The iconic Valorant map Split will presumably return to the tactical FPS shooter next year, according to reports from online sources on October 28. Split was removed from the rotation pool back in June to accommodate Pearl, the eighth and latest map in the game.
During Pearl's launch, the developers at Riot had stated their plans to maintain a seven-map rotation to create a gentler learning curve for beginners. Furthermore, officials mentioned that the decision to remove Split was based on important factors. However, fans weren't ready to accept Riot's solution and have been demanding they bring the map back ever since.
When is Valorant's Split map expected to return?
According to several sources, Split will return to the rotation in Valorant's Episode 6 Act 1, which will commence right after the ongoing act ends. The current Episode 5 Act 3 started on October 18 and will continue for around two more months, with an end date in December.
Some sources have also shared what appears to be an excerpt of a new press release from Riot discussing the return of Split. According to the translation provided by the informant, the developers are planning to keep the map pool restricted to seven maps. With Split's return, two other maps will exit the rotation.
Although the aforementioned speculation is tempting, the information is unofficial, and fans should take it with a grain of salt. Split was one of the first three maps added to the game during the open beta phase. It is widely considered to be defender-centric due to the presence of many chokepoints and a complex design. However, Split's removal seems to have heavily disappointed fans.
Even though the map was removed from the pool to accommodate Pearl, the developers had assured fans that the change was only temporary. In a press release from June, the team also teased that Split may receive some interesting changes before it returns to the rotation.
The Ion Episode 5 collection, which was released with Episode 5 Act 3, was introduced with a trailer that featured Split in the backdrop. Since then, the community has been rife with speculation about its return.
Riot Games is known to bring massive changes at the beginning of each episode in Valorant. All episodes host three acts, with each lasting two months. Hence, the game hosts a new episode every six months.
Valorant is a free-to-play shooter game, and Riot Games needs to tweak the prevalent meta with new content frequently to battle the monotony of 5v5 matches. However, the developers also need to ensure that the game remains friendly to new players who can easily be overwhelmed by too much content.