The year 2017 was a relatively good year for gaming. Various titles that have eventually gained critical acclaim were released. Fortnite, NieR: Automata, and Cuphead are just some of the many games from 2017 that went on to become household names within a short span of time. On the mobile gaming front, 2017 was also the year that Garena: Free Fire Rampage came out to play.
Garena: Free Fire Rampage, also more commonly referred to as Free Fire, is a survival shooter battle royale from Garena International I. Free Fire plays similarly to Fortnite mobile’s battle royale mode, though Free Fire is undoubtedly less strenuous to one’s device thanks to its improved optimization. Another primary difference it has from Fortnite is that Free Fire has more realistic graphics compared to the former’s cartoony charm.
There’s definitely a lot to explore and discover in Free Fire as it has a wide selection of unlockable characters, weapons, clothing and customization, and a plethora of other rewards. You’ll particularly find yourself marveling at tons of content, but at the heart of it all, Free Fire is an exciting yet challenging survival shooter, which is what this beginner’s guide will focus on.
Free Fire’s gameplay mechanics are quite simple, if you really think about it: get airdropped into the arena, pick up weapons, and start shooting enemies so you can be the last one standing among 49 other competitors. All this happens within 10 heart-stopping minutes. Put like that, it almost sounds easy, right?
If you’ve encountered Free Fire, you know that’s not how things always pan out. Surely, it’s the ideal, but how do you achieve such magnificent gameplay when you have 49 other players trying to hunt you down? What’s more, all of them are non-AI players, making each enemy an unpredictable competitor compared to AIs that may behave in a pattern.
That’s exactly what this beginner’s guide for Garena: Free Fire Rampage is all about: how to stay alive, what actions you should accomplish to survive the longest, and how to be the last one standing to claim victory—not to mention a ton of rewards. Starting out, it can be difficult to tell which gun is which and what it does exactly, but believe it or not, it’s not as relevant as you might think.
Sure, knowing which firearms do what exactly will definitely work to your advantage, but this may not matter as much when you’re in the thick of battle and are simply geared to aim and shoot. Thus, this beginner’s guide for Free Fire won’t delve into the nitty-gritty of your equipment—as long as your weapon can keep firing, our tips and tricks will increase your chances of being at the top of your game regardless of what you’re equipped with. That said, let’s get right into it!
Unlike other shooters such as CS: GO, you don’t spawn at a random location when playing Free Fire. As mentioned, you get airdropped into the map, which means you have the opportunity to pick where you can begin your assault. At the onset, this teensy bit of detail might seem insignificant, but it’s actually the first and foremost step to your survival.
When getting airdropped, the game will provide you with a prompt that indicates when you’ll be able to eject from the plane. You also have the opportunity to see where other players have chosen to drop. With that in mind, don’t be hasty about getting off the plane. Wait a short while so you can gauge where other players might land. You might feel excited about diving right into the fray, but remember: your objective is to survive the longest.
As a beginner, it can be more difficult to get to that point if you’re simply going to rush headlong into the fight. If you do decide to airdrop in the same location as other players may have, get ready for a quick firefight, though your chances of survival may be slim unless you’re quick to the draw. Otherwise, patience and observation are what win the day.
So you might ask, where’s the ideal place to land from an airdrop? Our recommendation is to find a spot a little far off where you’ve seen other players airdrop from. Let them fight among themselves first while you make sure you arm yourself to the teeth by scrounging for loot (more on this later). By doing this, you reduce the number of enemies you need to contend with—and you don’t even have to lift a finger.
At the same time, aim to land on a place with a building—any kind of building at all regardless of its size. Chances are, this building will have the weapons and ammunition you need to fight back should you encounter another competitor.
That’s one important thing to remember about Free Fire: As a beginner, you enter the game without any equipment for either defense or offense. This is why it’s important to plan your landing and find a building, as you’re more likely to discover weapons and ammunition, even backpacks and medkits, in an enclosed space. At the same time, landing on or close to a building will provide you with temporary cover. This building may even give you a better vantage point (more on this later).
