I just covered VALORANT Movement Fundamentals in my last blog, if you didn’t read it, I suggest doing that before continuing on with this one.
If you want to be good at any tactical shooter game (VALORANT, Counter-Strike, etc.), you need good crosshair placement. A perfectly placed crosshair is the key to giving yourself the absolute best chance to get a frag.
Beginners (Iron, Bronze, Silver, Gold, and even Platinum ranked players) who make movement and crosshair placement a priority will get a lot better, fast.
Let's break down what good crosshair placement consists of.
As you move throughout the map, your crosshair stays at head height regardless of elevation changes
Your crosshair is positioned in a way that you're ready to hit a headshot without flicking
When holding angles your crosshair is the right distance from the angle
Let me explain the 3 points above in more detail.
1. As you move throughout the map, your crosshair stays at head height regardless of elevation changes
There are elevation changes on every map. If you have a feeling you're going to run into an enemy and they're on a ramp or elevated in any way you should position your crosshair and pre-aim before turning the corner.
Here's a hypothetical situation. The enemy team has taken A and someone hears a Jett Updraft into heaven. I'm rotating through A Link and want to take heaven control back. This is bad crosshair placement. Even though it's head height for me at my current position. It's not head height for where the enemy will actually be as I turn this corner.
Instead, it should be positioned at head height of the surface that the enemy is on and that I am about to peek. Like this:
Practicing crosshair placement while you move is one of the hardest things for a beginner. To begin, you need to know where head height is. Then you need to keep your crosshair there by only moving your mouse left and right as you move. In VALORANT Movement Fundamentals I went over a task in Aim Lab called ValorantHavenEntry. This is a great task to practice with.
2. Your crosshair is positioned in a way that you're ready to hit a headshot without flicking
Here's another hypothetical situation. Let's pretend I'm rotating to A. This is an example of bad crosshair placement. Even though my crosshair is at head height, it's not positioned for me to be ready to take a gunfight without flicking.
Instead, as I rotate through A Link it should look like this in case the enemy team pushed out of A to take a fight at A Link.
To practice, always keep your crosshair at the corner you are about to approach or turn. Be ready to shoot if someone turns that corner.
3. When holding angles your crosshair is the right distance from the angle
This is very important when you are defending. Knowing how far your crosshair needs to be from the angle is key. Let's pretend enemies are running out of A Link into B. Here are the differences in crosshair placement.
When you put your crosshair too close to the angle you most likely will have to perform some sort of flicking or tracking as someone runs across your screen. You want to avoid these movements when holding angles.
When your crosshair is too far, it's a similar concept to being too close. You're going to have to rely on flicking to hit your shot.
There are things to consider when holding an angle. How fast is your reaction time? If it's slow, your crosshair needs to be further away from the angle. There are also other factors like audibles. If someone is running full speed and you can hear it, your reaction time will most likely be a lot faster. That means you can make the adjustments to move your crosshair closer to the angle before that enemy runs by.
When your crosshair placement is perfect. You don't have to do anything but hit mouse1 to get a kill. This is what your goal should be when holding angles.
Now that you have the fundamentals of movement and understand the meaning of crosshair placement. Let's have a look at a real example. The clip below is taken from the VALORANT Champions Tour Masters tournament in Iceland. We're going to take a look at Team Liquid's ScreaM vs Version1 on Split. This round in specific ScreaM gets a 4K, but focus on the following:
His crosshair placement stays at head height
He lines up his shots before he sees the enemy (pre-aims)
He uses his strafe keys to peek instead of holding W around corners
He barely moves his crosshair before shooting, and he doesn't rely on flicks (although he is capable of landing flicks)
Now you have information about crosshair placement. If you have horrible crosshair placement now, don't worry, you're on your way to improving already because you're aware and you have the knowledge of what makes someone's crosshair placement great.
The next time you hop into the server be aware of where your crosshair is at all times until it becomes second nature and visualize where your enemy will be and pre-aim before you turn corners.
If you're enjoying the content and finding it valuable please share it! Any shares are greatly appreciated! If you sign up for an account right now you will receive a special "Radiant" badge on your user profile (limited to the first 250 members). You will also get alerted when new blogs are posted and you can comment!