The Buff Browser
Browse Buff's collection of helpful blogs as we explore gameplay tips and tricks from the pros, review and recommend the latest games, and take an inside look into loyalty gaming and earning rewards.
Buff faqsFall Guys: Ultimate Knockout—Get the Crown & Earn Buffs Too!This family-friendly game is a bright splash of color in the gaming world—a beautiful take on the trending Battle Royale-style games. This game brings controller-clutching gameplay that will have you leaning frantically all over your seat, and brings screams of joy, relief, and occasional frustration to the room. Mediatonic brings back the thrilling memories of a TV favorite, Wipe Out, and blends it with the nail-biting sense of excitement and suspense from the elimination show, Squid Games. With loads of consistent map additions, and limited themed cosmetics, Fall Guys is always exciting, especially if you own the battle pass. And now you can earn extra Buff Points while you're having fun! Keep reading to learn more. » Looking to use those Buffs for prizes? Discover all there is to know about Buff Points What Is Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout All About? Mediatonic, a British video game developer with Epic Games as a parent company, started releasing games in 2009, but really only took off with the release of Fall Guys in 2020. This was quickly followed by a massive popularity boost when Epic Games acquired Tonic Games Group, the company that owns Mediatonic. Fall Guys is now available to play for free on Windows PCs, PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch consoles with full cross-platform support! How to Play You'll start each round in a brightly colored map as a customizable bean character, where you're pitted against other players in an elimination-style set of arenas. Whether it's winning races, competing in teams, lasting in survival rounds, or fighting it out in sudden death, your goal in Fall Guys is to be the last bean standing. Doing so will earn you crowns to show off your wins. Fall Guys has a few rotating game modes, which feature team games, private lobbies, solo knockouts, and fun limited-time themed game modes that rotate within every season! At the time of writing, there have been 2 seasons each featuring amazing battle passes with awesome skins, items, and XP boosts! You might be dodging giant fruits and swinging hammers or trying to stay afloat on layers of disappearing platforms. There will be slippery pink goo to maneuver over and giant spinning fans threatening to yeet you across the map and back to the start. With all this considered, it's almost guaranteed you will be kept on your toes every round. Why We Love the Game Aside from its whimsical environments and challenging rounds, at its core, it's a game that lets friends and family play together across loads of platforms while meeting new friends around the world. On top of its ever-growing vibrant community, Buff has been excited to recently have brought Fall Guys into its library, only further enhancing the amazing experience that Fall Guys players have, by letting gamers get passive rewards just by playing the Ultimate Knockout online with your friends. Is it a silly game? Absolutely. But that's why it's so endearing. So, How Will It Work? Since Buff integrated with Fall Guys this year in 2022, it's never been easier to earn real-life rewards by playing this brightly colored title with your mates online. It's quite simple: Buff uses a stat tracking program called Overwolf to let them see your in-game progress and assign you challenges to earn the in-app currency, Buff Points. Buff works on PC and mobile and works with a freemium business model, allowing players to get higher tier paid-for subscriptions and watch optional adverts, letting Buff make some sweet rewards available to loyal gamers with no extra effort required. » Want to learn more about Buff? Read our guide to how Buff works Download Buff Getting started is super easy. Just head on over to the download page and hit download. Installing Buff will also automatically install Overwolf, the trusted Buff partner that allows the app to run on your PC so you can start earning rewards immediately. Earn Buffs While Playing Fall Guys As you're finishing matches and challenges you'll be earning Buff Points. you can also earn these points in fun-to-complete daily and weekly challenges, wheel spins, watching ads, and subscribing to premium tiers of the app. The more you play your favorite Buff-supported games, the more Buff Points you'll earn! Cash Out on Your Rewards After you've gathered enough Buff Points playing games over time, you'll be ready to redeem a sweet reward over in the Buff Marketplace. These rewards include gift cards to shops like Amazon, Apple, GameStop, Walmart, Google, and most gaming platforms, as well as gaming peripherals, in-game currencies, CD keys for full game titles, and even being able to donate your Buff points to planting trees and saving sea turtles around the world. What Are You Waiting For? So, if you're up for some family-friendly fun in the world's most colorful party royale, just hop onto your favorite gaming platform and download the game for free now! Double up the rewarding feeling of crossing those finish lines with some extra rewards by playing on PC with Buff. » Get started: Download Buff
Buff faqsPlaying Valorant's Fracture Map: Callouts, Strategies, & Pro TipsValorant's seventh map, Fracture, brought some spicy new flavor to the game back when it was released in 2021 as a part of Episode 3, Act 2. Valorant differentiates itself from other games in the FPS genre with its twists on the attacker-defender dynamic, which is clear on Fracture. The map is seemingly designed in a way that empowers the attacker side with an advantage over the defenders. That being said, there are some strategies you should know when it comes to playing on Fracture, so keep reading to find out. » Learn more about Valorant Fracture Map Overview While Fracture is a massive octagonal-shaped map, it plays like an H-shape due to the positioning of the attacker spawns and zip lines. While that makes it extremely difficult for the players new to the map to coordinate with their teammates, it also allows for those who know the ins and outs to make some sick plays. The attacker spawn is located on the bottom of the map, but can immediately access the top side through the zip line, and the defender spawn is encased smack dab in the middle of the map. There are four Ultimate Orbs scattered across the map. » Want free skins in Valorant? Take a look at the 2 in-game methods for doing so Attacking A Site on Fracture Callouts When attacking A Site, pay attention to A Rope and A Main. A Rope is a choke point you really want to have control over as it is an essential location to hold for both attacking A Site