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How to Play Valorant: The Beginner’s Manual

Covering everything from gameplay mechanics to weapons



In this article:


First-person shooter video game Valorant isn’t through making its sweep. Continuing its takeover of the global gaming community, the title developed by Riot Games first won players over in 2020 thanks to its unique gameplay, awesome graphics, and lovable characters—and it’s only getting better.


Looking ahead, things at Valorant are shaping up to be bigger and crazier, as even more people join in. If you yourself are planning to try it out or have already dipped your toes in the world of Valorant, the beginner’s manual ahead can help you become a pro in no time.



How to Play Valorant: The Basics

Set in a future equivalent of planet earth, Valorant begins with 10 players divided into two teams: Attackers and Defenders. Each match kicks off in a lobby where players choose and lock in their desired Agent.


The aim is to become the first team to win 13 rounds. To accomplish this, players must either eliminate the members of the opposing team or finish the objective assigned to them. For Attackers, this involves planting a spike (or the game’s equivalent to a bomb). They must plant and defend the spike against the opposing team until it successfully goes off. The attacking side receives the point in the round if the spike detonates or the group manages to eliminate the enemy team.


On the other end, the Defenders are tasked to neutralize the bomb as quickly as possible. This involves the players defusing it within a specific time. The group receives the point if this attempt is successful.


Valorant agent Jett

Photo: Polygon


Though the game will always involve Attackers and Defenders, different game modes exist to give players a more dynamic and unique playing experience. See ahead for what you can expect.


Replication

This is the game’s best-of-nine mode where all 10 players use the same Agents. The game usually lasts 10 to 15 minutes.


Spike Rush

Here, players use the same randomized weapon in their artillery, with buffs and debuffs scattered across the map. This mode lasts around 8 to 12 minutes.


Deathmatch

Deathmatch allows players to practice gunplay mechanics while restricting abilities or their warm-up. The game ends after nine minutes or once a player achieves 40 kills.


Escalation

In this 5v5 mode of the deathmatch, players aim to kill and race the opposing team through different abilities and weapons. The winner is decided once a team reaches level 12 or has a higher level than the opponent within 10 minutes.


Snowball Fight

Like Escalation, Snowball Fight is a 5v5 deathmatch mode where the first team to achieve 50 kills wins the round. Here, players can only use the Snowball Launcher as a weapon, and buffs generate across the map.


Practice Game

Practice modes consist of Shooting Tests, Spike Planting, and Spike Defusing. These allow players to get the hang of the game mechanics and techniques.



A Clear Breakdown of Valorant Roles

What are the different roles and characters you can play on Valorant? As of writing, the game currently features 19 Agents with unique skill sets.


Duelists

Considered the characters with the most impact on a team, Duelists are the principal damage-dealers of Valorant. Popular Duelists in the game include Jett, Reyna, and Phoenix.


Controllers

These support experts assist their team by limiting enemy vision and taking control of the map. Four Controllers are currently playable. These are Astra, Brimstone, Omen, and Viper. 


Initiators

Like the Duelists, Initiators thrive thanks to offensive playstyles. One of their main specialties is forcing enemies out of hiding before initiating a clash. Sova, Fade, and Breach are some examples of the Agents in this class.


Sentinels

The defensive experts of the game, Sentinels support their team by providing intelligence and pinpointing sites. Killjoy, Sage, and Chamber are the best examples of this class.


 Lineup of Valorant Agents you can play

Photo: ESPORTS.NET



Weapons and Economy

Like other FPS and MOBA games, Valorant’s gameplay highly depends on its unique economy. Winners of a round are awarded credits, which they can then use to buy better weapons, armor, and tools. Meanwhile, losers will need to find creative ways to win in order to recover from economic damage.


Here’s a breakdown of the game’s weapon types and what scenarios they excel in.


Sidearm

The sidearm is capable of high headshot damage and is good to use when your primary gun is out of ammo. Five weapons under this class are Classic, Shorty, Frenzy, Ghost, and Sheriff.


