Valorant Economy Guide - Winning is all about the credits!
What you buy in Valorant and when you do it can be the difference between victory and defeat.
While it may look pretty straightforward, managing your economy is key in Valorant. It’s not about just buying whatever you want and repurchasing all your abilities. You got to be smart about their use, and be realistic. You're likely never going to use all of Reyna’s 4 Devours in one round, so maybe it would be better to help your team with that 400 Creds on other things.
Riot Games made sure that the economy management played a huge part in Valorant’s gameplay, agent selection, and approach to each round. And trust us when we say, making the right decisions and managing your economy correctly allows you to buy better and win every round.
If you're starting in Valorant, this simple Valorant economy guide will teach you the basics of economy management and show a list of some useful tips and tricks that players at pro and high-level use in their games. Stay around and have a good read!
Credits per round
There are many things that will affect the number of credits you’ll win and you’ll have for the next round in Valorant. What you must know is that the winning team will always have the advantage. Losing teams gain a loss bonus, but even at the top bonus (just 100 credits below the winning team), they’ll still be at a disadvantage due to the extra credits awarded for kills.
So, how do you balance this out? Will the losing team forever be at a disadvantage? Well, that’s why we have a pistol round, also known as an economy round or “eco” round. It does help balance the disparity between round winners and losers. It won’t put you back on top, but it will even the playing field with a similar economy. With that said, let's see how this system works.
Credits per win - 3 000
Credits per loss - 1 900
Round loss bonus - If you lose two rounds in a row, you’ll get an extra 500 credits, if you lose the third round, you’ll get 500 more. Meaning 1 900 on your first loss, 2 400 on your second, and 2 900 in your third consecutive loss. This is the maximum loss bonus, you won’t get more creds after three losses.
Credits per kill - Killing an enemy gets you 200 credits.
Credits per Spike plant - This awards you 300 more creds for the entire team. By defusing it, only one player gets the amount.
The credit cap is 9 000, so it's important to spend your money if you are getting a lot close to it. Why earn an extra 3 000 creds if you are already full? In this case, the rest is wasted. At the end of the first half, your creds reset.
Pistol round - First Round
Everyone starts with as much as 800 credits, and you should spend them right away. This is an investment. You are able to get 3 000 creds for a win, and if you decide to save up and lose, you’re going to get a total of 2 700. Never plan for failure during the early game, it’s better to heavily invest in a win than to prepare for a loss, at least in the first round. Things you buy In Valorant - a shield or one more ability use - can make the difference. There's one pistol round per half.
You have 3 options:
Pistol + Skills.
Most people like to upgrade their pistol and they usually go for the Ghost, even though the Frenzy is becoming more popular in ranked and competitive matches. The Ghost is not a bad pistol, even better if you have good aim. You’ll still be able to purchase a few of your abilities, like a Sage wall. Make sure to do this only if you are comfortable with the Ghost, otherwise, go for the other options.
Shields + Skills - If you’re comfortable sticking with the basic pistol, a light shield will counter a Ghost headshot and give you better trade opportunities.
Skills only - Also possible. You’ll have the endurance of a sheet of paper, but if you like picking agents with a good ability set, like Cypher, Killjoy or Breach, this might be your better option.
In the end, regardless of the meta, it comes down to preference. Purchase whatever you feel comfortable with, but make sure you've used those credits.
Setting up for a successful economy round
The magic number for every round is 3900 credits. That’s your goal. It’s enough money to make a full buy (a heavy shield and a good rifle). The best rifles in Valorant are the Vandal and the Phantom, and both cost 2 900 creds. The shield costs 1000 creds. If you still want to buy abilities, then you’ll need to add their prices to the formula. Some characters cost more than others. If you're an Omen, for example, you have to save 600 more to buy all your utility.
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By now, you should realize that this is a cycle. If you lost the first round, it’s better to save up on the second round, so on the third one, you are on par with the enemy. Assuming they won the previous two rounds, by saving up you’ll have a little bit above 4 000 credits without counting kills. If you win the second round, look for better guns on the ground and maybe you won't even need to buy again.
If you won the first round, don't be afraid to buy SMGs to guarantee an easy win in the second one. As long as you win the first two rounds, you’ll be in a much better situation than the enemy. That doesn’t mean that they cannot come back, just that they won't have any room for error. Even if they destroy you with an eco round, you’ll still have the cash to buy in the following one.
Later rounds and economy management
Remember: as a rule of thumb, full buy when you have 3900 credits. A good tip is to keep an eye on the “Min. next round” tab near the current creds amount in the buy menu. This way you’ll have a better idea of whether you should spend more or less credits this round.
Always buy together with your whole team, as a unit, and make strategies around it. Of course, there are some exceptions to this rule. What guns you and your team should buy depends on what the enemy can buy. Press Tab and see the opponent team’s economy. If both your team and the enemy players don’t quite meet the requirements, with all players having less than 3900 credits or just a few around that mark, you can force buy or light/half buy. There are also some weapons that are considered “high risk, high reward” guns, that can save your team or break your entire eco.