and after planting the spike. With control over A Rope, A Main becomes a safer option to get to A Site, as you can worry less about flanks coming from A Hall while having great coverage over A Site post-planting. Goal Your goal here is to quickly gain control over the key areas mentioned above to have strong positioning for A Site and line of sight into Defender spawn. Strategies Having your Controller smoke key areas like A Rope and A Link to impede defender advancement to A Site will do wonders for progressing through A Hall. Once you've planted the spike, A Main is a solid position to defend so long as you cover flanks from potential enemies wrapping around from A Hall. Defending A Site on Fracture Callouts When defending A Site, pay attention to A Hall and give at least a little attention to A Drop. Attackers will be rushing to secure A Rope, so make sure you are ready to counter. And though A Drop is not the preferred mode of entry for Attackers into A Site, be sure to respect the possibility. Goal Your goal here is to gain control over A Rope, as it will allow you to keep watch over the A Drop entry while being ready for the action coming from A Hall. Strategies Do not hunker down in the defender spawn! Fracture makes this an awful position that is easily beaten out with a couple of smokes from the opposing team. Attacking B Site on Fracture Callouts When attacking B Site, important callouts are B Tower, B Link, and B Canteen. Gaining control of B Tower gives you excellent lines of sight to the entry points into B Site leading into and post plant. B Link and B Canteen are important areas to launch smokes, singling out enemies on the defending team as you look to take B Site. Goal Your goal here is to attempt to gain control over B Tower as quickly as possible. Strategies Push hard in the beginning, and then be sure to mix things up and keep defenders guessing. There are even more entries to B Site for defenders to cover, so use that to your advantage and catch them off guard. Defending B Site on Fracture Callouts When defending B Site, keep watch over B Arcade and B Main, the main entry points where attackers will push into B Site. Goal Your goal here is to take out enemies with your Duelist leading the charge to try to get an upper hand on enemies advancing into B Site. Strategies As we mentioned before, defenders have it rough on this map with the number of entries they need to cover, so try to get early picks to turn the odds in your favor. Expert Tips & Tricks Don't Dodge Fracture The attacker and defender spawn positioning is a big part of what makes Fracture so different, which also means it takes a while to become accustomed to the imbalance. There are things you will get a grasp of with enough experience running through dozens of matches on the map. A Site Planting Lots of players will plant on Heaven on A Site, hiding behind the wall in the corner for cover. You can actually wallbang this wall, but not always! The angles and guns you use will actually determine the success of this method. Jump into a custom match with a friend to get an idea of how this works. Farm Ultimate Orbs Fracture is also special in that there is an extra Ultimate Orb on each site, totaling 4. Take advantage of this! Especially as you are still getting used to playing the map, having your ult up and ready might be the boost you need to push forward with confidence. » Get free rewards just for playing: Download Buff and see how it works Teamwork Is Essential on Fracture More so than most other maps, teamwork is paramount for successfully winning on Fracture—especially if you are defending. Stick to the advice we've provided in this article and be sure to run a few custom games to practice the strategies. » Not sure what to use your Buffs for? Learn all you need to know about Buff Points
Buff faqsThe 7 Best League of Legends Champions for First-Time PlayersLeague of Legends is an extremely popular game, with its mobile equivalent, Wild Rift, making its way into the list of the highest esports prize pools. There are 160+ champions in League of Legends, with more than 200 items to buff them in-game during matches, so it's easy to feel overwhelmed when you open the game for the first time. There's a lot to learn, especially if you've never played a MOBA before, so if you're looking for a place to start, then you've found it. We've made a guide with some of the easiest and strongest champions to start with, so you can start winning your lane and carrying your team to victory while getting a nice variety of gameplay styles. 1. Garen—The Might of Demacia Garen is a melee attacker who wields a mighty broadsword and wears magic-resistant armor. He's capable of dishing out huge physical damage and has amazing sustainability thanks to his high hit-points and unique passive that lets him heal a percentage of his max health each second after not taking damage for a while. Garen is a very easy champion to use, and with the right items, you can get him to be ridiculously tanky. Garen's Stats Cost: 450 Blue EssenceLane: Top Role: Fighter/TankDamage: Physical Tips for Playing Garen All champions have a downside, and Garen's is that he doesn't have much crowd control (stuns, slows, knockbacks, etc.) nor does he have a good way to initiate a fight. However, his abilities have no cost, so don't be afraid to be aggressive. » Take a look at Garen's abilities 2. Annie—The Dark Child Annie is a ranged spellcaster who has the power to call flames at will and is protected by a giant flaming teddy bear called Tibbers. She excels at dealing burst damage with her abilities and also has a great range on all of her kit. Her ultimate is a great way to initiate fights, and her passive stun provides a great way to control the lane. Annie's Stats Cost: 450 Blue EssenceLane: Mid, BotRole: Spellcaster, Support Damage: Magical Tips for Playing Annie Annie has huge damage capability, but she's also slow and squishy and doesn't have any way to escape a fight if she needs to. When playing Annie, make sure to kite away from damage and focus your stun on the enemies' main damage dealer. Additionally, her stun comes up every 4th ability, so farm with her fireball Q (last hits restore mana) and attack enemies when you have your stun ready. Summoning Tibbers with a stun is a great way to start a fight, and it's easier to land. » Take a look at Annie's abilities 3. Ashe—The Frost Archer Ashe is a ranged attacker with the innate ability to wield the true power of ice. Ashe is amazingly easy to play and excels during the laning phase due to her high base damage and long range. Ashe is a bot lane ADC and usually benefits from having a support that can initiate fights and keep her opponents from reaching her. Ashe's Stats Cost: 450 Blue EssenceLane: BotRole: ADCDamage: Physical Tips for Playing Ashe Ashe is fun and easy to