Valorant: Riot plans to balance Agents to counter oppressive defending

Image credits - Sportskeeda
Image credits - Sportskeeda
Dipanjan Dey

Valorant has officially entered into Act III. The new map Icebox has been a phenomenal success for Riot Games as the community is quite taken by it. Similarly, the new Agent Skye has also intrigued players and included a unique diversity in the Agent pool, especially when it comes to offensive characters. 

Despite all the glitches and hidden spots on Icebox, the map has been quite successful in Valorant. Initial reports suggest that Riot has taken care of the bugs and the problem with Omen on Icebox. Similarly, the latest Q&A session with Riot answered some essential questions about Smurfing and Weekly Challenges. 

Also read - Valorant Act 3 Patch 1.10: Riot implements competitive changes to fix Ranked system

Riot Games set to change the game dynamics in Valorant with patch v1.11

However, with all that being said, Riot Games has taken up a mission to buff Agents that are already strong in Valorant. For instance, an Agent like Breach, perhaps the best in Valorant right now, will get another buff in the v1.11 update. In an interview with Hitscan, Senior Game Designer Max 'Orcane’ Grossman revealed a few intricate details about the future of Valorant. 

While the current state of the game is heavily criticized for being biased towards overpowered Agents, there are several who feel that these changes are necessary. Although, when one considers Agents like Brimstone, or Viper, or even Sage, their fall from grace is one which wasn't predicted. These Agents suddenly became ostracized from the meta where they are merely left as the least picked Agents. 

On the other hand, according to Orcane, Valorant has shifted into a dynamic that favors defenders at the moment. Initially, it was a 50-50 situation, but now the oppressive nature of defense on Valorant has forced the developers to add some more buffs to Agents primarily used for attack. This means that the fragger Agents will see a stark change in their game play after this update.

Buffs and nerfs for certain Agents to ensure the reduction of oppressive defending in Valorant

Similarly, Agents like Cypher or Killjoy, naturally OP, would get a slight tweak to balance out both attackers' and defenders' side in Valorant. In the right hands, both of these Agents can be incredibly oppressive, and Riot has planned to bring the nerf hammer down on them in Valorant patch 1.11.

Orcane suggests that “Killjoy has always been, in our minds, very potent at locking down a single site. Whereas Cypher is more about creating this information network across the map. So we’re really trying to drill into those identities.”

Thus the idea now is to induce a system that does not favor an oppressive bias for the defending side in Valorant. Simultaneously, Riot Games are prepared to experiment with their Agent pool in order to strike the perfect balance with these Agents. As Orcane stated, the idea is not to make the defense more complicated or difficult but to make sure that there are more opportunities for Attackers to capitalize on certain advantages. 

While this stands as a good thing for players that naturally favor attacking, it might be a change that will take time to adapt for Defenders. Valorant is a Tactical shooter game with equal opportunities on both sides; these changes will undoubtedly enforce the quality of equality in every match. 

The v1.11 update will roll out during the last week of October, presumably on the 27th, and Riot wants to make sure that Valorant feels much more balanced going into the First Strike tournament. 

Also read - Valorant: Shroud predicts Valorant will become the best FPS in eSports

Edited by Joey Carr

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