My valorant diary - 6 months of experience and tips

Posted by Steve

Tuesday, January 5, 2021 9:53 PM

My valorant diary - 6 months of experience and tips

Hey,

my name is Phame. I want to make this diary to track my progress and also help new players to get better in this game. But with all the guides around, I won't make any guides and concentrate on the diary aspect.

Personal Information

I'm a 25 y.o. student from germany. In my freetime I used to play Yu-Gi-Oh! competitively, but due to the corona situation I couldn't attend any RL tournaments, so I needed a new game to grind. I have literally no experience in shooter and PC games besides small games. In general I'm a quite competitive person, so I always want to get the best possible at something I'm doing.

How it started

I'm not a huge gamer so I didn't want to commit to a gaming PC. As corona forced me to stay inside most of the time (germany had big lockdowns), I decided to start playing PC games. So in May 2020 I decided to buy a gaming laptop, the Asus G14, because my old macbook air 11" was dying.
My first thought was to get up to date with the large RPGs of the last decade, but that idea was shattered from the valorant hype still going on at that time. All my friends played valorant, so I joined them at the official release of this game. But how to get started? Valorant is my first shooter and my first real PC game.

Imagine me sitting on a couch and using my 60 Hz display and my Razer Viper Ultimate on my lap trying to hit someone. Well yeah, that didn't work out I realized after a few days. So I started to clean my super old working desk and used it just to play valorant.

Now I was using my laptop and mouse on the naked desk. At least it was better than the couch.

Progress - Act 1

Act Rank: https://imgur.com/Hh0JykJ

After my funny obligatory unranked games I started this Journey of course as Iron 1. There is where I realized, I cannot play this game casually.
Fortunately I've started this game with 5 stacks, otherwise the toxicity of some players would have probably stopped me from playing this game. My friends were also already at bronze/silver level and much better than I was. As my competitive mindset was challenged, I've started to look up ways to get better in Valorant.

My tip #1: Watch guides! Or rather watch enough guides, so you know the mechanics and knowledge you need to learn and then watch specific guides for each topic, while avoiding the clickbait guides with minimum knowledge.

I'm a type of person, who watches guides for everything in life. Cooking, cleaning, studying and gaming, I watch guides before I start something. So I watched hours and hours of guides, when I had time (for example while being transported in train or car). But watching videos won't improve anything. It will take a few months until I got my mechanics to a good basic level.

My first step to improve was to use Aimer7's Aiming guide. For that I also bought Kovaak's and started to train my aim for 1 Hour a day. I can tell you, you definitely need a goal in mind to do aimtraining. For me it is the most boring thing in this world. Even more if you don't get results immediatly.

After a week I started to see some improvements in my mouse control and was quite happy to see minimal improvements. As I said before I never actually played something with my mouse, so my mouse control was quite bad.
While my aimtraining was going on, I realized something important: my DPI/eDPI, which was about 400 at that time. Every time I got better with my mouse, I've got the feeling that the crosshair was too fast. So I changed my eDPI to round about 300 and got a small improvement boost. Don't do this, if you already found your eDPI! You will ruin your musclememory.
But still this will happen along my journey quite a few more times.

While my aim training was going on, I started to look at my hardware. My display is 60 Hz and 14 inch. Not optimal, but I cannot change that for now. What I could change, was my non-existent mousepad. So I got myself a nice mousepad from a local store in a decent size (about 400 mm x 400 mm) without looking at the speed of the pad. That also gave me a small boost.
Right now I was at about Iron 3 and hitting Bronze 1 for the first time. After a few weeks into Act 1 I also reached Bronze 2, where I peaked.

Progress - Act 2

Act Rank: https://imgur.com/cXrDoTy

My aimtraining was still going on and I had to change my eDPI while going on to 250 eDPI. Maybe someone in the comments can explain this phenomen to me, but I always got the feeling of losing control while gaining control of the mouse without lowering the sens. At least it worked for me and I broke every Personal Record day after day unti l plateaued. I was quite happy to see improvements in my aim training, but somehow it didn't transfered to Valorant. I was still stuck in Bronze.

Of course I could blame it on smurfs or bad teammates/leavers (oh boy there were many), but I wouldn't accept such excuses for myself. I've started to watch how pros are playing, tournaments and compilations of Flexninja, Average Jonas and Flights. Also I tried to remember every angle, where enemies camped me. After a while I developed a little bit of gamesense and hit Silver 1. I was soooo happy to finally reach such a milestone in my journey.
I still had round about 4 months until the year ended and so I set my goal to reach gold 1 until end of the year. It kinda seemed possible after I reached Silver 1. At this time I also choose Omen as my main agent. One reason was Flexninjas plays, but the main reason was that literally nobody in the low elo ranks will smoke probably or even take a smoker. So I chose to take that role.

My tip #2 is: Choose 1 to 2 agents, who you main and watch guides on how to play them. You don't need to tap heads, if you for example set up one way smokes. Every player in Silver and sometimes Gold will rush into them and die, often multiple times in a match.

You probably ask how I got that huge jump in ranks in my act rank at this point. Before I explain what happened, I want to note, that I was soloqueuing most of the time, because my friends lost interest in this game more and more, but I was already hooked by this game.

My tip #3 is: Get your hardware down, before you even try to get better in Valorant.

Yes, I finally got an external monitor for my laptop! 24 Inch, 144 Hz. As a student my budget is quite tight, so I got the AOC 24G2. The input lag is still quite high for high level FPS, but for my use it is enough. I don't know how to explain that and it sounds like "RGB makes your aim better" or "Prime Vandal is aimbot", but I suddenly sensed all the improvements of my training all at once. I suddenly hit every single shot and my headshot rate jumped from >1% to at least 10%+, it was a massacre. A normal match in Silver, where I struggled before, suddenly felt like a deathmatch. I even run and gun'ed on many occasions.
You can even see it in the Act 2 Rank. There were only 3 Wins in Silver 3 and 7 Wins in Gold 1, 4 of them were caused by me dropping back to Gold 1, so I only had 3 games in Silver 3 and 3 games in Gold 1 until I reached Gold 2.

