The Definitive Guide: Agent Astra

Astra Guide on gradient background

 

Astra leaning against a background with a bulldog rifle

Reach for the stars with this awesome Valorant agent: Astra.

When it comes to being absolutely stellar, if we do say so ourselves, at taking over every round as a controller agent, to play Astra is your best bet.

She features some of the most dynamic and tactical abilities in the game. With an ability kit that’s a total advantage for your team, you’re sure to take home a win per round.

Of course, to be a player to play her well, you should be a player that knows her well. Don’t worry! You’ve come to the right agent guide.

Without further ado, let’s reach for the stars and get to know all her abilities. Here’s your star-worthy Valorant Astra Guide.

Character Overview

Ghanian Agent Astra is the 15th of the Riot Games Valorant agents. She was officially released in-game and joined the roster of agents you can play on March 2, 2021.

She plays a key role in games given that she’s a controller.

According to her Valorant agent biography, she “harnesses the energies of the cosmos to reshape battlefields to her whim. With full command of her astral form and a talent for deep strategic foresight, she’s always eons ahead of her enemy’s next move.”

Astra as a Controller

The general role of a controller is vital in team compositions, and more or less dictates how a round will go. This is because they mostly stay back and plan the strategy of how you tackle your play.

Astra, specifically, is great when it comes to team-oriented games. Her abilities are mostly to guide the other agents in-game. She basically controls the map with her stars.

Although Astra is officially recognized as a controller, she does also carry the aspects of an initiator.

When in-game, Astra blocks enemy vision as well as supports her teammates with stuns while vulnerating enemies. Also, expect that she smokes like one of her skills because she is a controller.

Astra’s Abilities

Astra in her astral form

Astral Form

Before anything else, we have to understand the most essential part of her ability set, the Astral Form.

This is a key ability that allows you to do just about everything with her.

It allows deploying the layout and knowing where to place stars to use your abilities. It’s also the trigger for activating her ultimate ability.

 

Astra in meditation form thinking about where to place orbs

Astral Form is activated by pressing X, which is the same as her ultimate button.

How It Works

Astra will get the FULL VIEW of the map while in Astral Form. She’s only able to place stars while in this form. She is also able to play her ultimate ability and other abilities while in this vulnerable state.

To play stars down means she can use whatever ability of the stars are placed. Astra can deploy up to five stars around the map, as well as retract them from where she first deployed them.

Her role as a controller makes it important to use it before the round begins. Though, you can always quickly retract her starts to make better use of the abilities in case plans change mid-game.

This is the foundation of her kit. Getting a hang of her Astral Form will determine a lot of how well your rounds add up at the end of a match.

Astra’s Stars

Unlike other agents, rather than buying each ability, you will only buy her stars. This goes along with all her other abilities stocked for single-use (or double use when it comes to her smokes).

Stars are the first currency that’s completely unique to only Agent Astra.

Astra placing an orb

These deployable stars can be turned into her abilities while in astral form.

You can even exit Astral Form and then reactivate them later in real-time. They can be transformed into abilities of her kit which are: Nova Pulse, Nebula, or Gravity Well.

Before Playing Astra

Before diving into the main abilities that the stars can activate, let’s first discuss how they affect Astra’s economy.

Astra’s abilities cost stars, not traditional in-game credits. Astra’s abilities can only be activated depending on the availability of stars in your inventory.

Here’s what you need to consider about using her stars:

  1. At the start of every round, you will get 1 star for free.
  2. Her stars cost 150 credits each, and can only buy them on the shop menu at the start of every round.
  3. She has a limit of using only 5 stars per round.
  4. Each of her abilities requires a start being placed around the map in order to use them.
  5. Stars take some time to replenish after retracting them.
  6. Stars that have been retracted will be counted as used and will not be saved for the next round.

 

Needless to say, players who choose to use Astra have to be mindful about how they use her stars to their advantage.

Gravity Well (C Ability)

Players in the area are pulled toward the center before it explodes, making all players still trapped inside fragile.

  • Charge Needed: 1 star
  • Recharge Time: 12 seconds

 

With the use of a star that’s already been placed, Astra deploys a black hole that pulls all nearby agents, teammates or not, into its center.

