VALORANT is a 5v5 tactical shooter from Riot Games, the developer behind such games as League of Legends, Legends of Runeterra, etc.
Riot just launched the closed beta for VALORANT on April 7th. After that, it kind of took over Twitch as the number 1 game on the platform. All the big-name streamers and content creators from different games are praising the game for its brilliant execution.
Since this game is a cross between 90% CSGO and like 10% Overwatch, players especially coming from CSGO are currently dominating in-game. Although ex Apex Legends pros won the first-ever tournament hosted by ESPN. Reddit user and CSGO veteran Arsennio pointed out a huge problem with the CSGO community heavily influencing VALORANT with their own idea of what a meta should be for VALORANT.
A good example of that should be when players complained about Raze for being too overpowered. Even though the Devs Nerfed Raze in the patch 0.47+, in that patch note Devs emphasized how with more time savvy players could have been more efficient on how to deal with RAZE without the nerfs.
Even though VALORANT shares most of its DNA from CSGO, it should become its own thing. Just cause it worked for CSGO shouldn’t necessarily be a good fit for VALORANT, a game that is still in its closed beta right now.
There are really two sides to what is happening right now and neither one is really the right answer.
- VALORANT is a different game so stop talking about CSGO.
- CSGO did this right and VALORANT should too.
There are some things that need to be pointed out
- The previous understanding of angle play, movement mechanics, and gun mechanics is inspired by games we know, but should not be limited by them. The meta we know is broken by this game’s core functions. Angles can be blocked from anywhere with near pinpoint accuracy with no prior study, skipped by class abilities that jump over/teleport through angles, paths can be blocked by traps, cameras can view areas that would normally provoke an info battle. Hell, even a dead player is sometimes only mostly dead and any section of the map is never completely cleared. (Sage and omen reference).
- The introduction of Neutral areas to every map changes a lot as well. Instead of a long-run race at the start of every round, there is a matter of 10-15m of space to fight over right at round start. This changes rotation meta, initial fights, and flank safety. The utility being low skill requirement changes how those neutral battles are fought and smoke/teleportation/jump makes holding areas a much different battle of exchanged attacks and info usage. That is from the first second of the round.
- Post plant, execute, and flank rotations function completely differently than in CSGO. Post plant holding angles was meta. It can no longer be reliably done due to info abilities (camera and sonar), sages ice wall and slow, and teleports this post-plant meta is more moving than the meta we know. Executes involve a different function when initiating trades because movement speed is slower the defender has more of an opportunity to defend. This makes executes require something more clever than just “flash me in and smoke site“. Instead of info baits, flanks, and ability usage change how efficient the entry will be on an agent by agent basis. Executing a site that has a sage defender is much different than a site with a Cypher defender. Flank rotations have the potential to be much quicker with agents like Omen and Jett. Brimstone can smoke off an entire flank path in a few clicks. Corner flashes are near impossible to turn from. This all changes how you expect flank/rotation to occur vs how it actually does.
VALORANT can be different
VALORANT has the potential to be a game with an adaptable meta. At the end of the day, VALORANT is just in its initial stage right now. How the meta will actually play out is really impossible to figure out right now since most players around the world still have no chance to get their hands on the game.
With more exposure more players will come up with just completely different playstyle than any devs or CSGO veterans could dream of. That is the kind of excitement that one should look for in a game such as VALORANT that was tailor-made for competitive players in mind. We just have to wait to get the worldwide release of VALORANT to actually see what kind of meta forms around this game.