VALORANT Noob Guide: 61 Do’s And Dont’s To Remember

61 Do’s And Dont’s For VALORANT Beginners to Remember

This article will be formatted like a listicle to outline what you should and shouldn’t be doing in your VALORANT games.

Within the list will be an array of information surrounding a whole bunch of topics, the scope of this article will be really general and noob-friendly.

There will be a random assortment of very basic fundamentals that you should understand, alongside a bunch of more niche tips here and there.

Some tips will focus on game sense. This is the idea of making the high percentage play; the safer decision that will most likely secure you the round is often what people mean when they talk about ‘game sense’.

Understanding what you should be doing when you find yourself in sticky situations will imbue you with a sense of confidence and composure to win the round.

Before you begin, note that there will be some basic terminology. If you run into any words you don’t recognize, head to our VALORANT terminology guide.


#1 Play a safe post-plant

More often than not, the longer you deny enemy information about where and how you are playing your post-plant will strip time away from their attack and make them have to clear a lot more angles.

After being planted the spike has 45 seconds until it detonates.

The defenders need a full 7 seconds to defuse it. So in reality they only have 38 seconds for planning and executing a retake.

The longer that you and your teammates stay alive and the more that the clock ticks away the greater chance will be at winning the round. It is likely that they will lose belief and confidence as the spike beeps faster.

dos and donts haven

Let’s imagine you are one of the two yellow players here defending the spike against the two red agents (you have info that there is no flank). Both yellow players are holding a crossfire ready to trade each other out.

The timing of how and when you make contact with the two red players is crucial.

Timing example: Let’s say the spike is planted for C Long so both Red players believe you and your teammate are playing Long.

The red agent from C Link pushes out leftwards straight away to help his teammate contest long and doesn’t check on your position.

You hear this audio queue and decide to shift walk downwards towards Logs knowing the enemies are focused on Long.

Seizing space that an enemy believes they have cleared is very strong in these sorts of situations as you are catching enemies off guard by ambushing them right where they just came from.

#2 Use your utility to buy time in a post-plant 

A molly, for example, Phoenix’s Hot Hands, can cut off quite a few valuable seconds from any enemy’s attempt to push a choke point and get on site.

Any utility is valuable to cut off seconds from enemy pushes. I.E. Successfully flashing an opponent can buy you 2 seconds or managing to concuss someone with Skye’s dog or Breach’s Fault Line will probably secure you 3-4.

#3 If you have lineups, establish a gameplan with your teammates to have someone supporting you or have the majority of the team playing offsite.

#4 Keep your crosshair at enemy head level all the time

Check this video out.

From 2:00 onwards, there is footage from a VALORANT dev that has designed the maps with Unreal Engine.

Riot Nu is the Tech Lead for VALORANT and around 2:30 there is an explanation about how all agents are the exact same height, 200cm.

The more interesting point here is that all Radianite crates are roughly the exact same height as the tip of an agent’s head.

Knowing this will help you adjust your crosshair across various distances, slightly higher for close distances and slightly lower for longer distances.

You will be able to use crates on some maps as guides if you are still getting used to where you should be placing your crosshair.

#5 Buy a Marshall during eco rounds on Breeze

#6 Buy your teammate a rifle if they can’t afford it and you have your Bladestorm on Jett

#7 Try using the Operator on Jett while on defense

Check out our previous article that showcases strong positions Jett players should try using the Operator from.

#8 Retrieve your spycam as Cypher if you are rotating to retake the other site to retake when the spike is already planted.

#9 Use your Alarm Bot and or Turret as Killjoy to watch flanks. Use Cypher’s Trapwires in a similar fashion.

dos and donts killjoy

#10 Buy the Phantom as opposed to the Vandal if you are new to tactical shooters. The Phantom is more forgiving and easier to control when it comes to spraying.

#11 Try playing positions on site where you can retreat to safety and play retake with the team if the enemy is bombarding you with utility.

Coordinated plays by attackers can leave lone defenders on site at a significant disadvantage.

Staying to hold the site by yourself against 5 attackers that are W keying towards you can be very daunting and almost certainly lead to your death if you don’t have a solid plan in place.

Don’t be afraid to fall off-site and play retake with your team if you don’t think you will be able to deal with the attackers flooding site.

#12 Communicate with your team a strategy for eco rounds.

Eco rounds are difficult to win but with a sound plan they become slightly more winnable.

Rushing mid as 5 or playing extremely cheese angles waiting for a push are two viable options. Even gamble stacking a site as a 5 man is another option.

#13 If you are purchasing a Shorty on an eco round. Make sure to drop it after purchasing and hold your Classic until the buy-phase is over.

This will allow you to rotate with your Classic if opponents didn’t come to your side of the map.

dos and donts shorty

Rotating the map with a shorty is an almost impossible task as you will inevitably have to cross long passageways and fight opponents at distances where the shorty will be useless.

#14 Pay attention to the tendencies of enemy opponents on both attack and defence rounds. Devise a strategy to counter any predictable and or repetitive enemy moves.

#15 If you are playing Brimstone try playing around the middle of the map so you can smoke either bombsite for the team.

