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Valorant is set for inevitable success, but there's still room to improve


Expect it to be huge. Valorant, Riot Games’ tactical, abilities- and weapons-based shooter, is finally out in the wild, and it’s arrived off the back of a frankly massive “closed” beta. Some of those numbers, like the outrageous watch times and concurrent viewers on Twitch, are artificially inflated – namely by Riot’s “drops” system of handing out beta keys to random viewers of streams – but the player numbers aren’t. There’s good reason for it.

For starters, I’m not sure I’ve played a game that feels as ground-up optimised for its own purpose as Valorant. This is a game that makes its case through competency. It has the best servers (are we numb to the words “128-tick” yet?), the most optimal art style, an aggressive, proprietary anti-cheat system and a team behind it that feels frankly obsessed with proving its pedigree. It’s a statement, Riot Games standing up and saying “this is what we can do”.