The physics in Rocket League are as incredible as they are challenging. But that's part of the fun. Taking advantage of the most advanced mechanics is sometimes as rewarding as winning a match.
Playing the game in its simplest form can be entertaining for a while. With that in mind, it won't get you far against skilled players. Using complex mechanics can help you make the ball's flight path almost unpredictable for defenders.
And who doesn't want to do that, especially in a ranked game? In this article, we'll cover one of the most exciting ball handling skills in Rocket League: the aerial dribble.
How to air dribble
The aerial dribble may be one of the flashiest moves in the game. But is it an effective mechanic? Yes, it actually is. No matter what rank you play, becoming a skilled dribbler can add a new layer to your game. Controlling the ball on the ground and in the air can give you many advantages over your opponents.
It's a power move that can, at the very least, level the playing field.
There are two elements to aerial dribbling in Rocket League. You have configuration and in-flight control. Obviously, setup is crucial to a successful dribble.
Think of your first contact as the most important thing to master. If you can't get the timing right when rolling the ball against the wall, you won't get anywhere with this mechanic.
Rocket League Air Dribbling Setup Key Mechanic
As you practice your technique, focus on the following steps.
- Maintain the same rhythm as the ball.
- Hit the ball from below to make it go high.
- After that, jump to stay close to the ball.
- Don't fly too close to the ball or you risk pushing it too far while boosting.
- Use boost to control your car in the air.
These are the same principles that any professional Rocket League player worth their salt follows. Everything else comes from practice and consistency.
How to dribble from a wall in Rocket League
The easiest way to do an air dribble on the wall is to start with the ball on the ground. For the setup to work, you will need to roll the ball along the curve.
A ball that doesn't bounce is much easier to control. Advanced players, on the other hand, have enough practice hours to follow the ball even when it bounces.
- Push the ball towards the wall. Going slower helps prevent the ball from bouncing hard towards the center of the court or rolling towards the ceiling.
- Aim your car at the underside of the ball to make it go up.
- Wait for the ball to wrap around the curvature of the wall and create space.
- Hit the underside of the ball. This will make it go towards the field.
- Jump right after hitting the ball for easy tracking.
- Tap the booster to hit the ball and control its flight path.
How to dribble from the ground in Rocket League
Unlike air dribbling from the wall, ground-to-air dribbling requires a different setup. This time you'll want a bouncy ball.
- Get into position to hit a bouncing ball from below.
- Hit it and jump with your car at the same time. Do this immediately after the ball bounces for perfect timing. This will create enough momentum for the ball to go high and your car to easily follow behind.
- Keep pushing your car into the ball as it begins to descend to maintain control in the air and dribble the ball.
How to Air Dribble on the Keyboard in Rocket League
Motor control is what separates the best Rocket League players from the rest of the pack. It's no secret that high-level gamers use controllers no matter what platform they're playing on.
That said, that doesn't mean a traditional keyboard and mouse setup can't do the trick.
The secret to becoming an air dribbling ace from your keyboard is to avoid holding anything down. Pressing your buttons in increments will give you greater control over your direction, speed, and power.
Using the mouse to control the camera isn't rocket science (no pun intended). Just be sure to experiment with different sensitivities. Controlling your camera is key to getting your positioning on point (slightly behind and under the ball).
But due to the pace of the game, what feels right at home in other genres may not work to your advantage in the high-octane environment of Rocket League.
Once you get used to doing more tapping than holding, everything else is the same.
- Execute the setup by rolling the ball down the wall and jumping with it or knocking it off the floor.
- Maintain the same airspeed as the ball while staying slightly behind.
- Hit the ball underneath to make it bounce in the air.
- Lightly press your boost button to reduce the distance and hit the ball.
It may be harder at first, but Rocket League wasn't designed as a console-only game. It plays very well with a standard computer setup, but it takes more time to master the motor control and game physics.
Rocket League Air Dribbling FAQ
How to score a goal from an air dribble in Rocket League?
You've probably seen this thousands of times by skilled players. Yet the movement is not as advanced as you might think.
The fake air dribble is a move that can surprise defenders. You start by setting up an air dribble from the ground or wall. Make the first touch to dribble the ball once.
Then, at the end of your second jump, perform a forward flip. Most defenders can expect another jump or dribble. However, the front flip will allow you to execute a powerful shot towards the goal if you are facing the post.
What's the best way to practice aerial dribbling in Rocket League?
Switching to free play is the fastest way to start practicing your technique. It's just you, the field and the ball.
However, since the game went live, a few mods have appeared. BakkesMod is one of the most useful plugins for Rocket League. It offers several training packs with pre-made scenarios that allow you to learn and master various mechanics.
For aerial dribbling, you can choose from many trajectories, angles and ball speeds. It's convenient because you won't have to worry about configuration. You can just focus on controlling your car in the air and timing your boost perfectly.
Reflexes matter a lot in Rocket League, but so do hours of practice. When you're trying to learn and perfect advanced skills, like aerial dribbling, nothing is easy.
First you have to understand the physics of the game, then its mechanics, and then you have to practice the same moves from all possible angles.
Of course, once you have the blueprint for how this is done, it's only a matter of time until you can add something new to your repertoire.
Since Rocket League is a game where the ball spends a lot of time in the air, air dribbling should definitely be one of the first advanced mechanics you need to learn.
What is your favorite setup and tracking for an aerial dribble? Do you prefer to take the ball off the ground or find the wall more useful to start your dribble in a specific direction?
Let us know in the comments section below.