Rocket League is an excellent game. While its concept is very simple – rocket-powered cars play football / soccer in all kinds of pitches, from a beach with an 80s theme, to a pitch in the middle of a post-apocalyptic desert in the theme of Mad Max – the game is incredibly fun!
But it’s far from a brand new game… Rocket League launched back in July 2015, and it took the world by storm. To this day, its player base continues to rapidly increase in size, and thanks to various Esport events of this game – the most well-known of these being the Rocket League Championship Series (RLCS) – the game is going to stay with us for a long time to come…
I should warn you though… once you’ve picked the game up and played your first couple of matches, it will be very difficult to put it down again. Matches are short, but intense and absolutely addicting; this game is the pinnacle of the saying “just one more game before bed…” You won’t be going to bed until much, much later, my friend… that’s how insanely obsessive this game is.
Furthermore, the music is super catchy, and you are bound to catch yourself humming or whistling the tunes sometime during the day. Soon enough, you will have the best game you have ever played; you will absolutely love how exhilarating and fast-paced Rocket League is… but there’s just one problem – you absolutely suck at it…
No worries though! In this post, we’ll be going through some of Rocket Leauge’s biggest tips and tricks to help you improve your game, and become a rocket-powered car football / soccer superstar!
Change The Camera Settings
I cannot stress how vital changing the camera settings are, especially when you’re first starting out with the game. The default camera settings might not be the best for you, especially if you want to see as much of the pitch as possible to easily find the ball, your opponents and your teammates without turning the camera around much.
The biggest camera setting which you need to focus on changing, however, is the famed “camera shake”. As the name entails, the camera will shake every time your car connects with the ball. This not only becomes very annoying real quickly, but it can also distract you and throw off any shots or passes you may make with the ball.
With the camera settings, you will be able to change the height of the camera, the view distance of the camera; the angle of the camera, and finally the sensitivity of the camera. Be sure to experiment with the settings to find the right camera angle and distance for you.
Don’t Chase After the Ball
I know, I know… that ball is very tempting to hit with your vehicle, but one of the main things you need to have with this game is patience, especially if you have other players on your team. You don’t want to get in their way while they’re lining up a perfect shot or pass and cause them to mess it up, potentially resulting in a lost match.
Waiting for the perfect moment when your teammate crosses the ball into the center, or when they clear it away from your goal towards you, will not only give you a better chance at winning the game, but it will also allow you to have a smooth flow of rotation and bring you closer to victory.
Speaking of rotation…
Learn to Rotate and Utilize It
Rotating is basically when you and your teammates take turns defending, attacking and being a goalie. As well as patience, positing yourself is also key at getting good at the game. When you’re first starting out, many players may not rotate, but after a few hours of gameplay, you will start to see others utilize this vital tactic.
When you and your teammates are rotating during the game – either in 2v2, 3v3 or 4v4 game modes – the goal must not be left unattended. I see this happen a lot, even in higher-ranked matches; people seem to rotate, but leave the goal wide open for the ball to be smacked into it. In order to avoid this, you need one member of your team to stay put near the goal.
For example, when a teammate or two are at the opposition’s end of the pitch with the ball, you or another teammate need to stay put on your side of the pitch, ready to intercept the ball if it happens to shoot away from the opposition end of the field.
Once you learn to rotate effectively, you will be one step closer to winning matches left, right and center.
Form a Group
One thing which you can do to increase the chances of you doing better at matches is to find teammates you’ve played with before and form a group with them. As you’ve played with them before, you both will be on better terms with each other than if you were complete strangers. Furthermore, both of you will have some sort of understanding as to how you play and what tactics you both use; you will learn to anticipate each other’s moves and this will ultimately increase your chances of winning.
If you both are really good at teamwork and are winning matches left, right and center, consider adding them as a friend so that you both will be able to play together as teammates for a lot longer than just a single day.
Use the Handbrake
At first glance, the handbrake may seem useless, but believe me, it’s one of the most important controls of your vehicle. Not only does it allow you to drift around corners, which doesn’t slow you down as much as turning normally, but it allows you to quickly turn your car around no matter how fast you were going beforehand. This is very important because it will allow you to quickly intercept the ball if it’s coming your way and you want your car to face where it came from previously.
