Momentum In Rocket League - A Guide With Yukeo
Wed 28th Aug 2019 - 10:09pm
One of the many hidden plethora of factors in Rocket League is, as the title suggests, momentum. This may initially seem to be a rather unimportant aspect of the game, but can prove to, in fact, be quite the opposite. Professional player Maurice "Yukeo" Weihs helps to prove this point.
Why Momentum Is So Important
In fact, Yukeo immediately proves the importance of momentum by stating, "(It is) very important. You need to have full control of what you are doing. For example, when you have to recover and rotate back, you should try and maintain your momentum. It is also necessary when you are trying to beat someone to the ball."
Yukeo makes a strong point here, in that rotation requires your momentum to be maintained. Rotation, to be quickly defined, is the constant cycle of positioning your car and your teammates positioning their cars in such a way that offence and defence are both accounted for. If you are going back to the net to defend against an incoming shot, for example, you will need your momentum to be maintained so that you can get back with enough time to save a shot. Or if the opposing player is taking their time, you can quickly grab boost.
On the topic of boost, though, how might you maintain your momentum with little to no boost left for you? Luckily, there are a few ways to do this, including:
- Flipping forward or flipping diagonally
- Wave dashing (See the guide Wave Dashing: A Rocket League Guide for further guidance on this)
- Feathering the little boost you have left
Otherwise, there are some great ways to maintain your momentum if you can spare some boost. Yukeo says, "Boosting and flipping forward/diagonally at the right times" is one of the best ways of doing this. He continues by adding, "Recovery techniques such as a wavedash, landing on all 4 wheels and good powerslides can be very important for your start of the momentum."
Rotational ability comes under this sub-title, but Yukeo adds onto this with three techniques including wave dashing, landing on all wheels, and powersliding well. Having a good recovery is crucial if you want to maintain your momentum after being on the attack. If you have just pushed up in offence with, for example, an aerial, you should always make sure to land on all four wheels. Even if the situation means you are flying towards a wall or the backboard, rotate your car with the air roll to make sure you do this.
Powersliding is also a surprisingly under-used action in the game. Boosting and powersliding are very, very effective and allows you to quickly turn in a direction of your choice while keeping the majority of your speed. Even if this means you need to do a 180 degree turn, do not underestimate the powerslide.
You might have previously heard the term 'Supersonic' in Rocket League. If you are uncertain what this means, it refers to the moment where your car cannot travel any faster. There is a cap on how fast your car can go to keep the game fair, so how would you know when you have reached this speed? Yukeo replies to this question with, "A good indicator of knowing when you are supersonic are the two purple trails that will appear." Note the trail may not always be purple, and this is dependent on your choice of trail in the customisation settings.
Another question you may be asking is whether you should flip forward or continue to boost if you become supersonic. You may want to maintain this speed, so you will want the most effective way of doing so. When asked, Yukeo responded "Flipping forward/diagonally while supersonic can help you save up some boost, which is very effective. Saving up extra boost while keeping your momentum can lead to you creating a goal opportunity or reach a ball you wouldn't have been able to before."
The most important factor of maintaining momentum whilst supersonic is conserving boost. As Yukeo correctly points out, if you save your boost while supersonic, you can use that boost for offence or defence depending on the situation you are in. The boost that you may not have had earlier can come in useful in the future, and this also means you do not have to take a boost pad that a teammate could have to help you out.
Shot Types and Momentum
Of course, it is not only you and other players that has momentum to look out for. The ball has its own physics and the momentum of the ball is just as important as your own momentum. Different shot types require the ball to have a high amount of momentum, and others not so much.
When asked which shots require a high amount of momentum, Yukeo replied, "Any shot that is super powerful will require a high amount of momentum. For example, redirects in the air. If the ball comes towards you too slowly, it is very difficult to get a powerful shot off from it. Wall shots or clears are also better when the ball has a high amount of momentum. Passing plays on the ground, too."
There are a lot of mechanical parts of the game that require the ball to have a lot of momentum, then, and to summarise these, this includes:
- Power shots (For more guidance, check out the guide "Getting The Most Out Of Power Shots - A Rocket League Guide)
- Wall Shots
- Grounded passing plays
The common denominator of all these shot types is the fact that it means the player is going for a hard shot as opposed to taking a more controlling attempt at scoring. Each of these shot types require the ball to move quite quickly across the field, and this is why a high amount of momentum is crucial.
On the flipside, there are also shot types which require a lower amount of momentum. Yukeo says these include, "Any dribbles. When you have to control the ball, it is ideal to start out with a low amount of momentum." As previously mentioned, anything that requires a lot of control will most likely mean you need your car to be slower to allow for full control over how the ball is going to move.
Dribbling with the ball on top of your car, maintaining a low amount of momentum, can be converted into a shot of high momentum with a flick. This can be done by timing a flick well so that the ball is propelled forward with the back end of your flip. This forms a great amount of power behind the shot if done well, and demonstrates how momentum can be manipulated for your good.
Newer players to the game may very well find themselves struggling to grasp the physics of the ball and their car. The ball does not act like one in real life, and the cars certainly don't either, and so it can take a bit of time to get accustomed to.
For the best training to get used to these aspects of the game, Yukeo suggests, "Freeplay is, in my opinion, the best way to learn mechanics. You can focus on playing fast in freeplay, hitting the ball powerfully, following it up as quickly as possible and reading all the wall bounces," and I could not have put it better myself.
To conclude, the best form of training you can use for momentum purposes is Freeplay. If you are a new player, be sure to just hit the ball around, observing how the physics work and how momentum plays a factor in multiple shot types as well as just in general. It is a very important aspect of the game that is somewhat hidden away and not thought about, so acknowledging that it is there and optimizing your knowledge of it will be sure to give you an upper hand.
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