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  • "Leaks are a plague": Valorant data miner Shiick discusses mining, leaks, and more
Shiick has been data mining Valorant content for a while now (Image via Sportskeeda)

"Leaks are a plague": Valorant data miner Shiick discusses mining, leaks, and more

As with most gaming communities, Valorant has a few data miners who provide players with insight into the title's future. Shiick is a popular data miner who loves tinkering with game files to dig up information that Riot Games has neatly hidden.

In a recent exclusive interview with Amitesh Dhar of Sportskeeda Esports, Shiick spoke about data mining and provided interesting details about Riot Games' tactical shooter.


Valorant expanded to become one of the most popular esports titles globally. Developed and published by Riot Games, the game already has an active professional circuit and an equally enthusiastic player community.

Shiick's work is a crucial part of the Valorant player experience


Q: Before we get down and dirty with the rest of the details, why don’t you introduce yourself to our readers?


Shiick: I'm a hobbyist programmer passionate about technology, games, and everything related to those fields. I data mine Valorant as a hobby, working on many projects around the game.

Q: What made you get into data mining? Are there any other titles that interest you over Valorant?

Shiick: I got into data mining early on for Valorant. Around May 2020, when the game was still in Closed Beta, I saw a few people sharing stuff from the files and looked into it myself. I wanted to do that too, as I was curious to see how the game worked. It took some curious digging to make sense of everything I saw in the game files, and then I started posting about the game.


I'm interested in many other games for data mining, mainly live service games. But I stick to Valorant as it takes a lot of time, so I wouldn't be able to keep up with other games as much.

Q: Kingdom Archives is a great place to find information about anything and everything related to Valorant. How did the website come into being?

Shiick: Kingdom Archives is an entire story, but it began with me wanting to have a place where I had full control of the voice lines. It was initially supposed to be a repository of voice lines. It later extended to anything that could be archived.


Q: Although it’s just been two years, Valorant has shown tremendous growth as an esports title. What are your thoughts on it?

Shiick: I am convinced that Valorant esports will become a massive ecosystem for the industry. The game has everything it needs to succeed. With Riot's involvement in the scene, I'm sure they will make good decisions to grow the burgeoning ecosystem even more.

Q: What are the challenges of data mining? Has Riot Games ever contacted you and asked you to stop?

Shiick: Data mining has a few challenges. The most important one is to understand what you are looking at. Otherwise, you end up sharing misinformation, which is often hard to fix. We've seen a lot of cases where misunderstandings have led to more confusion. Aside from that, the other challenges are tiny and down to what is being discussed/shared.

No, Riot Games never contacted me. I am free to do/post anything I want.


Q: There has always been a lot of debate surrounding leaks being harmful to a game because they 'ruin the surprise.' How do you feel about it? Do you think leaks generate enough hype, or do they kill it?

Shiick: Let's clear up something about leaks first. Data mining is not considered “leaks.” Riot knows and controls what is in the game files, so they expect to see it shared at some point. That's my main take from talking with game developers.

That being said, leaks are a plague. It spoils what developers have been working on, often disclosed in development stages. Sure, they may increase the hype “immediately,” but since those features are generally not available right away, the hype dies down until it releases. Then the hype stabilizes as information is revealed early on, so there is no surprise effect.


Q: What’s the one thing that stands out about Valorant compared to the other current tactical shooters in the market?

Shiick: Developers are relentlessly working to create a better community and gaming space. I am thrilled a company cares about the social side of a game as much. The effort to reduce toxicity is outstanding and makes the title more enjoyable. Aside from that, the update cycle also makes the game feel “fresh," and it's much appreciated.

Q: There have been rumors about Valorant coming to consoles and other handheld devices like mobile phones. What is your take on this? Will the game benefit in any way?

Shiick: I am convinced Valorant has a lot to gain from a console/mobile version. Mobile devices being standard allows a different part of the market to get involved. Same thing for consoles. Opening the game to various platforms is a good idea, as it will help the community grow. However, I hope they keep crossplay to a minimum.


Q: Being a data miner, it’s understood that the community would be spamming your DMs for leaks. Does that happen? If it does, then does that get too overbearing for you?

Shiick: I get DMs about game-related stuff, but it is minimal compared to other data miners. It's bearable, and 95% of the time, the interaction I'm going to have with the person will be delightful.


Q: Tell us about your favorite agent and map in the game. What’s your usual role when you’re queuing up for matches?

Shiick: I am a big fan of Brimstone. He allows for creativity when playing with a relatively simple kit. As for maps, I think Bind is my favorite map. It allows for a lot of wild stuff with Brimstone. My usual role varies. I mainly fill in the game, so I try to pick what's needed to help my team the best. I generally end up playing sentinels/controllers/initiators.

Q: Anything else you’d like to share with readers?

Shiick: Keep enjoying Valorant and my work. Lots of cool stuff is coming in the future for the game and my projects.


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Edited by
Srijan Sen
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