play, but, unfortunately, she's slow, making escaping fights a difficult endeavor. Keep an eye out for enemy jungler ganks during the laning phase, and don't forget to ward! Above all else, use your range to your advantage! Stay safe and keep poking your opponents, and always save enough mana for your ultimate, the enchanted crystal arrow—it's great if you need to initiate a fight or stun some enemies to provide an opportunity for escape. » Take a look at Ashe's abilities 4. Malphite—Shard of the Monolith Malphite is a magic-based melee attacker whose rocky exterior provides an amazing defense against all kinds of damage. He's a popular pick at most ranks in the LoL competitive scene due to his tankiness and amazing potential for initiating team fights. Malphite is an easy champion to play, and with the right build, you could easily be tanking tons of damage while still dishing loads of your own to multiple opponents. Malphite's Stats Cost: 1,350 Blue EssenceLane: Top, sometimes mid or jungleRole: Tank, FighterDamage: Magical Tips for Playing Malphite Malphite can cast his ultimate, unstoppable force, from brush or through walls and can hit multiple targets. Use this to initiate surprise fights for your team, or even to escape from ganks. » Take a look at Malphite's abilities 5. Jinx—The Loose Cannon Jinx is arguably one of LoL's most famous characters, and she's also one of the most popular champions to play. She's an easy-to-learn ranged physical attacker that excels at poking her opponents with long-ranged attacks and abilities. Jinx's Stats Cost: 4,800 Blue EssenceLane: BotRole: ADCDamage: Physical Tips for Playing Jinx Jinx has huge damage potential and can move around fairly quickly, but she's quite easy to kill as she's got very few hitpoints to work with. Jinx players nearly always have a support in the lane with them and play it extremely safe when soloing a lane. Jinx's ultimate can travel across the map, so keep an eye out for static fights or opponents trying to escape from a fight. Then, try and snipe them with your ultimate, the super mega death rocket. Timing does take a bit of practice, but it's super satisfying when you land your shot. » Take a look at Jinx's abilities 6. Warwick—The Uncaged Wrath of Zaun Warwick, a melee attacker, has been a popular pick for the jungle since the game launched. He's extremely easy to play, and he's really strong early game, so ganking early and stunting your opponents' progress in lanes is a popular tactic. Warwick's full potential unlocks when he reaches level 6, allowing you to easily pick off unsuspecting enemies throughout the rest of the match. Warwick's Stats Cost: 450 Blue EssenceLane: Jungle, TopRole: Jungler, FighterDamage: Physical Tips for Playing Warwick Warwick is a great initiator and can snowball pretty well in the early game, but even though his damage type is physical, a lot of his damage is magic, so its best to keep an eye out for people building magical resistance. Warwick's Q, jaws of the beast, lets you jump behind enemies if held down, which makes dodging skill shots and following flash escapes very easy. use Warwick's E, primal howl, when healing during a fight for maximum defense. » Take a look at Warwick's abilities 7. Soraka—The Starchild Soraka is a ranged spellcasting support who has the highest team-healing potential in the game. Even after her major rework, Soraka is one of LoL's main supports with the highest sustain and can keep her teammate healthy throughout the laning phase. and can help any fight on the map with her global heal (R). Soraka's Stats Cost: 450 Blue EssenceLane: Bot Role: SupportDamage: Magical Tips for Playing Soraka Landing Soraka's Q, starcall, is super important for keeping your health up and enemies away from you. Soraka has huge healing potential, allowing her to help any fight on the map with her global heal (R), but she is slow and easy to poke. » Take a look at Soraka's abilities Just Keep Practicing! We'll be honest—your first game will probably seem tough and overwhelming, especially if you've joined in with friends who've got higher levels. So we'll leave you with our biggest tip: keep trying—you'll eventually find your lane and the champions you'll love to play in them, so for now, why not try out these listed easy-to-learn champions so you can focus on mechanics and gameplay and start racking up some S+ games! » Ready to earn some rewards while playing your favorite games? Download Buff and learn how it works
Tips & tricksValorant’s Breeze: Game-Changing Tips & Tricks to Help You WinValorant is always bringing in new maps and swapping out some old ones. Although Breeze will be rotating out for the 2023 season, it will stay in other non-competitive modes. Plus, it will more likely return, so it's a good idea to get that last bit of practice on the map before that rotation happens. This way, you will be ahead of the curve when Breeze comes back, even if it does with some changes to the layout. Although there have been complaints about Breeze as a map (which is probably why Riot is rotating it out this coming season), Breeze is still an exciting map to play. With lots of long lines of sight, it is the perfect playground to outclass your enemies with superior aim. » Learn more about different Valorant maps Breeze Map Overview Like in many of the other maps, there are two spike sites. What makes Breeze really stand out, though, is how expansive it is with its emphasis on long-range combat. Mid is also a vastly open area where a lot of action goes down, so it's important to have good communication here if you want to find success on Breeze's beachy shores. » Need more Valorant rewards? Read our guide on how to earn free Valorant Points Attacking A Site on Breeze Your entry points into A Site are through A Main and A Hall, along with Mid Doors if going through Mid. Having a solid Viper wall makes entry a whole lot easier, as it cuts out the strong defender angle from A Switch. Once you gain control over A Site post plant, use the Pyramids to your advantage. You should do so while holding the angles on Mid Door, A Main—and watch out around A Bridge. Defending A Site on Breeze You need to have a strong hold on A Main. Having your controller get a smoke on the A Main entrance to A Site is going to make things a lot easier to defend and stall. Try to mix it up and counteract an enemy Viper wall by playing some off-angles. Make sure to keep the comms strong around A Hall, as fighting at A Site often gets heated and extended, and you don't want an enemy flank to wipe out your whole team. Attacking B Site on Breeze B Site is a lot more tight-knit than the other areas of the map once you can make space and get onto the site. Be ready for some close-quarters combat and equip yourself accordingly. Entries into B Site are through B Main and B Tunnel. It can be very