Valorant

How to rank up fast in Valorant’s Rated: Competitive survival guide

Published: 22/Jun/2020 14:20 Updated: 22/Jun/2020 20:49

by Andy Williams

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Valorant’s Rated mode is set to go live with Patch 1.02, but if you’re transitioning from Unrated to the competitive mode for the first time, there’s a few things you’ll want to learn before diving into the deep end.

Valorant is a competitive shooter at its core. Introducing a Rated mode – which rewards players for their grind against equally skilled opponents – is only a natural step forward for a title that is destined to flourish as an esport.

While both Unrated and Rated share the same Spike Defusal mode, Rated matches will play entirely different to its more casual counterpart. So here’s everything you need to know to hit the ground running and soar through the ranks in competitive Valorant.

Moving from Unrated to Rated: What to expect

Player defusing Spike on Ascent.
Riot Games
Rated games will play in an entirely different way to Unrated matches.

Providing you’ve played your 20 Unrated matches, you will have access to Rated once it goes live. Valorant’s competitive mode is made up of eight ranks ranging from Iron to Radiant, each with three tiers of progression (aside from the highest rank).

You can queue with a party of up to five members, but each must be within a two ranks range of yourself. So if you want to play with a friend whose rank is considerably higher than yours, you’ll have to grind your way there.

Team composition is the biggest change that you’ll notice in your transition to Rated. A team stacked with Duelists might work in Unrated, but in Rated you will be punished for doing so.

While we’ll touch on this in a little more depth later, just know that for now, you’ll want a healthy balance of Agents — those Sentinels really come into their own in Rated!

Aside from that, you’ll notice that teams will be a lot more structured as you progress through the ranks. Proper utilization of abilities (at the right time) can often dictate the outcome of a round. Before we delve into how to get you one step closer to that coveted Radiant rank, let’s first take a look at the Matchmaking Ration (MMR) system.

Understanding the Rated MMR system

Riot Games
Progressing from rank to rank can be a tricky affair.

You will have to play five placement matches when dipping your toes into Rated for the first time. During those matches, Riot’s algorithm will take a number of variables into account to place you among equally skilled players.

While top fragging your way through every match is great, that will only get you so far in Future Earth. Valorant will reward winning over anything else… So that means you want to maximize your chances of clinching a victory.

So if the biggest metric in the algorithm is winning, then the easiest way to securing your win is consistently playing with the same teammates. As it stands, there is no dedicated solo queue — meaning that you have a good chance of coming up against a premade squad, which will immediately put you on the back foot and lessen your chances of ranking up.

If you haven’t come across any teammates in-game yet, there’s plenty of forums where you can find like-minded players looking to rank-up… Try the ‘Looking for Group’ channels in the official Valorant Discord for your specific region.

Which Agents to use in Rated

Valorant's Agents filtered by type.
Riot Games / Dexerto
Which Agent best suits you?

So now that you understand how Rated’s MMR system works, let’s take a deep look into team composition. As you’ll probably already know, Agents are split into four categories (highlighted above). If you haven’t yet found your groove with a specific Agent, our beginner’s guide and Agent guides will help you do just that.

While there is no specific formula for the perfect composition, having a healthy balance is the general rule of thumb. Duelists and Initiators will come into their own on Attack, whereas Controllers and Sentinels will prosper on Defense.

Within the current meta, Sage is a must-have Agent for any team. Her healing capabilities prove invaluable as the rounds progress on Attack, while her Barrier and Slow Orbs can single-handedly bring the most aggressive of enemy pushes to a halt.

Agent selection is also dependent on the map being played. Some maps favor Attack more, and you’ll therefore want to capitalize on that by leaning more towards Duelists and Initiators, who’ll aid your ability to win key duels and push a Reactor Site.

Map knowledge and economy

Valorant's four maps at launch.
Blitz / Dexerto
Taking the time to learn each map will better help your understanding of the dynamics.

After playing a minimum of 20 Unrated matches, you’ll already have a pretty good grasp of each map and how they work. What really sets players apart from others, though, is their knack of understanding map dynamics.

Having the game sense of when and where to push comes with experience. For example, using your utility effectively (both in terms of placement and timing) to isolate areas of the map, plays a huge role in how well you can take control of the map.

Playing to the clock and using time relative to your map positioning is a great habit to pick up on, as it will improve your play tenfold in the long run. Be sure to brush up on our map guides to ensure you know callouts and important map features like the back of your hand.