#16 Consider warming up briefly before queuing competitive games if you find that you are inconsistent with your aim day-to-day.

#17 Keep tabs of the ultimates that your opponents have as it could give you good insight as to what they plan on doing.

#18 If using a shotgun on an eco round aim for the upper chest as this will give you the best chance at dealing lethal damage.

Aiming at the standard head height will cause some pellets to spread around the head and miss completely.

#19 If the enemy you are fighting has strafed behind a wall and you are anticipating they will peek at you again, try pre-firing at headshot height for a potential advantage.

#20 If you have Sage ultimate and a teammate has just died, sometimes it is worth looking for a pick first before reviving.

By doing this you will gain better judgment as to whether it will be best to save your ultimate for a more crucial moment.

If you were successful in finding a pick and then decided to use Resurrection afterward, it would now be a 5v4 in your favor.

#21 Mix up your attacking strategy: make sure you are being unpredictable and hard to read.

#22 If you are playing Sage more often than not it will be your job to hold the bomb and stick around the team so you can heal, revive, and farm ultimate points when planting.

#23 If it is safe to do so, shoot the enemy Sage’s Barrier Orb down early in the round to deny the defenders this form of security. Shooting down the wall will force them to have someone holding this area.

For example, if the enemy Sage uses her wall mid on Split, this will allow her to rotate to B heaven holding B Main.

If you don’t shoot her wall down and decide to do a team push through B Main you have an extra angle to clear out (Sage’s hold).

dos and donts break sage wall

If you did decide to break the wall, however, this will make the enemy paranoid about a potential mid lurker, and most likely force the Sage to hold mid.

#24 Pay attention to your minimap. Also, open up the main map to see what is happening on the other bombsite (if you are in a safe position).

Sometimes if your teammates are lacking comms this can be a great way to see how many enemies are pushing and what sort of action is unfolding across the map.

Take regular glances at the minimap as well; sometimes red question marks will appear for enemies that have been spotted by your team.

#25 Try your best to hide from Sova’s Owl Drone as it can lead to easy picks for the enemy team if your location is revealed.

#26 Communication from one side of the map to the other is vital

Understanding where the enemy presence is at the start of the round will help your team figure out how they should be defending and whether they should be rotating or not.

At 0:45 IGL Fanatic Boaster explains the importance of this and shares what you should and shouldn’t be doing when information about the enemy is being revealed.

#27 Use initiators to open up space for the team on attack, I.E. Skye’s dog or Sova’s Owl Drone.

‘Opening up space’ in VALORANT generally refers to the use of abilities to create a safe path for teammates to take.

In this case, Skye’s dog could be used in A Lobby to clear out A Sewers.

The team can follow behind the dog at a safe distance, assuring that the dog makes first contact with the enemy.

After the dog has reached the site and confirmed there are no enemies it has now successfully opened up space for the team in A Sewers.

#28 Stay aware of the opponent’s economy to know what they may be doing.

Keeping tabs on how many credits the enemy has will help you predict certain plays. If the enemy has a Jett make sure you know whether or not they can afford an Operator.

Knowing this will alert you as to whether you should or shouldn’t be peeking A belt/ Rafters on Icebox for example, or C long on Haven.

Knowing that the enemy is on an eco can help your team prepare for a potential 5 man enemy push down mid etc.

#29 If you have lost one site over and over on defense consider swapping around your team formation and or deciding to retake it.

#30 If attacking A on Haven, use Jett’s Cloudburst at the A Lobby door to momentarily cut off the defender’s angle from A Long and provide a safer entry.

dos donts jett smoke gif

#31 Be prepared to shoot Sova’s Recon Dart and KAY/O’s knife since most players use the same lineups across rounds.

#32 Try spraying through Radianite crates if you know an enemy is taking cover behind one, they are highly penetrable.

#33 Try to expect that an orb will be farmed if Killjoy or Sage is 1 off ultimate. Consider playing to protect the orbs.

#34 If one member of your team has a rifle on an eco round, make sure to play around them so that you can recycle their gun if they die.

#35 Mix up your positioning on-site round-to-round when defending.

#36 When using Jett’s Bladestorm try to make yourself a hard target to hit. You rarely want to be shifting when dueling an enemy since the kunai are perfectly accurate regardless of your movement.

dos donts bladestorm gif

#37 Take small breaks between your games for your own health and ability to focus.

At the 00:50 second mark in this video, well-renowned pro player Liquid ScreaM shares how he takes regular breaks to be able to stay at the top of his game.


#38 DON’T stomp around after tapping the spike. Shift walk so that your enemy suspects you are still on it.

#39 DON’T spray the Vandal like a lunatic.

Its spray pattern is much harder to control than the AK from CSGO. You are better off tapping or burst firing 3-4 bullets then resetting the recoil, (strafing whilst your recoil is resetting), then burst firing again.

#40 DON’T force buy if the rest of your team is saving.

DON’T sacrifice purchasing smokes so you can buy a full shield. Having full smoke utility as the team’s only controller agent is extremely valuable. You are better off buying a light shield and topping up on smokes.

