Valorant is a popular free-to-play tactical-based, first-person shooter. Two teams of five square off against each other in various game modes. The main draw of Valorant, Competitive mode, pits the two teams against each other in a series of short rounds—up to 35—and the winning team is whoever nabs the most victories.
Valorant is often a slower-paced, methodical game that rewards cooperation, communication, and strategizing. Players choose from a pool of unique characters each equipped with their own special abilities. Each character has one ‘Ultimate-like’ ability that can often be the key to victory or a successful defensive stand.
As with all shooter games, Valorant does have a bit of a learning curve to it. Below are 10 things that you shouldn’t do while playing Valorant.
- Don’t Be Silent
Valorant, above all else, is a team-based game. Neglecting to communicate with your team could—and likely will—be detrimental to securing a victory. Clear communication and a mindful awareness of your surroundings are crucial elements. Calling out the location of a player on the opposing team not only alerts your teammates to the location but tells whoever is closest to be on their guard. Not plugging in your microphone, or keeping silent for the game, is a counter-productive action that essentially gives the other team a decisive advantage.
- Don’t Panic Ult
Panic Ulting is when a player uses their Ultimate ability in the heat of battle during a non-advantageous time. Using Raze’s Showstopper on a single enemy early in the round seems like a sure-fire way to cripple the other team and give your team a one-up, but it could also severely hinder your team and lead to you being eliminated. Had you entered a shootout and won, you could’ve used Showstopper on a duo you later encountered or had you forfeited the first battle and regrouped, you might’ve been able to launch Showstopper on the enemy team as they made a break for the victory.
- Don’t Shoot Before You Aim
Shooting before aiming is almost a guarantee that you’ll lose the skirmish. Getting down the sights quickly is key but taking a moment to aim at your opponent could be the key to victory. If both players just spray and pray, it’s a coin toss on who wins. But if you size your opponent up, and they negate doing the same to you, your chances of surviving that encounter are far greater.
- Don’t Run into Open Space
Valorant is a game that relies on cover and strategy. Players often post up in advantageous spots and wait for players to make a mistake. Running out into the open all willy-nilly is that mistake. In Valorant, it’s best to assume that you’re never safe to be without cover. Always act as though an open space is a certified death sentence. If you run into the middle of the map without a teammate watching your back, just go ahead and consider yourself eliminated.
- Don’t Always Go to the Same Spot Each Round
Becoming predictable is the easiest way for the enemy team to take you out at the start of the round. If you always go to the same spot, they’ll catch on and know to look for you. When you make that critical corner peek, they’ll be aiming down the sights waiting for you. Mix it up and take different control points to avoid becoming predictable and giving the opposing team an advantage.
- Don’t Spend Your Credits Wildly
Managing your credits between rounds is crucial to winning. Don’t always load up on the best gun you can get. You need to save credits for armor and abilities. If your team gets snowballed in round one, considering holding off on buying anything in the round too. This is referred to as “Saving” and can help give your team an advantage in later rounds.
- Don’t Carelessly Create Noise
Sound is a key element in Valorant. Players can hear you running, falling from a higher spot, reloading, shooting, and using abilities. Walking is silent, so it’s best to walk as much as possible. There are certainly times when running is necessary, like when rushing a point or escaping a spike, but knowing when to make noise and when not to is an important aspect of Valorant.
- Don’t Reload too Often
In shooter games, most players are accustomed to reloading after every kill. This has become standard in games like Call of Duty, Halo, and Battlefield where it takes more shots to take down an enemy. But in Valorant, teams move together in pairs—and even 3-5 person units—so when you take down an enemy, it’s likely that another is waiting in the wings to counterattack you. If you get caught while reloading, it’s game over for you. Be mindful of your ammunition, and if you still have enough ammo left for another firefight, refrain from reloading until you’re sure that you won’t be ambushed.
- Don’t Run and Gun
Unlike Apex, Overwatch, Warzone, and the like, running and gunning in Valorant is not a sound strategy. It can work, but it’s not reliable. Enemy players are often behind cover or set up in an advantageous spot waiting to get the drop on someone. Valorant isn’t Halo, you’re likely not running around a corner and taking out three people while jumping and dodging. The hitbox in Valorant is far too unforgiving for that.
- Don’t Just Run to the Spike
You have 45 seconds to defuse the Spike once it’s planted. There’s no need to run in without checking your surroundings and strategizing with your team about how to defuse it. If you’re not the only one left alive on your team, communicate and figure out the best approach.
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