The Rocket League guide

Who I am
Marie-Ange Demory
@marie-angedemory

Please note:

The guide is based on the US version of Rocket League on PlayStation 4, there may be differences with other releases of the game.

The 4-wheeled football

What you are about to read is our guide to Rocket League, a game that owes its popularity to the free distribution on PlayStation 4 in the PS Plus program, but which has nevertheless found enormous success (accompanied by surprising sales) also on PC. In case any of you have spent the summer on Mars and have therefore never heard of Rocket League, the rules of the game are quite simple: you have to score a goal, or send a big ball into the opponent's goal, while controlling a four-wheeled armored vehicle. Simple, isn't it? Actually not so much, but let's go in order.
The fact that for many it immediately became a drug, together with its free distribution on consoles, immediately made Rocket League one of the most played titles of the past months. Which means that approaching it now could be even more complicated, since the probability of finding yourself in the game with much more skilled and trained players would be very high. For this reason, in the first steps of this guide we will dedicate ourselves to describing the basic moves, starting with the movements of the vehicle, and then continuing with the best way to position the camera and everything you need to know the first time you start a game. We will then move on to more specific commands, such as jump and boost (yes, football matches between vehicles are a bit strange), as well as suggesting some maneuvers with which to gain an important advantage over other players, perhaps using the carom on the edges. of the field as during the soccer games in the gym in the days of the school. After that we will devote ourselves to the strategies to be adopted in the different types of games. Yes, although basically the goal is always the same, between a 4 vs 4 and 1 vs 1 the difference from a tactical and strategic point of view is considerable. Not to mention the differences you will notice between the games between friends and those against the artificial intelligence managed by the game. Finally, we will dedicate a last, but not least, paragraph to the modifications that you can make to your cars in the garage.
At this point the overview is complete, it's time to leave: fasten your seat belts and have fun!





Controls

The basic controls of the game do not need any particular explanation. The left analog is used for vehicle control, while the right analog is used to look around with the camera. The X is used to perform a jump, with the square the handbrake is activated and aerial acrobatics are performed, the circle activates the boost, while the triangle is reserved for activating or deactivating the Ball Cam, i.e. the possibility of orienting the camera always in the direction of the game ball.

The right and left backbones are dedicated respectively to voice chat and to display the score, while the triggers are used to accelerate and brake, always considering them from right to left. However, this simple list of commands is enriched with some useful special moves that can be performed using different key combinations. To begin, by pressing X twice and keeping the button pressed you perform a double jump, which can turn into a dodge if at the beginning of the maneuver you have oriented the left analog lever in a specific direction. While in flight during the execution of a jump it is then possible to try a rocket flight by pressing circle: still using the left analogue it is also possible to control, even if slightly, the direction of the flight. Finally, note that the flight, even in its controlled version, can also be performed during the ascent phase of a double jump.

The best shot

One of the indispensable pre-requisites to become a skilled Rocket League player as soon as possible is the optimal preparation of the options related to the shot. It goes without saying that there is no universally valid setting for everyone, however we would like to provide you with some useful tips to find the configuration that is most congenial to you, taking advantage of the opportunity to review the different options.
Let's start from the Camera FOV, the depth of field set by default to 90. This is already a good value, however you could try to raise it to 100 or even 110: if you do not feel particular discomfort, greater visual depth will help you to better read the actions of game. Camer Height and Camera Angle respectively refer to the height and angle of the virtual camera: in this case the basic values ​​seemed practically perfect, so we advise you not to change them. Although, as a basic rule, de gustobus non disputandum est. The Camera Distance, or rather the distance of the camera from the back of your car, seemed to us to be a small thread: it is better to go from 240 to 250, without exaggerating, however, because then it becomes complicated to react with the right timing. Stiffness and Swivel Speed, that is the rigidity and speed of movement, are already optimally calibrated and we advise you to modify them only in case the frame changes cause you discomfort. In this regard, avoid activating the Camera Shake unless you want the view to shake and shake by replicating all the impacts of your car. Much more useful is the check on the Ball Cam Indicator, a useful visual marker of the position of the ball.
Beyond the different options, the real dilemma boils down to a simple question: is it better to use the Ball Cam or not? As already mentioned above, the Ball Cam is an option that allows you to always aim the camera in the direction of the game ball. Contrary to the initial inconvenience associated with this particular display, its use is practically essential during the early stages of the game. To answer our question immediately, therefore, we strongly advise you to use the Ball Cam, at least for the first ten hours of play, since the resulting advantages definitely outweigh the contraindications. To begin with, it allows you to always understand where the game action is taking place, avoiding you wandering aimlessly around the field in search of a teammate or an opponent, in the vain hope that the ball happens luckily in your part. Furthermore, in the most eventful games, immediately understanding where the ball is, even after sudden changes in the front, can be decisive. Furthermore, in situations where greater precision is required, the Ball Cam with its privileged point of view helps you to maneuver with greater skill, whether it is a shot on goal or a parade, not to mention the greater ease that you will find in maneuvering the ball when it is above you.
Of course, that doesn't mean there aren't any drawbacks. The situation in which they emerge more easily is the one that sees you engaged in defensive action, when you will actually find it difficult to understand how much field there is still behind you. To tell the truth, that of localization between the boundaries of the field is a problem that can extend to several game situations when the Ball Cam is active. Likewise, driving in a straight line is not always easy, especially near the boundaries of the field. However, these are problems that begin to have their weight only after a few hours of intense gameplay, when the basic game controls are mastered to perfection. In short, once you have become familiar with the mechanics and physics of Rocket League, no one forbids you to deactivate this option in some situations or even for the entire game, perhaps using the indications on the screen and on the pitch as a reference point. To start, however, the Ball Cam is a very useful tool, almost indispensable. Probably using it the first few times you will feel dizzy and it will seem to you to make a lot of effort for nothing, but we are convinced that it will not take much to convince you of its goodness as a teaching tool.