To land in your ideal location (or as close to it as possible), observe the landing area while in the plane and pick a spot. Eject from the plane while you’re a short distance away from your chosen spot and use the accelerate button to move faster toward that area.
Keep in mind, however, that the accelerate button only works when moving forward and using any directional button will deactivate it. You may also use the dive button to steer yourself toward your desired location. When you’re close to the ground, the game will provide you with a prompt to parachute down. If you fail to press the parachute button, the game will automatically activate this function for you.
As with any journey, the first step is the most important. Planning your landing is one of the keys to being the last player standing.
Assuming you’ve landed on a building, start looting it for supplies and weaponry. Even if you’ve landed in an open area, make it a point to move fast and gain as many items as you can. Similar to diving, traveling on the ground will also let you use the accelerate button. Again, this only works if you’re moving forward and will be deactivated when using directional keys.
In Free Fire, you can pick up a primary weapon, a secondary weapon, a sidearm, and a melee weapon. Your default melee weapon is your fists. You can also find backpacks, medkits, ammunition, magazines, and vests and armor for defense.
As mentioned, you have a bigger chance of finding items in enclosed areas. Items in open spaces are scattered throughout, and you have a higher chance of being spotted by the enemy while searching for loot. You may have time to catch your bearings, but ultimately, you run the risk of being shot and killed while looting, and that’s no fun at all.
That said, when you manage to chance upon items, get as many of them as you can. You can do this by simply walking over these items and they will be automatically added into your weapon slots, on your person (in the case of vests, helmets, or other items that can serve as armor or defense), or your inventory if you manage to acquire a backpack.
You can also get extra ammunition and even longer magazines for more bullet capacity when looting. A typical melee weapon you can also obtain is a scythe. Leave no stone unturned, but don’t take your time either. Occasionally, you may find equipment with arrows, which will increase your current stats.
Treat this tip like it’s Christmas: you get free stuff and you can get as much as you can possibly hold. There’s never enough that you can get your hands on—at least until your inventory indicates that it’s full.
Because Free Fire is a survival shooter battle royale, you significantly increase your chances of being the last player standing when you make an effort to take cover. Whether you’re playing the classic mode of the game or the team battle mode (more on this later), knowing where to take cover will keep you alive for longer. It’s one thing to know how to aim and shoot in an open space, but doing it behind a safe spot can increase your chances of making a successful kill.
We’ve previously talked about buildings, which is perhaps the primary cover you can use. In classic battle royale mode, buildings don’t just provide you with discretion—it’s also sort of like a bait. Chances are, other players have already figured out that searching buildings is one of the most effective and safest ways to loot. Since they’re more likely to try looting a building, this can be your chance to lie in wait for another player to arrive and exterminate them.
However, make no mistake that other competitors are likely expecting a firefight to ensue. So, when you’re taking cover in a building (assuming you’ve already grabbed the loot you’re able to take), be sure to situate yourself in a corner. With a wall behind you, you don’t have to worry about your six. This is the biggest problem you will have to contend with when traversing an open area—you never know who’s going to shoot you from behind.
By the time you figure it out, it might be too late to flee or retaliate. You effectively eliminate this problem when you’re camping in a corner because you only need to worry about your front view and periphery.
When inside a building, it’s best to find a corner that is directly opposite a door or entrance. This will give you a view of who’s entering, even if they’re sneaking around. Keep in mind that doors are choke points, and you can secure them by directly aiming at where anyone is expected to enter.
However, you might want to reconsider this tactic when this particular corner is near a window. Having a window right next to where you’re hiding might give passing or sneaking enemies the chance to sniff you out. As much as possible, stay in a corner that has more enclosed space around and just one possible entry point you’ll have to pay attention to.
