Ugami’s guide: How to play Valorant in 2023
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A new year has begun, and a new Valorant episode rises with it. With a hard reset to your rank, a new map, changes to agents, and a new cool-looking skin line, Valorant is, for sure, one of the best competitive video games to start playing in 2023.
But… How do you even start? How to play Valorant? Well, in this article, we hope to share with you all of our experience climbing the ranks all the way up to Ascendant.
Valorant Characters: Know your agents
Valorant has 21 agents available for you to play. Five of them are available for you immediately if you are a new player. The other 16 agents will be available to unlock as you get experience points while playing the game.
These Valorant agents have different abilities and play styles you must master if you want to climb the ranks. So if you are new to the game, we strongly recommend you test out the five agents that are available to you and see which one you like the most.
As you could have probably guessed, each agent has a different role attached to them. There are four roles in total: Controller, Duelist, Initiator, and Sentinel. These roles determine the overall job of your agent.
Duelists are supposed to be the first point of contact of your team on the attacking side. They must have the confidence to pick gunfights on their own since they are the ones who are supposed to enter the site first and create space. This is useful as their teammates can follow them into the site and plant the spike.
Now, don’t worry if you don’t get tons of kills if you are a Duelist. As long as you create space for your teammates and communicate with them, you will be fine. Remember, the game’s goal is to win, not to have a cool-looking K/D Ratio. All Duelists have strengths and weaknesses, but the best ones, in my opinion, are Jett and Raze
Controllers are supposed to smoke parts of the map for their teammates. They have the power to create choke points and make an area more favorable to attack or defend for their team.
If you want to pick this role for yourself, we recommend you to stay communicated with your teammates. Let them know when you will put up your smokes to attack the site and to see where the enemies are pushing to put them while your team is defending a certain area.
All controllers have their strengths and weaknesses, but in my opinion, Omen and Viper are the strongest Controllers in the game right now. Now don’t be discouraged from picking an agent with this role if you think that if you don’t get kills, the game isn’t fun.
I’m an Omen main myself! When my team has a good duelist that creates space for me, I tend to be the top fragger of my team, or at least I usually perform really well most of the time. So trust me, Controllers are really fun to play.
And in my experience, if you don’t have one on your team, you will probably lose that game. Especially since attacking and defending without smokes is giving your enemy free spaces to control the map.
Initiators are the information-gathering agents. They make their teammates’ jobs easier to perform since gathering information is crucial to attack or defending a site.
“How many enemies are here?” “Where are they positioned?” A good Initiator can answer these questions. Using this information, your teammates can decide to use their utility and abilities to attack the site or rotate to a different one. Especially if there are a lot of enemies in a particular area of the map.
And if you are defending with your information-gathering powers, you can make your team make decisions. for example, rotating to a different site to help their team or to hold their ground and wait for reinforcements.
All Initiators have strengths and weaknesses, but the best ones to me are KAY/O and Sova.
Sentinels are supposed to watch for enemy flanks and rotations. With their utility, they can have control of certain areas of the map to know if someone from the enemy team is trying to flank their team. Or even if they are rotating to another part of the map.
The only Sentinel with no abilities to do this is Sage, but don’t sleep on her since she is actually one of the best Agents in the game. With her healing orb and Ice Walls, she can create space and support her teammates in unique ways.
Plus, her ULT has the power to bring back one of her teammates from the dead. So even though she has no utility to watch flanks and rotations, we have to put her and Killjoy as the two best Sentinels in the game.
How can I climb up the ranks in Valorant Fast?
Well, I guess you are wondering how to climb up the Valorant ranks faster or how to get out of the ELO Hell you are currently in. So I’m going to share with you five tips that helped me to improve a lot and to get Ascendant in my first Episode in Valorant, which was Episode 4 (when this new rank was introduced).
1) Mastering two agents
You need to focus on mastering two agents. If you are filling roles, your team composition might look better. Still, if you are not comfortable with the agent or the role you select, you will probably be underperforming in that game.
Always remember that if you are playing solo, the only non-random factor in your matches will be yourself. Trust me! it is better to have that factor always in your favor. You can choose to master any agent you like but stick to two agents at a time.
