Tactical shooter, first-person shooter
VALORANT is a free-to-play first-person tactical shooter video game being developed and published by Riot Games.
It was announced on October 15, 2019 under the codename “Project A”, until it was officially revealed as Valorant on March 2, 2020. It was officially released on June 2nd, 2020.
VALORANT takes place on a version of Earth in the near future following an event known as First Light. This event spans the entire globe, leading to big transformations to life, technology, and how governments operate. However, select people across the globe start to gain abilities stemming from this massive event. These gifted individuals are called Radiants.
In response to First Light, a shadow organization founds the Valorant Protocol, which pulls together Agents from all over the world. These Agents consist of Radiants and other individuals equipped with Radiant technology. Due to the backstories of these characters, the Valorant team features interesting dynamics as the individuals not only sometimes know each other, but they also come from a wide spectrum of backgrounds ranging from crime to the military.
VALORANT is a competitive tactical shooter from the first-person perspective. It takes place on a near-future Earth and features a cast of characters known as Agents, each of which have their own unique set of abilities to create tactical opportunities.
Ten players are divided into two teams, Attackers and Defenders, with the goal of winning the most rounds. In order to win a round, a team must eliminate the opposing team or complete their team-specific Spike objective. First team who reaches 13 rounds, wins the game. The game starts in a lobby, where players have to lock in their Agent. The lobby lasts for 80 seconds or until everyone has locked in their Agent. Only one of each Agent can be selected on each team and players cannot see which Agent has been picked on the opposing team until the first Buy Phase. The Buy Phase occurs before each round and lasts for 30 seconds. During Buy Phase, most areas of the map are inaccessible and the two teams cannot meet each other. Therefore, Attackers cannot enter sites and are only limited to areas near their spawn zone, while the Defenders can move freely between sites, but not further than that. Players are also allowed to buy weapons, shields, and abilities during this phase.
Agents are composed of individuals with hypernatural abilities known as Radiants and Radianite Technology users. Each have their own Signature Ability and an Ultimate Ability used to create and allow tactical opportunities. Riot Games had stated they planned on launching VALORANT with 12 Agents, since then 3 more agents have been released. Bringing the total to 15 playable agents.
Players are able to utilse a range of different weapons, each with their own attributes to cater to specific playstyles, with corresponding strengths and weaknesses. Weapons can be bought during the Buy Phase using creds, bought for teammates or can be picked up when dropped by dead players. They are divided into the following categories:
Players can also buy two types of shields: Light Shields and Heavy Shields. These act as armor, absorbing 66% of damage taken.
Unlike Weapons, abilities persist after death and between rounds of the same half. Each agent has two Basic Abilities, charges of which must be purchased between rounds but persist until used. They also have one Signature Ability & Ultimate Ability each. Signature Ability are generally free and/or restock every round or every 2 kills. Ultimate Ability are can be utilised once 6 or 7 ultimate points (depending on the agent) are obtained by kills, spike plants, ultimate orbs etc.
- 128-tick servers.
- At least 30 frames per second on most computers with minimal specifications and 60 to 144 FPS on modern gaming rigs.
- A global spread of datacenters aimed at <35ms for players in major cities around the world
- A well developed netcode.
- Anti-cheat service on launch day.
The project was conceived in early 2013 within a small R&D team of designers at Riot Games, who were looking to innovate genres with closed legacy loops into live service games. Tactical shooters are challenging and competitive, with a history over competitive integrity. These ideas became core to the project, and the game was developed alongside anti-cheat measures.
“Project A” Announcement
Valorant was announced with the codename “Project A” on October 15, 2019 through Riot Games’ 10th Anniversary edition of their “Riot Pls” blog, which celebrated 10 years since the release of their multiplayer online battle arena video game League of Legends. In an announcement video, Anna “SuperCakes” Donlon, the executive producer, describes the game as a “character-based tactical shooter” which focuses on competitive aspects and includes precise gunplay. She also states that the game takes place on a “beautiful, near-future Earth” and features a “lethal cast of characters, each with their own unique abilities”.
Riot further explains that the game will stay true to the high-consequential gameplay of other competitive tactical shooters with the addition of unique character abilities that create and open tactical opportunities. Riot emphasized their attention on solving technical issues commonly found in other competitive shooters, focusing on improving global infrastructure and netcode to create lower server ping and fight against peeker’s advantage. An anti-cheat system is also at the forefront of the game’s development.
The reception of the announcement video were generally positive, many people have drawn comparisons of Project A with other competitive shooters such as Valve Corporation’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Blizzard Entertainment’s Overwatch. Greg “Ghostwalker” Street, Riot Games’ vice president of IP and Entertainment, responded to the Overwatch comparisons on Twitter, saying “While we are honored by comparisons between Riot’s Project A and Overwatch, the two aren’t really in the same genre. Project A is a tactical shooter. Lethality is high and you don’t respawn. Map control and gunplay are key. The abilities are more about utility.”
On March 2, 2020, Riot Games officially revealed the title: Valorant. They announced the game will be free-to-play with a Summer 2020 release window. In addition to revealing the game’s title, Riot Games created official social media accounts for Valorant, its own website, and details on the gameplay.
Main article: Closed Beta
Valorant held a closed beta on April 7–May 28, initially in the following regions and countries: Europe, Canada, United States, Turkey, Russia, and CIS countries. Through Twitch drops, select streamers were granted access, while other players were randomly selected for access.
|Minimum (30 FPS)||Recommended (60 FPS)||High-end (144+ FPS)|
|OS||Windows 7/8/10 64-bit||Windows 7/8/10 64 bit||Windows 7/8/10 64 bit|
|Processor||Intel i3-370M||Intel i3-4150||Intel Core i5-4460 3.2GHz|
|GPU||Intel HD 3000 (1 GB)||GeForce GT 730||GTX 1050 Ti|
|(Actual install size)||7.99 GB||7.99 GB||7.99 GB|
|RAM||4 GB||4 GB||4 GB|
The following are the regional servers that are used to play Valorant. Only accounts that are registered in that region or mapped region can play in that specific region’s server. Players cannot change servers.
|Server Region / Name||Abbreviation||Hosted Location(s)||Mapped region(s)|
|North America||NA (NA1)|
|Southeast Asia||SEA||AP (Shard)|
|South Asia||SA||AP (Shard)|
|CIS Countries +Ukraine||CIS|
|Latin America (LATAM)||LAS, LAN|
- In China to prevent gaming addictions (which is required for games in China), if you play over 3 hours your in-game income will be reduced by 50%.