Rocket League Ground Dribbling and Flicks Guide by Lumision
What is a Dribble?
If you’ve watched some higher level players play, you’ve likely seen players keep the ball on the roof of their car, and proceed to give a double jump or flip into the ball.
This skill allows players to get the ball over opponents, power-shot to the goal, setup a shot for a teammate, or create an exciting buzzer beater goal.
So how does one dribble?
To start a dribble, chip the ball up slightly so that it is able to get on your car. If you don’t already know, how high the ball chips is dependent on how much your car’s trajectory opposes the ball’s.
This means if a ball is coming towards you at high speed, it’ll chip high if you move forward to it, whilst if a ball is already moving in the direction you’re driving, gaining height on the ball would be almost impossible.
Now, the difficult part – getting it to stay on your roof.
Focus on the white outline of the ball on the ground, when the ball goes left, move left, when it goes right, move right. You have to get used to how much the ball moves and how much you have to move in certain situations of where the ball is. Do not spam boost, feather it to match your speed with the ball. Try to keep it on the center of your car as much as possible.
Espeon had made a video on how the ball’s physics interacts with the car’s trajectory and hit location, I highly suggest you go check it out.
Tip 1: Turn off ball cam while dribbling so the camera doesn’t go wonky-crazy.
Tip 2: Try not to use Reverse if the ball is behind, instead, let go of Accelerate for a brief moment.
Tip 3: Do not hold down accelerate while the ball is slow. Instead, give the Accelerate button small pushes.
Flicking is the act of flipping your car whilst dribbling to give the ball power and height. This makes the shot difficult to save and allows for easily getting the ball over an opponent should he challenge your dribble.
But how exactly does one flick?
There is a condition for flicking – the ball has to be on the side of which direction you flip to.
This means that if you flip backwards, the ball has to be in the general back area of your car, if you flip to the side, the ball has to be on that particular side of your car. Otherwise, the flip wouldn’t hit the ball.
Try to practice dribble-flicking in free-play or preferably exhibition with limited boost, the hardest flick to do would be the front flick because it’s difficult to maintain the ball on your front while not letting the ball slide off.
Here is a prime example of dribble-flicking in a high-level 1v1 match …it’s a delayed flick actually, which i’ll be getting intonext
If you already know how to flick, this concept shouldn’t be difficult to grasp. But why delay a flick?
Delayed Flicks pack a lot of power and height into the ball, much more so than a normal flick would. This can be useful to take a power-shot from midfield or set it off the backboard for a teammate.
So how does one do a delayed flick?
When you want to flick, hold down Jump, Air-roll, Boost, and the Analog Stick towards the direction you want to flip to all at the same time, then wait till you tilt for about half a second, then flip. Yes, that’s four buttons to hold at once.
Edit: You can also delay your flick by another half a second after tilting forward, as shown in jetserpent’s GIF.
You can see from these two GIFs that the ball gets a LOT of speed and height from the flick.
It also does seem like delayed flicks have a harsher condition for the flick to hit the ball, which makes this require even more skill to perform. In this GIF, I should have flipped a little more to the side, and so I miss the flick.
Differences between cars for dribbling
I’d like to point out that this is a very arguable topic, and I myself do not know too much about it. But I’ll try my best to explain what I know.
So first of all, dribble control. If you haven’t already watched Espeon’s video linked above, basically, taller cars with shorter lengths generally register hits with more height velocity, while short cars that are long generally register hits that have less height velocity.
This means that taller cars like Octane do not lose control of the ball as easily as shorter cars do; shorter cars like Dominus would lose control of the ball much more easily while preparing for a front-flick, and have it slide off the front.
Secondly, the flick’s height. What short cars lose out in control makes up for in its flicking power.
Basically, long cars like the Batmobile will pack a lot of height from the flick. This also applies to the Dominus and Breakout.
Last but not least, the turn radius. Different cars have different turn radii, except for the import cars and its originals.
This’ll make dribbling difficult to stay consistent if you change cars often.
Levels of dribbling
So right here I’ll simply describe each level of dribbling, its abilities and its downsides.
1. Ability to keep the ball on your hood, but not flick.
So what most players do is they utilize the double jump instead of a flick. But what happens when you either miss or it gets blocked by the opponent? You’ll either hit the wall or end up in the opponent’s goal.
This’ll allow for easy counters. High-risk, high-reward strategy.
2. Ability to flick, but not a delayed one
At this stage, if you’re able to read the opponent’s position and know when to flick, it’s pretty good. However, after a 1v1 game full of dribble-flicks, the opponent would start to read your shots. This is when the mind-games start.
Having to focus on dribbling the ball, reading the opponent, and getting the ball to a flick-able position without letting it slide off is a difficult combination to pull off, but it yields. When you do flick the ball, you do not put yourself out of position unless you send the ball to a wall while you’re very close to the opponent’s goal.
However, if your opponent manages to hit the dribble off of your car because you didn’t notice his challenge, you’re doomed as it’ll 50/50 to your half while you’re still facing the opponent’s goal.
3. Ability to do a delayed-flick
A delayed flick requires more skill and precision to pull off, but with this ability in hand, you can power-shot without much speed on your dribble and surprise your opponent with the delay of your flick. This can really catch them off guard sometimes.
However, a strong delayed flick near the opponent’s goal would send it flying to the backboard sometimes (more if you’re using a long car), and it’d put you behind the ball.
Putting practice to performance
Now, with all these skills in hand, maybe you’d take your time to dribble and juke out opponents much more easily and less predictably.
I’ll just leave some GIFs of real-match dribbles down here.
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