New Agent, new meta. This week’s patch is a big one, and not just because of the introduction of a healer far more suited for the frigid conditions of a certain new map. However, if you thought that all this patch would be is a new Agent and nothing more then you’re so very, very wrong.
For the full list of patch changes and notes be sure to visit the Official Valorant notes available on the game’s home screen.
Valorbuff will have a complete breakdown of this down-under wonder shortly, but for now, here’s the quick and dirty assessment of this healing predator.
Adding another healer into the Valorant mix will hurt Sage’s pick rate numbers, especially given that Skye is custom-built to seek and destroy enemy Agents on the new vertically-prolific Icebox map. But past the obviousness of how big another healer is for the meta, Skye has some nasty tricks that come with a severe downside. Her two non-healing abilities and Ultimate are all-powerful skills that allow for direct engagement with the enemy but all also succumb and cease after a few pistol shots.
New Skye players will have to pick and choose the best moments to use their abilities, lest they get shot out of the sky and leave the new Agent without a breeze to fly upon.
But, dat Tazmanian Tiger, though.
The tuning to flash mechanics will have a major effect at the low level since it opens up the window of opportunity for teammates to take advantage of any given bang. One of the more difficult mechanics to take advantage of, flashes should see some ease of use, as well as a higher pick rate for characters such as Breach who, in the past have felt just as likely to flash their teammates as they were an enemy Agent.
Well, that’s certainly an improvement, huh? Adding a full .25 seconds to Breach’s signature door-bang ability is huge for his viability, while also taking some of the sting out of the fact that Breach’s abilities are all super-telegraphed thanks to requiring an actual wall surface.
Oof. These changes to Cypher--and Killjoy, don’t think she’s getting out of this alive--are part of the dev team’s initiative to tune down Sentinels and take some of the bite out of our resident trap Agents. The Cypher changes seem fair in a vacuum, but certainly takes away his post-death value as a team’s resident trapster. Worse, seeing where these traps were at is a big value to enemy teams who may now find an open flanking-route that was bugged before.
Look what they did to my girl. While the cooldown reductions are a mea culpa, the range of activation changes means that Killjoy will be forced to stay at home far more often and be less of a roving Agent who can bug one point then rotate with the team. Killjoy players will need to learn what 40m range is real fast, lest they walk away and remove their key Site-watching advantage. The Nanoswarm buffs are nice, but still feels a bit gimmicky in regards to its application as a kill-securing skill.
GAMES SYSTEMS UPDATE
Update to economy ruleset
Unexpected, but also welcome changes abroad in Patch 1.11. These changes to the game’s economy will force more thoughtful play and, with luck, make even the most toxic Agent think about how important the end of the round can be. If anything, this may keep teams more even from round to round and stop a snowballing effect from happening when one team really gets going with an advantage.
Things are always changing around the world of Valorant and 1.11 is seemingly no different. The changes to some of the game’s most powerful Sentinels are a harsh pill to swallow, but with any luck the balm that is a new Agent to mess around with more than makes up for any upcoming difficult times.
Don’t forget to look up. Patch 1.11 was available but has now been rolled back due to technical difficulties.