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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.
A gamer wearing headphones sitting in front of a computer preparing for Valorant Premiere
EsportsValorant Premier: Everything You Need to Unleash Your Competitive EdgeIntroducing Valorant Premier, the ultimate tournament experience for competitive Valorant gamers looking to upgrade their performance. This exclusive three-phase tournament that takes place every act—complete with restrictions like map and agent bans—is designed for dedicated players and teams of similar skill to compete for recognition and unique rewards and items like Valorant skins. Whether you've been perfecting your strategies in ranked play or dreaming of facing off against the best in your division, Valorant Premier may be the tournament for you. » Need more Valorant Points? Here are the best ways to get Valorant Points for free Valorant Premier Phases 1. Enrollment Once you've got a team, the owner will have to pick a zone for your matches to take place in; and there are two things to keep in mind: Latency The zone corresponds with server regions so it's advised your team chooses a server with good latency.Schedule The zone also determines what your match schedule will be, so choose with your team's location and schedule in mind. Once your team's zone is chosen by the team owner, you'll be sorted into a skill division based on the average MMR of all 5-7 of your teammates, and it'll be time to get ready for your matches. 2. Weekly Matches You can play up to 2 matches a week to earn Premier Score (PS) points for your team. If you lose your first game, don't worry about being knocked out straight away. The tournament is based on a point system, so if you win consecutive games after your first, you may still get enough PS points to enter the playoff tournament: Winning a match = 100 pointsLosing a match = 25 pointsNot attending = 0 points » See our tips for dominating the Valorant economy 3. Playoff Tournament If your team has gathered enough PS points by the end of the weekly matches phase, you'll be entered into the playoff tournament, where you'll be put up against other teams in a traditional bracket system to see which team is the best in the division. The stakes are higher here, but so are the rules. If you make it to the playoff tournament, you and your team can expect matches similar to pro matches that are streamed live to the world, including map bans, draft picks, a higher point system, and the chance of being kicked out of the tournament if you lose. If you lose during the semi-finals, a runner-up match is played for 3rd place. » Interested in competing? See these other Valorant tournaments you can join for money Valorant Premier Entry Criteria SMS verification You'll need to confirm your identity (and the fact you're not a robot) with an SMS verification code.Any ranked placement You need to have been placed in any rank at least once at any point in your Valorant career to be eligible.A team You'll need to sign up as a team of 5-7. If you don't have a team that big, you can open your team to the public for others to join, or you can find an existing team to join. » Not sure who to play? See the most OP agents for dominating Valorant ranked How to Prepare for Valorant Premier There's a fair amount of time before the weekly matches phase of the tournament starts, so take advantage of that space to practice with your team in as many games as possible. Keep these tips in mind: Communication is key Get into communication with the members of the squad, whether it's in-game or over Discord, and work on building a good team composition and solid synergy with your teammates.Play to your strengths Diversifying between roles can open up weaknesses in your team's synergy, so figure out what everyone's strengths are and build on them.Watch gameplay footage It's a great idea to watch game footage of your practice matches back as a team to identify your strong and weak points. Consider watching pro footage (or your competition, if you can get your hands on it) to pick up on any strategies that they might have. » Need more tips? See our guides to climbing the Valorant competitive ladder and how to outsmart your opponents Get Ready for Valorant Premier It's time to unleash your skills on the biggest stage of all ranks: the Valorant Premier Tournament. Get hyped for an adrenaline-pumping showdown against and with top-notch teams from across the globe. With a fair matchmaking system and a diverse player pool, grab your crew, sign up, and gear up for some mind-blowing battles that'll push your strategies, teamwork, and gaming prowess to the max. » Take a look at some of the other thrilling Valorant tournaments
A small Minecraft house in the middle of an open field
Tips & tricksHow to Build a House in Minecraft (+ Examples)Whether it's keeping safe from all the evil mobs out to get you at night or just having a place to dump all your hard-earned materials, every player needs some sort of home in the world of Minecraft. And, in a world where creativity knows no bounds, constructing a house that has more than just 4 flat walls and a roof is an essential skill. Whether you're a seasoned player or just starting your journey, learning how to build a proper house in Minecraft can be an enriching experience. » Looking to earn an income from your Minecraft skills? Here are 5 legitimate income streams for Minecraft players Preparing for Your Minecraft House Build Key Resources and Materials If you've just started in your Minecraft world in survival mode, the first thing you're going to need is a temporary safe place and