Valorant’s current map pool may be controversial, but to compare it to maps in other FPS games that have been modified and perfected over countless patches seems unfair. Whether you love them or hate them, the team of Riot game developers featuring Volcano, famous for CSGO map designs such as Cache, has shown us how even the trickiest angles can be to your advantage.
This is a short guide of the current map pool to help in your quest to mastery and rank climb.
Bind is a 2-bombsite map with a very unique feature “binding” the sites together; teleports. They are however very noisy and so use them with caution as they will reveal your position. As always, communication is key, and if you coordinate with your team they offer an opportunity to quickly overwhelm the bombsite that is least defended. Likewise, if they aren’t watched, defenders can use them to quickly flank enemy attackers.
Because of the need for early map control, watch out for early gunfights on A short. Showers are also hotly contested and very difficult to hold against an agent with flashbangs or other zone-control abilities. Be flexible with positions and ready to change things up if the person defending cannot hold, or if your attacking agent doesn’t seem to make any progress.
In defending this site you have a few options but the most solid defense is with 3 agents. One holding Showers from the inside, another peeking A short or A port from site, and possibly a 3rd from U halls, helping to hold A short as well as quickly rotating to B site if needed.
Attackers from A short can wall off the first corner of the site and plant next to Truck. Defenders will think twice before jumping through the portal in a re-take situation, and the only disadvantage here for attackers is the small space around you and the planted spike. Post-plant, hold deep on A short and beware of flashbangs and other abilities as you hold for re-takes.
Use abilities to defend Hookah, a common entry point to the B bombsite. Holding B long is also a key objective as it otherwise gives attackers a direct entry to the A site via the teleporter.
As attackers, smoke B long early and deep to try and take control of the teleporter. Similar to taking Mid on other maps, you now hold all the cards and can dictate where to take the fight.
Sorry, Riot, but of course every map’s spawn zone is often referred to as T spawn for attackers, and CT spawn for defenders. Expect more CSGO callout copies as more pro players switch from CSGO to Valorant.
Split is another 2-bombsite map. This one has a highly contested mid-section. Defenders have a slight advantage in holding Mid, but if attackers can assert their dominance early they have a strong advantage with lots of options (similar to the teleporters on Bind). Many long angles on Split means an extra need for attackers to use abilities in taking position and map control. As always, peek with caution 🙂
Be prepared to lose team-members in taking a bomb site. Round wins here often depend on post-plant strength and so choosing agents and abilities for specifically these situations might be wise.
Defending the A site can be hard because of the lack of cover on site. Your best bet is to either hold an off-angle from Screens or be more aggressive and set up a defence around A main.
As attacker, use abilities to block vision from below Rafters, Ramp and Screens. Once the spike is planted, don’t hang around in the open but take up similar positions as the initial defence around Screens and A main.
The B bombsite is quickly accessible from Mid, and relative to other parts of the map easy to hold because of the many corners. Use this and have a single agent hold this site, while dedicating 2 to the A site and 2 to Mid. As a defender of the B bombsite, avoid peeking and instead use the time it takes enemies to clear all angles. Remember to communicate quickly with your team if you hear enemies approaching.
As attackers, block of Heaven with smokes or a wall as soon as you’re on site, and cut of rotations before they have time to arrive. One taking Middle Mail and another covering B alley should significantly slow down re-take attacks.
As defenders, holding Mid for as long as possible is important because of the access to bombsites you have when you control it. Use abilities early and often to hold attackers at bay. Attack it with at least 2 players, ideally split between Sewer and B link. Once you have control, take a few seconds to think through the plan of attack and remember to communicate with the rest of your team.
Uniquely for FPS games, Haven is a 3-bombsite map. While this naturally splits up the defense more so than on other maps, there is plenty of space and options for rotations, split entrances, and bombsite re-takes. Similar to Split, much of Haven fights are going to be around control of Mid which has direct access to bombsites B and C. A site, also similar to other maps, has access points from A long and A short.
All this space makes for excellent site re-takes and clutches as we saw in the T1 Valorant Invitational tourney.
Have one agent hold A long from Heaven, another covering Towers from A box and a third rotating player in A tunnel. As attackers, forget about A long and instead have everyone rush A short when the time is right. Post-plant, make use of the many angles on site to hold against a re-take.
The B site is easily accessed by rotations from both A and C and so a single agent guarding the only entryway is fine. Ideally a Cypher that can safely hold aggressive angles with Trapwire and cam spots.
As attackers, it isn’t so much taking the site that’s your problem. It’s holding it against quick rotations and re-takes. Smoke or wall off both A link and C link to buy yourselves more time and control.
Cypher is, again, a good option for holding this site. With a trapwire on garage and a cam looking at C long you have everything covered. Rotate position between Logs and Connector while looking at the cam, and be ready to call out when, inevitably, your cam gets taken out by enemies peeking C long.
If you attack this site from C long, remember to smoke it off, ideally with a Brimstone, and make use of Cubby as you advance. Without an Operator, your better bet is more likely coming in through Garage. Taking control of Mid doors early in rounds gives you more options for attacking the C site from both C long and Garage at the same time.
These 3 maps have received quite a lot of criticism, especially from players struggling with the many corners and angles to clear. One of the lead map designers, Volcano, had this to say about it in a recent stream;
“We’re always keeping an eye on that, and how it’s playing. There is a reason for it being that way given how much utility is in the game. Once teams start getting really in using that on attacker sides, corners end up being really useful. We’ve had versions of maps without as many corners and it gets really difficult to play with all the flushing and recon utility. But, we’re keeping an eye on it”
Reddit user UlfricTheThird has leaked what is supposedly imagery from a 4th, yet to be released, map called “Ascent”. Judging by the pictures of gondolas, canals, and lampposts this map is inspired by Venice.