Don’t Always Shoot the Ball
If you’ve ever watched a football / soccer match on the television, or maybe even in a stadium, you know that the players take their time with the ball and pass it to each other while waiting for the perfect moment to advance towards the goal and get a clear shot of the goal; the same applies to Rocket League, even when the pitch is far smaller.
When you get possession of the ball, it can be difficult to not just smack it as hard as you can towards the goal, but this is generally a bad idea because your opponents can easily intercept it and send it back your way. Instead, you can either pass it to a member of your team, or you can take a chance and try and dribble it towards your opposition’s goal.
Furthermore, if you and the ball are in either corner on the pitch on your opponent’s side, it’s much better to cross the ball into the center to your teammates rather than trying your luck from there…
Save Your Boost
One of the most fundamental things in Rocket League is boost… it’s what essentially makes the “rocket” in Rocket League… You will find boost on the pitch; either as small boost pads which are scattered all around the pitch which will give you 12% of boost, or big boost pads located at the corners and mid field of the pitch – these completely refill your boost meter.
Boosting makes your car go faster and, once you reach a rank where people will start to do aerials, allows you to fly your car in the air. While there are other ways to increase the speed of your car, such as lunging your car forward by holding the forward button and double jumping, boosting is still the most common way to do so.
As boost is very scarce, and it takes around 5 seconds for the small pads to recharge, and 10 for the large pads, you will quickly find yourself empty if you use up all your boost to catch up with the ball. Consider saving your boost for when you truly need it, such as lining yourself up to take the shot towards goal.
There is also a tactic called “boost starving”, which is when one team prevents the other from collecting boost from the large pads by constantly driving over the pads and keeping control of the map… try and prevent this from happening to you in every match you’re in because this is a very damaging tactic, and can leave you vulnerable to being scored against.
Don’t Worry About Doing Aerials or Air Dribbles…
As you climb the ranks in Rocket League, you will see people take to the sky and pass or shoot the ball from the air. Some will even dribble the ball in the air with their car by flipping and controlling the direction of the ball. It will absolutely change everything you thought you knew about Rocket League, and will separate the pros from the beginners… and it’s okay if you can’t quite get the hang of it…
Many pro players who compete in the RLCS don’t really do many aerials or fancy air dribbles. While they have definitely learnt how to do them, they don’t really utilize them much during matches…
Try not to get too hung up on trying to do aerials or air dribbles early on. It would be more beneficial for you to get the basics down first of all before tackling something more complex like aerials.
There’s Nothing Wrong with Demoing
When you hit an opponent with your car at supersonic speed (the highest speed you can go), their car will explode and will be out of play for a few seconds before being respawned again. This is called demoing, and this destructive tactic is done in every single rank level; even during the major championships, players demo each other when the time is right. It can completely throw off a team’s positioning, and you can demo somebody moments before they shoot the ball at your goal, ultimately preventing a goal being scored against you.
Unfortunately, though demoing is a fair and balanced tactic which the top players in the world do, to many people it is very controversial, and if you do demo a player in a match, be ready to face some complaints from them… but know that you’ve done nothing wrong… Demoing is a legit and far game mechanic, and there’s nothing wrong with doing it to somebody.
Don’t Listen to the Toxicity
Rocket League is a very competitive game, and with that competitiveness you are bound to run into people who take the game very seriously, to the point where they may verbally abuse you, either with voice chat, text chat or with the game’s quick chat. Whether you play a ranked or unranked game, you will encounter a player or two who will take the game seriously, and if they’re losing you can be sure they will take out their anger on you.
The best thing you can do here is either ignore it and go about the match, or if things get really heated you can easily disable chat entirely and play your games without having to face any abuse.
And there you have it; those were 10 tips and tricks which will help you become better at Rocket League, whether you are a beginner or somewhat of a pro. If you can, try and complete the tutorials before getting into any more matches as they can help you a lot in understanding the mechanics of the game, such as shooting and defending.
Furthermore, there are tons of custom training in the training section of the main menu which will further help you to practice and get better at the game. If there are any tips and tricks that I may have missed in this post which you think will help out people a lot, then please don’t be scared of speaking your mind down below in the comments section. 😉
Jamie – the PC Gaming Nerd