advantageous to look for an early pick on an enemy in Nest before committing to planting. If you are a Phantom-over-Vandal player, you may see more success with your B Site pushes, as this is where that controllable spray will really get a chance to shine. Defending B Site on Breeze While defending B Site, you are going to want your utility out early. An early smoke on B Main can help stall an enemy push, especially considering just how close the enemy starting point is. It makes a lot of sense to have strong utility agents here, as having mollies or a Sage slow can really make the enemy team think twice about rushing the site. Tips for High-Ranking Players If you are playing more challenging games, here are some tips that might come in handy: If you are playing in the higher ranks, you are going to see way fewer 5 man rushes onto either site, which we see quite often in the lower ranks. Control over Main is going to be paramount. Having a strong OP user on the defender side in Nest is going to make life a whole ton easier to maintain that control. A double controller team can actually be a really strong comp on Breeze. Blocking lines of sight and making entry into sites more difficult by denying vision will be the name of the game on a map with such wide, open areas. » Struggling with Fracture map instead? Read our tips to boost your Fracture map playstyle Get Rewards for Playing With Buff While Breeze will be moving out of rotation, it is definitely a good idea to be comfortable for its eventual return. What will be here to stay, though, is Buff! Even with the map rotations, different agents, and weapons, it won't matter what you decide to play. With Buff running in the background while playing Valorant, you will always be earning Buff points to later spend on redeeming some awesome rewards!
EsportsValorant Competitive Mode: How Does It Work?Valorant is one of the most popular competitive shooters at the moment. In 2022, there was an average of 22 million monthly players, with a massive percentage of those players grinding ranked matches. Because the ranked portion of Valorant is so popular, Riot focuses a lot of its attention on making sure the game runs perfectly so that the experience is always flawless—and a reliable shooter is the best kind of competitive shooter. Ranked matches in Valorant—or any game, really—are no walk in the park, and it takes a lot of skill and grinding to climb up the ranks. So, why play ranked? Before we answer that, let's break down what Valorant's competitive mode is and how it works. » Learn more about Valorant What Is Valorant’s Competitive Mode? As the name of the mode suggests, it includes competitive features for players who are there to prove themselves against other players of similar skill and ultimately get better at the game. It is a great way to put a name or rank to your skill level and requires patience, perseverance, and practice. The gameplay rules are similar to those of unrated games, though the stakes are higher—wins and losses permanently affect your rank, which is visible to your party, the tab menu, and end-game scoreboard summaries. » Read some expert tips on how to improve your Fracture map strategy in Valorant Ranking System Explained Ranks in Valorant are used to most accurately describe your skill level and place you against similarly skilled opponents in the competitive matches. Those ranks can also act as bragging rights when you've achieved a higher rank than your friends, but you'll still have harder games than them. Before you dive into some Ranked games, you'll need to unlock Competitive mode. There are 2 different prerequisites to unlocking Competitive mode depending on when you started playing the game, and once you've unlocked the mode, there are a few things you'll have to keep in mind if you're aiming to get a rank by the end of that Episode. In Episode 4 Act 1, Riot made a few changes that can be summed up in 5 steps: 1. Unlock Ranked If you've created an account during or after Episode 4 Act 1 (that started in January 2022), you'll need to get your account to reach level 20 by playing spike rushes, deathmatches, and unrated matches for XP. If, however, you've made an account before 2022, and you've played at least one ranked match before reaching level 20, you'll be allowed to continue playing ranked even if you're below level 20. However, if it's an old account but you've never played ranked before, the level 20 rule applies. 2. Play 5 Placement Matches Once you have access to the Competitive mode, you'll have to play 5 matches to determine your initial rank. These matches are vital to getting a good placement at the start of the Act. Valorant uses a system called MMR, which is what determines your skill level against other players. In these first 5 placement matches (especially if they're your first), your MMR will be extremely flexible. This means that you'll both earn and lose a lot of MMR. Depending on what your MMR is by the end of your 5th game, you'll receive the rank that the system thinks suits your level of skill. 3. Play Ranked and Climb Now that you've got a rank, it's time to work on improving it. From the lowest rank to the highest, there are 9 ranks you'll need to grind through by winning games: • Iron 1, 2, and 3 • Bronze 1, 2, and 3 • Silver 1, 2, and 3 • Gold 1, 2, and 3 • Platinum 1, 2, and 3 • Diamond 1, 2, and 3 • Ascendant 1, 2, and 3 • Immortal 1, 2, and 3 • Radiant—the top 500 Valorant players in your region. 4. Brace Yourself for the End of the Act Valorant has extended seasons called Episodes, which are split into 3 Acts, each about 2-3 months long. When you're playing ranked, your wins and losses will only count toward the rank you receive for that Act. When the Act is over, your rank will reset, and you'll have to play another 5 placement matches at the beginning of the following Act. This is great if you placed low and you'd like a good shot at placing higher during the next Act. However, it's not so good if you're at a really high rank and risk placing much lower at the start of the next season. 