It will burst after a delay, giving agents within it a Vulnerable Debuff (receive 2x damage), much like the debuff you can get when coming in contact with Viper’s Snake Venom.

When to Use Gravity Well

Gravity Well is such a great utility that helps you take the upper hand. The better you know the map and the patterns of the enemy movement, the better you can use this ability.

Using this one in high traffic spots even pulling enemies into an open corridor marks true satisfaction.

But wait! It gets better.

Gravity Well works awesomely for targeting campers. And we all know everyone doesn’t like a camper while playing around.

When it comes to the Gravity Well, it’s great for both offense and defense:

  • For offense, you can use it to clear spots where enemies usually crowd.
  • For defense, you can use it similarly to clear out of sight, well-known choke points

 

The thing about this utility is you have to strategically calculate the moves of your enemies. Plus, it works super well with the next ability that we’ll talk about.

Nova Pulse (Q Ability )

The Nova Pulse charges briefly then strikes, concussing all players in its area.

  • Charge Needed: 1 star
  • Recharge Time: 12 seconds

 

Astra’s Nova Pulse detonates after a short charge-up delay, stunning all players caught in its area of effect.

It only has one charge that you can use on at a time. Although after its 12-second cooldown, you can use this one again as long as you have a star placed down.

When to Use Nova Pulse

Using this ability well depends on how much you know the map and how good you are at assessing your enemies.

Since you must catch other players within the range of your star, it’s a matter of being stealthy and strategic of where you use this ability.

Place stars in known choke points. This is a great way to make overly enthusiastic players hesitant or even a great consequence for pushing with a little too aggressively.

After all, concussive abilities such as the Nova Pulse always work better when dealing with out-of-position players.

When it comes to using Nova Pulses for offense, you can place a star in an area that will usually have a defender. After which, you can activate the Nova Pulse in an effort to catch them off guard and stun them.

If you get the Noval Pulses just right, you can catch multiple people in your stun. Free kills for you to collect!

Some Tips

  • A good tactic would be to place it on hot defender spots or on off angles other players consistently take up. Since a placed star is unassuming, other agents may take risks on how they assess the situation.
  • Another good tactic may be to use it earlier on in a round. This can surprise your enemies and you a chance to push onto spike plants with ease.
  • After plating a spike, you can drop your remaining stars on the bombsite. Once you hear the defuse begin, you detonate the Nova Pulse.

 

Nova Pulses can easily catch multiple enemies for teams that push together. Pairing it with the Gravity Well is always a great move to your team’s advantage, as we’ve stated previously.

Nebula/Dissipate (E Ability)

ACTIVATE a star to transform it into a Nebula. Use (F) to Dissipate it, returning the star to be placed in a new location after a delay. Dissipate briefly forms a fake Nebula at the Star’s location before returning.”

  • Charge Needed: 2 stars
  • Recharge Time: 14 seconds

 

We love anyone from the Valorant agent pool who has a smoke ability, and obviously, Agent Astra is our gal. Nebula or Dissispate is her signature ability, and for good reason too.

Nebula is the ability that puts Astra squarely in the controller class. Just like Brimstone and Omen, you can smoke off heaven, high ground, typical defender angles, and entry points as a great defensive play.

When to Use Nebula

As a controller, you can expect to use her smoke to the strategical advantage of your team’s play.

The more you’re accustomed to using her smokes, the more of an upper hand your team will have per round.

The hollow smoke activated by Nebula’s signature ability utility goes off for fifteen seconds in a smoke site.

The best part about it is that after a 14-second cooldown, Astra will be able to deploy more. You don’t have to worry about wasting your smokes per round.

Nebula and Dissipate are classified under the same utility even though they are different skills. This is because an effect of Dissipate creates a lesser smoke, sort of like a mini Nebula.

Dissipate allows her to call back a deployed star to reuse later on. Dissipate allows recalled stars to burst into a Nebula smoke for two seconds before being returned, temporarily obscuring the enemy’s vision.

Though do take note that reclaimed stars do not carry over from round to round. They will be highlighted in a different color to outline to differentiate between fresh or reclaimed stars.

Ultimate: Cosmic Divide

The Astral Form Cosmic Divide allows Astra to create a dark, wall-like barrier on the map. The Cosmic Divide splits the map in half for the next 20 seconds.