One other tip you can apply to having one door in an enclosed space is to stay right beside the door itself. Anyone careless enough not to check their side while entering will be an easy target.
Similarly, keep in mind that this tactic can also be used against you. Thus, when entering buildings, be wary of corner areas or blind spots behind entrances. Buildings don’t actually have doors but holes shaped like doors. Enemies can hide right behind them so be wary when approaching these. Look out for competitors lying in wait for you in corners as well.
On the other hand, buildings can also give you a better vantage point when they have an upper story. They’re likely to have open windows you can peek and aim from. If there’s a skirmish on the ground, you have a bigger chance of picking out your enemies from above.
You can also survey the area from this vantage point and shoot unsuspecting competitors even while they’re far off. Looking through windows from the upper story of a building will especially work wonders when you use a scope, which some long arms may provide.
However, make sure that there’s no window behind you, which the enemy can use to sneak up on you and take you out. Plant yourself as a sniper on a window only for a short while as you still run the risk of not being able to secure the area outside of what you can see from your scope.
If you happen to find yourself in an open area (which you will have to traverse eventually), trees are your best bet for hiding, but again, you leave your six entirely open.
You may also sometimes find vehicles scattered throughout the area, which you may also use as cover. Otherwise, you may ride these vehicles and use them to minimize potential damage while traveling. However, keep in mind that moving vehicles will give away your position and enemies can still shoot you from afar.
You may want to keep your vehicle stationary as a temporary means of cover, but you won’t be able to shoot while mounted on a vehicle so use this tactic with caution. If possible, don’t stay in the vehicle for too long if you don’t plan on driving it anyway. If at all, vehicles are most useful when you’re trying to flee from the shrinking safe zone (more on this later). You can try to run over other players but assuming they have a gun, you simply become a bigger target that’s harder to miss.
Aside from vehicles, there are other objects that may serve as cover, such as boxes or barrels. Treat them like smaller trees or bushes—you leave your backside vulnerable. Try to hide behind these objects and face the open area instead so you can see those attempting to ambush you.
Generally speaking, taking cover isn’t only useful when you’re on the offense. It can, quite literally, be a lifesaver when you’re using a medkit. As a rule of thumb, try not to heal in an open space as using the medkit may take around two to three seconds to complete—a precious window of opportunity that may be used against you.
The thing with medkits is that you can’t undo using them. In that short span of time, enemies can take advantage of your immobility and shoot you. Given that you’re healing because you’re already injured, it can take even shorter than three seconds before you perish from enemy fire, especially if you’re not wearing any armor.
Speaking of wearing items, we do not recommend dressing up your character in bright neon colors. After playing a few rounds, the game may offer you a new wardrobe (which you have to download if you want to use them for your character) or other custom items. There are tons of cool clothes, footwear, and even hairstyles that you can use, many of them in bright colors.
You may be tempted to dress your character to the nines and even make them wear some fancy, neon-colored outfits. As much as possible, try not to enter into battle wearing clothing that will make you stick out like a sore thumb. Although these outfits are undeniably amazing, bright colors can make you an easy target. Instead, try to make your character wear outfits that will allow you to blend into the surroundings.
Going green is one good way to lessen your chances of being spotted on the grass or from a distance. Muted or neutral colors will also make your character more difficult to notice. In this case, your wardrobe becomes your cover so make sure you’re dressed to kill—literally.
What distinguishes survival shooters like Free Fire from other more casual mobile games is the fact that you can play the latter in a more relaxed atmosphere. You can even play casual games without sound and it wouldn’t make a difference.
Free Fire is definitely not that kind of game.
When entering the fray in Free Fire, you need a steady supply of concentration and, in particular, laser-focused sense of sight and hearing. It’s not the kind of game you can play without putting the sound on as listening to approaching enemies plays a big factor in your survival.
One thing that may not be as obvious in the beginning is that running produces a loud rustling or scratching sound. You might initially think that this is just the game’s natural sound effects—until you start camping and hearing other footsteps.
