It's here! It is here! Valorant ranked or competitive mode, whatever you want to call it has finally been turned on meaning you no longer have to guess how bad you are at the game as there will now be a system showing you, with its newly upgraded graphics and renamed top-tier, exactly where you rank compared to your fellow players.
That is not all we have in this update though, everyone's least favourite agent, Viper has been given a buff, we have a new surrender feature allowing you to bail on lost causes and various other tweaks and adjustments. So without further ado, let's get into the nitty-gritty.
Viper & Agent changes
The agent with the most substantial changes is undoubtedly Viper, with two of her abilities receiving a buff, and one nerf. Her Toxic Screen ability will now travel through walls, allowing her to cut off more areas of the map. This is a potentially huge change and could easily make Viper a must-pick for top tier playing going forward.
Her snake bite ability will also now make players Fragile, meaning they are affected by it and take damage from snake bite they will receive a multiplier at this time for any other damage accrued.
Her Poison Orb has been nerfed with the cooldown from opening and closing these smokes increased from 0.5s to 6s. This will decrease the ability to use these as easy one-way smokes but that Riot clearly never intended it to be as affective as it has become.
Other agents have received small changes; Jett's Blade Storm will now refresh if she kills Phoenix when he is using Run It Back, and Reyna will also be able to collect soul orbs from a dead Run It Back Phoenix.
Cypher's spycam and cyber cages have been consistently buggy since being in the game and Riot have again made adjustments to make these abilities work as intended.
Ranked / competitive mode
(Picture: Riot Games)
Yes, we all wanted it and it is now here. Ranked mode. Things are slightly different from last time around, the top rank which was was before, rather confusingly, called Valorant now goes by the name Radiant. There are also some lovely new graphics, as the previous ones looked like they were done in the dark.
To play Valorant's ranked Competitive mode you will have to played 20 Unrated matches. To get your first rank, you have to complete a total of five placement matches in Competitive mode. Your performance during these matches will determine your first Valorant rank.
Riot has also gone through the games original three maps cleaning up some of the clutter and reducing the number of sharp angles that have become a point of criticism. Essentially going forward you will not have to do as many 90 degree turns as you enter traverse maps and enter sites.
Take for instance the entrance to a sewer, which from attackers side right would of been a character size box easily tall and deep enough from a player to hide behind, that has now been cut down to half it's size making entering this area far easier.
(Picture: Riot Games)
This reduction of angles can be seen across all three original maps.
(Picture; Riot Games)
Valorant v1.02 full patch notes
Adjusted numerous locations to allow clearing angles to be a bit more straightforward in the following places:
- Garage Doors
- Entrance to C Long on Attacker Side
- Cover in A Lobby restructured to open up the space which allows for additional sightlines and traversal options
- C Link
- A Link
- The Entrance to A Sewer and the bottom of A Sewer
- Defender spawn entrance
- Attacker side of A-Main (Including a self-boost to gain an additional angle to peek A Main as an attacker)
- Garden entrance
- A Bath entrance
- B Teleporter Exit and B Window entrance
- Defender Spawn
We’re peeling back a bit on the amount of locations that require ability usage, thorough angle checking or teamwork to clear safely.
The intention is that angles that are more difficult to clear are most commonly found in areas meant to reinforce existing territory control. This is to emphasize ability usage and teamwork in order to reliably gain control of these locations. An added benefit is that this encourages ability usage and combat engagements to be spread out across the map which can help prevent the frequency of scenarios where all of the players expend all of their abilities and ultimates in the same place at the same time.
We’ll continue monitoring how the maps are playing and make adjustments as necessary.
- Collision and Nav Mesh (playable terrain) improvements
- Crouch-walking accuracy: 3.45 >>> 4.1
- Walk accuracy 6.4 >>> 4.4
- Run Accuracy 3.5 >>> 6.4
- We discovered an accidental discrepancy in how we were applying movement inaccuracy to the Bucky's right-click, one we introduced during closed beta when we added a delay for players to receive walking accuracy when slowing down from a running state. This was making it so that the right-click was much more accurate on the run that intended. We've fixed this now so that running with the right-click is significantly more inaccurate than walking or standing still. We've also increased the inaccuracy for crouch-walking to more appropriately match the amount of evasion it provides.