some materials. The fastest way to get some basic blocks to build your first "house" so you can make it through the night without dying is to go punch a tree to get some wood, make a wooden shovel or a door on a crafting bench, and dig up a stack of dirt to make a temporary hovel to store your gathered materials. Be sure to leave a hole in the wall or roof to let in some natural light! Once you've got a safety spot, you can focus on gathering some essential materials for your real home project. Some materials, like wood, can be used extremely diversely to make a wide range of building blocks, as well as aesthetic blocks to elevate your house designs to the next level. Here are some blocks we suggest farming up for the best range of home-building items: Wooden blocks from trees Includes logs, stripped logs, planks, slabs, stairs, fences, gates, doors, trapdoors, pressure plates, and buttons.Stone blocks from exploring Includes blocks, stairs, slabs, fences, buttons, and pressure plates.Sand for glassQuartz from the Nether Includes clean white blocks, stairs, pillars, and slabs. Select an Ideal Location for Your House A house on a lake? Easy. A mansion on the side of a mountain? No problem! A hideout in the treetops with a magnificent view? Sure thing! Each place you choose to build your home will have its pros and cons, so try to keep these questions in mind when you're choosing your spot: How safe is this spot from mobs? A house in the sky can mean a quick death with a cheeky creeper spawn, while one on flat ground can be swarmed by skeletons, zombies, and spiders.How easy it is to get back and forth from your house to your mine/portals/farms? Houses in the trees make can make getting back from your mining mission extra lengthy, for example.Is there space to grow? You'll be collecting a lot of stuff over your survival experience, is there space to add rooms to store it all? Plan the Design and Layout While gathering materials and picking locations, you should keep in mind your proposed house style—will it be a modern-looking house with an open-plan look or something more intimate like a hobbit hole with smaller rooms and a separate kitchen? You may want contrasting colors like white quartz and dark wood, or something a little friendlier with cedarwood and cobblestone. If you show up at the wrong spot with the wrong materials for the house you've got in mind, it can be a little demotivating, so save yourself the extra effort and plan ahead! Build Your House It's time to get building! I'll be constructing my own house alongside you in this blog. In this case, I've chosen a clean mountainside home looking over a small river that'll give me easy access to a mine and allow me to get carts and railways going if I ever want to incorporate them. There's also loads of space to expand and add new rooms within the mountain without changing the aesthetic feel of the place while still maintaining safety from the mobs that spawn on fields and open areas. Foundation and Flooring Now that you've done your planning and have a basic vision in mind for your lovely abode, it's time to lay down the foundations. Start by building the frame and floor of your house, and keep in mind where your house's entrance will be, so you can incorporate stairs and an entranceway if you need to. Pro tip: Avoid having a big rectangle or square with just 4 walls to make the design look more exciting. Walls and Structure It's a great idea to choose a different material from your floor when building your walls. Smooth blocks work really well for this, especially when you start adding some decoration to them. Natural lighting is also quite important when building your house, so don't forget to plan for windows! I'd suggest building the entire wall first and knocking out sections where you'd like your windows to be. » Struggling to farm in Minecraft? Here's how to breed horses and frogs Roofing When it comes to roofing, the actual design of the outside roof is pretty much up to you, though many people recommend keeping away from traditional pointy roofs as they can become tricky to build and use a lot of material to complete. Don't make the ceiling too low, I like to have one more block's space above me than I think I need to have, which prevents any claustrophobic feelings when you're inside. Additionally, since we don't have much in the way of downlights in Minecraft, you should leave additional space for lighting. Interior design There's a joke amongst interior designers where if you see an open corner, stick a plant in it—and the same goes for Minecraft. After sticking down your obvious furniture, like beds, chairs, tables, and counters, take time to work on the small details next, like pot plants, decorative buttons, and fancy lighting. Advanced building tip: Avoid boxes! Anything that breaks up the shape of a box is good, so try overhangs and pillars, half walls, windowsills, and garden beds to break up the boring feeling of living in a box. The most boring kind of house has no overhangs, four flat walls, and block windows, so try and avoid anything that fits this description. Minecraft Is About Testing Your Creativity You're officially equipped with the know-how to build an amazing house in Minecraft. Now it's your turn to let your imagination run wild and create the coolest digs in the virtual world. So go ahead, experiment with all kinds of materials, get those creative juices flowing, and build the house you've always dreamed of. Remember, the sky's the limit, and every block you place is a chance to show off your style. Happy building!
Three PC gamers seated next to each other, competing at an eSports tournament.