To complement map knowledge, you’ll want to really get to grips with how your economy works and how it can impact not only the imminent round, but also future rounds. Keeping tabs on both your team’s and opponent’s economy will better inform your buys when entering rounds.

If you want to get a better understanding of how Creds work in Valorant, deep-dive into our economy guide which covers everything from the basics right through to the intricacies of ability usage.

Valorant

All Valorant skin bundles: tiers, weapons, prices

Published: 3/Dec/2020 15:38 Updated: 3/Dec/2020 15:39

by Lauren Bergin

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One of the coolest things about Valorant is the range of beautiful and expertly-crafted skins that you can equip to make your weapons stand out. Here’s a rundown of every skin in Riot Games’ FPS, as well as everything you need to know about them.

Valorant has become one of the most popular FPS games in the world. Drawing influence from games like CS:GO and Overwatch, the game and its esports scene have been an instant success.

Alongside the colorful abilities that make Valorant stand out among competitors, another aspect of the game is its skins. Riot Games have always had a knack for developing beautiful skin designs and executing them flawlessly, and Valorant is no exception.

Below you’ll find a detailed list of what skins are available in Valorant, how they are priced and how to get them. However, we need to start off slow, so let’s begin with the skin tier lists.

Skin Price tier in Valorant

Valorant-skin-tier

Just as in other Riot Games series, skins in Valorant are ranked by tier. Select tier is the lowest and therefore cheapest skin line, with Exclusive sitting at the other end of the scale. Let’s dive right into the base prices for each tier and their associated icons in the store:

  • Select Edition (SE), blue circle: 875 VP (~ $7) per individual skin, 3,500 VP (~$32) per bundle.
  • Deluxe Edition (DE), green rhombus: 1275 VP (~$12) per individual skin, 5,100 (~$47) per bundle.
  • Premium Edition (PE), upside down pink triangle: 1775 VP (~$17) per individual skin, 7,100 VP (~$75) per bundle.
  • Ultra Edition (UE), yellow diamond: 2475 VP (~$25) per individual skin, 9,900 VP (~$100) per bundle.
  • Exclusive Edition (XE), upside down orange pentagon: Varies.

Each skin has its own custom animations, reload, sound effects and death animations. Some can even evolve as you level up your weapon, changing the way that the look and react.

Wait, Valorant has evolving weapon skins?

Oni-Skin-Transformation

The short answer is yes, Valorant has evolving skins, but these are only available for some weapons and skin lines. In order to start levelling up your skins you need to partake in the Battle Pass Challenges and start earning Radianite Points.

We’ve got an extensive guide on Radianite skins right here for you, so make sure you’re up to speed before you start deciding which skins to save up for.

As you level up skins they’ll start to do different things, such as include new animations, sounds and more. The higher your weapon’s level, the cooler the skin, so it’s absolutely worth the grind to be able to flex how hard you’ve worked.

OK great, so where can I buy Valorant skins?

Valorant-Store-Screenshot

Skins are available through Battle Pass missions as well as in the store, and often come as all-inclusive bundles upon release.

Individual skins rotate every 24 hours, so if you see something you like it may be worth adding it to your collection.

However, most skins never leave the store so there’s no rush. After all, Riot drop new skins semi-frequently so you never know what’s around the corner!

All Valorant skins from the highest to lowest tier

Below is all of the skins in Valorant listed from highest to lowest tier in alphabetical order. The weapons these skins are available for are beneath each picture.

Exclusive

Singularity (Evolves)

Valorant-Singularity-Skins

Available for:

  • Ares
  • Phantom
  • Sheriff
  • Spectre
  • Melee

Ultra

Elderflame (Evolves)

Elderflame skin collection in Valorant.

Available for:

  • Frenzy
  • Judge
  • Operator
  • Vandal
  • Melee

Premium

Glitchpop 

Glitchpop-Skin-Bundle

Available for:

  • Bulldog
  • Frenxy
  • Judge
  • Odin
  • Melee

*  The Glitchpop bundle costs 8,700VP (~$85), placing it somewhere in between Ultra and Premium tier.

