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Sage nerfs and Breach buffs seem to be working as Valorant maps don’t seem to favor the defender side anymore

Valorant has previously been criticized for favoring the defender side (Image Credits: Riot Games)
Valorant has previously been criticized for favoring the defender side (Image Credits: Riot Games)
ANALYST
Modified 19 Oct 2020, 15:52 IST
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One of the biggest criticisms that Riot Games got about Valorant’s map design and general gameplay is that the shooter seems to favor the defender side.

Ever since Valorant’s closed beta release, Agents like Sova, Sage and Cypher were one of the most crucial picks when it came to defense. The lack of utility kits in the form of stuns and flashes made it quite difficult for entry fragging duelists like Jett and Raze to have easy access to the plant sites.

Moreover, Sage was also very oppressive with her Slow Orbs and Barrier Orbs. Half of her kit was like a big ‘nope button’ for the attacking side, and she could single-handedly stall out the most aggressive of enemy pushes.

Valorant’s gameplay often gave the edge to the defender side, and this was one of the reasons which allowed teams to create double Operator comps, especially on a map like Haven.

Double-Op comps were soon becoming the meta for many of the teams. The Operator, being quite overpowered on its own even after the Valorant patch 1.09 nerfs, was making the defender side more favored in the shooter.

However, with ACT 3 and Icebox finally upon us, much of the Valorant community is slowly starting to feel that the maps in the game are not as easy to defend as they used to be.

The Sage nerfs and the Breach buffs in patch 1.07 seem to have been instrumental in making the game feel a bit more attack-favored.

Valorant’s gameplay does not favor the defense side anymore

In a recent Reddit post, an EU Valorant coach, who goes by the handle of coachspin, gave a detailed take on Valorant’s Split, and how it favors the attacking side at the moment.

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In his YouTube channel, coachspin reviewed a VODs from SUMN FC as he gave his analytical take on how the team attacks on the map.

Coachspin started his Reddit post by saying:

“Recently we've seen a string of results where teams win more rounds on attack than defence on split, something which would have been unheard of a month or so ago. I've reviewed a vod from SUMN FC, a contender team in Europe who have had a couple of great results giving them a top 5 ranking at time of writing. One thing they excel at is their attacking side on Split. There are a few notable things that they do which are becoming increasingly common.”

SUMN FC is a Valorant team in the United Kingdom and according to vlr.gg, they are currently the fourth-best team in the European region.

Coachspin stated that what sets the team apart from the rest of the Valorant rosters is that SUMN FC have a unique strategy when it comes to attack.

In the Reddit post, he laid down four points which makes SUMN FC so successful during attack.

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Point 1: Jett, Raze and breach make the perfect triangle

"SUMN FC uses both Jett and Raze as well as Breach. This lets them run very fast, executing rounds where the Raze and Jett burst into site quickly, supported by the breach flashes from long range. This gives the rest of the team a huge amount of room to take the site."

Point 2: Mid control is crucial

"They switch between these fast executes, and a very methodical default where they slowly take control of mid and then deny all information to their opponent before executing late in the round. By denying info and using some simple fakes they reduce the likelihood that their opponents stack up one site making their executes more effective."

Point 3: Forcing the enemy to commit mistakes

"Having no info also often forces mistakes from their opponents as they overextend to try to find out where SUMN FC are playing."

Point 4: Fast aggressive plays have lesser counterplay

"The counterplay to their slow default is to stack mid, however this leaves the sites vulnerable to a fast execute. The counterplay to the fast executes is to heavily defend sites that leaves mid vulnerable to SUMN FC's default. This makes any defensive setup a gamble and gives SUMN FC a lot of passive pressure as their opponents have to try to work out how SUMN FC will play and make macro team movements quickly to react. FPX does this very well."

SUMN FC’s Split set-up is applicable for all Valorant maps

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Defensive playstyles are often universally frowned upon, and Valorant was kind of becoming a very defensive game during pro play as well.

With Sage receiving nerfs to her wall and slow as well as Breach getting significant buffs to his flash, it is easier for the attacking team to get control of mid in Valorant's Split.

However, it’s not just Split that SUMN FC’s set-up will work on. In Ascent and Haven as well, the triangle of Raze, Breach and Jett can wreak havoc on the enemy team when executed right.

It’s highly likely that this aggressive gameplay will be the meta moving forward into the Final Strike tournament.

Published 19 Oct 2020, 15:52 IST
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