Who starts well

Although Rocket League is a fairly straightforward game, at least conceptually, don't make the mistake of believing that it's just as easy to master the mechanics. If you're starting the game for the first time, resist the temptation to go straight to an online challenge and head to the training section instead and select the tutorial. There are two voices, Basic and Advanced, and it is good to complete both. The first will guide you step by step through the basic commands, showing you how to perform jumps, boosts and dodges, as well as explaining how the Ball Cam works. In the Advanced section, on the other hand, you will be given the opportunity to learn more about the most elaborate maneuvers and the most spectacular stunts. At this point you will probably be quivering to test when learned, but perhaps it is better to take some more time. Also in the training section, you will find three more practical programs at the bottom of the screen: Goalie, Striker and Aerial. With the first you will take on the role of a goalkeeper, with the second that of an attacker, while the third will ask you to perform increasingly complex aerial maneuvers. Each of these training programs includes basic exercises and more difficult ones: do not get stuck, force yourself to easily overcome the simpler part of the program and tackle the Pro exercises without anxiety. There will be time later to retrace your steps and resume your workout. speech when you have a little more experience on your back.
The next step is the Free Play section, where you can let off steam alone on a field with no opponents or time limits. Consider it the virtual version of the suburban pitch where you trained alone as children. However, you will soon begin to feel the urge to face a real challenge: thank goodness there are bots! Of course, no one forbids you to jump into an online game and get the experience there, but as already mentioned the bar of competition in that terrain is now quite high and in all likelihood you would only risk coming out unmotivated and with your tail between your legs. In our opinion it is best to go step by step and start understanding what happens in a real game by participating in a series of exhibitions against bots.



The ideal is to select 2 vs 2 or 3 vs 3 matches, so as to start tasting the team dynamics without the excessive confusion of 4 vs 4. The difficulties you will encounter in this juncture depend very much on the level of intelligence of the players. bot. At the lowest level you will have plenty of time to study what's going on and put into practice the notions you have learned without excessive anxiety. Better not to stay too long at this level, however, because the matches out there are very different, so try some challenges at a higher level first, perhaps even allowing yourself a season - where continuity in victories is essential - and then make your online debut. without awe.

Maybe not everyone knows that ...

Despite its simplicity, Rocket League has many facets, some of which escape even the most seasoned players. The use of the handbrake, for example, is not very widespread in relation to its usefulness. It is actually the quickest way to reverse your direction of travel, essential to react quickly when the ball changes direction unexpectedly or to run to defend during an opponent's counterattack. Furthermore, in these situations it is always quite complex to orient oneself, given the excitement of the moment: know that the two halves of the field show the colors of the teams to which they were initially assigned, so often a glance at the ground is enough to find a point of reference.
Another particularly tense phase is the initial one. As you will notice pretty quickly, most players tend to shoot for the ball right after the kick-off, but this doesn't always turn out to be the best. To decide whether or not to participate in the initial fight, look around and try to evaluate if you are in an optimal position. There are two factors to consider: the distance in relation to the ball and the presence of Pressure Plates (i.e. those footboards on the ground that give you the boost) on the trajectory. Evaluating objectively you will find that in most cases it is better to stay in your own half and provide cover: you never know where the ball may splash after the first scuffle. Also remember that Rocket League does not provide for a draw: in the event of a tie after regular time, you go to extra time where the golden goal rule applies, i.e. the first to score wins. This awareness can generate greater pressure in some players: in these situations, however, you do not necessarily have to change your style of play. At the most it is advisable to raise the attention threshold a little and avoid venturing into risky plays. Be calm and don't give the ball to your opponent.
Finally, one of the most recurring doubts of Rocket League players concerns the functioning of the leveling system. First of all, it must be pointed out that the level increase does not confer any concrete advantage to the player, but serves the game to create games as balanced as possible. The first variable to come into play in determining a player's level is the time spent playing, although online games have a higher specific weight than those against bots. In addition to simple consistency, however, the game also rewards skill by granting XP in different amounts when scoring a goal or providing an assist, when making an epic save or save, when throwing the ball near the opponent's goal line. , when you are rewarded as an MVP and, of course, when you win.

