so hop into a custom game and get creative.
While FPS games aren’t often considered in terms of “role”, they most certainly have them. While you want to definitely have enough skills to play with any weapon or playstyle, the best way to up your game is to focus on one (or at least one at a time).
That means if you’re a fan of being a sniper, you could double down on learning how to get the most out of that playstyle.
Most FPS games are team games, and with team games come teamwork, synergies, and counters. Learning how to make a solid team composition and strategy while being aware of the weaknesses of your plan is a big part of getting the upper hand in competitive gaming.
For example, your shotgun may be rendered useless on a map with long sightlines, which is unless you buddy up with a teammate to provide a distraction while you take the long-alternative route around behind the enemy team!
While 99% of gameplay improvements come from your abilities as a player, hardware does play a role in giving you a head-start and finding the skill ceiling.
Most specifically, for a PC player, you will be wanting to use a responsive, comfortable mouse that suits your grip style on a mouse mat large enough to permit all types of mouse movement. You’ll also want to be playing on a relatively high refresh rate monitor. 120Hz is ideal to ensure that your framerate isn’t messing with your chances of victory!
Shooters are tough, but it’s for that exact reason that they can be so incredibly rewarding to improve at. If this list has reinforced anything, it is that you should actively be reflecting on your gameplay if you are looking to improve — keenly looking for your weaknesses in order to iron them out. With enough dedication, you will rise up the ranks in no time.