What is your experience and level as a Valorant player?
I’ve started playing PC FPS games in 2017, got rank 9 on PUBG South America and Global Elite in CSGO before I started playing Valorant, so I had some experience with shooters. Got to immortal quickly when I started playing the game a bit more seriously and grinded hard for a month to get to Radiant. I’ve been having some issues with my PC which made it frustrating to play competitive so I had the idea of starting to coach! I’ve always found fun helping my friends improve at a few games and the concept of coaching, so it’s been very pleasing so far to work with something I enjoy!
What is your coaching approach in Valorant?
I personalize each session according mainly to their actual skill in-game rather than rank. Rank helps me to know how late/early they are into learning certain aspects of the game and how specific I can get to bring them the most value.
I make sure that they will learn by explaining superficially a concept while I watch them play. After the game ends I’ll make a deeper explanation, and rewatch some interesting rounds if there are any. After explaining everything, I give them a chance to ask anything about Valorant, and after the questions, I show some training drills and give them some notes containing what they should focus on and some extra tips to ensure they don`t forget about the discussed things.
How do you analyze a player’s performance?
Both watching live gameplay and reviewing recorded matches (VODs). If it’s not live gameplay, I can either record myself reviewing it and send it to the client, or we can do it together in a Discord call, it’s up to them.
I look at their profile on tracker.gg, so I can see their rank and how much they play the game. But most important is seeing their performance in-game so I can see what mistakes they shouldn’t be committing at their rank anymore.
I provide feedback before, during, and after the match that they played (Or VOD that we watched), and after the session, I give them notes with points they can improve and how to do it.
How can you help players improve their aiming skills?
I’ll link a few clips showing the training drills that I use the most:
Bursting and movement: https://youtu.be/3kxNK7Cw8NI
To improve at crosshair placement is either spamming deathmatches focusing on it (which you’ll not improve your gamesense and it’s not a very realistic representation of a real competitive match), playing customs by yourself and peeking angle by angle (same issue) or being more conscious about it during your games, which I think it’s the best way to do it.
What strategies do you recommend for effective team communication?
Players should try to communicate almost everything that they can see/hear and that could be helpful for their teammates (enemies pushing, taking orbs, planting spike, drones, flashes, enemies locations…). It’s also important to avoid complaining as it can tilt the entire team leading to a loss, so when something needs to be fixed, talk about the fix, not about the mistake, if possible don’t even mention it. For example, if your controller didn’t smoke, next round just ask him to smoke, don’t talk about how he didn’t smoke on the last round.
Regarding aggression, in my view players should be aggressive by default, especially in Solo Queue. I’d rather see a player overheating and going crazy (cause he’s gonna learn his limits) than a player who’s afraid to try and do things. Not only that but they’ll lose a lot of opportunities and give way too much space and time for the enemies to think.
Also communicating what you want to do is very valuable, as your teammates can help your play if they know what you’re going to do. Creating plays through communication (pre-round is a great time to do that) is a very good skill to have as well, and that can be a game changer in any elo.
Can you share some tips for map control in Valorant?
Map control is very important, Each Agent/Role in the game has a job when doing that, some are good at holding it and some are good at taking it, so I coach each one differently on how they can achieve that. Some agents are very strong on certain maps, for example, Sage on Pearl/Icebox/Split since she has some good walls to plant the spike or hold certain parts of the map, and Breach has Fracture/Lotus mainly, because his stuns are super strong to fight for control on some choke points in these maps.
But the main mistake people make regarding that is giving too much space on defense, they play too far back making it so they cannot pick their fights well, and also enemies will take control of bombsite entrances without any difficulty. On top of all that, you won’t have time to call for backup since you’ll see them only when they’re very close to the site sometimes.
When attacking, the mistake is either not creating a plan pre-round with their team, or just playing way too slow/not trading kills. If you take too long to make a move, they’ll have all the time in the world to think about your next move and it won’t surprise them anymore. Of course sometimes playing slow is fine, but some players don’t know when to play faster.
Having map control makes everything easier as the enemies’ next moves will be easier to predict and react to.
How do you develop a player’s game sense and decision-making?
