Hey, you. Yes, you--the Valorant player reading this right now. Stop it. Just… Stop. You know what you did, and you’re going to keep doing it until someone points it out and you’re haunted by your actions every waking moment.
Or at least until that next Ranked loss. Have no fear, we’re here to help you out and point out the small things that all Valorant players do every once in a while. These can either be a small hiccup or turn into a recurring bad habit that you’re doomed to repeat until the end of time.
Let’s take a look at the five worst Valorant habits that you need to break immediately.
Spray And/Or Pray
There’s a kind of panic that sets in when two opposing players lock eyes from across a crowded battlefield and decide that it must end there and now. Suddenly, both players unload every ounce of ammunition in their weapon and take on a real “let god sort them out” kind of mentality. And I’m here to tell you: It’s bad.
One of the biggest things you can do to improve in any game, but especially Valorant, is stay alive. Do yourself a favor and don’t get into a battle of wills where you and your opponent have both decided to stubbornly commit to a fight or die trying. Not only are you letting the other players know exactly where you are and what you’re doing, you’re also taking unnecessary damage and risk.
Don’t pray and spray, just run away.
Abilities (Do Not) Get Kills
There are exceptions to this rule, but for the most part, Valorant is a game about guns, not Agent abilities. This rule applies less to Duelists than most, but in a panic, I’ll tell this to a Raze main as much as I will a Cypher: stop trying to use your abilities in panic situations to secure the kill when your gun is far more reliable. There will be plenty of moments where you and an enemy both round the same corner, walk right into each other, and start firing off abilities and hoping something lands.
Stay calm and remember that you have a gun; otherwise, you’re not only wasting round utility but you’re also costing yourself economy in the form of re-purchasing ability uses. Once again, the best thing you can do for your team is not die, and this includes not dying while using every ability you purchased at the start of the round.
Going All In
There’s a real risk-reward system at work with the economy of Valorant. Entire books could be written about the game’s purchasing system, credit flow, and when’s the best time to go for the big guns. However, there’s also fallacy at work: Having a bigger gun doesn’t always mean you’ll win the day, nor does having that big gun earlier than the other team. Far too often players will race to get that round 4 Operator, only to immediately die and wreck their economy for the proceeding rounds. This doesn’t mean that you should never go for the big buy, but get a feel for the pace of any individual game and ask if having an Odin is really the best fit for any particular round.
Rambo Isn’t Home Right Now
Valorant is a team game. I know that sounds obvious but I think, on occasion, some of y'all need a friendly reminder. Moreover, unless you’re a member of Sentinels or something you’re most likely not going to be the big playmaker who runs onto a point, gets the Ace, and plants all within the span of twenty seconds. Playing carefully and conservatively in Valorant always provides an advantage over being the first to run through Hookah, only to get donked in the head. Stay in communication with your team and actually talk about round-to-round strategy. Go play deathmatch if you really can’t quell that urge to be Leeroy Jenkins and ruin everyone else’s time.
Show A Little Self-Care
The biggest habit that all players of competitive games have, and maybe the hardest to break, is that they’re all too hard on themselves. Life is about mistakes and learning from them, not making a mistake and then ruminating on it for the next hour. And this isn’t to say “Hey, don’t take your mistakes seriously because none of this matters.” But far too often players allow their worst mistakes to hang around too long, and that’s what leads those mistakes to turn into bad habits. The best thing you can do to improve in Valorant is learning to give yourself a break, accepting that not all matches are going to go your way, and that there’s a learning experience around every corner.
Everyone messes up. Even the professionals. What you do after you mess up is what separates the different classes of players.