Now that Valorant has gone through its first act, Ignition, I think this is a good time to explore what we’ve learned about the competitive environment of ranked queue. Lets talk about what you can do to help stay more consistent and really push your competitive rank higher.
Should you solo queue, duo, or 5 stack to raise rank faster?
One important thing to take note of when it comes to Valorant's competitive ranked queue is Solo, Duo and 5 Stacks are weighed the same with wins and losses.
There's no "shortcuts" to the top, and you can't really be carried too far. The most obvious answer to really raising your rank: you have to play better.
Rank is not about how many teammates you queue with, but how you actually play with them and/or the people you are matchmade with.
Find the right teammates for the job
Since there is no indication of a separate ranked queue for Solo, Duo and 5 stack, it is important to find players you enjoy playing with who also have a competitive drive to play the game as its development intended.
Finding the meta, communicating in a healthy, productive and resourceful way while securing rounds are traits all good teammates of any rank have, and the things you should be looking for when finding players who you can team with to win games.
If you're really gridning, you'll want to find a group of players for before, during, and after your normal play times with overlapping schedules just in case you log on earlier or decide to game a bit later. You’ll need the backup and extra players. Trust me.
Consider team and agent composition
Another thing to think about when finding players to queue with is what agents they are good with and how you supplement and support the team with your agent pool.
If your agents overlap and you can only play dueling type agents, the team composition could begin to suffer because of a lack of support.
Heavy fraggers don’t always make the best teammates but a team full of support players will not work either in games like Valorant.
You’ll need to find balance through familiarization of the hero pool and playing to your strengths.
Tips for building the right competitive ranked team comp
- Have a few friends that support, but don’t stack them.
- If you have a heavy fragger on your team, let them have Reyna, Raze or Phoenix.
- It’s okay to have a big friends list with a variety of players. Prioritize a handful first.
Collect and communicate early game info
The first 5 rounds of each half of Valorant gives you a good amount of information on what sites to exploit or buff with support.
Remember to communicate if you are struggling with holding key areas or if you need utility from a player like Omen that can recharge and hold off enemy players for a few seconds longer.
It isn’t weak of you to be honest when it comes to needing help or asking for utility support. The more communicative you are, the more information your team has to be successful round over round.
Agree on a "default" strategy (not a 5-man rush)
Attacking half requires a “default” strategy your team agrees on, meta or not. This default strategy requires players with better aim sets and abilities to look for frags or stragglers on weak sides or mid areas to create opportunities to exploit enemy defenders.
5-man rushes in Valorant are especially weak with stalling and denial based defender heroes. Get comfortable using the clock and finding picks.
Playing mid is key
Most maps are being built with heavy mid lane focus being the key to winning on both sides. Find angles and creative uses of your smoke abilities to force movement and rotations into advantageous positions for your pre-aim or assisting teammate crossfire.
- Find picks on weird off beats during the round. Use your clock wisely.
- Control mid with utility. Set up crossfires on high reliable peek areas.
- Force a pick in the weak sites or areas with your fraggers.
Practice your aim
Top Valorant players spent hundreds and hundreds of hours playing the game. There is a small trick that can help you speed up your progress if you are now starting on Valorant — use an aim trainer. This creates synergy and the majority of players advance faster and see K/D improvements in the game a lot faster. That’s because in the controlled environment that the aim trainer provides, you can spend 99% of the time practicing, taking out looting, waiting in lobbies, looking for the next enemy, and so on. Once your core mechanics are improved, start putting more effort into game sense, the weapons, abilities of your character, and all the other important elements in dominating on Valorant.
Communicate like a pro
Remember to communicate wisely and economically with teammates:
- Shouting over each other for enemy positions or updates isn’t effective communication.
- If everyone is talking, nobody is listening.
- Don’t overreact or over rotate to deal with communications from dead teammates.
- Interpret the communication the most effective way, and find a solution that doesn’t put you in harms way for little to no gain. Trade if the opportunity exists, but do not force it.
The most important things to think about at any tier, but especially the higher tiers of competitive (Diamond, Immoral, and Radiant) aside from team compositions is economy.
The usefulness of your team composition on each map will allow you to remain resilient against round losses and eventually match losses. If your team composition can use utility together economically you’ll have a stronger purchasing power to help fill any gaps you have.
- Buy together. Think about teammates needs.
- Not everyone can Operator every round. Communicate who is buying what.
- Always have utility ready for game-changing moments
Cost per frag
Raze and Reyna are two heavy fragging characters that will always need utility. The cost per frag of their utility is generally low so allowing them to buy utility first and you supplement their weapons (sometimes sacrificing for a smaller or weaker one) is top priority to being successful.
- If your teammates need you to smoke a crucial middle area each round, account for that in your pre-round spending if you are out of that utility.
- Coordinate smokes with Omen players who get recharging abilities.
- Make sure to make the best of your “next round balance” tip and anticipate what you will be buying ahead of time.
Also a huge tip from me to you: DON’T BUY FULL ARMOR UNLESS YOU HAVE THE ECONOMY FOR IT.
Sacrificing weapons for full armor in Valorant is a waste. You’ll always be upside down if you play this way. 125hp is more than good enough in most situations in Valorant, and that extra 25hp isn’t always worth the 600 extra credits.
That’s it! Hopefully some of these tips will help you going into Act II. Good luck on your ladder climb; I’ll see you there!
- Valorant Act 2 Competitive and Character Changes
- How to Change Your Name in Valorant
- How Valorant Competitive Ranking Works
- Apex Keyboard OLED Logo Images for Valorant Characters
- Valorant: Reyna Tips and Tricks
- Valorant Act 3 Competitive Changes: What We Know
Find other Valorant players in the official SteelSeries Discord!