I try to open their eyes by showing how I’d play if I were in their shoes, I also make sure to let them know how important that is, and which alternatives are also good. It’s usually easy to tell what the player is lacking since if he dies exposed to some angle he’s not holding, for example, means that he’s not aware of his surroundings, so looking at the map more would help with that.
The most common mistake about rotation is rotating too soon (without any reads about the enemies). Players either peek for example A Main and if they don’t see anyone there, they instantly rotate without anything happening on the map. Or they’ll rotate as soon as they see one/two enemies on the map, gambling for no reason. To fix that you should just rotate when it’s more obvious that they’re going to the other side (3-4 enemies on that part of the map), or if you have a read that they never fake/lurk.
What advice do you have for choosing the right agent for a player’s playstyle?
It depends on how they like to play the game! If they like playing very aggressively and going in front, duelists are made for that, If they like lurking, holding sites and being an anchor for their team, Sentinels are the right pick. Initiators if you like supporting the plays of your teammates and gathering info. If you like playing a little bit safer and trading kills, plus lurking eventually and making some mind games, controllers can be very interesting. Above everything, the Agents that you find most fun are the ones worth investing in since you’ll enjoy the game more and learn better with them!
I coach players on how their agent could make the most impact on the game, also taking into consideration the skill level of the player I’m coaching, since perfecting utility usage won’t matter as much for a silver player than for a diamond+ player, since their mistakes are usually fundamentals that are missing.
How do you help players adapt to new patches and meta shifts?
What do you think separates amateur players from professionals?
Their dedication to the game, consistency, and how much they are willing to sacrifice to improve. To become a pro you’ll be competing against players who tryhard the game in every single aspect of it, things you never even thought about, sometimes. They practice way more, not only aim as some people think, but also movement, self-coaching and lots and lots of grinding. Playing scrims is also very important since on Solo Queue the game is less serious, there is less cooperation and individual skill makes more difference (Which I love!)
How do you measure the progress of players you coach?
I give them the tools necessary for their progress and leave my discord available for questions they might have in case they find difficulties applying the main points of the coaching session. I sometimes get messages saying that they ranked up and thanking me, and sometimes messages saying that they still struggle with x thing, in that case, I try my best to understand why they’re not achieving it and to explain how they can change that.
If I’m coaching a returning student, I check their tracker again and see if they have applied at least the main points of the session so we can keep making progress.
How do you create personalized training plans for players?
To create training plans, I use things that have helped me to get better at the game, and gather some ideas from other coaches/youtubers that are interesting as well. I give specific training for specific issues the student has, it varies depending on their rank and actual skill level. Sometimes I also give some instructions on what they could do to take a step further on improving at certain things!
What success stories can you share from your coaching career?
I’ve helped people with lots of different objectives and ranks! Hardstuck bronze players achieving gold, going from Silver to Diamond in a few weeks, and even an Immortal player achieving Radiant for the first time! I’ve helped them through coaching and assistance through Discord.
What is your top advice for players new to Valorant?
What basic player level do you recommend before seeking professional coaching?
Depends on your goal and on how much you care about money efficiency. If you want to improve without doing a lot of coaching, hiring a coach can be interesting if you don’t know why you’re stuck, or what things you’re doing wrong even after you tried to look for those mistakes. YouTube videos and watching higher elo players, trying to understand why and how they do things is a great way to improve. Also, if you want to skip that part of finding it by yourself, a coach can do that for you!
What tools do you use to facilitate Valorant coaching sessions?
Tracker.gg: Gives a good understanding of what I’ll be dealing with;
Valoplant.gg: Easy way to show strategies/rotations and gameplans, and I use it sometimes to explain things in a different way if the student is having problems understanding something.
OBS Studio: To record their gameplay and rewatch a few rounds if needed.
Epic Pen: Good to draw on the screen to explain things better.
Discord: to watch them play and screenshare my Valorant as I explain concepts.
Do you offer coaching through Discord, and how does it work?
I do offer coaching through Discord, my username is “giggio.”
I received the payment in any way that works for both of us: Paypal, BTC, Bank transfer if available etc…
My Discord is available for the students to ask for questions and I’m always very happy to help! (As long as I see that you’re actually trying to fix it, some rare students think that they’ll fix things by asking questions without doing any work in-game to improve at it!) But other than that I do my best and have even recorded some clips, sent VODs from pro players and a few screenshots to help students in case it’s needed!