In Valorant, Harbor’s role as a controller is heavily debatable. Players say his kit isn’t fit to be a controller, while some say he is better as an initiator.
You have to get into all the details to know why Harbor’s role is as ‘fixed’ as other agents in the game.
We’ll dive into Harbor’s skills and explain his fit in most compositions and where he excels the most.
This will be a complete guide on everything connected to Harbor and get you playing him like a pro in no time.
|Ability Name||Cost||Ability Type||Description|
|Cascade||150||Basic Ability 1||Cascade pushes a wall in the direction he is facing, slowing down any enemy trying to push through and blocks their vision.|
|Cove||350||Basic Ability 2||Cove is an orb that acts as a smoke when it lands on the ground, but also acts as a shield to keep players inside safe.|
|High Tide||Free / 40s cooldown||Signature||High Tide is a long wall that’s placed by holding the fire key and adjusting the aim to curve it.|
|Reckoning||7 orbs||Ultimate||Reckoning summons a large water pool in the direction Harbor is facing in an Area of Effect, concussing enemies.|
Suppose you’re in a fight, and your team has fewer players alive.
Now you can create a giant wall of water and push it in the direction you are facing (you can stop it at any time). This will make it impossible for the enemies to spot you.
Beware of the blind bullets that are going to come through.
Another possible scenario where you could use cascade to your benefit is if you’re going on the offense.
Suppose you’re defending mid-bottom on Ascent, and your team decides to push mid. As Harbor, you can use Cascade while facing mid-top. It enables your teammates to push mid-link, as they won’t have to worry about enemies aiming from mid-top.
Another advantage of Cascade is that it slows down the enemies passing through it — for 1 second. The benefit? It makes them an easy target for you and your team.
A useful tip would be to aim towards the wall at head height. Why? Even if the enemies decide to push through, you can catch them the very instant their head pops out.
You can use cove in many different ways depending on the situation.
You can use Cove when you’re trying to plant/defuse the spike while enemies are ambushing you. You point in the direction where you want to place the Cove, and you press Q.
It creates a ball-like structure on the ground. It creates a shield for cover that protects you against bullets and enemy utilities.
Another way to use cove is when you’re trying to push into the site without taking any damage.
Suppose you’re trying to push lane at B site in Ascent, you can place the orb outside B main to ensure safety and cover for your team.
Enemies will try to shoot you through the smoke, but because it has a shield, you can rush within a given amount of time without taking any damage.
It will also allow you to hold certain choke points and angles.
Suppose you’re defending A main on Ascent, where you hear many footsteps. You can use Cove in the direction of A main, allowing you to fall back into the site and call for backup. This would provide you with enough time so that your teammates can arrive to help you.
You can use Cove to fake as a secondary controller while the main controller helps your team take control of another site.
In other words, you can use Cove to aid retreating, rushing, faking, defusing/planting spikes, holding angles, and more!
You can use High Tide in a couple of ways.
Let’s say you and your team are trying to push, but the enemies seem to have a strong agent composition.
They can hold down sites for fast rushes.
Now you can use Harbor as a secondary controller and fake onto opposite sites.
As you fake another site with a high tide, some of the enemy players might rotate. This will allow your team to push through with the primary controller (who has smokes).
During retakes. Let’s say, you’re trying to retake the B site on Icebox.
You’ll find enemies hiding behind the yellow container or playing from the cubby.
You can launch High Tide by pressing E, holding the primary fire button, and curving it with your mouse movement.
This will allow you to curve the wall, helping you block the enemy’s vision across multiple spots. You can also use this to your benefit by leaving small (smart) crevices on the wall’s ends that you can use to take down enemies.
One of your teammates can defuse the spike while the rest of you can hold angles looking out for enemies trying to push through it.
On defense, you can use high tide while defending a site to block off all pressure points. The enemy team won’t be free to push into the site easily.
Reckoning is Harbor’s ultimate ability.
It’s a unique one. How? It creates geysers in an AoE (area of effect) on enemies in front of Harbor.
This compels the enemies to reveal their positions while dodging those geysers. Why? The water pools will concuss them if they get caught in them.
Suppose you’re trying to push a site, you can use Reckoning by facing in the direction of the site.
The geysers will force the enemy players to move out of their hiding spots.
You can use it while defending. The enemies will likely fall back (or slow down) to avoid the geysers’ concussions.
You can also use Reckoning in combination with Cascade or High Tide, or both. How? Catch them off-guard, slow them down, keep them moving, and concuss them.
It amplifies your chances of winning during a site retake.
The best way to play Harbor is to be aggressive.
Harbor, being the secondary controller, has an important role to play for the team. He has abilities that work both as a controller and an initiator. He can block off certain pressure points and can get useful information by taking early-round map control.
It’s a fact that Harbor, currently, isn’t an essential part of the meta. But here’s what many still don’t realize — by using Harbor as a secondary controller, you can turn the game’s odds in your favor.
Suppose you are playing Harbor on Ascent from A main, you can use Cascade early in the round to block off the enemy’s vision.
It also clears certain angles so that your team gets important information to help you win the round.
Another example is you can slow down fast rushes by playing a passive/aggressive role with Harbor. You can use Cove at pressure points and hide inside it to catch the enemies off guard as they are executing into the site.
If you try these positioning techniques and master them, you’ll start to get frags and win rounds.
Another thing to understand here — Harbor isn’t as strong of a defensive agent as Viper. Why? Because his Cove is breakable. His wall (High Tide) isn’t as good as Viper’s wall too.
So the best way to play Harbor is to use his abilities in synergy with other agents.
Harbor’s abilities, combined with other agents’ abilities (like Brimstone), can make rounds very easy to win.
Their ultimates combined together create a much higher impact than usual.
For instance, Reckoning, combined with Brimstone’s ultimate, can be a round-winning combination. How? Reckoning will push enemies out in the open, and Brimstone’s ultimate (Orbital Strike) can blow them up.
In fact, it’s an excellent post-plant situation that will make it almost impossible for the enemy team to defuse the spike.
Similarly, you can also use Reckoning to counter Viper’s pit, as she usually hides inside her ultimate.
You can force Viper and her teammates to get out or get caught up in your geysers.
When To Choose Harbor
Harbor is strong on many different maps, as his ability to play as a secondary controller provides his team with a good amount of information. Try to come up with new strategies that help your team win more rounds.
Here’s when and how you should choose Harbor:
- Pearl complements Harbor’s playstyle. You can pair up Harbor with Fade on Pearl as they can easily get you into sites and get information on hidden enemies. Cove can turn out to be a round-winning utility while planting in Pearl, as enemies can shoot through boxes on sites.
- Harbor can potentially play as the primary and only controller on Fracture. His High Tide can bend very creatively and can cover multiple angles on the defending sites.
- With Harbor’s High Tide on Bind, you can easily block off Killjoy’s turret and Chamber’s Trademark, making it easy for your team to rush into sites. While defending, you can use Cascade and other abilities to put pressure on choke points, making it easy for you to defend sites.
- You can play Harbor as an aggressive agent on Ascent, as his abilities give you the advantage of taking map control. You can combine his High Tide and Cascade and allow your team to push onto sites.