Force buy - As stated before, it is when you use all your available resources to try to steal a round from your opponents. Force buys are not advisable, and it must be done as a team in order to work. If done correctly, you could win a round you actually had no business winning
Light buy - If you can’t afford everything you want, just light buy. Spend a couple of credits in your abilities and cheaper weapons, like the Spectre, the Ares, or shotguns and pistols, and save up, so if you win or lose, you still have decent money for the next round. Getting some utility can be the difference in a fight.
High risk, high reward - There are some weapons that are really strong and might even be considered overpowered but have such a high price that, many times, are not worth buying. The best example of this is the Operator sniper rifle. It's the only weapon that kills with one shot to the body at long range, but is also the most expensive gun by far, at a cost of 5000 creds, and requires high-level aiming skills to be effective. The last thing you want is to lose this gun, or you’ll have no money left next round. But if you kill two or three enemies, you get the jackpot.
Ask yourself: are you on a losing streak? Maybe you’ll need to force buy or light buy next! Are you winning? You don’t need to, you’ll probably have plenty of money to face the enemy, so just light buy. And even if you lose, you can get back on track since you both will be fighting evenly again. If you’re confident in your aim and want to take some risks, try an Operator. Just make sure you hit your shots and at least kill someone.
Saving weapons and abilities
No one likes to lose a round. It not only means that you don’t earn a point, but it also means your enemy gets a point. However, sometimes it’s worth losing points just to keep your economy in a healthy state.
This is especially true if your team decides to Force buy and the plan goes completely south and 3 teammates die right as the barriers open. From now on, you know it's barely possible to win.
In certain scenarios, it’s better to find a hiding place on the map, stay low to live until the end of the round and save your hard-earned weapons. This way, you won't get as many credits for the loss, but, on the other hand, you won’t need to buy again the next round.
This also applies to character abilities. See the utility you have and ask yourself if using this now will impact the round. If not, just save. Keep in mind that abilities carry on to the next round even if you die, so avoid using anything you don't need.
Spending on your teammates
Valorant is a team game after all. If everyone on your side has the best weapons, you have higher chances of winning. It seems obvious, but it’s not. Even if that particular main Viper teammate charges time and time again against the enemy players, you’ll want to buy them a shield or a rifle.
Think of it this way: if this person manages to run and survive long enough to distract the enemy team, you can easily turn that into one or two kills. And if you bought them a nice rifle to go along with their “methods,” then they'll have probably done enough damage to nullify a shield. Either way, you have something to win from helping out partners. It’s better to share with someone to secure wins, rather than lose and screw yourself up with the loss penalty.
In Valorant, you need to be vocal about your needs and say your objectives. Communication with your partners is key. If you are trying to save up for the next round, or want to “Force Buy", tell your team. You all need to buy as a unit in order to get the most of every round. Remember: unless you are a gaming expert and have god aim in Valorant, it’s going to be very difficult to carry your team to victory alone, even with a good weapon.
Final tips and words of advice
The most important thing when playing Valorant is that you feel comfortable with the tools that you are given. This economy guide will give you the necessary tips and information to make the best decisions when spending Creds in the buy phase and in the round. A single credit makes a big difference. But it’s a guide, not a rule! Every game is unique, but what doesn’t change is teamwork. Valorant economy is all about thinking of the next round. The more rounds you play, the better you get at it.
And teamwork is key. If you are not willing to work as a team and communicate with them or cooperate, you'd better try another game. It will save you the salt. If you want to play a solo game, try Teamfight Tactics from Riot Games. Valorant is a tactical game, and as such, solo play is rarely advisable.
So load up your gun, pick an entrance to a bomb site to hold, and shoot any incoming enemy with your economic advantage! We hope that our content helps you improve, win more rounds, and become the best Valorant economist. Share with your teammates and your enemies will be no match for you! If you want to learn more, check out our other Valorant guides.
How does the economy work in Valorant?
It’s quite easy, you get Creds after each round to spend on gear, abilities, and shields on what is called the buy phase. Economy refers to your management and "investment" of those credits. Basically, buy stuff to win games, and save up to get even better buys. Check out the guide to learn more.
What should I buy in Valorant?
It is recommended that you always save 3900 credits to at least buy a rifle and a shield. That’s a full buy. Rifles have the best cost-benefit in Valorant. That’s the bare minimum required for a successful round. Other than that, buy what you feel like buying in the buy menu. It’s better to buy and easier to play with weapons you like rather than weapons you aren't fond of.
What does “eco” mean in Valorant?
It refers to your economy, the number of creds you have, and the management of them. A good eco means enough money or a good enough position to buy whatever you need each round. An eco round is an economic round, in which a team buys little to no guns to reset and have enough money for a full buy in the next one.
How do I get Valorant credits?
In Valorant, you get credits by winning, losing, killing enemies, planting the Spike, and defusing it. Each activity gives you a different amount of credits. Winning nets you 3000, losing nets 1900 at minimum, a kill gives you 200 creds, while a Spike plant and defuse nets you 300 creds.
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