Why precision matters: The best esports plays of 2022

(Image credit: Valve)

Whether you’re playing an intense tactical shooter, a fast-paced and team-based hero shooter, a chaotic battle royale, or a strategic MOBA, accuracy is crucial for competitive success. Because of this, gaming communities have spent years developing strategies and tools to help players hone their precision, and peripheral manufacturers like ASUS’ Republic of Gamers (ROG) have focused heavily on making sure their keyboards and mice have low latency, rapid key/button actuation, high polling rates and DPI maximums, and pinpoint optical sensors. ASUS even has a free video game that’s designed to assist gamers with aim training, promoting precise competitive gameplay.

Ultimately, nothing illustrates the value of accuracy and precision in gaming more than the top moments from matches between the best pro players around the globe. For that reason, we’ve spotlighted five of the best esports plays of 2022 across multiple popular competitive titles below, including Counter-Strike, Apex Legends, League of Legends, and more.

S1mple picks off NiP one-by-one at IEM Cologne 2022

Many consider Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev to be the best CS:GO player there ever was, and he certainly makes a fantastic case for himself with this clutch ace against Ninjas in Pyjamas (NiP) during the IEM Cologne 2022 tournament. With only one of his teammates still alive, he quickly scores two AWP frags against Plopski and es3tag with precise flick shots to level the playing field. His comrade Perfecto falls to hampus’ AK-47 shortly afterwards, but s1mple answers back with a spinning flick that takes down REZ. All alone and sandwiched between the remaining NiP players, s1mple manages to rapidly line up yet another snipe onto Brollan, leaving him in a 1v1 with hampus. Rotating away from the approaching threat, s1mple scopes in and scores his fifth kill to win the round. Between the impeccable flick accuracy, quick target acquisition, and careful crosshair placement, this was easily one of s1mple’s best ever plays. 

Ardiis defies the odds and clutches a 1v3 

Like CS:GO, Valorant is another game where rapid target acquisition and proper crosshair placement can give players a chance to go on a rampage. During the Valorant Champions Istanbul 2022 competition, Ardis "ardiis" Svarenieks went on one such killing spree, mowing down three DRX players in just three seconds before they knew what hit them. After successfully flanking his opponents and planting the spike, ardiis peeked up and around a nearby corner, keeping his crosshair at head level. Thanks to this placement, he was able to quickly headshot BuZz. Then, he ducked back into cover, keeping himself safe from stax’s return fire while simultaneously flicking to target and mow down MaKo. Finally, ardiis once again placed his crosshair at head level and turned the corner, quickly lining up a round-winning final blow on stax. 

Pelican slays four to win the match for the Houston Outlaws 

One of Overwatch 2’s deadliest damage heroes is Hanzo, a mid-range sniper character that can pick off opponents with rapid-fire arrow projectiles. In this clip during an Overwatch League 2022 match between the Houston Outlaws and the Toronto Defiant, Outlaws player Oh "Pelican" Se-hyun capitalized on the character’s potential, using his excellent tracking and shot-leading to carry his team to victory. As the Overtime timer began ticking down and two of his teammates fell, Pelican managed to come out of nowhere and take down both Chorong and Hotba, leaving the Defiant without a tank and with only one support on the objective. He then landed an incredible flick shot on Although when he attempted to ambush Pelican, and then took care of Heesu’s incoming Tracer with a filthy prediction shot. To cap things off, Pelican let loose with his Dragonstrike zoning Ultimate, preventing respawning Defiant members from contesting the objective and giving his team the win. 

YukaF goes ‘absolutely f***in ballistic’ with the Peacekeeper 

In this clip, Yuga "YukaF" Horie proves why you should respect the Peacekeeper shotgun in Apex Legends. Facing off against the Spacestation Gaming squad in the intense final moments of an Apex Legends Global Series 2022 match, YukaF lands several direct shots with the futuristic pump action, killing both Dropped and xenial outright and also making it easy for his teammates to clean up everyone else that he tagged to get the win. Ultimately, this incredible play highlights just how deadly burst damage-type weapons can be in close-quarters combat when in the hands of someone with top tier aiming and prediction skills. 

Zeka scores a Quadra Kill that leads to victory 

Precision in competitive gaming is generally associated with shooters and aiming abilities, but it’s very important in MOBAs, too. In this wild clip from the League of Legends World Championship 2022 quarterfinals, Kim "Zeka" Geon-woo precisely micromanages his movement and abilities while rapidly target-switching between EDward Gaming’s players, methodically taking out four of them after his DRX teammate Pyosik managed to steal EDG’s Ocean Drake. Robbed of their advantage and left with nobody to defend their Nexus, EDG then gets run over by the charging DRX roster. 

Precision matters — here’s how you can improve yours 

As all five of the above clips show, being precise and accurate is crucial for competitive success, regardless of which type of game you’re playing. Whether you’re trying to clutch a round of CS:GO, aggressively pump players full of damage in Apex Legends, or outplay opponents with perfect movement in a MOBA like League of Legends, you’ll need to aim efficiently and effectively.

If you’re looking for some ways to improve your aim, aim training programs like Aim Lab, Aiming.Pro., and osu! all offer a variety of modes, levels, and courses that you can practice with to improve. You likely won’t see improvements right away, but with enough practice, you’re sure to get better while using these tools.

Consider getting some high quality gaming peripherals, too, such as the keyboards, mice, headsets, and more sold in the ROG and TUF Gaming lineup, suitable for both PC and console gaming. These peripherals come with features that competitive players will find very desirable like low latency, anti-ghosting, high DPI maximums, and more. It’s true that you won’t instantly become better just by using elite gear, but something like a ROG Chakram X, ROG Keris, or ROG Gladius III mouse will give you lots of options for fine-tuning your aim and provides you with an excellent foundation you can develop your skills from.