Hey everyone! Today I’ll be talking to you about how to properly utilize Vandal in Valorant. Why is it riskier, but more rewarding to Phantom and more. We’ve already done the Valorant aim guide, but now I’ll narrow it down to the most popular weapon, the Vandal.
I am a professional player, that is, professional Valorant booster here at Boosting Factory. I raised dozens of accounts to Radiant and I use Vandal 99% of the time, simply because it gives me that edge over an average Phantom player, and you will find out why.
So without further ado, let’s dig in.
1. Pros and Cons of Vandal
To understand how Vandal compares to Phantom, we need to start with the fundamentals. How is it better and worse than Phantom, so let’s start with stats.
||0-15 / 15-30 / 30-45
||156 / 140 / 124
||39 / 35 / 31
||33 / 29 / 26
As seen in the table above, Vandal has no damage dropoff with range, unlike Phantom, meaning that you do the same damage in all ranges. However, it has a slightly lower fire rate for that reason. You also see a bunch of numbers that tell you the strength of the weapon depending on which body part it hits, however, it varies by head, body, and legs. And Phantom has a range dropoff.
This is why we need to employ a number called TTK, shortened for Time To Kill. It’s a very popular number used in all shooter games, it tells you how much time you need to kill an enemy if you hit all your bullets, simple as that. So here’s the calculation for both Vandal and Phantom.
||0-15 / 15-30 / 30-50
||0 / 0.09 / 0.09 sec
||0.27 / 0.36 / 0.36 sec
What we can see from the table above is that under 15 meters (close range), Phantom outperforms Vandal, it will one shot in the head, and 0.27 seconds to the body. While Vandal will outperform on any range past 15 meters.
What this tells us again is that whenever you’re playing Vandal, you should be looking to play angles where you will be 15 meters or more from the enemy
players at first sight, so you have an advantage during the first fight.
2. Vandal’s Recoil
As we concluded, overall numbers are in favor of Vandal. However, there are more variables such as recoil. Vandal loses this fight, it has a more difficult recoil pattern, however, this can also be mitigated if you learn it and play around it.
What you need to know is this, Vandal shoots the first 3 shots nearly in the same spot, each one goes above the other but very slightly. You can, of course, practice pulling it down just SLIGHTLY in order to get all three bullets in the same spot.
From bullets 3 to 9, it starts kicking up more and even going left and right randomly. You can’t learn the left and right because it’s random, you need luck there, however, you can keep pulling down so your bullets go in the same height, just left and right is the random variable.
After the 9th bullet is basically a shitfest and you should never be shooting past the 9th bullet without resetting your recoil. What you will be doing in 99% of cases are the 3 shot bursts or one-tapping. In rare cases in close combat, you might be spraying just for the sake of your life.
Okay, so Vandal and Phantom playstyles differ quite significantly. With Phantom, you almost want to spray, not too many bullets though, but you’re aiming for 3 or more bullets per person for sure. However, with Vandal it’s the opposite, you want to finish the job within the first 3 bullets.
Imagine you’re playing Sheriff or Operator. You have one shot, maximum a couple to finish the job or you’re dead. Also, when you play those two, you do not run around like a duck and expose yourself too much, you hold tight angles, pop up, do 1-3 bullets, hide again.
On the contrary, with Phantom, you can move more aggressively and less precisely, crouch and spray when you see an enemy. It’s a bit more forgiving, hence why I said Vandal is much more rewarding but also harder to play.
4. Counter-strafing method
If you’re unfamiliar with this method, it’s basically this. Imagine you’re standing and you want to pop up just slightly to fire that 1 or 3 burst shot like discussed in the tip above. You press A because the left is open, once you reach that point where you want to shoot, you will press D immediately to start moving back right. And in that tiny tiny moment between your agent changing from moving left to right, he’s actually standing still. This means that your bullets are as precise as if you were standing.
This method requires a lot of practice in order to time this well, but once you figure it out, it’s game-changing. Everything is done in sync and at the perfect moment. This is also called Jiggle peeking and it’s explained well in our Peek and Check Corners guide.
You should also use this method when caught in the open in order to dodge enemy bullets while shooting precisely. Firing 1-3 bullets during that transition from left to right, then again right to left while your recoil resets in between.
As previously discussed, you want to play the positions that are back in the site and as far away from the enemy as possible - just like the Operator. Because you want the enemies to have falloff damage reduction if they’re not playing Vandal or Operator, while you don’t.
For example on Haven, you want to hold the C site which is a very long site, and stand in the back. While you don’t want to sit in the garage due to this being a favorable position for Phantoms when they enter the garage and push you. You want to hold the A site on the long lane while you don’t want to play the sewers since it's basically face to face when they push. You get the gist. Always seek for regular spots that put you on the longest range between you and the enemy.
6. Aiming down sights
This is a frequent question I get from my Valorant rank boosting
clients, especially if they’re a new Valorant player
. What range should I ADS at? Should I ADS at all?
ADS does three things:
- 1. Reduces your fire-rate
- 2. Changes your recoil pattern
- 3. Lowers your movement speed
In 99% of cases, you should not be ADSing. You should only ADS at 40 meters or higher, where you literally can’t see the enemy. Or if your eyesight is damaged and you can’t see even a shorter range. Otherwise, never. The drawbacks are just too major.
When you do ADS, spraying is not an option. Only one tap attempt or nothing, spraying is impossible. If you can’t decide what’s 40 meters, pretend you’re playing an Operator once again, what spots would you hold? That’s where.
7. Allow your recoil to reset
As previously discussed, you want to shoot in up to 3 bullet bursts. And then after you stop it takes a slight time for the recoil to reset, and you can then again shoot 3 bullet bursts with near-perfect accuracy. How long is that? This is a mistake many Valorant players make
There’s a neat little trick. To test it out, go to the practice range and start firing up to 9 bullets without ADS. Your crosshair
will naturally start jumping up, once you stop shooting, it will slowly go down to your original position. Once it’s back to that position, your recoil has been reset. The longer you shoot, the longer it takes to reset, you will see how fast it resets after only 3 bullets.
It’s hard to pay attention to this during actual fights, but you will, with time, learn this with muscle memory.
8. Do not spray through smoke
While this seems like your only solution many times, it’s not a good idea. Since Phantom has a silencer attached to it, enemies cannot see where the bullets are coming from. But with Vandal, they see exactly where bullets are coming from and can just shoot in that direction and kill you. Use this against other players who don’t know this, don’t just spray in smokes.
Thank you for reading and enjoy your new Vandal skills!