Welp, this was surprising as hell. I crushed my goal of reaching Gold 1 at the end of the year. With this sudden improvement I felt accomplished and I wanted to push muich further. Finally I saw the improvents of 2 months of aimtraining.
Of course Gold 3 was also not far away and I also reached it and peaked at Gold 3 in this act. While being happy that I reached so far, I also realized the huge wall to Platin. I kept losing against any Platin Player and it seems they were 10x times better than I was. There was something I was still missing to push further.

Progress - Act 3

With my studies going on and me start to take a new part time job, I didn't have enough time to do aim training anymore, so I concentrated my efforts to improve my game sense and mechanical skills in valorant like counter strafing, peeking and so on. It also was probably the thing I was missing to reach Platin.

My tip #4 is: If you your aim is not great, train your gamesense and basic mechanical skills. This will easily push you into Gold/Plat and is much more important than raw aim. You don't need headshots right now, if you can caught opponents off guard with off angles or if you can read their rotations and general playstyle. Many players and more often over confident players (mostly because of their aim) will do the same thing every round and you can easily capitalize on that.

After a month of hard stucking in Gold 1 and Gold 2 something clicked in my head. My gamesense was suddenly good enough to caught enemies off guard with my rotations and flanks and now I know most common angles to check (which doesn't imply that I survive every peek). Also my crosshair placement was at headlevel every time I didn't have to swing my crosshair for more than 90 degrees.

My tip #5 is: To train crosshair placement I always shoot at the wall with different ranges before every round in the buying phase and run up to the wall to check, if it was headlevel. You can always buy your weapon again, if you bought it the same round, to refill your ammo.

At this time I also had to change my eDPI for the last time to 200 eDPI. It kinda destroyed my muscle memory, but I got it back after a week. Now it feels exactly how I want it.

My raw aim is quite bad right now, because I don't aim train with Kovaak's or Aimlabs anymore, but my crosshair placement and gamesense are carrying me super hard. And 2 weeks ago I finally reached Platin 1 with random 2-3 stacks, I found on a Valorant discord server.

I recently got a bigger screen at 27 inches, so I can see heads much easier without putting my face on the screen and I got a new mouse, the Logitech G Pro X Superlight, which also improved my mouse feeling quite a lot.

So here I am now. My act rank is Plat 2, which I'm very proud of for reaching this far.
Act rank: https://imgur.com/HjV68yr

And today I had insane matches, where I hit every shot and so I even peak at Plat 3 (notably the 22-3-1 match): https://imgur.com/DzPuvce

My tip #6: Use the phantom, if you are not confident at hitting headshots. There are no and I mean NO benefits, if your aim and crosshair placement is not on point. All the Vandal vs Phantom videos are for plat or higher players, where the aim starts to be consistent. You can randomly hit a headshot, which is more luck than skill, but most of the time many players will start to spray above the head of the enemy. The phantom is much easier to control. You will get more kills by spray and pray with phantom than with the vandal. Of course you shouldn't spray more than 5 bullets at all most of the time, but even the 5 bullet spray is much more easier to hit than with a vandal, especially if you are not prepared to shoot, because you got surprised by an early peek.
To train your spray you can do the same thing in tip #5. I start to shoot at head and spray down to crouch head level multiple times in the buy phase. After a while you will get a hang of it. Of course you also have to change the distance too.

My tip #7: Don't hold angles too close. It is frustrating to watch my mates holding angles really tight and get peek and picked, because they couldn't react fast enough. If you hold angles with at least a body width distance from the angle, you will have more time to react and also they will probably swing the angle about that width, if they don't jigglepeek the angle.

My tip #8: Please warm up before and after rank games. Ideally you should play some deathmatches before and after ranked games to reset your mind and aim. If you don't have much time even the Range can be enough.
Some days your aim will be off and will require a hard reset. There I used a tip from a youtuber (Sorry I don't remember who it was), where you have to play deatchmatch with 2x of your sens to calibrate your aim again. You can do this the same way with 0.5 of your sense, depending on how off your aim feels (faster or slower). After this my aim feels normal again on those days.

My new goal is to reach Diamant 1 in the next 2 months. I think I have to start to aimtrain again, because I kinda suck at aiming freely without relying on crosshair placement. By the end of the year I hope to reach Diamant 3. I don't know, if it's possible, but I play 2 to 4 matches a day and will start aimtrain again for 30 mins a day, so I will hope for the best.

I hoped you enjoyed reading this. I did this mostly for myself, but added the tips for newer players, in the hope they will help them. You can ask me anything and I will probably answer every question, when I have time.

Please forgive me for typos or grammar, my english is not that great tbh.

‚Äč

Some data

Playtime:

~370 hours Valorant (Iron 1 to Plat 3)
~50 hours Kovaak's
= 420 hours of FPS experience

Hardware:

Laptop: Asus G14
Display: AOC 24G2 and AOC 27G1 Mouse: Logitech G Pro X Superlight
Mousepad: Corsair MM250
Keyboard: RK61 (random amazon bugdet keyboard)

Vandal or Phantom:
Phantom

Favorite skins:
Prime Vandal or Reaver. Phantom Oni or Ion. I didn't play blast much, so I didn't buy it yet.

References

  • https://www.reddit.com/r/VALORANT/comments/kqps58/my_valorant_diary_6_months_of_experience_and_tips/
  • https://reddit.com/kqps58

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