For example, I chose to main Omen and Chamber in the last episode, and I started to perform way better once I got comfortable with them. So, knowing how to play an agent correctly can make all the difference in a game.
With the latest Chamber nerfs, I decided to start mastering another agent. I chose KAY/O since I began to notice a lack of initiators and information-gathering agents in my lobbies. So if no one is going to do it for you, it is better to do it yourself.
Now you know, test the new valorant agent you have unlocked and pick your two favorite ones, and start using them in every match so you can master them as soon as possible.
2) Knowing the map areas
Learn the areas of the Valorant map and give good calls. And no, saying “He’s right there,” “Behind us,” or “To the right/left” aren’t good calls. This is one of the main things to keep an eye on it while learning how to play Valorant.
Other people are not facing in the same direction as you, and they are not watching your monitor. this is why you need to learn the specific and general calls for certain areas of the maps in Valorant.
For example, “Heaven” means they are in the upper area of the site, and “Mid” means they are in the middle area of the map. These are general calls that are used in Valorant. Specific calls are the ones that refer to a particular area of the map and are the best ones to give since you are giving the exact location of the enemies.
Another example is “boat” this is a specific small area in the map Ascent with a boat in it; this is why it is called “boat.” “Gen” or “Generator” is another specific call on Ascent-
I know! There are a lot of calls in Valorant. Still, no worries; you can see the names of the areas on every map if you bring your map out when you are playing a game.
You can also ping an area on the map. If you do this, you can give your teammates both audio and visual calls. And it’s perfect just in case they are too distracted fighting your enemies or doing something else.
3) Aim ‘n shoot
Practice your aim and warm up before your ranked games. The aim isn’t all that matters in a game. You can play perfectly as any agent, give the best calls in the game, and use your utility like a pro player. But you will lose the game if you do not win your gunfights.
So I recommend practicing your aim in the range and playing deathmatch. You can even add, to your practice routine, a third-party aim trainer like Kovaak’s or AimLab if you want to.
But don’t get obsessed with practicing your aim too much. You also need to play this video game in order to improve your game sense, abilities, and general understanding of the game.
So practice your aim a little bit, warm up before a gaming session, and you’ll start seeing a huge improvement.
4) Watch and learn
Watch Valorant content creators! There are a lot of Valorant content creators available, and many are outstanding ones too. But if you start paying attention to them carefully, you can actually learn a lot from them.
For example, you can observe the calls they are giving and receiving, how they play their utility and how they pick their gunfights. It is up to you to decide which content creators to watch.
There are ones that showcase specific agents they have mastered, and you could be interested in that, or maybe not. But go ahead, explore their content and start learning from the big players so you can be one too.
Also, other things could help you make your gaming experience much better. Like having a good gaming monitor to see your movements and the creators’ content with the best possible resolution.
5) Remember to have fun
Take a break if you are feeling frustrated or if you are on a losing streak. After all, Valorant is a video game! Video games are supposed to be fun and entertaining.
So if you are raging a lot and feeling frustrated, it’s time to take a break. Eat a snack, listen to some music and then get back on it with a cold head and healthy mindset.
If you need to take longer breaks, go ahead! You’ll start noticing improvements in your overall performance if you play with a cool attitude and positive energy.
Hours of guaranteed fun while learning how to play Valorant!
Now that you know how to get better at Valorant, you can start playing it! This is a video game that will give you many hours of fun. Besides these tips, you can use tools such as a Valorant Tracker to get data about your performance and know how to improve.
If you are wondering, is Valorant free? The answer is yes! But it is important to know that it is only available on PC. Fortunately, the minimal requirements are easily filled with most PCs nowadays, so it should not be a problem for you to play it.
Don’t forget that you can also level up in real life using a gamer card like the Ugami Card. This is a debit card for gamers that will give you rewards for every transaction you make and that you can exchange for all kinds of gaming goodies.
Hopefully, with all this information about how to play valorant, you can start and improve your gaming journey to be the best. Good Luck, Gamers!