The Evolving Valorant Meta in Ranked and VCT

The Valorant esports meta of buying an assault rifle plus heavy armor whenever possible has been the standard since the inception of Valorant. However, this was brought into question when a new strategy was recently executed in professional VCT play. In NRG’s match against Ghost Gaming, they ran a strategy of opting for light armor instead of heavy armor on their buy rounds.


Image Credits | Riot Games

Why run light armor over heavy armor?

The most obvious reason to run light armor over heavy armor is to save credits. Not only is light armor cheaper overall, its armor to credit ratio is comparatively lower, making it a great value purchase. By saving gold across the various rounds, it allows for more “buy rounds” and access to Valorant assault rifles. Back to NRG’s match, the strategy enabled the team to play 3 more rounds with rifles which they would have otherwise not have been able to without saving credits through light armor.

It is also important to note that the Vandal deals 40 damage to body shots and 160 damage to head shots. This means even if you have 100 health along with light armor or full armor, it will take the same amount of Vandal shots for an enemy to kill you. Against a team that enjoys using the Vandal, or in long range maps like Breeze, purchasing light armor instead is a very viable strategy to save credits for better buys. Aside from saving credits to purchase assault rifles, the 600 credits saved can also be used to purchase a full set of abilities on most agents.

On the downside, the strategy can be countered with abilities or SMGs. Abilities that decay or make you vulnerable will counter this strategy as they bring you closer to death. SMG purchases are also deadly, as having less armor will put you in great risk of dying to a small burst of bullets.


Image Credits | Riot Games

Most picked agent in pro play


While stats and pick rates vary from region to region, Chamber remains a top performer Valorant agent worldwide. Chamber excels in all compositions due to his ability to peak aggressively for early picks, save on eco rounds while being a threat with the Headhunter, and guard against flanks with his trip. On average across all VCT events, Chamber holds the highest first kill to first death ratio at 1.239.

Rise of initiators

Initiators picks are getting increasingly popular, especially in the South Asian Valorant Series. As duelists like Jett get nerfed, professional comps are increasingly relying on initiators to fill the role of duelists. This is especially so given their utility allows them to support their team in entries. Most importantly, if utility is not used or recharged, they have the versatility to effectively use them in post plant situations.

Check out what’s the current state of Valorant is, and learn more about the new map.