Best pistol round buys guide: Breach, Cypher, Omen, Raze, Reyna, Viper
The pistol round is a crucial round that may propel a team to a win. The pistol round occurs after every side switch and is much different than most rounds, as both sides only have enough credits to play with pistols (or the Shorty shotgun). Winning a pistol round, almost guarantees the winning team to pick up the following round due to the opponents high likeliness of committing to an eco round because of low credits. This can lead to the assumption that winning both pistol rounds in a match, almost guarantees picking up four rounds. That is a huge number as 13 are needed to secure a win.
This guide is designed to suggest best buys for the pistol round depending on the agent picked. The agent’s kit, alongside his or her role, is taken into account to justify why we suggest the following buy. Also, we believe that whether you are playing on the attacking or defending side may also have an effect on which utility to skip or buy on the pistol round.
For pistol rounds, we almost always recommend either sticking with the Classic pistol, or buying the Ghost pistol. Other sidearms are very situational, and are usually just not worth their price tag apart from being unreliable in a lot of scenarios.
Check out our pistol round buys guide for the basic Valorant agents.
Breach’s primary job is to set up his teammates for an entry or peek using his utility. Breach has the strongest pure flash skill in the game, Flashpoint, and we recommend getting both on attack. You can then purchase Light Shields with the remaining credits. On defense, you can easily do the same. However, some may opt for a more offensive option by getting one Aftershock paired with a Ghost, sacrificing one Flashpoint. A well timed Flashpoint alongside a Ghost peek, may catch rushing attackers off guard.
Cypher is definitely in the Valorant meta right now. Everyone’s beloved spy agent can be useful on both sides of the battle due to his free Spycam that gathers intel. Apart from that, his purchasable utility is excellent for cutting off flanks, as well as walking through his Cyber Cage unnoticed. On offense, Light Shields with two Cyber Cages and one Trapwire is a safe and solid setup. On defense we recommend going full utility. A solid Cypher player should be skilled enough to almost hold a bombsite solo and buy time for his teammates to rotate into the site, hence the heavy utility buy. Also, you save 200 credits for the following round. If you’re feeling weary, however, you can stick to the same buy as on Offense.
Omen has quite a few options on the pistol round. In fact, Omen can buy full utility and Light Shields on these types of rounds. While enticing, dropping one Shrouded Step and Light Shields can buy you the better pistol, Ghost. On offense, we suggest going with the former option, unless you will be engaging in long range battles on mid areas of a the map. On defense, both options will be a very solid buy. Whatever you do, make sure to get Paranoia, as it is currently an extremely efficient flash-type ability in Valorant.
The destructive Raze, similarly to Omen, is quite flexible on her buys in the pistol round. In the end, we recommend always picking up the Boom Bot as it is great for revealing enemies ahead, no matter whether you’re on offense or defense. Given that Raze is a duelist, we’d love to see her with a Ghost in hand. However, each of her skills costs 200 Credits. Therefore, we recommend buying Light Shields instead and picking up one Blast Pack either for boosting or tossing it into smokes or areas where enemies may be present for additional chip damage.
Reyna has a very straightforward buy that we strongly suggest to stick to. Given her reliance on getting kills to overheal using Devour, you should stray from purchasing Light Shields for sure. Instead, always buy the Ghost pistol, get a kill, and hopefully use Devour to overheal yourself. Pair that with one Leer and you should be able to get at least one kill to sustain yourself after devouring one Soul Orb to fight on.
Coming in last (same as Viper’s pick rate in Valorant), the female agent’s Snakebite got a slight buff recently. On offense, we suggest picking up both Snakebite abilities to clear corners and pair that with Light Shields and Poison Cloud. You’ll be a fully stacked attacker with this Viper set up. On defense, we definitely recommend picking up Poison Cloud complemented with one Snakebite. In expense of the Light Shields and one Snakebite, you’ll get the Ghost which pairs nicely with Viper’s re-usable abilities on defense.
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