#41 DON’T play competitive games without a microphone.

#42 DON’T over-rotate.

Many rounds are lost due to leaving a bombsite completely open for the enemy to take for free.

If you are a Sentinel like Cypher or Killjoy it can be very strong to anchor-site despite hearing a ruckus on the other.

#43 DON’T hold down your W key when traversing the map.

Make sure to clear angles and navigate the map using your A and D keys.

This will make it a lot harder for enemies to lock their crosshairs on you as your character strafes quickest when avoiding the W key altogether.

In this video at 00:15 Sero explains well why you should use A and D to peek angles and clear sites, as well as how exactly you should do it.

#44 DON’T buy the second round if you failed to plant the spike and have less than 2000 credits each.

Force buying the second round after losing the first pistol round is only viable if you each have over 2000 credits and believe you have all generated a strategy that will catch the enemy off guard.

#45 DON’T Shift walk if the enemy is already aware you are rotating, this will just allow them to rotate faster than you.

#46 DON’T be afraid to dodge a competitive game if you are having to fill an agent you have never played before. I.E. if you have to play a controller but never have.

#47 DON’T be toxic in a competitive match even if you are just messing around… You can’t possibly gauge how a stranger will take it and it could very well lead to them throwing.

#48 DON’T assume that an enemy which is having a good game is a smurf.

Sometimes an enemy player is just going to hit their shots and have one of their better games and there might not be much you can do about it.

Every game is winnable though and dropping your head early and thinking that the enemy is better than you is something you should avoid.

You may be equally as good as the person that just happens to be hitting these potentially lucky shots on you.

VALORANT is a lot more forgiving than Riot’s counterpart, League of Legends, same goes with CSGO. I

t is much harder to come back in these games, in VALORANT however you should try your best to never lose hope.

#49 DON’T guide a teammate if they are in a clutch situation, in almost all scenarios it is best to let them use their own judgement as your comms can throw their concentration off.

#50 DON’T reload if you still have at least half a magazine left.

Reloading your gun makes quite a significant audio queue around your vicinity and can give away your position. Try to reload only when you know for sure there aren’t any enemies around you or if they already know where you are.

#51 DON’T lurk if you are the only agent that can flash and help the team initiate attacks on bomb sites.

If you are deciding to lurk on an agent like Reyna and you are the only player on your team that can provide a blind to entry site you should communicate this to your team first.

Let them know they should not push anything yet and just play default for a moment until you link up with them again.

#52 DON’T think you are safe just because something is smoked. Standing in common pre-aim angles will most likely get you sprayed down through it.

#53 DON’T overpeek when playing defense, denying the attackers information makes it a lot harder for them to execute entries.

#54 DON’T instantly queue again after a bunch of grueling losses.

Take a moment to ‘reset your mental’ even if it’s just a 2-5 minute walk to grab a snack and look into the distance.

‘Tilt queuing’ is a problem a lot of players succumb to, after losing multiple games and feeling deflated it is likely you will be performing sub-optimally.

dos donts wardell tilt gif

It is going to be tough for you to be the best version of yourself in your comp game if you are frustrated and prone to be easily triggered before it even starts.

#55 DON’T lock in a controller other than Viper on Breeze and Icebox. Viper is by far the strongest agent for these two maps.

#56 DON’T expect a good outcome to come your way if you are testing out new agents in competitive games.

#57 DON’T flame teammates and avoid trying to educate them even if you think you may know better.

The middle of the comp game is not the best time to teach your opponents something and will most likely bring the team morale down.

Not everyone plays perfectly and this is just something that you have to come to accept.

Obviously, this is situational if you have had a friendly relation so far with this person in the game, you can go ahead and try sharing something nicely and constructively but outright blaming them for something and pointing out flaws doesn’t do much good.

#58 DON’T buy a Sheriff on pistol rounds unless you are a Jett or are playing long range angles on maps like Breeze or Icebox. Utility is very valuable in these early rounds.

#59 DON’T stand completely still during aim duels, be sure to strafe left and right so that it is harder for the enemy to shoot you.

#60 DON’T be nervous in clutch situations or during post plants (or at least try not to be).

When tense situations arise some people begin walking around the same way they might when they take a phone call IRL.

In a post plant, it is best to choose the position you want to play, stick to it and hold the angle until you make contact.

Obviously, if you are gaining audio queues from enemies and information is coming your way from teammates this is subject to change.

Nevertheless, what I mean is that pacing up and down and switching between multiple angles is going to do you no good.

Stay calm, hold one angle and be confident.

Work on some techniques that will help you regain your focus and become less anxious, a simple slow, and deep breath could do the trick.

#61 DON’T half-clear corners… make sure to peek at everything with the expectation that someone is there.

In this video TenZ discusses how it is quite a common problem that even high elo players succumb to.

Closing Thoughts

I hope that if you are new to VALORANT or have been playing for a little while there are some things here that you have learned.

Some of these fundamental concepts are things that become ingrained in your playstyle over time.

The more you are exposed to tricky situations within games the more competent you will find yourself feeling the next time you have a similar encounter.