EGO by Onetap (Evolves)

Valorant-Ego-Bundle

Available for:

  • Ghost
  • Guardian
  • Stinger
  • Vandal
  • Melee

G.U.N (Evolves)

GUN-Skin-Bundle

Available for:

  • Bucky
  • Classic
  • Operator
  • Spectre
  • Melee

Ion (Evolves)

Valorant-Ion-Skins

Available for:

  • Bucky
  • Operator
  • Phantom
  • Sheriff
  • Melee

Nebula

Valorant-Nebula-Bundle

Available for:

  • Ares
  • Guardian
  • Phantom
  • Sheriff
  • Melee

Oni (Evolves)

Valorant's Oni collection.
Riot Games
The Oni Collection completely upgraded would cost 26,300 Valorant Points — leaving you with 10 RP left over.

Available for:

  • Bucky
  • Guardian
  • Phantom
  • Shorty
  • Melee

Prime (Evolves)

Valorant Prime Bundle

Available for:

  • Classic
  • Guardian
  • Spectre
  • Vandal
  • Melee

Reaver (Evolves)

Reaver-Skin-Bundle

  • Guardian
  • Operator
  • Sheriff
  • Vandal
  • Melee

Sovereign (Evolves)

Sovereign-Skin-Bundle

Available for:

  • Ghost
  • Guardian
  • Marshal
  • Stinger
  • Melee

Spline (Evolves)

Valorant-Spline-Skins

  • Classic
  • Operator
  • Phantom
  • Spectre
  • Melee

Deluxe

Aristocrat

Aristocrat Stinger

Available for:

  • Ares
  • Bulldog
  • Sheriff
  • Stinger
  • Vandal

Avalanche

Valorant-Avalanche-Skin

Available for:

  • Classic
  • Marshal
  • Phantom
  • Spectre
  • Vandal

Prism

Valorant-Prism-Bundle

Available for:

  • Ares
  • Ghost
  • Operator
  • Phantom
  • Stinger
  • Melee

Sakura

Sakura Vandal Valorant

Available for:

  • Ares
  • Classic
  • Sheriff
  • Stinger
  • Vandal

Wasteland

Valorant Wasteland Skins

Available for:

  • Marshall
  • Sheriff
  • Shorty
  • Spectre
  • Vandal

Select

Convex

Convex-Operator-Skin

  • Bulldog
  • Judge
  • Operator
  • Sheriff
  • Spectre

Galleria

Galleria Marshal Valorant

Available for:

  • Bucky
  • Classic
  • Guardian
  • Marshal
  • Phantom

Luxe

Valorant-Luxe-Spectre

  • Ghost
  • Judge
  • Operator
  • Spectre
  • Vandal

Rush

Valorant Rush Frenzy

Available for:

  • Ares
  • Bulldog
  • Frenzy
  • Judge
  • Phantom

Sensation

Sensation Skins Valorant No Logo

Available for:

  • Frenzy
  • Judge
  • Odin
  • Stinger
  • Vandal

* The Sensation Bundle costs 2930 VP (~$29), making it a slightly cheaper Select Tier bundle.

Smite

Smite-Skin-Bundle

Available for:

  • Classic
  • Judge
  • Odin
  • Phantom
  • Melee

Battlepass Skins

Battlepass skins are earned by purchasing the Battlepass and earning XP. These cannot be bought, so get them before they’re gone!

Act 1

DOT EXE

Valorant Dot Exe Ghost

Available for:

  • Ghost
  • Judge
  • Odin
  • Vandal

Couture

Couture-Bulldog-Valorant

Available for:

  • Bulldog
  • Frenzy
  • Marshal
  • Stinger

Kingdom

Kingdom Bucky Valorant

Available for:

  • Bucky
  • Classic
  • Phantom
  • Spectre
  • Melee

Act 2

Hivemind

Hivemind-Melee-Valorant

Available for:

  • Ares
  • Shorty
  • Spectre
  • Vandal
  • Melee

POLYfox

Polyfox-Judge-Valorant

Available for:

  • Bulldog
  • Guardian
  • Judge
  • Sheriff

Red Alert

Red-Alert-Bucky

Available for:

  • Bucky
  • Classic
  • Operator
  • Stinger

Act 3

Electroflux

Electroflux Stinger Valorant

Available for:

  • Bucky
  • Classic
  • Sheriff
  • Stinger

Jade

Jade-Judge-Valorant

Available for:

  • Ghost
  • Judge
  • Phantom
  • Spectre

Ruin

Rush-Vandal-Valorant

Available for:

  • Guardian
  • Marshal
  • Shorty
  • Vandal
  • Melee