While the Cosmic Divide ultimate is activated, not a single agent will be able to see each other through the barrier of the wall. It acts similar to smokes, being a huge divide in the map.

 

Astra using her ultimate ability

When to Use Cosmic Divide

It is important to know that gunfire will not penetrate the barrier and even sounds will be muffled on the other side.

Although utilities of other characters may work between this barrier, though blindly, so be wary. Also be mindful of using this one for aggressive plants because sounds can still be heard, just not as loud.

The Cosmic Divide is the most powerful ultimate when it comes to changing the look and layout of the map.

The Cosmic Divide works great as both offense and defense but in a similar way: when tackling a bomb site.

Using this ultimate, it’s great to split the map in half to favor your team.

This allows to take up a site WITHOUT crossfire. With the help of this massive wall, the dampened sound will help your team push aggressively across the map.

One of the biggest tips we can offer is when using the Cosmic Divide post-plant. It’s almost, if not sure, a win.

Tips & Tricks

Strategic Star Placements

For defense, place 3 stars on the site you’re defending and 2 on the other site.

In case you’re playing in Haven, where there are 3 sites, use 3 and save the two in case you need to take a site back for later in-game.

Using Gravity Well Against Campers

We’re familiar players who take early spots at unforgiving angles or wait in the opposing team’s teleporter to lower down their guard. But there are tricks to this.

It’s an annoying move, though using a Gravity Well helps solve that problem. Placing a star while you’re in Astral Form adjacent to a camp spot is an easy way to prevent any camper’s easy pick-off that they can’t escape.

On the other hand, when it comes to dealing with teleporter campers, drop a star near the door. You’ll have any unsuspecting player pulled into their unsuspecting doom.

Gravity Well with Other Agents’ Utilities

The Gravity Well works great with the abilities that can be found in another agent’s kit.

These include:

  • Raze’s Boombot
  • Sova’s Owl Drone
  • Skye’s Seekers
  • Brimstone’s Incendiary
  • Killjoy’s Nanoswarm
  • Phoenix’s Hot HandsViper’s Snake Bite

 

Using a combination of these agents’ abilities with Astra’s will work wonders for your round.

Using a “Wormhole

This is not an official term in Valorant, but we just like to call this use case the Worm or Wormhole.

Place the stars in a worm-like formation for entering the site. Take back the stars using Dissipate (F) as you are walking through it.

This one is a great cover tactic. Plus, you get to keep your stars to use again for later.

League of Legends Crossover Skins

Along with the Patch 3.01 update, Riot Games decided to make purchasable skins available to Valorant players.

The special thing about these skins is that they’re in a crossover with League of Legend characters.

It’s not really a trick or tip, but it’ll be awful to miss such a sweet update.

Strengths and Weaknesses

The more you know your Valorant character, the better you can defeat your enemy. So let’s look at the ups and downs of this one.

Pros:

  1. Her utility kit makes her a very versatile addition to the team composition.
  2. She can view the whole map, which is good for strategy plays.
  3. She can fake sites easily making it easier to trick your enemies taking the game to your advantage.

Cons:

  1. She’s a team-dependent player.
  2. Her Astral Form makes her very vulnerable.

Astra and Player Compatibility

Just like there are different agents, there are different types of players. A Valorant Astra Guide is not a true Astra Guide without telling you who or who should not play Agent Astra.

Who Should Play Agent Astra

  1. Those who have good map awareness.
  2. Good team players.
  3. People who are good at multitasking, because you have to switch in and out of Astral Form while playing.
  4. Experienced Valorant players.

Who Should Not Play Agent Astra

  1. People who are new to playing Valorant.
  2. Those who play aggressively.
  3. Players who don’t like strategizing plays for your team.
  4. Those who aren’t team players.

Conclusion

Whether you’re new to Valorant or not, it’s better to be aware of the agent pool to know who you’ll be selecting.

If you’re eyeing Astra, the more you know about her, the better. Also since she’s such a unique character to the roster, using her while playing Valorant is such a great advantage to your team.

As long as you’re one for strategy and tactics, and your attitude is as strong as hers, you’ll do great!