5. Receive Rewards Since there are 3 Acts in an Episode, there are 3 opportunities during that Episode for you to get different ranks. Your previous rank does influence your next placement, but because the MMR is so flexible, it could go either way—you could place much lower, much higher, or even right where you already were (which is likely and better for skill level MMR for everybody.) At the end of the Episode, you'll receive rewards based on the highest rank you achieved during the end of the 3 separate Acts within the Episode. » Read our guide on how to earn free Valorant points Why You Should Care About the Competitive Mode Other than bragging rights, Competitive mode not only lets you get some sweet rewards by the end of the Episode but is also the best-balanced game mode of them all, since everyone there has their own ranked MMR and they want to keep it that way or improve it. So why aren't Casual modes balanced? Well, you might already know that Casual game modes can be riddled with complete noobs to pros who'll crush you to the point that you'll think they're hacking. That's because the MMR for Casual and Ranked are separate. A pro who plays ranked all day and is sitting in immortal rank might play the odd casual game here and there—and get paired up with players at the silver/gold level, which isn't fun or productive for either side. Playing ranked games makes sure that you are paired with people who are at your level, so you're always playing fair games. Another reason you should care about Competitive mode is that your rank is an indication of your skill level, and it can help you improve. » Learn the differences between Valorant Points and Radianite Points Key Takeaway Competitive mode is filled with sweat-lords who are trying their best to improve and win games, which means that in all likeliness, you'll have a team comprised of the same try-hard nature, even if they're all random players. This might seem daunting at first, but this no-messing-about environment is the ultimate way to improve your mechanics, rotations, positioning, and communication in the world of Valorant. If you're grinding through your ranks, or even sticking to the casual side of the game, try running Buff in the background for some free rewards!
EsportsDota 2 vs. World of Warcraft: What Is the Difference?You may have heard that Dota comes from Warcraft, and that isn't wrong. Back in 2003, while Warcraft 3's Frozen Throne expansion was at its peak, IceFrog and Steve Feak, two big W3 community map makers at the time, created a game mod called Defense of the Ancients, or Dota as we know it. It quickly became the most popular mod in the Warcraft 3 community. A decade later, Dota 2 came out as a free-to-play standalone title on Steam, which is still massively popular today. But, what are the similarities between World of Warcraft and Dota 2 today? Well, it turns out they're completely different games. » Have some Dota skins you don't like? Learn how to sell your Dota 2 skins on Steam Dota 2 Summarized Game Design Dota 2 is a MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) that can be compared to League of Legends in gameplay. Its predecessor did so well as a game mod that it formed the standard of MOBA games. On release, Dota 2 was instantly popular, despite the existence of LoL and other MOBAs at the time. Dota 2 is a round-based game, where two teams of 5 players battle each other in a pre-defined 3-laned map. Each player has to control their own unique hero (out of a selection of around 120 heroes), each with their own abilities, attacks, and lore. Each hero has to gather gold by killing creeps or enemy heroes and build effective kits that suit them and their team from the shop. Goal The goal is simple—you need to go into your respective lanes, kill creeps and enemy heroes to win your lane, then push together to destroy the enemy team's base. The execution, however, is not quite so simple. Dota 2 comes with immense strategy and split-second decision-making, and it requires hundreds of hours to even be considered proficient at the game. » Read more about Dota 2 account boosting and why you should avoid it World of Warcraft Summarized Game Design World of Warcraft shares some of its lore and universe with Warcraft 3, though its game style is completely different. In the original Warcraft games, you'd be playing a top-down RTS game, building up a base, managing economies, and commanding hoards of orcs or armies of night elves to overrun your opponents and destroy your enemies' bases. You could have 12 people all versing each other, 1v1s, 2v2s, AIs, and loads of different maps to play on. WoW Community The community side of Warcraft 3 was probably what really made the game so popular, though. There, you'd find tower defenses, mauls, card games, shooters, and pretty much any other minigame you could think of in the RTS world (that's where many of those minigames you might know were born). I gotta hand it to those map makers too, I tried my hand at making a custom map during the peak of Warcraft 3 LANs, and it was certainly a lot to unpack, considering how much you were able to do for free. Goal In World of Warcraft, however, you are playing as a single customizable character from a series of different races and classes in an MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game). You can level up by doing quests or group dungeons, learn new spells, improve your gear, learn professions, etc. And you can do all that with (or against) thousands of other people doing the same. The game takes hundreds of hours to get to the end-game content, but even then, there's always something new you could do, whether that's farming reputations, getting achievements, or improving your PvP rating. You'll be playing from a 3rd-person perspective, with an action bar full of interchangeable skills and spells, in an open world map that is breathtakingly large and filled with all sorts of fantastical beasts and interesting NPCs with their own stories. You can also join guilds and communities filled with other players that can make the whole experience both easier and more enjoyable. Dota 2 vs. World Of Warcraft: Game & Genre Comparison Dota 2 took over the characters from the original game, which was made with edited Warcraft 3 models, so it's easy to see how some of the characters and visual features seem pulled straight out of the Warcraft universe. As a result, both games are set in fantasy universes that share similar species and monsters, as well as terrain. As for differences, Comparing Dota 2 to World of Warcraft is like comparing Chess to Monopoly; they're both games that require strategy and experience, but fundamentally they're completely different. Dota 2 is a 45-90 min match that you'll play with 9 other players that you might never see again, and you'll start fresh at the beginning of every match. In World of Warcraft, you can play with up to 40 people at once, and you can even choose whether you want to play against NPCs (PvE) or other players (PvP). And trust me, playing against NPCs is not always an easier choice. » Check out our list of best DOTA 2 heroes for ranked games Final Thoughts Though there are a lot of differences between World of Warcraft and Dota 2 today, their history is a constant reminder of the good ol' days in Warcraft 3, going to LANs with friends and rejecting the option of sleep for countless hours of fun. Both of these games are worth sinking hundreds of hours into, though one might struggle to find the time to play both. If you do find the time, why not have Buff open in the background to earn some cool rewards?