Esports7 Best Free Online eSports Games to Play in 2023 to Make $$$The gaming industry is colossal. So big that, in 2022, it accrued more revenue than the film, music, and book publishing industries combined—and eSports makes up a huge portion of this industry. In 2018, Epic Games stated that more than $100 million was allocated for the Fortnite competitive scene for that year alone. eSports has now become a great opportunity for elite gamers to turn passion into careers in the gaming world. As such, here are the best free-to-play titles in the eSports scene that you can make money from without having to spend money on. Beware , All That Glitters Is Not Gold Before we move on to our list, I felt the need to give a short disclaimer, from personal experience. Becoming a professional eSports gamer is hard. It requires years of hard work, sacrifices, and long hours of grinding. Even when you're signed up by a team, it's not the same as playing for fun. It's a job that requires repetitive plays, strategy review, and skill mastery, which can be tedious. Luckily, there are ways to earn rewards, equipment, and in-game currency without dedicating your entire life to a game. Loyalty programs such as Buff offer free rewards for playing your favorite game. Simply play while Buff runs in the background, earn points, and redeem for in-game items, currency, or real-life equipment. Best part, it's legit and hassle-free. Best Competitive Games in 2023 for Making $$$ With that being said, we have selected games according to their popularity and the size of their prize pools. With enough patience, luck and skill, you can become a successful eSports athlete and earn some sweet cash through your career. 1. Apex Legends Available on Steam (PC), Origin (PC), PS, Xbox, and Switch Apex Legends is the most competitive FPS Battle Royale out at the moment. If you're not familiar with the genre, it's where dozens, or sometimes hundreds of teams or solo players are put into a shrinking arena with limited equipment and have to eliminate their opponents until they're the last ones standing. Apex is arguably the best-rated Royale to play at the moment, even earning a spot on the top eSports titles for PC in 2022. Respawn's remodeled Source engine allows Apex Legends to be an extremely fast-paced shooter with great mobility and gunplay, which invites some absolutely insane moments of gameplay making the competitive scene an extremely exciting experience to be a part of. The Apex Legends Global Series in 2022 has a prize pool of $2 million, but whether you're competing in the big leagues or just regional tourneys, Apex's eSports scene is worth being a part of. » Learn more about Apex Legends and how to get more Legend Tokens 2. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Available on Steam (PC) Counterstrike is among the OG's of competitive shooters in the eSports scene. It's a round-based team shooter where a team will have to try and plant a bomb on an objective area in the map, and the opposing team has to prevent that from happening or try to defuse the bomb before the round ends. The first title was made back in 2000 by Valve, the creators of Half Life, and has been growing in popularity as a competitive shooter since then. In 2021, the accumulative prize money from all the eSports tournaments was more than a whopping $21 million! The game's popularity is still high after all this time, so getting involved in the competitive scene can be rewarding. Many eSports CS:GO tournaments happen regionally, so you might just find a local tournament that could be worth joining. CS:GO pros and content creators are usually common candidates for sponsorships, so even if you're not winning parts of the prize pool, you could still be raking in a bit of cash by standing out with a cool sponsor. » Learn more about CS:GO and how to trade and sell skins on the CS:GO skin exchange 3. Dota 2 Available on Steam (PC) Dota 2 is a MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena), a strategy game where two teams of 5 players are pitted against each other with the goal of destroying the opponent's base. Each player controls a unique character from a selection of over 120, each with their own abilities and passive traits. The game's competitive scene is among the largest titles in the eSports world, with the total prize money for 2021 for Dota2 boasting a mouthwatering $40 million! Dota 2's audience is also huge, and the way the game is built allows tournaments to happen all the time, all around the world! Participating in a Dota 2 championship is an awesome experience whether you're playing or just spectating. » Learn more about Dota 2 4. Fortnite Available on Epic Games (PC), Xbox, PS, iOS, macOS, and GeForce Now Fortnite is a third-person shooter game that released in 2017 and blew up almost instantly. Its competitive scene features a Battle Royale that works similarly to Apex Legends. Fortnite thrives in the eSports scene, with top players walking home happy with a huge $3 million in global tournaments. If you're feeling up to joining Fortnite tournaments, Epic games has made getting started really easy! Just head over to the official Epic Games site and check out their competitive page. » Learn more about Fortnite 5. League of Legends Available on RIOT Games (PC) League of Legends was inspired by the original Dota and features great graphics and visuals. It's also a bit faster than DotA, with a little less depth. League of Legends features in the top eSports list, with the worlds series in 2021 having a prize pool of $2 million. Watching League of Legends tournaments is always exciting and an amazing experience if you're lucky enough to be at a live game. LOL's competitive games are best streamed over on lolesports.com, where you can also earn some awesome loot with stream drops! » Learn more about League of Legends 6. Rocket League Available