Valorant devs need to patch and change overlapping abilities

With the Valorant offseason in full swing, recently discovered beta updates hint a major shift in the meta. The goal seems to be making duelists attractive again.

Currently, in professional as well as ranked games, people have stopped using duelists. With most initiators having the same abilities as them, they have now gone down the pecking order. In VCT Champions it was the duelist role as the least picked character.

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Initiators have taken over the duelist role in VALORANT

To display this example we will take two characters who have been introduced in this game for a while now. As the duelist, we will take a look at Phoenix and from the initiators, we will look at KAY/O.

On paper, Phoenix’s abilities consist of two flashes, a wall and a mollie. While on the plus side having a passive ability that he can heal the wall and mollie. Kay/o has the suppressing knife, 2 flashes as well as a mollie? – Both characters while being in different roles have two identical abilities by function.

Phoenix has “Run it Back” which allows him to come back to life after dying from the spot he used the ability. While KAY/o has his null command which allows him to die and get revived by his teammates.

What we see here is that two characters while being made for two different roles have most of their kit overlapping with one another.  As such many Professional players have pushed to use Kay/o over Phoenix due to his knife being useful to gain information as well for the team while suppressing the opponents. In turn, Phoenix was being picked only in 6% of the games at VCT Champions last month.

Pure Duelist players move away from the role

Since the launch of Chamber in Valorant, there has been quite a drastic shift in the Valorant meta. Most players who used to only play Jett and Raze shifted to Chamber due to the sheer flexibility, the player provides in attack and defence.

This leads to many questioning how effective these character are in the professional scene. Keep in mind, for the first year of Valorant, Jett was one of the highest-picked characters in the game. The amount of mobility that was provided due to her abilities, lead to many professionals shifting to her. Her knives are a one-shot kill when aimed at the head as well as to help with the economy of the teams.

Currently, in the Valorant scene, there are very few professionals left who tend to play with just duelists during most of their matches in any tournament.

Upcoming updates and patches by Riot will need to revamp a lot of characters. They have already begun this with now the Reyna blinds having an infinite radius to blind off enemies in sight. While also increasing the duration of the Phoenix flashes by half a second. Additionally, with nerfs added to the Kay/o and Skye flashes in the upcoming patch, we could see the likes of Reyna and Yoru return to pro play. This is because each of these two characters will be receiving the needed buffs to allow easier entry into either site to plant. As well as to get entry skills to support their team.

There is plenty of work for Valorant devs in the offseason to make certain roles and agents playable again. We have entered a very stale meta where specific abilities have way more value then others, which in turn made half the agents obsolete.