Update Applied: Valorant Patch 1.14 Ends Year With Holiday Update

By Will HarrisonDecember 8, 2020
Update Applied: Valorant Patch 1.14 Ends Year With Holiday Update
Well, it certainly feels like it’s been a long while since we’ve done this, huh? Patch updates haven’t been as fast and furious as they were in those summer days, but that isn’t a bad thing. The list may look light for this last patch update of 2020, but within contains changes to an oft-changed Agent, pleasantly surprising map changes, and yet another attempt to pull a Lord Gargamel on Valorant and do something about those smurfs.
For the full list of patch changes, be sure to visit the official Valorant notes, also available on the game’s home screen.

AGENT UPDATES

Sage

Barrier Orb
  • Barrier Orb can’t be placed during Buy Phase
  • Once fortified, Barrier no longer loses health over time—Barrier only starts to deteriorate a few seconds before it expires
Sage is the Agent who just seemingly cannot stop getting tuned. In this case, Barrier Orb and its barrier keeps getting changes because players find new ways to make it just a little too good. It does seem odd in regards to what abilities are fine to be deployed pre-round and which ones Riot are taking a stance on, but Barrier will always be different because it’s a mechanic that’s so direct.

MAP UPDATES

Icebox

  • The changes to Icebox in this update are centered around simplifying the A Site and reducing the height of some of the most vertical areas on the map.
  • Reduced the height of the A Belt area and connected it via a ramp to the platform below
  • This puts the upper A Belt area more in line with the rest of the verticality in the site
  • Acquiring targets up top also requires less vertical movement of the crosshair
  • Added a see-through gate that can’t be passed from the ground level
  • Pathing should hopefully be more predictable from attackers approaching the site and defenders retaking the site
  • Sloped the wall (first image) and replaced the double stack of Radianite crates in the site with a smaller object (second image)
  • This should allow attackers to approach the site more safely, and a quicker retake of the site for defenders
  • Reduced the height of the yellow container.
  • This allows the top of the container to be fully cleared from several angles as well as reduces the amount of crosshair displacement required when aiming at targets on top of the container.
The initial complaints about Icebox were in regards to its verticality, which Riot seems to be tackling directly in these changes to A Site. The old/new photos Riot cooked up for their patch notes article will explain the tweaks better, but safe to say that A Site doesn’t feel so daunting anymore. Especially of note is the new sloped corner on A Site, removing the hard 90 degree angle and boxes, which should make A Site more fair and approachable. Only time will tell if these updates will make the map a bit more friendly to those not inclined to look up.

MODE UPDATE

Ready to have a Snowball Fight with your friends (and likely your foes)? Play a match of Snowball Fight and you’ll also nab a themed Gun Buddy, delivered at a later date.
The mode will only be available December 15-29.

5v5: Team Deathmatch

  • The first team to 50 kills wins
  • Respawns are enabled, so get back in there
  • The snowball launcher is your weapon of choice
  • The gift that keeps on giving: Power ups!
  • Gifts spawn around the map, sometimes a portal appears and gifts come pouring out. Just shoot them to open the gifts!
Who doesn’t love holiday modes and more deathmatches? This seems like a dumb, fun way to introduce more casual play. Now, if they’d only make a harpoon gun to match the snowball gun...

SOCIAL UPDATES

  • Requirements to unlock Competitive play have been changed from Play 20 Unrated matches >>> Win 10 Unrated matches
  • We hope this will lessen the amount of AFKs and INTing we see in Unrated games caused by smurfs just trying to unlock Competitive mode.
Yet another attempt by the developer to tackle the problem of smurfs--players attempting to play at a lower skill level for the purposes of easy wins by starting new accounts. While it feels like an impossible task, this change goes a long way to at least making smurfs stick to their ruse and win 10 games before ruining everyone else’s fun.

Update Complete

Valorant patch 1.14 closes the year of 2020 a bit on the quiet side, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty to see and do in the world of Valorant right now. What will 2021 hold? We’ll all find out together soon enough. Until then, happy holidays to everyone from the folks here at ValorBuff!
Clean up your room. Patch 1.14 is now available.
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