I love it if you move!

Like a footballer, ball control is everything in Rocket League vehicles. To understand its secrets, you have to start from the fundamentals: the movement of the ball depends on two factors, namely the speed and angle with which you come into contact with the ball. This concept, which is so easy in theory, must however be declined in practice. On the playing field, speed and angle depend on numerous factors represented mainly by the other vehicles in the game that aim quickly towards the ball. You will have rare occasions when you can approach the ball at the desired speed and with the perfect angle to throw it right where you want: here, those are the occasions that you must not fail for any reason. In many other cases, however, you will find yourself performing more elaborate maneuvers to impact the ball. The first is definitely the leap. The contact between the sheets and the ball often leads the latter to splash in the air and being able to hit it in flight before it hits the ground can guarantee you a decisive advantage over your opponents. The most decisive, however, is undoubtedly the boost, as well as the most versatile. Arriving at high speed on the sphere you will be able to give it greater power, thus performing shots that are more difficult to parry, but not only. Using the boost is the best way to sprint from one side of the field to the other during quick changes of front, but also the best way to stop the run-up of opposing vehicles. With a series of well-placed blows you can even destroy them giving your team a few useful seconds of numerical advantage. Particular attention must therefore be paid to the Pressure Plates, those platforms that allow you to recharge the boost bar. Keep an eye out in particular for the orange ones on which a sphere rises because it is a special type of platform that instantly and completely recharges your precious boost.
As you become familiar with the game, you will then begin to master even more elaborate maneuvers such as flips. To execute them, simply hold the left stick tilted in the desired direction and press the jump button twice. This maneuver is particularly useful in two situations. On the one hand, it allows you to at least partially compensate for an exhausted boost, making you gain ground in the run-up to the ball. On the other hand, in more purely defensive situations the side flip allows you to recover the position laterally by performing more hinted and precise course corrections, essential to intervene with the right timing on the ball. To surprise your opponents and play in advance, you can instead take advantage of the peculiar structure of the stadiums that host Rocket League matches and try your hand at running on the walls. This is not a simple maneuver, to be able to climb up a vertical surface and travel a few meters of road, perhaps catching the ball before it hits the ground surprising everyone, you will need a certain familiarity with the inertia and physics of the game. Furthermore, in order to complete an action by darting on the walls you will have to be ready to deactivate the Ball Cam on the fly, because this view often stumbles in these situations, preventing you from performing clean trajectories.
However, the maneuver that is capable of marking a real turning point in your career is rocket flight. We mentioned its execution a little while ago when we took care of the commands, but for the more distracted we repeat the key sequence necessary to take flight: first you have to perform a jump, or even better a double jump, then while you are in air you have to press circle. Obviously for the flight to activate you will need to have a residual amount of boost to use. During the flight it is also possible to slightly orient the direction by moving the left stick. Don't be fooled by the apparent simplicity, it will take some time to perform this stunt correctly. Remember that the training section and the Free Play are the ideal places to come back from time to time to perfect the execution of more complex maneuvers like this, so that you have no hesitation whatsoever when it comes to putting them into practice in the game.

Before you can use flight as an aerial move to hit the ball, however, you will likely need hours of training to hone your aim and coordination. However, this does not mean that the flight can be useful right away to cover great distances at high speed without running the risk of being intercepted and stopped by the opposing cars. In case you are feeling particularly reckless, you can even start a rocket flight phase by jumping from the walls of the stadium. A move that may not be very useful, because in addition to allowing you to fly to greater heights it does not bring other concrete advantages, but you want to put the spectacular ?!

