Riot Games' Valorant: Is This Shooter All It's Cracked Up To Be?
HWM Singapore|August 2020
Is it currently doing right (or wrong) and what Riot might need to do to ensure everything goes according to plan?
Kenneth Ang

Conceptually, Valorant is a team-based tactical shooter that takes pages out of Overwatch and CS: GO. Its main gameplay mode is Search and Destroy; two opposing teams take turns trying to plant or defuse a bomb in a specified zone. If either team manages to accomplish their objective, they score a point, and the match continues until one faction reaches the preset number of points and wins the game.

If this format feels a tad too long-winded, there’s also the Spike Rush “fun” mode, which is basically a sped-up version of the basic S&D. However, this time there are orbs scattered around the map for players to pick up, upon which they’ll receive small buffs for a period of time. A practice mode is also available if you’d like to test out abilities and guns in a pressure-free environment.

Of course, it’s not just about planting bombs— Riot has mentioned that more conventional modes such as Team Deathmatch and Free-for-all are being worked on—what sets Valorant apart from the other tactical shooters is the introduction of different Agents, each with their own unique skillset and Ultimate abilities.

Naturally, as we’ve seen from Overwatch, this means that there will be certain Agents that are just a little bit more useful than the others. It didn’t take long for these “optimal picks”, such as Cypher and Sage, to appear and community sites like All Out Rioters were quick to put out tier lists in preparation for the game’s Ranked mode, which has since gone live.

THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE META

So, where has the game done well, and where does it seem lacking? For starters, the one thing that all of us agreed on was this: Valorant is definitely NOT an entry-level shooter.

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