The newest agent to be added to Valorant after Fade, Neon is starting to work her way into the meta due to her dynamic, movement-oriented gameplay. She is much less reliant on good aim than the other duellists as her strengths lie in her fast pace. In this article, we’ll show you how to harness her abilities to catch your enemies off guard and race through the ranks!
- Cost: 300 credits
- Duration: 6s
At its core, Fast Lane creates a path to the site that instantly creates space and allows you to push up much more safely. It denies sight and even makes it harder for your enemies to hear you, giving you an advantage when entrying. On defense, you can use it across site entrances to block off certain angles to make attacks more difficult.
However, there are ways for your opponents to easily counter the wall if you use it in the most obvious way every time. They can spam through it, peek the end of it and spray your team down, or throw utility inside it such as slows and mollies. And if you get scanned through it by a Sova dart or drone, you’ll be a sitting duck and unable to defend yourself thanks to the limited vision you have from inside!
This by no means makes Fast Lane a weak ability; you just need to use it more strategically!
Leaving space to the left or right creates multiple attack pathways, allowing you to be unpredictable and leaving the other team second-guessing themselves. The denial of vision becomes particularly strong when you could push from multiple angles, as well as isolating angles with the wall.
A good example of this is attacking Ascent B site (pictured below). By angling the wall to reach the stairs next to the workshop and leaving space to your left, two potential avenues are created – you could push through the pathway created by the ability, or attack lane. The walls mean you don’t need to worry about defenders in CT, market or cubby, and create individual duels where your team has the advantage.
Neon’s wall can also be a strong tool for fakes due to how much information it prevents the enemy from gaining. Throw up your wall and for all they know, you could be on the site already. Pair it with a couple of stuns too and you have a convincing potential attack. This is even stronger when you consider the speed at which you can reunite with your team thanks to Neon’s signature ability.
With the 4.08 patch, the wall no longer deals damage either, giving you more options when executing as now there is no disadvantage to bursting out of it for a surprise attack. However, it does mean there is slightly less deterrent to pushing through it (although you will still have the sight advantage, as you’ll be able to spot the gun barrel before your opponent can see you) so you’ll need to be more cautious of the other side.
- Cost: 200 credits, up to 2 total
- Windup: 1.1s
- Effect: 3s concuss
Relay Bolt is a great way to get a free kill or pass through an area more safely. Depending on how you angle the stun, the distance between the two charges will vary. You can use this to your advantage in different situations.
Keeping the stuns close together is powerful when you know the position of your enemy, as they’ll struggle to escape them both, often running out of range of one only to be caught by the other. It’s also helpful to clear specific angles for the same reason. You could also aim the bolts to clear multiple angles at once. Be sure to hold them if you do this so you can cut off any attempted escapes.
In order for the bolt to be most effective, you should be prepared to push up quickly behind them to catch any stunned enemies. Keep in mind that they will likely be holding your push as it’s still possible to get one-tap kills even when under the effects of the stun. You can counteract this by using your slide to slip under their crosshairs.
There are also opportunities for team synergy here – paired with Viper’s Snake Bite or Brimstone’s Incendiary, you can deal much more damage as the enemy will be slowed. However, you can also cause your team frustration if you aren’t careful, as Relay Bolt affects anyone in range – it isn’t exclusive to the other team!
As with any ability that interacts with the map, you may benefit from spending some time practicing on custom maps to understand where to aim to get your desired bounce. A frustration commonly shared by Valorant players is the abundance of invisible walls or counter-intuitive textures in many areas which cause abilities to behave differently from what is expected. The last thing you want to do is end up stunning yourself!
- Cost: Free
- Duration: 15s max
- Cooldown: 2 kill recharge
- Energy drain: 10/s
High Gear is fundamental to Neon’s playstyle as it enables you to hugely mix up the tempo and surprise your opponents. Like the signature abilities of other duelists, it refreshes after two kills, but uniquely, it lasts over 10 seconds per usage rather than being immediately used up. It also slowly regenerates when not in use. You can toggle it with E or your equivalent bind so you don’t need to use up the whole bar in one go either. The energy bar will completely recharge on every kill.
One notable strength of High Gear is that you can rotate incredibly quickly, whether on the attacker or defender side. Over-rotating isn’t a problem as within a mere few seconds you can reach the other side of the map! You can also use it for a fast flank to get up behind the other team before they start to consider the possibility. The ability to cover large distances quickly makes Neon a good pick on maps like Breeze or Fracture.
Since you can get up close to your enemies quickly, many Neon mains like to make use of shotguns, especially in eco or pistol rounds. You can negate the range disadvantage you would normally suffer and don’t need to worry about precise aim, which is particularly helpful when sliding.
Other useful mechanics include jump-peeking with High Gear activated – it makes it even easier to gain info or bait a shot safely and means you won’t have to delay taking space if you don’t spot anyone. Bunnyhopping when this ability is activated allows for even more dynamic and unpredictable movements, although in Valorant it doesn’t grant much additional speed. You could even activate it to quickly grab a gun or the spike when it’s been dropped in the open – you’ll be in and out before the enemy realizes you were ever there!
Like Jett’s Dash, it’s possible to control the direction of your slide with your movement keys. You can slide towards, to the side of, or even away from an opponent. It can be difficult to master these movements, but once you do, it’ll help to make you much more unpredictable.
The main weakness to be aware of when sliding is the delay when pulling your gun out, which can leave you vulnerable for a moment. Equipping a weapon or sliding also cancels High Gear, so make sure you only do it when you’re ready for an engagement! Remember too that when you cancel, you’ll equip the last weapon you had before using it, so don’t get caught with your knife out.
- 7 points
- Duration: 20s minimum
- Damage: 22-10 per tick (with falloff)
Neon’s ultimate is one of the longest-lasting in the game, boasting a cool minimum of 20 seconds and resetting on every kill! High Gear is activated the whole time Overdrive is in use, which is especially useful as it deals more damage up close. Note, though, that it has unlimited range the damage falloff could leave you doing as little as 10 damage per hit.
It also has high movement accuracy so you can really take advantage of your mobility and ensure you’re harder to hit. Headshots don’t deal any more damage, so you don’t need to worry about aim – going for bodyshots gives you a higher chance of a kill. The main weakness of this ultimate is that time-to-kill is pretty slow (7 shots on a full-health opponent), so staying on the move might well be what keeps you alive long enough to get a multikill and secure a round.
You can pull out guns and unequip Overdrive after activating it, but the timer will continue, so make sure you only do so when you’re sure it will give you an advantage, such as taking long-range fights.
That’s it for our Valorant Neon guide – now you’re ready to lead your team to the win! If you found this article helpful, be sure to check out our other guides to level up your gameplay!
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