Submachine Guns (SMGs)

SMGs like Stinger and the Spectre are known for their burst damage potential and fast firing rates. 


Rifle

The Bulldog, Vandal, Phantom, and Guardian are rifles that can kill enemies in one shot from any distance.


Sniper

This weapon is capable of one-shot kills from great distances. The Marshall and Operator are two weapons in this category.


Heavy

From the name itself, these weapons are heavy-duty and ideal for asserting dominance given their high-volume power. Ares and Odin are examples of this weapon. 


Shotgun

One of the stronger weapons in the game, shotguns deal devastating blows in cases of close combat. The Bucky and the Judge are the two shotguns currently in the game.


Valorant buy menu for weapons and armor

Photo: Mobalytics



Valorant Ranks in Order

After playing a significant number of hours, Valorant players are expected to receive a rank based on their skills. Besides showcasing one’s prowess, the ranking system ensures that players will be matched up against other people with the same level, ensuring fair and even games.


Here are the Valorant ranks listed from highest to lowest:


  1. Iron

  2. Bronze

  3. Silver

  4. Gold

  5. Platinum

  6. Diamond

  7. Ascendant

  8. Immortal

  9. Radiant


Valorant ranks and placements

Source: Riot Games



Frequently Asked Questions About Valorant

Got some more questions in mind about the game? Look no further. Here are some answers to FAQs about Valorant:


How many GBs do I need to download Valorant?

Valorant’s download size is around 23.1GB. The game, players should note, is a bit heavy on hardware, so make sure to clear out storage.


Where can I download Valorant?

Simply visit the official website and click the “Play Free” button. Be sure to create a Riot Games account beforehand as this is a prerequisite to the download.


What are the minimum system requirements to play Valorant?

A minimum of 4GB RAM is required for smooth gameplay, so anything at par or above is preferred.


Is Valorant available anywhere other than PC?

Currently, the game is exclusively available on PC. 


How to change my name in Valorant?

Log into your Riot Games account and navigate to the ID tab. Once there, enter your desired name and save your changes. 


Can I change my Valorant region?

After signing up for a Riot Games account, a player can only change their region with the help of a VPN.


Valorant Agents

Photo: Valo2Asia



Play Valorant Like a Pro: 5 Proven Tips for the Grind

No one becomes a Valorant pro overnight. To help you master the game and pursue the long grind, here are five tips to keep in mind:


1. Choose the hero you want

Valorant is meant to be fun, so play the Agents you enjoy the most! An additional tip: playing a Duelist like Jett is your best bet if you like being aggressive. But if you prefer someone sneakier and tactical, picking a Controller like Viper is the way.


2. Communication is key

No matter how good you are as a single player, Valorant is still a team game. Adjusting to your team and proactively communicating will help you go from good to great.


3. Practice, practice, practice

While focusing on one character to excel in is a good thing, it won’t hurt to practice other characters, too. Mixing things up is the best way to learn about the characters’ strong and weak points.


4. Take things slow and steady

The atmosphere is normally high-stakes and intense in this game. While it’s understandable that you want to shoot your enemies non-stop, being still can be a beneficial tactic, too. Valorant greatly emphasizes the importance of aiming. If you constantly move while shooting, the chances of hitting your target are slim.


5. Make your weapon work for you

Again, weapons impact your performance as a player in a shooting game. Recognizing which weapon classes suit your playstyle the most can greatly improve your chances of winning.


Valorant agent Neon

Photo: TWINFINITE


Match Point!

While it is still an evolving game, Valorant has exceeded expectations for gamers thus far. Great things are coming, so now’s the perfect time to get in the game.


As you start your Valorant journey, make sure to power your sessions with Globe Broadband or one of the amazing prepaid gaming promos. Don’t forget to join Globe Gamer Grounds for exciting rewards, events, and more, too!



Art Maurice Zafra

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