10 months ago
Rocket League is a game by developers Psyonix which takes the simple idea of combining a basic car game with the idea of a soccer game. As of 2017, it surpassed 25 million sales, and blew up upon release. The game has been active for a very long time, while experiencing many changes, including the introduction of the Rocket League Championship Series (RLCS), as well as awesome updates, (Including the controversial story about Epic Games buying Psyonix). The prequel to this game is Super Acrobatic Rocket Powered Battle Cars, which was only released on the PS3 in 2008. Rocket League is the same but just all around more refined, with graphical upgrades, smoother movement, etc.
However, if you clicked on this article, you are probably expecting some basic tips on playing the game. So let's go through those.
The following tips are based on many aspects of the game. I will give you ten good tips on how to play generally better, and also to give newcomers to the game a taste of how in depth the world of Rocket League mechanics and general gameplay is. Just keep in mind:
You're not going to become Squishy overnight.
These skills take practice, make sure you spend some time practicing these in Free Play (With the exception of a few, since you can't really experiment with these in Free Play).
Here we go:
1. Have a balance of playing against others and freeplay.
As much as possible, balancing these two things will give you a solid amount of practice and experience, and is a great way to warm up for your games. If you are getting tired after playing a few games, or feel like you are on a bad streak, go play free play. This will generally enhance your skills and bring you back to play a few more games, without getting too toxic (We don't need anymore NeatMike equivalents).
2. Cars do matter.
While this is a bit controversial, many people say that it doesn't. It kind of does. Depending on your playstyle, you can choose the car that goes with you. For example, the most commonly used car in the game is the Octane. This is because it has a decent height, very nice turn radius (the amount of time it takes to turn), and its nose is fairly pointy, allowing more power on the ball. Cars that are generally flatter, such as the Batmobile, are also popular due to their ability to dribble as well as land shots and hit the ball over a larger area of the map. An example of a car you shouldn't use is the Backfire. Bad turn radius, and weird hitbox. Although I must mention; The difference in cars is very slight, but some cars give an edge in different situations. (Also try using the Scarab for a month and see how much better you can do than Sunless.)
3. Watch players slightly above your rank (1 - 2 ranks higher or the same).
While it is entertaining to watch Squishy pull off insane shots, or see Jhzer do some insane aerial passing plays with the Pulse team, sometimes it is better to watch people only slightly above your rank. This will prepare you better for playing against those in your rank, by giving you an idea of where to position yourselves in certain situations, what to do in those situations, and how to deal with your opposition. Seeing those players slightly above you can give you an edge, since watching players way higher perform crazy mechanics shows you things that most beginners don't have the ability to emulate. Work your way towards these, and eventually, you may be able to pull some of these off. Of course, don't stop watching these guys if you already do, but maybe check out lower players occasionally, because I understand how relaxing it is to watch these guys wreck their opponents.
4. Turn off camera shake. (Just do it, trust me, it'll make your life much better.)
5. Adjust your controls and camera settings.
Most players regret not doing this earlier (Maybe with the exception of camera settings). Many players suggest changing your air roll and powerslide button to L1 or Left bumper, and this helps TREMENDOUSLY when it comes to recoveries and controlling your car in the air. I changed mine later, and even still it only took me around 2-3 days to overcome. There are other settings which some players recommend, but these are all different. I'd recommend trying a few out to see what works for you, just try change that Air roll and powerslide button. It feels sooo much better. With your camera settings, change them up and see how they feel. Experiment with them. Many professional players publish their settings online, so check those out and use those (Just don't use Ganer's or LEDs, you will probably get a headache from trying to find out where your team and the opposition are).
6. Watch replays of your matches.
I swear I cannot stress this enough. WATCH THEM. Watching these will give you an idea of where you can improve and makes you think during your mistakes, "What could I have done better there?". It's surprising how many players don't actually go and watch these. This can mean the difference between you doing something right and doing something wrong. As you get higher in rank, you'll realise how crucial it is to get every situation well under your belt. The simplest mistakes in high grand champion usually results in a goal. However, most people reading this I assume aren't, so please watch your replays. Of course, now is the time to make mistakes in order to learn from them. This will help you a lot.
7. Try out training packs.
There is such a large variety of training packs out there, that there is probably one for every single situation by now. Since you can adjust many aspects of player position as well as ball position and speed, you can easily find a way to improve something you are struggling at. There are also many training packs which can help you warm up while you are searching for matches. I personally love perfecting my air control, and I am currently trying to enhance my air dribbling. So in this case, I can scroll through the options and see what I can try out. Make sure you check these out, they are more elaborate than they seem. (Don't try Linkuru's one until you're maybe Grand Champ).
Use this mode. Please. Many players don't and I think it is a great way of working on your own control. It teaches you lessons very well since a simple mistake usually leads to a goal (Which, as I said before, applies to Grand Champ, but I was primarily referring to twos/threes). In every instance you are in charge of your own goal. Using this mode usually results in you being able to carry a team, or at least allow less reliability on your teammates (Of course, don't play as a solo player in a team game). Try this, you WILL get much better.
9. In Freeplay, practice faster than you would normally play.
Start playing in uncomfortable situations in free play, by making the ball go really fast. See if you can hit it in the direction you want it to go, or hit the ball in really weird places, and try to perform recoveries from those. A good example of this is double-tapping (Where you hit the ball towards the wall and hit it again once it bounces off the wall in mid air). Using this technique, you can chip the ball really fast towards one of the walls and try hit it again. This has actually made me much better and allows full understanding of many situations the more you do it.
10. Don't Ballchase.
This is a common misconception in earlier ranks. During that early bronze time, most players seem to just aimlessly go to the ball, and hope it goes somewhere. There is an easy solution. The way the ball will go based on the direction the player is coming to make contact with the ball is very easily predictable in the early stages (Wait, Bronzes can't fake, right?). Take your time and realise where the ball is going to go, and think about what your counterattack is based on what you have predicted. It is better to assume something than to not go for it at all. That could give your opponent time to think of how to outplay you. This leads onto my next point:
11. Take your time.
If your opponent is going to grab boost, on the other side of the map, or defending his goal while you have possession of the ball, try and utilise that time to take control of the ball and see what you can do to bypass is defense. This is another common error which takes place in earlier ranks. Try and eradicate the thought of rushing the ball into the opponent' goal all the time and play wisely. Rocket League is heavily based on the mind, it is not nearly as important as the thought of 'What combinations of buttons should I press'. Be patient.
Well, those are some of the tips which I think are the most important. There are of course more, but I think this is a sufficient amount for beginners to get an idea of how to play and how to outsmart their opponents in order to reach a higher rank. Please drop any suggestions in the comments, I hope it was somewhat entertaining. I am extremely open to feedback. Thank you so much for reading.