EsportsTop 4 Most Thrilling Valorant Tournaments in 2023When Riot announced they were making an FPS game, there were mixed opinions on whether the game would be successful or not. Now, Valorant has almost hit the top of the competitive FPS eSports scene on PC, and loads of pro players have switched over from games like CS: GO. Watching the best Valorant teams go head-to-head with each other in the big eSports games can definitely be a nail-biting experience that may include some cheering (or yelling) at the screen. If you're interested in watching the action, we've made a breakdown of 4 of the best Valorant tournaments to keep an eye out for. Each of these tournaments features the best teams from around the globe, all competing for glory, fame, prize money, and of course—bragging rights. » Learn about the 2 best in-game methods for getting free Valorant skins 1. VALORANT Regional Leagues: Finals If there's any tournament worth watching outside of the Champions Tour, it's the Regional Leagues Finals. The Regional Leagues are split into 2 main sections where teams from 7 regions (previously 8, but CIS was removed this year) battle it out to be the grand champions and take home glory and a portion of a $150 000+ prize pool! The first stage of the Regionals happens inter-regionally, where 8 teams from each region play a best of 2 in the round-robin tournament format (every team plays every other team once each). The top 6 teams with the most wins get selected to enter playoffs, where they battle it out to find the region's best teams. The top teams of each region then progress through to the Regional League Finals, where they'll all be going against each other in a GSL format—a double elimination bracket that can decide 3rd place, 4th place, 5th place, and so on. The stakes are much higher in the Finals, where the 1st place will walk home with more than $50,000 in prize money. If you've made it this far, though, you'll still be rewarded close to $10,000 for coming in last. Here's a breakdown of Valorant's next Regional League: Date of Tournament Stage 1: January 9th, 2023 Stage 2: March 27th, 2023 Total Prize Pool €150 000 (2022 amount, 2023 amount yet to be confirmed) Regions Spain (+ Portugal and Italy)FranceUK (+Ireland)Poland and EE MENATurkeyDACH Restrictions Other than standard tournament rules, you'll have to be part of a specific region to participate. 2. Red Bull Campus Clutch By hosting the Red Bull Campus Clutch every year, Red Bull has made a sweet opportunity for university students to claim fame in Valorant. Universities around the world hold inter-house competitions to find their best team, after which they play regionally to find the region's best teams. Those teams will then form part of the 300 universities participating across 50 countries, consisting entirely of university students, all competing for bragging rights to be the best team among them all. The Campus Clutch is certainly exciting right from the beginning. As some regions get stomped on while others excel at the start, it'll be interesting to see which teams gain favor during the tournament. The winners of the whole Campus Clutch will automatically enter the world championships, where they can further prove their skills and potentially become the number 1 team in Valorant. Here's a breakdown of Red Bull's next Campus Clutch Date of Tournament TBD: In 2022, the tournament was held from August to December, so expect the same for 2023 Total Prize Pool €20,000 Regions 50 countries around the world. Full list here Restrictions Other than standard tournament rules, you gotta be 18 or older and a student currently studying at a university. 3. VCT: Game Changers The Valorant Champions Tour: Game Changers is a world championship hosted by Riot specifically for female competitors—and it's a biggy. In 2022, the finals reached over 230,000 peak viewers, resulting in VCT: Game Changers being the 2nd most-viewed female-only championship ever. In 2022, the Finals were hosted in Berlin, where the top teams from 8 regions competed for a share of €500,000! These are the best of the best in the female gaming world, and many of them belong to recognizable teams with female divisions, like Cloud-9 White, and G2 Gozen. Game Changers has year-long regionals that have streams running consistently, narrowing down the list of the best teams that will then get a chance to participate in the World Championship and take home the title of being the best female Valorant team for the year. In the World Championship, 8 teams will go head-to-head in a double-elimination bracket, where each game is best-of-three, until the Grand Final, which is a best-of-five. You can find most of the broadcasts over on Twitch.tv. Apparently, VCT: Game Changers will be different in 2023, with more participants, an increased total of final contestants, bigger prize pools, and way more exciting top-level matches that will happen in the Game Changer World Championship. Here's a breakdown of what we know about the next VCT: Game Changers: Date of Tournament While changes are being made to the tournament, dates have not been revealed, but regional qualifiers might be open soon! Total Prize Pool €500,000 (2022 amount, 2023 amount yet to be confirmed) Regions Global Restrictions Other than standard tournament rules, you'll have to be part of a registered pro team in your region to participate. » Interested in free Valorant points? Read our guide on earning free VPs 4. VALORANT Champions Tour If you're going to watch any Valorant streams, you'll wanna watch these ones. The VCT is the ultimate culmination of the best players in the world, competing for the number one title and a prize pool of $1,000,000. Here, you'll find the best commentators hosting the wildest games, with all the teams you've heard of, like Cloud9, NRG, OpTic Gaming, Fnatic, NAVI, G2—and loads of upcoming teams you've never heard of too. In the VCT, teams will compete inter-regionally against one another in multi-stage challenger playoffs. The top 2 teams will continue to the VCT and face the other regions' best teams. The regionals and finals work very similarly to the VCT Game Changers format, though the stakes are much higher. Simply winning the challenger's regional cup awards the team a prize of $30,000 before even entering the finals, while winning