on Epic Games (PC), Steam (PC), Xbox, PS, Linux, macOS, and GeForce Now There's no game out there similar to Rocket League. Putting it bluntly, it's soccer with rocket-powered control cars that can jump and use boosters to fly around in the air, and even though the raw mechanics of Rocket League have never changed, players are still finding amazing new ways to move around and manipulate the ball at their will. Rocket League is my personal favorite eSports title to watch, the finesse that the pros have is breathtaking once you know how difficult the game is to play. There are quite a few Rocket League tournaments for money, but look out for The Rocket League world championship this year in 2022, as it'll feature teams from all around the globe competing for a huge $6 million prize pool and massive sponsorship deals » Learn more about Rocket League 7. VALORANT Available on RIOT Games (PC) VALORANT is RIOT's approach to an FPS title after so much success on their MOBA: League of Legends. VALORANT is largely inspired by CS:GO and works much the same way from buying weapons at the beginning of each round to planting bombs on objectives. Where VALORANT stands out from its CS inspiration is its list of unique agents. There are currently 8 agents in the game, each with 4 unique abilities, one of which is an ultimate usually capable of turning the tides of a round if used well enough. The competitive scene for VALORANT took off almost instantly, thanks to RIOT Games' huge success with League of Legends. In the 2 years that VALORANT has been out, its already rewarded $14 million worth of prize money to players around the world. As RIOT's FPS grows in popularity, so do its opportunities in the eSports scene. » Learn more about Valorant Get Started and Earn More Along the Way Getting to the top admittedly won't be a walk in the park, but whether it's winning huge sums from eSports competitive tournaments or getting sponsored by brands, it's worth getting involved in the eSports scene. However, if you're not feeling up for the big leagues, you can also earn some passive rewards gaming with Buff!
A gamer celebrating a victory in battle royale in Fortnite
Tips & tricksVictory Royale: How to Win Consistently in Fortnite There are many reasons you'd want to win multiple matches of Fortnite's Battle Royale. On top of proving that you were the best player/squad in that match, winning a BR earns you a themed umbrella for the first win of every season—and, of course, a crown to take into the next game, granting you extra XP. If you're feeling strong, winning again with a crown equipped, or with one you've stolen off a dead guy, earns you a Crown Win and an emote that shows off just how many crowns you've won, ensuring some bragging rights. Winning consistently and bringing home crowns is like leveling up a badge of honor, but it does have a caveat. Your games will get harder, and other players will want your crowns. » See our top tips for making money with Fortnite Master the Basics While investing time in learning movement mechanics is indeed important, getting completely familiar with the basics and being comfortable with the core features are essential to coming out on top against 90+ other players. It's important to know which guns do more damage than others and what ammo type they use. You also need to get comfortable with all the shielding and healing methods in the game, from catching and eating fish to breaking a slap juice truck. Learning these mechanics is essential to staying alive and preparing for each of the encounters you'll face on the map. Here are some other basics we think you should focus on perfecting: Learn how to shoot effectively—tap-fire to increase accuracy on certain weapons, move around and shoot to make yourself less likely to be hit, etc.Learn the map, its hotspots, and where you should land based on how the bus crosses the map at the start of the game.Figure out the effective range for each weapon, and learn what different mythic versions of those weapons can do to change that.Use the ring to your advantage. Catch players who are running from the storm and find strategic spots as the ring gets smaller.Use the right cover. Wooden walls break faster than stone ones, trees and rocks can be broken with bullets, and cars explode eventually when shot at, so choose your cover wisely.Know how effective each type of healing and shielding item is.Know how to build (if you're playing in the legacy building mode).Manage your inventory, don't just carry guns. Practice, Practice, Practice Nobody starts Fortnite as a pro. Many might start out really good with transferable skills, like aim and movement from other titles. However, Fortnite's Battle Royale provides enough unique features that anyone who starts playing has to learn a few things to get better. It can be hard to focus on all the aspects of the game at once, especially when you're just starting out. Mastering the basics through practice can alleviate that feeling of chaos quite a lot. A pro tip to add to your practice schedule is to record your games and watch them back. This way, you can see what information you missed the first time and how to keep an eye on it for the next match. Learn to Play With Others Playing with a squad in Fortnite can greatly increase your chances of winning and make the game even more enjoyable. Just picture having a team that communicates well, shares resources, and supports each other... you could become an unstoppable team! Moreover, with a full squad, you can cover more ground, defend strategic points together, and coordinate attacks on enemies more effectively. On top of being a stronger force as a team, playing with a squad can teach you valuable teamwork skills that are transferable into other games—and certain real-life situations, too. » Do you like the "Big Battle" mode in Fortnite? Read why Fortnite's 50v50 