Whichever online shooter you’re playing, a key factor that divides your wins from your losses is how well you can aim. Game-sense, movement and tactical knowledge all have a role to play, but if you can’t make your shots land, you’re not likely to see many victory royale screens.
In this guide, we’ll walk you through some of the things you can do to help improve your aim in any shooter.
Kontrol Freeks have been around for over a decade with some players swearing by them as a necessity for any competitive controller player.
Essentially, KontrolFreeks are attachments for controller joysticks that extend their height and alter their shapes. In theory, a joystick with an extended height can provide a more finite control over the direction of the stick’s movement. Especially for those who use a high sensitivity, that added control could mean the difference between life and death.
The Xbox Elite controllers also offer sticks with extended heights, though those pads can retail for up to £160. At £15, KontrolFreeks are a much cheaper option if you’re just looking to experiment with modding your controller.
One of the key errors that beginner players make is that they don’t predict where enemies will appear. A great way to improve at this is to always keep your crosshairs at chest or head height.
When your crosshair is pointed slightly too high or low when rounding corners, that’s added distance to move your cursor when you see an enemy player. If you keep your cursor at the height you expect their head to be, you’ll be able to fire faster and have a better chance at securing the kill.
This tactic works especially well in smaller-scale shooters like Valorant and Rainbow Six Siege where player models and environments are kept consistent.
Aim Training Exercises
If you’re looking to purely train your reaction speed and linear aiming, then aim training exercises can prove useful. Some titles offer training areas where you can practice using the different weapons on offer in the game. Valorant, Apex Legends and Battlefield offer this functionality, with one rumoured to be coming to Rainbow Six Siege soon.
If you’re on PC, you can download an application called Aim Lab for free on Steam. This piece of software hosts a variety of aim training exercises that can help you improve your accuracy and reaction speed. It even has game-specific presets so you can tailor the settings to fit the game you want to improve at the most.
We recently interviewed Team NAVI’s Doki who said that, while he doesn’t personally like to use aim training games, he does know professionals who do.
Keep your sensitivity consistent
By using aim training exercises, you can help determine whether your sensitivity is too high or too low. If you find yourself consistently missing moving too far past targets, you need to decrease your sensitivity. If you frequently don’t aim far enough to targets, you need to increase your sensitivity.
Once you’ve found your personal sweet spot, you’ll want to keep your sensitivity setting consistent between different games. This will help you build up your muscle memory and will only help you improve more as you continue to practice.
To keep your sensitivity consistent between games, you can use a site like Aiming Pro. This site converts sensitivity figures between different games to help you stay consistent. For example, a sensitivity of 1 in Valorant is equivalent to a sensitivity of 10.5898 in Call of Duty: Warzone.
Practice, Practice, Practice
While aim training exercises are good for understanding how good your raw input aim is, nothing beats practising inside a live game of deathmatch. Once you’ve got your sensitivity sorted, hop into an unranked game of deathmatch get to grips with it.
As Doki said in our interview with him: “I say this to everyone who asks this question: play, play, play, play, play, and play.”
As we said at the top of this guide, getting good at shooters is the sum of several parts: aim, game-sense, movement, and tactical knowledge. It’s all well and good improving your aim, but if you can’t combine that with a good understanding of the rest of the game, then it might as well be worthless.
Don’t worry about your stats when jumping into practice deathmatches. Focus on where you’re positioning your crosshair and how you move through each map. Eventually, with enough practice, the aiming will become second nature and you can start to focus more closely on your movement and team tactics.
After all, we never stop improving – even the pros practise for several hours each day.
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[Featured Image Credit: Activision]