Duels and melees

Despite the long list of general advice we've given you, Rocket League can actually be a very different game from game to game depending on how you play it. In particular, 1 vs 1 matches are played with profoundly different rhythms and dynamics compared to group challenges (from 2 vs 2 to 4 vs 4). The reasons are simple to understand. To begin, you find yourself being solely responsible for your fortunes, there are no teammates to rely on or delegate certain activities to, you cannot take a breather or allow yourself the luxury of staying a moment on the sidelines. study what is happening on the playing field. From this derives the need to change one's strategy from one moment to the next, adapting to the behavior of one's opponent and the position of the ball in every single moment. In practice, we always find ourselves in a continuous transition phase between the different roles from goalkeeper to defender to attacker depending on the need of the moment. The most productive attitude in this context is to replicate the football style of children, that is to make sure that you are always as close as possible to the ball with an aggressive attitude in an attempt to steal control from the opponent and launch quickly towards the net. The result of this equation is a decidedly frenetic mode, in which you do not have a breather, which in the vast majority of cases ends up rewarding the strongest and most skilled player. There are no excuses to appeal to or companions on which to unload responsibility, in 1 vs 1 victory goes hand in hand with the ability to control the ball and direct it with calibrated touches where you want it. Precisely for this reason, before embarking on online challenges against other players in this mode it is advisable to devote yourself diligently to training against bots of Pro difficulty or higher. Keep in mind, however, that no artificial intelligence can simulate the unpredictability of the human mind for the moment: even if you seem to be very strong against bots, once you find yourself face to face with a human player it will be quite another music. !
However, everything you have learned about duels must be put aside when you find yourself part of a team. In this case, the main tool to hunt for victory must be coordination, which can only be obtained through constant and correct communication. Beyond this essential element, the most effective strategy varies according to the number of players on the pitch. In 2 vs 2 the most effective solution involves a division of tasks between the two players, one with a defensive vocation and the other engaged in attack. On some occasions, for example when you are faced with a team clearly inferior to yours in terms of skill and coordination, you can organize offensive sorties in which both players of the team participate in an attempt to surprise the rivals by claiming superiority. numerical. In general, however, it is important to always keep the evolution of the action under control, focusing in particular on the prevention of lethal counter-attacks by exploiting all the resources at one's disposal to get first on the ball, from the boost to the front flips without neglect rocket flight.
Finally, in 3 vs 3 and 4 vs 4, to make your team work, you need to add an additional layer of organization on the field. To begin, a player must be willing to play the role of goalkeeper, stationing more or less firmly on the goal line to prevent the ball from ending up in the back of the bag. In some specific situations (for example in clashes with particularly strong teams or when it is necessary to defend an advantage in the last minutes of the game) it is good for another player to sacrifice himself in defensive tasks, committing himself to never crossing the half-way line and limiting himself to to reject the ball every time it comes dangerously close to one's own goal, perhaps directing it if possible towards the players (or the player) with offensive duties.
These prerogatives must always be kept in mind, especially when you find yourself playing with complete strangers. If in the games between friends, in fact, constant communication (perhaps in one's own language) helps to distribute the roles in the different phases of the game and to make everyone aware of what one intends to do, when instead one finds oneself playing with companions chosen by matchmaking things don't always go smoothly. In these cases, observe the behavior of the other players and try to act accordingly, for example by resigning yourself to defending the goal in case no one else seems willing to do so. The game also features a convenient text chat (on PS4 you can use standard messages assigned to the four keys of the directional cross), but adherence to the suggestions launched through these tools always depends on the good will of those who play with you.

Garage

The reason why we left the paragraph dedicated to the garage for the last is linked to the substantial uselessness of the changes made to your vehicle. Beyond the satisfaction of one's own taste and greater recognition of one's vehicle in the fray of metal sheets, no increase in performance is linked to the changes that can be made in the garage: speed, power, agility and any other parameter in short will remain unchanged regardless of the aesthetic changes. . However the game still unlocks a number of spare parts as you progress through the game. The only requirement in this sense is the number of games played, no matter if you win or lose. So let's go briefly to see which parts can be changed and how.

Model: There are altogether eleven vehicles in the game, ten of which can be unlocked simply by playing. To unlock the eleventh, Sweeth Tooth, you must win at least one game behind the wheel of Backfire, Breakout, Gizmo, Hotshot, Octane, Paladin, Road Hog and X-Devil.
Color: the base color of your car must be a variant of blue and orange, the official colors of the two teams. However, you can change the secondary color and the type of paint.
Wake: is the wake generated by rocket flight. You can choose from rainbows, snowflakes, bubbles and other creative solutions.
Top: as good tamarri you can place objects on the roof of your car.
Antenna: Speaking of tamarraggine, placing the national flag on the antenna is a must. Other types of flags must be unlocked.

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