is so popular today Stay in The Know Fortnite is known for large content drops at the beginning of each season and has seen drastic changes to the overall gameplay since its launch. Staying updated is crucial if you want to remain competitive and have the best possible gaming experience. New updates often bring exciting features, weapons, and modes that can give you an advantage over other players if you learn them fast. Additionally, updates can address bugs, glitches, and balance issues that may be affecting your gameplay. By staying up to date, you can ensure that you have access to the latest changes in strategies, tactics, and game mechanics, allowing you to keep up with the META (Most Effective Tactic Available) and secure your wins. Mastering the Art of Victory Royale in Fortnite There's a lot of competition out there in the world of Fortnite, and it just gets tougher as you level up and play matches. However, with good teamwork, some strong knowledge of the game mechanics, and staying up to date with the meta, you'll be showing off a large stack of crowns in no time. » Are you already experienced? Consider earning money by playing Fortnite competitively
A gamer playing in a Valorant tournament next to other players
EsportsThe Best Valorant Tournaments You Can Join to Make Some MoneyPeople often assume that you have to be the best of the best to partake in any esports tournaments. Many believe that competitive gaming is only available to pros on the official rosters of big-time esports organizations like TSM or Gen.G. However, this is a drastic misconception. While it's true that the biggest tournaments are exclusive, there are plenty of tournaments for non-pros who just want to compete and test their skills. Even if you are not competing for millions of dollars and looking to become one of the highest-earning players, there are still a number of Valorant tournaments you may be able to join. » Looking for pro tournaments instead? Learn more about the most exciting Valorant tournaments 1. ONE Esports Valorant Community Tournaments ONE Esports Valorant Community Tournaments is a series of tournaments for regular players who are part of the ONE Esports community. What Is the Prize? Last year, the tournaments had prizes of $225 for the first-place team and $75 for second place. When Is It Held? The tournaments are seasonal, and the 2022 season took place last year on May 28. So while the 2022 season is currently closed, we can expect the 2023 one to be on its way this spring. Who Can Apply? Specifically for the Valorant Community Tournaments, ONE Esports allows players from North America, Europe, Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Malaysia. How to Sign Up To sign up, go to ONE Esports Community Tournament page on Battlefy, select your region, select Valorant as the game, and choose which tournament you would like to join. You can register your team through your Battlefy account, and each player must also join the official ONE Esports tournament discord server. The tournaments were free entry last year. » Dominate ranked with the top Valorant Agents 2. College VALORANT If you are currently a university student in the US or Canada, you might be interested in this tournament. What Is the Prize? Teams are awarded up to $3,000 in scholarships for placing first (scaling down to $500 for eighth place) at any of the 3 tournaments, with the Championship event prize yet to be announced. When Is it Held? The 2022-2023 College VALORANT season is currently in progress. If you are raring to compete, then gather your team for the upcoming season that will start later this year. Who Can Apply? College VALORANT is an official Riot Games league for collegiate players. The 2022-2023 season was the debut of this league, with 3 tournaments hosted over the fall, winter, and spring, leading into a College VALORANT Championship event in June or July. It is expected that the upcoming season will follow the same timeline. How to Sign Up? In order to take part, you must register (with each tournament requiring a separate registration), and all players must be currently enrolled in a degree program lasting at least 2 years and in good academic standing. Each player must be a full-time student or a part-time student that is within one academic year of their expected graduation. Don't worry if there are a ton of serious Valorant players at your university, as multiple teams from the same university are able to register. There is no entry fee, regardless of whether your college has an official esports program or student-run club teams. » Salty about your friends' cosmetics? Discover the top ways to get Valorant Points for free Where to Find the Best Tournaments Battlefy is the premier destination for tournaments when it comes to casual players and professionals-to-be. Battlefy creates a very streamlined experience when it comes to registering for Valorant tournaments. By going into the site and selecting Valorant, you are able to easily see all upcoming tournaments, prize pools, dates, etc. The only thing you have to do to get started is create a Battlefy account and follow the registration instructions for the tournament you choose. » Check out some tips and tricks for climbing Valorant's competitive ladder Can Playing Valorant Be a Profitable Hobby? While playing the smaller and lesser-known Valorant tournaments may not become a full-time job, it can very well lead to it. Gaining experience, getting exposure, and performing well at these tournaments can eventually help you become an active streamer or be scouted by a bigger esports organization. To do so, your aim will definitely need to be up to par, and you'd need to find some teammates who share a similar goal and skills. With so many tournaments not even requiring an entry fee, you've got nothing to lose!

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