COMPETITIVE MODE UPDATE
- Competitive Mode will be made available during this patch, changes since closed beta:
- Updated rank iconography.
- New name for top rank: Radiant
- Expanded skill disparity range for playing with friends in rank placements
HUD & UI
We’ve included a set of menu UI changes as part of our ongoing work to clarify the client experience coming out of Closed Beta. This is only a small portion of the improvements, but should push overall usability in a positive direction.Navigation and UI changes are disruptive, so we appreciate your patience adjusting to the new approach and we hope you find the changes to be upgrades after you settle in.
As always, thank you for your continued feedback. We have a long way to go, but we’ll keep hammering on the client UI until it’s a stellar experience for everyone.
- All main sections views now have a “back” button in the upper left to return to the Home view (pressing Escape is also supported)
- All details views (gun details, players cards, match details, etc.) have been converted to use the same back button in the upper left instead of a close button in the upper right
- Small popup dialogs still use the close button in the upper right where appropriate
- Slide-out options menu removed from the logo button in upper left
- New options button added to upper right, which opens the menu with Settings, Support, About, Leave Match, and Exit to Desktop buttons
- Circle progress elements for Battlepass and active contract removed from navigation; missions element remains throughout the experience
- Navigation reordered to accommodate the changes
- Exit to desktop flow converted to a single button with a popup that allows a player to exit or sign out and exit.
- Note that the Leave Match button is now displayed all the time, but will be locked in cases where leaving a match is not allowed. Previously the button was missing completely when leaving was not allowed, which looked like a bug rather than a restriction.
- Added a setting that allows players to always display the inventory in the lower right of the HUD
- Added a new HUD element that tells you when you haven't been spawned in due to being AFK
- Added Battlepass text button in the nav to make it easier to find
- Added small progress bar below text that shows progress for current level of the pass
- Hovering Battlepass in the nav shows a “peek” flyout of upcoming pass rewards
- Clicking either goes to a new Battlepass section
CONTRACT & AGENTS SECTION
- Moved Agents section out from under Collection to make it easier to find and to provide a home for contract progress in the nav
- Added small progress bar below text that shows progress for current level of the active contract
- Hovering Agents in the nav shows a “peek” of upcoming contract rewards
- Clicking Agents goes to the Agents section, and clicking the contract flyout navigates to Agents and opens the associated contract details
- Removed secondary navigation from Collection view since Agents no longer lives there and the navigation is no longer needed
QUALITY OF LIFE
- An Early Surrender option has been added. You can now opt to surrender out of a match ahead of the match’s completion if you do not want to continue playing. We will also be adding some light polish and functionality in future patches post 1.02.
- You can call an early surrender vote by typing: “/ff” “forfeit” “concede” or “surrender”
- An early surrender vote requires all present players on the surrendering team to vote ‘yes’ to pass
- You can vote via “/yes” or “/no” along with the settings F5 and F6 (defaults)
- Each team can only call a vote once per half
- Early surrender votes cannot be called before reaching round 8.
- Once a vote is called the vote option will be queued to vote on for the next round, or if you call the vote early enough in the buy phase you can vote immediately.
- The winning team gets round win credit for every round necessary to bring them up to the victory condition (13 rounds). The surrendering team will get loss credit for every round necessary to bring them up to 13 rounds
- Added a setting that to allow players to permanently mute text from enemy players
Update to Tagging (slowdown effect when hit by enemy fire)
- Effect of tagging on movement speed reduced:
- Tagging Movement Speed Reduction (Standard) 80% >> 70%
- Tagging Movement Speed Reduction (Wall Penetration) 35% >> 25%
- Increased the time it takes to reach desired slow amount when tagged by 100%
Tagging is intended to reward the player with better positioning and the player that successfully lands a shot on the enemy first. When tagged, you will now more gradually transition to the reduced tagging speed. In addition, the reduced tagging speed is slightly more forgiving. If you are positioned close to cover, this should allow you to potentially escape when tagged more frequently than before. Also, the effects of being tagged should feel less jarring especially when playing with higher ping.
