5 Simple Methods to Help You Become a Competitive Gamer. Even if You Lack The Skills.
Do you feel like your enemies are always stomping you? Do you struggle to become better at video games? Fret not! We’re here to give you the 5 most useful tips to become a competitive gamer.
1. Practice your aim
Your aim is important, because you have to deliver quick and accurate hits. Taking down your opponents quickly is a must.
It’s also crucial to quickly select the right units at the right time. Being efficient at giving orders is equally resourceful.
Before you start practicing your aim, it’s essential that you did all the calibrations. Your mouse or joystick needs to feel natural. Also, make sure that you’re comfortable with the sensitivity settings. While you’re at it, you might want to invert your Y-axis.
Here’s how you can train on your aim based on the genre of the video game you’re playing:
a) FPS games
Instantaneous aim & kill is the core of all first-person shooters (FPS). FPS players have practice consistently getting headshots. That’s the weakest spot of the opponent. Sometimes 1-shot kills are only possible through headshots. FPS gamers also need the fastest screen and rendering hardware. Even a few milliseconds can make the difference. You also need to have a decent mouse or controller that is comfortable and configurable.
There is no given formula on how to be a competitive FPS player. But there are some rules that you should follow daily:
- Hone your headshot skills. It’s impossible at first, but it’s the only way to improve. Do it while your enemy is moving, jumping, crouching, and shooting at you. Do it while you’re the one who’s doing all these actions. Consider the head as the only vulnerable target;
- Try to keep your crosshair at the head’s height. This way, when an enemy appears, you just have to move horizontally to head-shoot them. This eliminates any extra movements;
- Increase your mouse or joystick speed as you learn how to successfully aim for headshots. You have to be able to instantly aim anything on your screen, and to 180o headshot enemies from behind.
- Avoid using the scope of your weapons. Even if it’s a sniper that you’re using. This way you won’t lose precious time zooming in and out at your opponent. You must be able to kill them from various distances without any assistance.
b) Action games
Action games can be of a wide variety. As such, precise aiming isn’t generally needed when navigating around. Non-targeting weapons (swords, flamethrowers, etc.) don’t need precision either. Auto-lock (aim assist) on target might be available too. However, when precision weapons are used, aiming skills become important.
A rule of thumb is to get accustomed to the speed of your crosshair. You also need to purposefully place yourself in tough situations. This will help you deal with multiple targets quickly. It might feel chaotic or even impossible at first. But if you stick to your training regime, I promise you will improve in the long run. Fast-pacing targets will no longer overload your brain. Everything will start feeling slower in your eyes. If you reach that point, it means that you’ve improved considerably.
c) RPG or Strategy games
You’d think that RPG or strategy games wouldn’t need any speed or precision. In reality, it’s the total opposite. It’s critical to accurately and promptly select the right units at the right time. Doing that while managing other units, is no easy task. In my opinion, that’s the number one hindrance of amateurs trying to learn RPG or strategy games.
Using shortcuts is mandatory. There’s simply insufficient time to select appropriate actions and target enemies while in large-scale battles. That’s needed for keeping tabs on other units as well. Sometimes, you need to re-select them in case you accidentally clicked on other units. This is something you should practice online, where skillful players can be extremely oppressive on the battlefield. Average tactics won’t do the trick, and that will push you to evolve as a gamer.
2. Play online only
This stands true for all categories of games. You’ll never learn how to be good enough if you aren’t matched up against skillful players. No matter how great you think you are, there’s always room to learn more from a pro gamer. Items you considered to be useless, are utilized by them in such ways that will drop your jaw. It’s OK to play with bots offline, to try new strategies. Practicing aim is a good initial step too. However, you should quickly go online and see how effective your new tactics are.
Avoid playing too much with your closest friends. By constantly being matched up against the same players, you’ll only learn how certain people think. That means you’ll be missing out on other combat tactics that you’ve never thought of before. Also, improving becomes harder because once you surpass your friends, you’ll stop developing. At that point, you might falsely think that you reached your plateau.
3. Use online guides
There are a plethora of guides, forums, discord servers, image boards, etc. that evolve around a specific game or topic.
Veteran players are part of those communities. They have useful advice to give, and possess evident insight into all aspects of the game. Twitch or YouTube streamers are another good starting point. You’ll be able to witness firsthand how these strategies are used against your opponents. In reality, you won’t manage to learn everything about a game. But it should provide you with vital information on areas you need improvement.
4. Avoid distractions
All your training regimes won’t be effective if you’re constantly distracted. That could be your siblings, your dog, construction noises, etc. Hence, it’s important to find that hour of the day (or night) that allows you to train in peace and comfort. You won’t learn anything if you aren’t focused 100% on your screen. A good piece of advice I could give you is to do all the homework and chores before any session. Once everything has been taken care of, you’ll be free to enjoy your quality time. My preferred time is nighttime, of course. Everybody is asleep and there are no sounds coming from outside.
Generally, if people annoy you, let them know politely that they’re distracting you. Don’t be afraid to confront people that don’t understand why gaming is important to you. Just tell them it is, and that’s that. They should at least respect you. Also, consider noise-isolating headphones, if there’s no other option. That could help significantly.
5. Upgrade your hardware
Sometimes, it’s simply not your fault for being unable to improve. It could be your sluggish PC, your malfunctioning controller, or that stupid moving table. Understandably, you may not be able to afford any new tech. Especially with those graphics cards’ prices.
It’s also important to understand that great equipment does not equal great skills. A good starting point would be to become the greatest with your current rig. When hardware starts hindering your improvement, proceed to the next step of purchasing what you need.
I’ve beaten skilled players before with my old non-gaming laptop and a $5 mouse. So, don’t get easily discouraged if you don’t have the necessary equipment. Giving up without a fight, it’s much worse. Don’t let those scrubs with expensive RGB lights distract you.
Bonus tip: have fun
The point of all of this is for you to enjoy your time. Competitive matches can bring you joy unseen before. Playing against the best is intense and challenging, but it’s also the most rewarding experience. As such, you’ll never be truly competitive if you’re stressing out about it. All you’re going to accomplish is to turn it into a chore. This could make you steer clear from gaming altogether.
Do the following to avoid that:
- Ignore the trolls/toxic players;
- Leave from sessions that you aren’t enjoying;
- Leave from sessions where you’re being spawn killed;
- Don’t be shy when asking for help;
- Try to create teams/parties with people you have chemistry with. This way you can play and improve together;
- Remember that it’s just a game.
What else should we add to the list?
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