the finals meant walking home with $300,000 for the team. Semi-Final and Grand Final matches are the most intense matches you'll experience in the Valorant's eSports scene, each being a best-of-five matchup, with a massive live audience. On Twitch, 1,500,000 viewers came on to watch the final match alone, while some even paid a fair amount of money to travel to Turkey and experience the event live. The next VCT has been announced! Here's what we know so far: Date of Tournament Opening event in Brazil: Feb 13 - March 5, 2023Champions Tour 2023 EMEA League: March 26 - May 28, 2023Champions Tour 2023 Americas League: March 26 - May 28, 2023Champions Tour 2023 Pacific League: March 26 - May 28, 2023 Total Prize Pool €1,000,000 (2022 amount, 2023 amount is still being calculated.) Regions Spain ( + Portugal and Italy)FranceUK (+Ireland)Poland and EEMENATurkeyDACH Restrictions Other than standard tournament rules, you'll have to be part of the specific region to participate. Final Words These 4 major tournaments happen throughout each year, from tryouts to playoffs and finals, so there are hundreds of matches for you to catch live on Riot's site, or over on Twitch. Outside of those, there are loads of smaller tournaments hosted in many different languages around the world. There's probably even a game going on right now. If you're a fan of the game and you like to enjoy some Valorant matches of your own, why not try using Buff to get free rewards while playing?
ReviewsTop 6 Rarest League of Legends Skins of All TimeLoL has been available to the public for well over a decade now, and with its long history comes a plethora of skins for its 160+ champions that hit the rift every day. If you're familiar with the game, you might already know about the "legacy vault" and how certain skins become unavailable to purchase after a period of time. Some skins, however, are even rarer than those, to the point where people are willing to pay hundreds of dollars, sometimes even thousands, for LoL accounts that own those extremely rare cosmetics. Despite having thousands of hours logged in the game, there are skins that even I have never seen. Here are the most notable of those rare skins and the reasons why they are so rare. » New to LoL? Learn about the best LoL champions for first-time players 1. King Rammus The BETA Skin King Rammus is the oldest limited skin in the game. The only way you could get this bad boy was to participate in the closed Beta testing, during October 2009. Visually, it's really similar to the base skin—if you don't play Rammus much, you would probably not recognize it as a skin if you saw it on the rift. However, owning this skin is still pretty cool, as it shows you've been there since the beginning (or, rather, that the account has). I've personally never seen it in-game, so it's rare enough to get some attention. King Rammus is worth about $60. 2. Young Ryze From the Collectors Edition Also known as Human Ryze, this skin was also part of the Collector's Edition of League of Legends, which players could purchase to support Riot during the earlier days of their launch. This skin used to be just a recolor of Ryze, but has gotten a bit flashier with a more rounded visual overhaul during the champion's rework. It doesn't seem like there's any difference other than his visual appearance, yet this skin can make an account go for $150-$200 just for owning it. 3. Black Alistar From the Collectors Edition Black Alistar was part of a limited bundle when pre-ordering the Collectors Edition of League of Legends. Alistar's skin was the most notable one in the bundle, making the accounts that have it reach about $250 in value. The others in the bundle (Huntress Sivir, Goth Annie, and Silver Kayle) each go for about $100-$200 on account markets. Black Alistar is one of the most basic skins you can find in the game in terms of detail, as Alistar's base skin (purple and blue) has just been recolored to black and brown. » Learn how to get LoL cosmetics by watching streams 4. The PAX Trio The Limited Expo Skins If you're unfamiliar with the PAX expo, it's one of the biggest gaming expos in the world that happens every year and covers tabletop, arcade, and video gaming. As you can imagine, some of the biggest dev names and gaming companies show up to reveal new content and give away exclusive prizes. Naturally, Riot games can be found there quite often, and in the first 3 years of their presence at PAX, they handed out some ultra-limited skin codes to the participants of the expo. Due to all that, PAX skins are arguably the most expensive skins to get your hands on. These are: PAX Twisted Fate This one's the holy grail of rare skins—the first 20,000 people to attend PAX would get this skin, and because LoL wasn't super popular back then, many of those skins were never claimed. Right off the bat, players would sell this skin for anywhere between $200 and $500, but as the popularity of the game increased, so did the value of this skin. Today, you can find accounts with this skin being sold for over $4,000! As for the appearance of the skin, Twisted Fate just has a simple recolor that changes his clothing to a blue and black combo with accents of grey, which is basically equivalent to a chroma (recolor) in today's skins. Rocking this on the rift is definitely a cool statement of loyalty, but $4,000 for a recolor is a bit much if you ask me. PAX Jax Jax was the 2nd of the 3 champions to receive PAX skins, and his skin is arguably the most desired one of the lot, too. Awarded to players who attended PAX in 2010, PAX Jax puts Jax into a well-suited yellow jacket, which has made him stand out from the crowd for years. I always get excited seeing a PAX Jax running around in the rift—even if he's on the enemy team giving me a hard time. Owning this Jax skin could fetch you a lucrative amount if you're interested in selling your account. PAX Jax goes for about $500 on average. PAX Sivir Sivir was the last to get a PAX skin in 2011, giving her an awesome futuristic Tron look. My favorite part of the skin is that her weapon has been turned into a set of buttons from a controller. On top of that, she's rocking a stylish black suit with orange or blue trimmings and goggles, and she has very cool silver hair to wrap up the whole look. Accounts with PAX Sivir are in high demand, especially after her rework. Even though she's not one of the most popular female champions in LoL, you can still find accounts with this skin going for about $200-$700. 