When to save and spend credits in VALORANT

If you willingly play ranked, you clearly have questionable decision-making already.

Image via Riot Games

Who knew that deciding when to save or spend your money in VALORANT would be just as hard or harder than deciding in real life? And no we’re not talking about spending at the Night Market.

Within a match of VALORANT, a win or a loss can be decided not by an individual’s playmaking or by a team’s agent composition, but rather by a team’s ability to manage their economy round-to-round. Players have an individual supply of credits that they use to buy weapons, armor, and abilities each round, and knowing when to save and when to buy is pivotal to success at any rank.

Before making the choice to save or spend, you should get a basic understanding of how VALORANT‘s round-to-round economy works. A team has the best chance of success per round if they can all “full buy,” which involves everyone having a rifle, full armor, and a full set of abilities. On average, this costs around 4,000 to 4,500 credits, depending on the agent and how many abilities they have saved from a previous round.

Don’t worry shoppers, we’re here to help.

When to save credits in VALORANT

If your team can’t afford a full buy and the other team can, and it’s not the final round of the half or potentially the match, then your team should consider a save. If you continue to force half-buys each round instead of saving, then you’re just constantly playing at a disadvantage. You can use the buy menu to see how much money you’ll have next credits, and potentially buy a pistol, half-armor, or an ability while still having enough for a full buy next round.

Here are the specific situations where you should save:

  • After losing pistol rounds
  • If the team can’t afford a full buy against a team that can
  • The “bonus” round after winning the first two rounds of a half

During save rounds, you should consider heavy-stacking a site if you’re defending or rushing if you’re attacking. A few lucky flicks with the pistol could net you an enemy weapon and give you a chance at stealing the round, and at the very least you can weaken the enemy economy and make them buy more rifles next round.

If you’ve won the first two rounds, you should have a light buy going into round three, most likely with SMGs or shotguns. The opposing team should be able to put together a full buy, but you can keep your economy strong by holding onto the weapons you have. Even if you lose the round, you still have a 2-1 lead in the half and plenty of money to buy, and winning the bonus round can even break the opposing economy early.

When to buy in VALORANT

If your team has an average amount of 4,000+ credits per person, then you should be buying. Ideally, you should have enough to get all your abilities. But there are a few situations where it makes sense to buy even if you don’t have all your money.

Here are the situations where you should be buying:

  • After winning a pistol round
  • The last round of a half
  • An elimination round (opposing team is on 12 rounds or in overtime rounds)

After winning the pistol round, you should always be buying. You should be able to buy SMGs, armor, and abilities in the second round if you won the pistol round and got the spike planted. The opposing team cannot possibly have the same firepower as you in the second round.

Of course, you should be buying all you can if it’s the last round of the half, potentially the last round of regulation if the enemy team has 12 rounds or if it is an overtime round. There’s no excuse not to be buying when your back is against the wall.