Thus, while taking cover, listen to these approaching footsteps. Since the game somewhat simulates reality, you can actually discern the direction in which footsteps may be traveling. Treat this as a warning indicating a potential encounter. In the same breath, be careful when approaching buildings while running as your enemies can also hear you.
The good news is that this rustling sound disappears when you move while crouching or going prone. You can activate these modes by using their respective buttons at the lower right side of your screen, next to the shoot button.
As much as possible, we recommend traveling while crouching as it has several advantages. Aside from making you more stealthy while moving, it also turns you into a smaller target, albeit you’ll certainly be moving much slower than when you’re running. If you’re not escaping from enemy fire, crouching is the way to go. This works even better when you’re taking cover inside a building or behind objects since you’ll be harder to detect.
Similarly, going prone will also make you move without being an easy target, though this arguably has the slowest speed and may still make you vulnerable to enemies scoping you. However, the main advantage of going prone is that you can generally be hidden, even when you’re in an open area.
If you get shot and you go prone, other players are more likely to assume that you’ve died so they might just leave you alone. This is a great window of opportunity to sneak up on them or escape if you’re low in health. Going prone works best when you have a weapon that allows you to use the scope. The same can be said of crouching as scoping out enemies will give you a chance to aim and shoot from afar.
The scope button will appear at the right hand side of your screen. With a scope, enemies wouldn’t know what hit them. However, it may take more than one shot to fully eliminate another player when using the scope function. When this happens, expect your enemy to move away from your target area.
Since the game lets players know where a shot might originate from, the enemy may also use this to determine your location so swiftly repositioning yourself and shooting again may work to your advantage. At the very least, it might cause them to panic or become confused, buying you enough time to find a more suitable vantage point.
Since crouching and going prone are also available to your enemies, expect that they may also apply the same tactics. As a viable countermeasure, try your best to take cover, camp, and wait for them to approach your location. If you suspect that a player hasn’t really died and simply went prone, you can distinguish dead players from live ones if you see items around them since you can loot dead players (or, if you’re feeling exceptionally haughty, you can teabag* dead players at your own risk).
On the other hand, if you’re not camping or if you find yourself out in the open, keep moving and don’t stop. In open areas, running is your best bet. You can use the accelerate button to speed up towards your desired location or an available hiding spot. To decrease your chances of being hit by enemy fire, try not to move in a straight line, though this may mean having to forgo the accelerate function.
However, moving in a zigzag will make it harder for enemies to aim or predict where you’re going. You may still crouch or go prone, but our recommendation is to keep moving no matter what unless you plan to camp. You may also use the jump function to enter buildings through windows or escape from one. While the game may simulate some aspects of reality, you won’t get damaged by jumping from the second story of a building, which is generally about as tall as buildings can get.
This overall principle of moving—especially moving stealthily—will keep you alive even if you don’t have firearms equipped or you run out of bullets and have no chance to loot. Remember that you’re equipped with a default melee weapon: your fists. Sneaking up on an enemy is no easy feat, but if you manage to do this without being detected, your fists up-close are as good as bullets from afar. If you manage to pick up a scythe from your previous loot, even better.
Of course, you may also decide to use melee weapons as a means to conserve ammo. Enemies will likely assume that you’re equipped with a firearm so you may catch them by surprise when you’re making a beeline for their position. Again, try not to move in a straight line. You can catch them off guard with this largely unpredictable tactic, though you might want to do this when you have max health and are equipped with defensive items.
(*Teabag: An act in most shooters, arguably originating from Halo 2, where a player runs up to the corpse of their fallen opponent and repeatedly does a crouching and standing motion. This is done as a form of mockery.)
Aside from contending with 49 other enemies in classic mode of Free Fire, there’s another significant challenge faced by all players alike: the shrinking safe zone.