5. UFO Corki The First Promotional Skin Much like the other skins on this list, you had to be around really early for this one—you needed to have registered and played a match before Jan 14th, way back in 2010, shortly after the game's official launch. The skin itself has Corki in a round UFO with a glass dome covering his head. Other than that, there are no changes to the champion's visual or audio effects. Strangely enough, even though it's one of the rarer skins, accounts with this skin only go for about $30 a pop, making it the cheapest rare skin on this list. 6. Victorious Jarvan IV The First Victorious Skin Every year, at the end of a season, players who play ranked LoL games receive a reward based on their placement at the time. Reaching the gold rank or better would earn you that year's "Victorious" skin, each one themed to be set in a universe where that champion has achieved their full potential. Jarvan IV received the first victorious skin in season 1 back in 2010, and since then, Victorious skins have been highly sought after. Accounts that have this skin alone go for anywhere between $400 to $900! Final Words There are certainly bragging rights attached to these skins, as showing them off feels great when you get compliments. But, is it worth spending hundreds of dollars to buy other players' accounts (which you cant merge with your own) just to say you've got the rarest skins in the game? I'll let you decide. » Do you have any of the skins? Download Buff and redeem rewards while flaunting them
Rewards5 Pro Tips to Earn Money Streaming Your Gameplay on YouTubeYouTube has millions of content creators trying to make an income off of creating videos and streaming content, so you need to stand out from the rest to be successful. Having more followers and subscribers means higher chances of receiving donations and getting viewers to join your channel as members—where they'll pay a subscription to use special features when you're broadcasting live on the site. » Already streaming your gameplay on YouTube? Run Buff in the back for some extra free rewards 1. Broadcast Consistently According to Your Content Calendar It's important to have consistency in streaming content. Having a set schedule means the viewers who want to see your content know exactly when to show up to see you live. Sure, if your stream is shorter than eight hours, you have the option to save it as VOD that people can watch for a period of time. But the real entertainment is being able to communicate with your audience as a streamer, as well as interacting with your favorite streamer. 2. Produce High-Quality & Valuable Content Yes, it's possible to stream with low-end rigs and equipment, but putting a little budget into a better microphone and camera (if you want to show your face) goes an extremely long way for your viewers. If you think about it, even if you're watching a stream at 480p, having clear sound makes it okay to watch, but bad sound even at 4k is just a bad experience. Depending on your budget, you'll need to prioritize what you need to focus on to improve your stream quality. Internet Connection: Do a speed test to find out what you're working with—at least 20Mbps up and down is a recommended speed for consistent streaming performance.Audio Quality: Test for background noise that comes through your mic. It's best to get a standalone mic, but first, check if you can change sound filters on your streaming software. Lighting: Get a decent ring light from Amazon—this will dramatically improve how well you appear on your video feed. 3. Personalize Your Content to Stand Out From the Rest It's important that you bring something that fits your personality and character to the table, even if it's not entirely unique. For example, having a style of T-shirt that you exclusively wear while streaming can really make you more memorable. Here are some more examples: Intros & Outros Think of simple intros to use at the start of each video. It's usually a good idea to let your stream run for 5-10 minutes to let some of your audience hop on first before you start your intro. As for outros, keep it simple as well—"until next time, friends" works well, but try to find something that leans towards your personality. Unique Catchphrases Catchphrases can be a bit challenging, as they're something that best comes around naturally during your streaming career. If you have some catchy phrases you've been saying in the outside world, use them, but don't force them. Custom Video Thumbnails Stand out from the other streams with a custom video thumbnail. Bright colors and large text on your thumbnail work surprisingly well when trying to grab viewers' attention—combine that with a click-bait title, and you'll be seeing loads of traffic hitting your stream. » Interested in more than just YouTube? Discover the best games to Stream on Twitch 4. Promote Your Videos Using the Correct YouTube SEO YouTube is the biggest video platform worldwide, so you must know how to get your videos seen by millions of other content creators. Here are a few tips on how you can be found easier in the vast sea of content on YouTube. Use Keywords: Refine keywords in your titles and descriptions to a potential niche market and you'll find more success.Use Tags & Descriptions: You only have 20 tags and 5000 characters to work with, so use the space wisely.Promote Your Channel: Take advantage of other social media platforms. Monitor Analytics Closely: This will help you find your strengths and weaknesses in marketing your channel. 5. Interact With Your Viewers While Streaming You shouldn't force conversations, but do chat with your viewers if they're communicating with you. One of the biggest highlights of being a streamer is being able to communicate with your audience, and doing so can keep them around for longer. It's okay not to respond to chat if you've got millions of followers and there are thousands of messages coming through per minute, or if the comment simply isn't worth responding to, but try not to ignore your chat completely. » Want to get paid to play the games you love? Check out other ways to make money from playing games