You can’t go wrong if you stick with these agents in Ranked.
VALORANT Episode 2 is finally here and with it comes a brand new ranked season for casual and professional players all over the world. One of the best new changes is the removal of the progression arrows, which have been replaced by a progress bar and rank rating to indicate how close players are to ranking up or down. Not only that, players will have to put in a little more work than usual to receive a higher rank than Plat 3 after their placements, which means everyone is eager to get those games over with as soon as possible.
But before you get overexcited and jump into the new season, here are the best VALORANT agents to climb solo queue with.
Whether it’s Iron elo or Immortal, no one is ever going to get mad at you for insta-locking Sova. As arguably one of the most trusted and reliable agents in the game, Sova is a strong agent to choose for all five of the playable maps in VALORANT. While playing a more supportive role might turn some people off, you don’t really even have to be a top-tier Sova to be able to make a huge impact in your games.
His kit is relatively easy to pick up but also accessible enough to perfect - if you are willing to put the time in that is, which is probably the only downside when it comes to spamming Sova in ranked. The trick is to be able to learn two or three crucial Recon Bolt or Shock Bolt lineups for each map, something you will have to jump in a custom game and practice for. Thankfully, Team Liquid’s Jonas "AverageJonas" Navarsete has done the hardest part for you - finding those lineups. All you have to do is to hop on his Discord server and choose a selection of lineups you like and can remember. Being able to execute good Recon Bolts and Shock Darts will make your life a lot easier in solo queue. Not only that, your teammates will benefit from the information gathered by your Owl Drones and Recon Bolts which can be crucial, especially if you’re in a lobby with four people without mics!
Sage's pick-rate does fluctuate when it comes to pro play; some teams know exactly what to do with her, while others won’t play Sage on any maps at all. However, in ranked, especially lower elos, Sage is extremely valuable - mainly because most people have no idea how to play against her. She’s a must-have in almost every team comp on Split and Icebox, but it’s not always easy to convince your teammates to play the support agent, so instead of hoping someone else would play her, it’s best if you can learn how to play Sage on at least two maps.
Besides having the ability to heal everybody on your team and revive them in crucial scenarios, her Barrier Orb is extremely strong if used in the right way. You’ll also need to learn a couple of lineups for her Slow Orb, but it isn’t time-consuming at all in comparison to having to memorise other agents’ lineups. Lastly, it’s imperative that you are flexible with where you place your walls, there is no point doing the exact same wall every round, and it is also something you need to communicate to your teammates, so everyone knows which areas are inaccessible.
There are plenty of duellists to choose from in VALORANT, but some are much harder than others when it comes to climbing ranked. Reyna has seen a recent surge in popularity, but unless you have the ability to carry every single one of your games, it’s not easy to climb with such a self-serving agent. Jett, on the other hand, while similar to Reyna when it comes to her kit being self-serving, is much more forgiving to players who are having a bad game. Jett’s Tailwind is still one of the strongest abilities in the game, giving teams massive advantages if they have an aggressive Jett player who knows what they’re doing. Don’t be afraid to experiment with Jett because you can get away with holding obscenely difficult or awful angles and use your dash as a get-out-of-jail-free-card.
Moreover, Jett is also long known as the best Operator agent, again, as a result of her Tailwind, which means you don’t always have to play on the offence. Make sure to practice or bind the Tailwind ability to an easier key if you feel more comfortable saving it as an escape tool and don’t forget to use her Updraft too which can give you even more options to attack or retreat.
Raze is one of the most popular agents in solo queue and there are plenty of good reasons as to why she’s so frequently picked. While she is incredibly strong and works on all five of the maps, the likelihood of you getting to play her is a bit lower than the other agents so be prepared to be that annoying person and insta-lock her in agent select. Having said that, it’s best not to be a Raze one-trick or put all your time into practising the agent because you won’t always be the fastest in agent select so be sure you have one or two more agents in your back pocket.
Like Sova, you need to practice a fair few lineups with Raze if you want to give you and your teammates the best chance every round. There are a fair few self-explanatory Boom Bot and Paint Shell spots, but if you want to maximise Raze’s potential, you have to have a couple of less-obvious lineups under your belt. Not only that, her Blast Packs give her Jett-esque agility, but you need to make sure to practice double Blast Packs as opposed to just running around with one.
Images via Riot Games