As mentioned, Free Fire’s classic mode lasts for 10 minutes, which is made possible by the shrinking safe zone. The safe zone is pretty self-explanatory but one thing you should know about it is that it begins to decrease at a significant rate as time passes. Think of it as being inside a wide hallway with the walls closing in on you every so often.
Fortunately, the game displays a timer that tells you when the safe zone will start shrinking and when the shrinking has stopped—only for it to shrink again until there’s only a bit of “safe” space available.
That said, make it a point to regularly check your map. You can see a mini map at the upper left corner of your screen, which basically just tells you where you are at the moment. Click on the mini map to access a view of the entire map so you can see where you are and where you’re supposed to go in relation to the shrinking safe zone. It’s best to check your map while you’re hidden or are away from any enemies.
Getting caught outside or near the edge of the shrinking safe zone will cause a lot of damage, which can lead to your extermination. This is why getting as far away as possible from the moving edges of the safe zone is important. If you don’t have any armor, it will only take a matter of seconds before the “unsafe” zone kills you. However, if you do have armor and full health, it’s possible to run back into the safe zone when you use the accelerate button or if you’re mounted on a vehicle.
Out running the shrinking safe zone is, of course, much more difficult but not impossible. You just need to make sure that the path you’re treading doesn’t have any obstacles that can slow you down, such as buildings, trees, or other objects scattered in your general direction. The same principle applies when you’re driving a vehicle so you avoid accidentally capsizing your ride and being eliminated from the round in a most disappointing fashion.
Keep in mind that it’s easy to forget all about the shrinking safe zone when you’re in the heat of battle. That said, expect that other players might get caught off-guard by this, thus eliminating them. You can check how many enemies are still alive by looking at the number on the upper right corner of your screen (X/50, wherein X represents the number of players still active in the round).
If you’ve managed to survive long enough, expect to face off with one enemy in a very limited safe zone that may or may not be shrinking. In this case, a melee weapon might be your best bet as this scenario may be more advantageous when viewed from the perspective of close-quarters combat.
Overall, regularly check your map to avoid getting caught outside of the safe zone. Don’t panic when you’re trying to outrun the edges so you can have a higher chance of surviving even if you do overlook the shrinking safe zone.
Many popular action movies have given viewers the impression that guns don’t run out of bullets. The same can be said of various shooting games where you can just keep your trigger finger stuck on the shoot button without fear of losing any ammunition.
That’s not the case in Free Fire (which is quite ironic given the game’s title).
Since it has a more realistic inclination compared to other games, you will run out of bullets in Free Fire and you will need to reload every now and then. The good news is you can pick up extended magazines for your firearms, increasing the number of bullets you can pump out in one go.
As a rule of thumb, never engage in a firefight without reloading. In fact, reload every chance you get, especially when you’re taking cover or are hiding. You can do this by simply clicking on your primary weapon slot. Not forgetting to reload can sometimes be easier said than done when you’re running and trying to stay alive or shooting back at your enemies. Still, make a habit of regularly reloading before engaging in an encounter.
Of course, if you’re out of bullets, using your melee weapon will do damage just as good—if not better depending on the circumstance.
One of the fundamental aspects of marksmanship is being able to stay calm so your aim remains steady enough to hit your target. Breathe, aim, squeeze are basically the ABCs of firing a gun. Although these are typically associated with real-life firing exercises, these tenets, believe it or not, can also help you play Free Fire without proverbially dropping your gun in a panic.
Not only is Free Fire an exciting, challenging game, but it can really bring out your competitive streak. As such, the desire to win may be intense and heightened emotions in the battlefield can potentially cause panic upon sighting an approaching enemy or while you’re being fired at.
To stave off any knee-jerk reactions, it’s important to breathe, aim, and shoot as one would in a real-life firing exercise. When you see an enemy from a considerable distance, don’t immediately fire unless you have a clear shot.
