Best Mousepad for VALORANT - The Ultimate Guide
The first thought that a lot of people have when they're upgrading their gaming peripherals is 'I will need a top gaming mouse', and while a gaming mouse is without a doubt a very important piece of equipment it is merely a piece of the puzzle.
Something that's overlooked far too often if you're asking us is the mousepad. Just like with mice, keyboards, and headsets, mousepads come in many different sizes and can have a lot of differences between them. That's why it's important that you get yourself a mousepad that suits your playing style. If you often find yourself overshooting your targets you might want to go for a more controlling pad, for example. If it's speed you're after there are pads that deliver just that as well.
In order to help you choose your perfect pad we've been taking a look at what the pros are using. In this list we'll go over the most popular pads with the professionals and give you a brief rundown of what you can expect from each pad.
What makes a mousepad good for VALORANT?
VALORANT isn't a game where a lot of quick snaps and flicks are required. Just like CS:GO, the name of the game is precision and accurate crosshair placement. Of course this doesn't mean that you'll never have to make a nutty flick to save the day, but contrary to some other games that we analyze there's generally no need to keep your head (and crosshair) on a swivel at all times so theoretically there isn't really a need to go for a super fast pad. Of course these things come down to preference, but currently we're mostly seeing average glide pads as well as more control-oriented pads in the VALORANT scene, so make of that what you will.
Just like with any other game that we analyze, cloth pads are by far the most represented. This could be down to the fact that not a lot of companies are actually making quality hard pads at sizes that the pros need but there's also an argument to be made for the portability of cloth pads and the fact that hard pads offer less overall control. At this point in the scene, a lot of VALORANT pros are coming from other games such as CS:GO and Overwatch, so perhaps this might change in the future, but for now the VALORANT scene seems to be following the common trend: a large size cloth pad with a decent amount of control seems to be the way to go.
Most Used Brand: Zowie
With so many people coming over from the CS:GO scene it's perhaps not a surprise that Zowie is the most used brand as far as mousepads go. Around 34% of professionals have a Zowie pad on their desk, with an almost even divide between the very control-oriented G-SR and the slightly faster G-SR-SE.
The second most used brand is Logitech. Their ever-present G640 is their most used pad, and that makes sense too: it's an inexpensive, widely available pad that's 'middle of the road' in almost all aspects, making it a great all-rounder. Rounding out the top three is SteelSeries. Their line of QcK pads is one of the most commonly used by casual gamers and professionals alike, so it's no great surprise to see that they're the third most used brand here.
What's interesting in the VALORANT scene is that we see a lot of Artisan pads being used. These are often touted as being the best mousepads that money can buy (if you can find a retailer, that is) and it's been interesting seeing more and more people using these pads.
Most used manufacturer
1. Logitech G640
Middle of the road
The Logitech G640 is about as 'middle of the road' as they come. It has a medium glide in the sense that it doesn't try to go for utter maximum speed but it's also not very controlling. This makes it a great choice for people who want a bit of both, and that combined with its inoffensive 3mm thickness and pretty much perfect size makes it the pad of choice for a lot of gamers out there.
Another bonus with this pad is that it needs little maintenance. It keeps its original glide for a long time before it needs to be washed and the lack of a special coating or something like that makes for a pad that stays consistent for a long time. The rubber base also does a great job at keeping the G640 in place, so all of these factors combined make for a very reliable, though perhaps not very remarkable (that's not a bad thing though) mousepad.
2. Zowie G-SR
The Zowie G-SR is a mousepad that's often mentioned on enthusiast forums because it does something that not a lot of other cloth pads do: it's a dedicated control pad. This means that it offers a lot of surface friction and stopping power, making it a great option for people who have a tendency to overshoot their targets or who just want a more controlling experience.
The glide makes it a bit of a 'love or hate it' pad, however. Whereas most other pads on this list can be used by the majority of players without much adaptation not everyone immediately falls in love with the more restrained experience that the G-SR offers. That's okay, though. It would be awfully boring if every pad had the exact same glide, and in a game where precision and crosshair placement matters a lot more than crazy 180 flicks it's not strange to see pros gravitating towards a pad like this.
If you feel like most cloth pads are just a tad too slippery and/or you prefer more control then this is definitely one to check out.
3. Zowie G-SR-SE
A special pad
The 'SE' in G-SR-SE stands for 'Special Edition,' which might lead some people to think that this is just a fancy recolored version of Zowie's well-known G-SR pad (no idea what the 'G-SR' stands for though) but that's actually not true as both are very different pads.
The G-SR-SE has a thickness of 3.5 millimeters, making it pretty average on the thickness front, but that's not what makes this pad so popular. The foam, for starters, is a lot more dense than what you find on most other popular pads, and that makes for a super consistent and reliable surface to execute your movements on. The differences between foams might not be as apparent for every gamer, but if you've been using a couple of different popular pads over your career you will notice that this pad offers a slightly different glide. It's not as fast as what you usually experience with cloth pads: there's a bit more control offered here, without sliding off into that slightly murky and gritty feeling that dedicated control pads give you.
If you're looking for a pad that will restrain you a bit more than most other commonly used cloth pads without having the feeling of being pulled back then this is a great choice. It's a premium pad, and the only thing we're missing here is the option to get a version with stitched edges for those who prefer that.
4. SteelSeries QcK Heavy
As used by Selly55, ScreaM, gMd, ...
The thickest of the bunch
At first glance the QcK Heavy might look exactly the same as a regular mousepad but if you were to see both in real life you'd immediately see the difference. The Heavy didn't steal its name, to say the least.
This pad is a whopping 6 millimeters thick, making it great at covering up even pretty noticeable imperfections in any playing surface. The glide is technically the same as what the thinner QcKs offer (i.e. a medium-fast glide) but because of the thickness the QcK Heavy can feel a bit slower. If your mouse has small feet and/or you've got a tendency to put a lot of pressure on your mouse it can cause the feet to sink into the pad a bit, making it appear slower than its thinner brethren.
If you've got a bit of a rocky desk or you're someone who frequently has to play on unreliable surfaces this is a great choice, but do be warned that the thickness isn't for everyone.
5. SteelSeries QcK+
As used by PLAYER1, Coffee, JEROME, ...
The SteelSeries QcK line has been running for a long, long time. They've been used by competitive heroes and casual gamers for over a decade now, so if you've got a couple of gaming buddies odds are that at least one of them will be rocking a QcK pad. And why not? This QcK+ is friendly on your wallet, available pretty much anywhere, and it has a nice medium-fast glide that will work for a large variety of gamers.
With a thickness of 2 millimeters it won't do the best job at covering up any major inconsistencies on your desk so be wary of that if you're planning on going for this one, but the rubber base does its job perfectly (which means no crumpling or moving around) so if you've got a smooth playing area and you're just getting into this whole mousepad game then the QcK+ is a great starter pad.
Conclusion: the best mousepad for VALORANT
There are a couple of things we can deduce from looking at what the VALORANT pros are using: you'll want a cloth pad of at least a large size to accommodate for the pretty low sensitivity that VALORANT pros use. Between those there are a bunch of options, though. Not a lot of pros use speed-oriented pads but we do see a sizable portion go for control pads. Of course this largely depends on personal preference (and, truth be told, there aren't a whole lot of true speed pads being made by the common manufacturers) but it's interesting to note.
In any case, we hope that this article has been informative, but if you have any questions or remarks feel free to reach out on Twitter, Discord, or shoot us a comment on the relevant review pages. If this is a topic of interest to you you can also check out our Best Mousepad for Gaming article.
Thanks for reading!