Disclaimer: This guide will be updated periodically as the meta updates and changes.
Valorant is out now for the public to play. We had some lovely thoughts about it; now it’s time to put our playthroughs and experiences to practice.
Here are some tips to get you started and how to go about this new Riot Games title.
Do Not Play This Game Like Overwatch & Call of Duty
If you’re a shooter fan who love playing fast-paced first-person shooters like the aforementioned titles, Valorant is a wake-up call.
You cannot run and gun; your accuracy and recoil effects will be heavily affected. Basically, play every character like you would McCree: walk, stop, aim, and shoot.
You have to learn how to approach doorways and open areas slowly, as well as not make too much noise when moving around. To do the latter, hold shift when running. You’d be surprised at how many people don’t use this function too often; footsteps are very prominent in Valorant.
Play This Like Counter-Strike
Those skills you had when playing CS:GO and other CS games prior to this? They’ll be put to very good use here.
Secure doorways, watch out for long hallways, switch weapons instead of reloading while in a firefight, throw “flashbangs” and “grenades” to flush people out in corners and camping spots: old skills from past “restrictive” shooters will work in Valorant. Just make sure to complement them with your character’s special abilities.
Beginners: Use Phoenix & Sova
At this point in time, you shouldn’t worry about who is the best hero to use in the game. You need to pick a hero suited to your level. If this is your first time playing a CS:GO-style first-person shooter, you may want to use either Phoenix or Sova from the get-go for the first 50 games.
Phoenix has a ton of cool-yet-easy specials like a “flash bang grenade” that curves left or right into corners and an AoE fire attack that lets you funnel enemies to a perfect ambush spot. Or flush out sniper nests from a good blind spot.
Sova lets you shoot an arrow that reveals nearby enemies for you and your allies. And yes, you can pull off trick shots to shoot recon arrows at spots normally unreachable by opposing teams (see video below).
If you can’t remember all these spots, that’s OK: as long as you know the general vicinity to aim for, like higher up on the wall and not too obvious for enemies to easily spot it, that is enough to get the info you need.
For Assault Rifle Users, Pull Down On The Mouse Button For The First 10 Shots
The Vandal and Phantom assault rifles are decent weapons from the get-go, but you need to control its spraying pattern if you hope to score consistent hits with the weapon.
As this video below will tell you, spray patterns on your assault rifles make a difference in whether your shots will make it to an opponent’s head or not. For example, the Phantom goes up, left, and right after the first 10 shots, so you need to pull down your mouse aiming slightly if you are aiming at your opponent’s head.
Practice your shots in Practice Mode, take note of the spray patterns, and pretty soon you’ll be able to rely on muscle memory when you’re attempting to headshot enemies with assault rifle sprays.
Another protip: if your spray control needs work, it is always better to stop shooting and let your gun “reset”, and then re-aim and start shooting again. Again, play this game like you would with McCree in Overwatch.
Can’t Aim For Nuts? Love Corridors? Try The Shotguns
For some players who prefer to wander tight corridors and rather leave the sniping to experts, we suggest going for a Judge shotgun/Heavy Armor/Sheriff sidearm combo and filling up that close-ranged/support niche.
Tag along with someone who prefers assault rifles, then help them out with their flank and rear. The Judge shotgun has a tight spread and rapid fire to take down people who appear in corners and quickly gun down wounded enemies.
The Sheriff sidearm can take care of enemies from afar, though you shouldn’t be using this if you’re focused on covering corners. It’s more of a last-ditch effort if you’re funneled to a wide open space.
Prefire To Stall Enemies
If you’re trying to keep enemies in a particular corner or angle, it is sometimes better to prefire at common areas where they’re hold up at an angle. A good strategy is to ask a teammate or two to cover your flank and back areas, then prefire if you know there are at least a couple of enemies there.
Sort Out The Economy Game
Learn how much your favourite weapons and setups are. Chances are your team will get wiped out in any of the 12+ rounds you’ll be in, which means lost investment. You have to plan to save up for certain rounds.
All those economy round lessons you’ve learned in CS:GO? They work here.
This Video Below Has The Right Idea
This tip sheet from Reddit user quarkez dishes out some advice in less than two minutes. Highlights include:
- Recognizing the visual cue that will let you know if you have enough time to defuse the spike. If you start the defuse after the White Orb appears, you cannot do the full 7 second defuse. Before the White Orb flashes? Go for it!
- If you want to get the most DPS out of your default classic gun, left click and then right click in consecutive fashion. Practice the timing to get it right; it’s pretty tricky at first.
- When you’re on a zipline, you have perfect accuracy. Also, you can be silent while using it; just hold the walk button (Shift key on default).
- You can get rid of Cypher’s tripwires using the following: Sova’s Shock Darts, Raze’s Blast Pack/Satchel and Grenade, and Jett’s Dash.