Not only does this conserve ammo, but it also doesn’t haphazardly give away your position. As mentioned, players can discern where enemy fire is coming from as damage will be marked by red lines on your screen, thus indicating the origin of the bullet. Since this can also be seen by enemies on their screen when you fire on them, they can use this to locate your position and retaliate.
Occasionally, you may encounter an enemy (or enemies) a very short distance away and it would be a wasted opportunity not to hazard a shot. Since you’re unlikely to kill them with one shot, anticipate that they will either try to shoot back or flee. If they try to shoot you upfront, move to the side or in a zigzag motion going forward. You can choose to either shoot back or catch them with your melee weapon.
On the other hand, if an enemy tries to flee, they will likely run directly away from you or to the side. A trick you can apply if an enemy runs sideways is to aim a few meters ahead of the direction they’re running toward. Fire just before they reach your crosshair. Repeat until you’ve caused significant damage or the enemy has fallen.
On the whole, these tactics can be executed effectively if you don’t panic and have your wits about you. Breathe, aim, shoot—and don’t let just your trigger finger control your actions.
Let’s veer away from Free Fire’s classic mode for a bit and temporarily put a spotlight on the team battle mode. Unlike the classic battle royale mode, wherein you’re virtually attempting to become a one-man (or one-woman) army, team battle allows you to engage in a skirmish with the benefit of having other players on your side. If you have friends who are also playing Free Fire, you may invite them to a 4v4 clash. Otherwise, the game will match you with random players to complete your team.
One good thing about Free Fire is that it has a voice chat function that you can use to communicate with your squadmates. Apart from all the other tips and tricks we’ve recommended so far, sticking close to your teammates and smoothly coordinating with them is important when you’re playing in a squad. Using the voice chat function can make this easier, especially if you’re playing with IRL friends. If you’re not too hot about using voice chat, however, you can still efficiently contribute to your team’s success by, well, being a team player.
As the philosopher Aristotle once said, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, and this phrase could not ring more true when it comes to team battle. This means your team stands to claim victory at a much higher percentage when each individual player moves in relation with other players on their side. That said, try not to move too far away from your teammates as you may need to provide cover fire or revive a teammate who’s down. You can do this more effectively when you’re just a short distance away.
Some tactics you may apply when doing team battles is to either have a buddy system or move as a whole, kind of like what the Spartans did in the movie 300. With a buddy system, someone can cover your six or vice versa, or you can fire at enemies that your buddy failed to spot.
On the other hand, if you move as a whole, your team has a better chance of rubbing out the enemy team with minimal casualties since you’ll be able to quickly heal whoever is down. You may want to have a designated scout, perhaps a pair who provides cover fire, and one person to regularly check your team’s six.
Depending on the situation or your equipment (which the game will give you an opportunity to buy before a team encounter), you can also have a designated reviver and a backup reviver when things go awry.
All in all, it pays to coordinate with teammates when you’re in this mode. Resist the temptation to be a lone wolf hero. You’ll be an even bigger hero when you know how to be a team player.
One last, but not the least important, tip we’d like to offer for a survival shooter like Free Fire is the time-tested adage that patience is a virtue. Running headfirst into the frontlines of battle may be a brave move, but it’s not always the wisest approach. Remember that your objective is to stay alive the longest and making rash decisions will hardly support this cause.
Be patient and hide when necessary. Take cover, camp, and lie in wait for the enemy to come to you instead of you offering yourself on a silver platter. If you spot a skirmish nearby, let other competitors fight among themselves so you can pick off the survivors as they’ve likely sustained damage from the firefight.
Your most effective weapons aren’t the type, size, or level of firearms you’re carrying—your most important weapons are patience, focus, and knowing how to use what you’re equipped with despite some limitations. You may be a beginner but you can definitely level the playing field when you apply not only these tactics but the mindset of a resourceful hunter.
With that, we end our beginner’s guide for Garena: Free Fire Rampage. If you have more tactics you want to share, don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments section below! Now, you can be on your way to being the last player standing in this intense survival shooter battle royale!