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Valorant: Hiko addresses smurfing issue and explains why it is ruining the competitive experience of the game

Hiko addressed the smurfing problem midway into his stream and explained how big of an issue it is becoming in Valorant (Screengrab from Hiko
Hiko addressed the smurfing problem midway into his stream and explained how big of an issue it is becoming in Valorant (Screengrab from Hiko's Stream)
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Modified 01 Nov 2020, 12:47 IST
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Valorant’s matchmaking has been plagued by a lot of problems ever since the official launch of the game. One of the most persistent issues that the shooter has been facing is the smurfing problem.

When it comes to community opinions, many players feel that smurfing is almost as bad as hacking, especially when it comes to ruining the gameplay experience of other players. 

In a recent Reddit post, a Valorant player, who goes by the handle of QuanTheHole, talked about the elephant in the room, "Smurfing vs Hacking”.

The Redditor talked about one of Hiko’s recent streams and how the 100Thieves pro went into a lot of detail on smurfing.

The Redditor said:

“But what can really be done about it? Why aren't they combating it the same way as cheaters and Hardware ID flagging them to stop it at the bare minimum? Why not add some additional measures like 2FA authentication for one account? Although these two methods are not bulletproof proof it can only help.”
“A game like Valorant which promotes COMPETITIVE INTEGRITY above all else, I find it funny that it's not strictly enforced. We all have done it, but maybe the only way to stop it is to actually change as a community and stand against it and not encourage it, especially if you are a streamer/pro.”

He then addressed the fact that Riot Games are aware of the smurfing problem as in their recent Ask Valorant #10, the devs went into some detail about how they will be countering smurfs.

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QuanTheHole wrote: 

“Hopefully the new algorithm to accelerate the accounts to right thresholds will be good enough, but IMO acceleration of new accounts can work in favor of account selling, or even poorly places a diamond player in an Immortal game where it actually hurts the higher tier competitive play. It's a tradeoff and tough game design problem. Best of luck to the devs to finding a solution.”

From a developer’s point of view, there really can be no permanent fix to the smurfing problem, and it’s the Valorant community that needs to play a more active role in discouraging it.

Hiko, in his latest stream, shares much of this same sentiment.

Hiko addresses Valorant’s smurfing issues

The Valorant community needs to play a more active role in discouraging smurfing (Image Credits: Riot Games)
The Valorant community needs to play a more active role in discouraging smurfing (Image Credits: Riot Games)

In one of our previous discussions, we had addressed the issues that come with professional Valorant players smurfing in lower-ranked tiers. The insanely long matchmaking queue times in Radiant often force Valorant’s elite to create a secondary account and style on the more inexperienced players.

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100Thieves’ Hiko was no stranger to this fact and in his latest stream, he talked about how he did smurf in Valorant but found it to be incredibly boring.

Hiko addressed the smurfing problem midway into his stream and explained how big of an issue it is becoming in Valorant.

He said:

“Smurfing is a big problem in many of the online games. The problem is, say you have a friend who is really really bad at games but you want to queue with them right? Your girlfriend may be, maybe she is really bad, maybe your boyfriend is really bad, maybe your IRL friend is really bad, usually the reason why somebody smurfs. I don’t know many people who smurf in solo queue, I feel like that’s just weird… but if you’re smurfing to play with your friends, I feel like you should… if you’re going to smurf there is definitely a place you can go where you can play as a smurf, and it’s called Unrated.”

Hiko explained that high-tier players should avoid queuing up for Valorant’s competitive matchmaking as that ruins the gameplay experience for other players.

He continued:

“Smurfing is much different than having an alternate account. I have alternate accounts that are Radiant, and I don’t consider that smurfing. If I had an account that was Bronze or Silver though, and I am queueing with an IRL friend that I know, and I am literally just boosting them, then that to me is smurfing and that’s what ruins the game. That just ruins the Competitive mode.”
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“Smurfing ruins two separate things right? Smurfing ruins the game you’re in, so not only the person you’re playing with, you’re ruining that guy/girl’s account by boosting the rank and by giving them wins that they shouldn’t get. They’re not getting the wins on their own and they’re not getting better. Moreover, you’re also boosting all the people in our team, you’re giving them a free win if you’re doing like 50 kills. But also, you’re ruining the game for the person that you’re smurfing with, the person that you’re boosting. That person will be ruining the game for everyone on the team in the future when they end up solo queuing, and they are Immortal 1 when they should be Silver. So smurfing only literally hurts in the immediate future and in the long term future.”

Hiko doesn’t discourage anyone from playing with their friends, who are less experienced than them in Valorant. 

He said:

“I am all for you playing the game with your friends… but you shouldn’t boost them to the point of boosting their rank in Competitive, there is an unrated lobby for that right? There is a Deathmatch mode, there is Spike Rush, you can go into Custom. Why would you play Competitive with a friend who is literally Silver and you boost their account? You just ruin the game for them in the long run. They are not going to have any fun playing Competitive anymore after that. They’re literally only going to play with you; they're only going to want to play with you.”

When asked if he has smurfed in Valorant, the 100Thieves pro said that he did. He, however, added that as a Radiant player, he found it to be one of the most boring experiences in the game.

Published 01 Nov 2020, 12:46 IST
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