Passing Plays In Rocket League: A Guide With Yukeo
Mon 14th Oct 2019 - 9:27pm
Passing in Rocket League is undoubtedly important. If you find yourself in any game mode other than solo duels, you will have to adapt your play to suit your teammates. Otherwise, you will come to find yourself in a one versus two situation or even one versus three if you are in standard playlists. This is why passing plays are quite crucial.
The Importance of Passing Plays
In fact, to emphasise this, I got the help of Maurice "Yukeo" Weihs to weigh in on this topic. Regarding the importance of passing plays, Yukeo says, "Passing plays are very important and worth [it] to learn." He follows up by saying, "Especially when you are queueing with a partner and use them in an unpredictable way."
In terms of the advantages of passing plays in comparison to performing a solo play, Yukeo names one in particular. This is, "If they shadow and give you enough space, a pass infield makes the shot after way harder to save for the defender."
This is a very strong point, as it takes into account the defender of the other team. A pass to a nearby teammate is always going to be less predictable than going for a simple, straight shot of your own. So be sure to mix it up between solo plays and passing plays, as going for shots on your own every time can be repetitive and easy to read for your opponents.
As it may be obvious, positioning yourself smartly on the field is an important part of the game. This links quite strongly with the topic of passing plays. If you are looking for a powerful play between you and your teammates, you should be aware of the aspect of positioning.
When asked when a player might know when to position themselves for a pass, Yukeo stated, "Focusing on your teammate's car and understanding typical situations where it's possible to pass from are key to that. Usually you can be ready for a pass whenever your teammate is on the sides of the field."
So generally, if you find your teammates are on left or right of the field, positioning yourself in the center of the field would be the optimal choice, as here you should be clearly visible for the teammate who has possession over the ball.
What if, though, you are a defender wanting to interrupt a passing play from the other team? How might you position yourself at this point? Yukeo claims, "Preferably you want to interrupt the pass before it happens. So you basically have to be able to predict a passing play by focusing on the opponent's car and be ready to challenge the pass before it reaches his teammate, but at the same time you also have to be ready in case he decides to go for a solo play instead."
It is a lot to think about, but this will become a regular thought process that will eventually seem like a completely subconscious move after playing plenty of games that allow you time to understand how to position.
So that is your positioning. What about your teammate's? Well, when it comes to knowing where your teammate will position themselves, Yukeo suggested, "Obviously, if you can see their car on the screen waiting for a pass, go for one but if they are in your blind spot, you just need to have a feeling of where your teammates are or will be on the field. This comes after time and focusing on your teammates' positions and rotations."
Really, as Yukeo points out, just playing the game over a relatively long period of time will help you understand positioning and how your teammates are going to position as well as yourself.
Awareness of Teammates and Enemies
So coming hand-in-hand with the subject of positioning comes awareness of other players on the field, whether they are on your team or not.
When asked if awareness is a major factor towards improving in Rocket League, Yukeo replied, "Yes, you definitely need to focus on every player on the field and their rotations. In some situations, you won't be able to see your teammate on your screen, but if you are smart enough and understand where your teammate is going to be, you can still pass blindly and make a deadly pass."
This is a potentially risky play, but over time your confidence in understanding where every player on the field at any given time is will increase, meaning the risk-factor of a blind pass will be significantly decreased.
That is being aware of teammates to pass to. However, awareness of opponents in a game may just be as important. For clarification, Yukeo says, "If the opponents land behind you and you forget about them, they can easily bump or demo you. You should always think a lot while playing and use all the information that you have to your advantage."
Being a smart player gives you a massive advantage over players who do not consider all these awareness factors. In fact, being aware of enemies also means you can intercept passing plays much more easily. If you find a player has possession over the ball, and you have a good awareness of where the other opponents are, you can cut off angles that would allow for a passing play on the opposing team.
So, What About Solo Plays?
Of course, solo plays are still a thing. As we mentioned, passing plays are very effective. They are unpredictable, difficult to read, and improves your awareness of other players on the field. But are there any negatives?
Yukeo answers this by mentioning, "They can be risky, because you can take two players out at the same time if they don't turn into a goal. They can also be predictable if you overdo it." As disappointing as it is, most mechanics and aspects of the game can become predictable when overdone, despite how unpredictable they can be at first. This is why, as said earlier, mixing up passing plays and solo plays is the best option.
You may be wondering when a solo play is actually a better option than a passing play. Yukeo answers, "In a 1v2 when the opponent is trying to cut off the pass by moving towards your teammate, you should definitely go for a solo play instead, because he decided to only cover the pass option."
This provides as good advice for defending, too. You need to be aware of multiple options when you are facing an attack from the other team. Sure, passing plays are on the table, but never doubt the chance of a solid solo play, even if it is one attacker against multiple teammates.
Overall, passing plays are crucial to improving in Rocket League. You will tend to struggle climbing the rank ladder without at least attempting to pass to your teammates. As you become better at passing, you will find that you improve at general understanding of positioning, and this is why passing plays are truly one of the most important aspects of Rocket League.