Tagging through walls has been further reduced which should enable reliable escapes when being shot through walls.
- New Orb Type - Tracer Orb
- Team-wide buff that grants 2x wall penetration and reveals enemies for .75s when they are hit
- Duration: Entire round
- Speed Boost changed to Combat Stim
- Movement speed and durations unchanged
- Reload time decreased by 30%
- Weapon draw time decreased by 30%
- Spread recovery time decreased by 30%
- Rate of Fire increased by 30%
- Jump force increased by 25%
- Plague Orb now shares a pool with Paranoia Orb
- Only one of these will be chosen per game
- Only one Plague Orb can spawn per round
- Health reduction decreased from 90 to 50
- Deception Orb now shares a pool with Plague Orb
- Only one of these will be chosen per game
- Only one Deception Orb can spawn per round
- Duration decreased from 10s to 8s (now matches Plague Orb)
- Tunnel vision decreased by 20% (meaning you see more on your screen)
- Reyna: Killing practice bots now properly spawns Soul Orbs
- Jett: Killing practice bots now properly refreshes Blade Storm
The team primarily focused on smoothing out framerates in certain scenarios. Mostly this helps out mid to high spec machines.
- Optimized a worst case performance scenario that occurred when multiple players are moving close to one another.
- Optimized multi-kill streak banners.
- Optimized player health bars
- Optimized creation of pings (z-ping, ping wheel, when an ally dies, etc)
- Optimized Spawn Barrier audio causing periodic framerate dips.
- [1.01 Hotfix] Resolved an issue that was causing low memory systems with slow HDDs to perform especially poorly.
- Levels 2-7 for the Sovereign Ghost skin are now fixed and unlockable
- As we’ve stated, we never intend for skins to be pay-to-win or pay-to-lose . In this case, the Sovereign Ghost was playing unsilenced audio in third-person on Levels 2-7, so it was totally pay-to-lose and we didn’t want any of you to experience that. It’s fixed now, so go ahead and upgrade that baby and enjoy your custom effects, finisher, kill banner, and variants!
- Fixed Toggle Walk, you can once again use this setting
- Fixed the Return from AFK message only displaying the name of the last player to rejoin
- Fixed an issue where the defuse bar would duplicate
- Fixed several localization strings and text overlaps
- Fixed several crashes
- Fixed a bug where the Spike could automatically plant when you walked onto a plant site while it was in your inventory
- Fixed a bug where the Spike would float in the air if it had been placed on a Sage wall
- Fixed a bug where the dropped Spike's model could be invisible to defenders on while it was on the ground
- Fixed a bug where gun buddies were squished on the Arsenal page
- Fixed a bug where trying to open the Character Select UI while the megamap in the Shooting Range would result in a deadlock
- Improved GPU performance of most out of game menu screens
- Fixed a bug where sometimes players got stuck on the transition into game and never successfully transitioned into game
- Fixed a bug where the spread on the Bucky's alt fire was higher when walking than was when running or standing still
- Fixed a bug where dead players could appear standing when you reconnect to a match
- Fixed a bug where you could get stuck grabbing orbs
- Fixed a bug where enemy players would appear on the minimap while watching the Spike, once your team was dead
- Competitive match overtime on this patch will be resolved using Sudden Death, which we know is intrinsically unfair. We’re actively working on replacing this with a more fair solution.
- We’ve discovered issues in our routing software causing some players in Sweden to be incorrectly placed on our Istanbul game servers, and this is likely causing a small number of players elsewhere to also end up on the incorrect game servers. The fix is deployed to our Stockholm networking gear and we’re deploying the fix globally this week.
For the complete patch notes refer to the official Valorant page.