As part of Valorant update 1.04, there were some major changes to both Agent and weapon balancing, so here’s a TL;DR of the tweaks Riot made as part of the July 21 update.
There’s no hiding the fact that Viper has been underwhelming for the most part, following Valorant’s launch. Despite receiving a considerable buff as part of Patch 1.02, the Toxic Controller Agent was still left as one of the least used characters across all skill levels.
Granted, the addition of being able to pierce walls with her emitters made Viper a more viable option, but when compared to the likes of Brimstone, she brought very little to the table. That is, until Patch 1.04, where Riot have given the American Chemist yet another buff, which could mean that Viper will now be a suitable alternative to Brimstone.
While on the topic of the Orbital Commander, both Brimstone and Raze received a considerable nerf, with players now having to graft much harder to earn their Ultimates. Let’s delve into the major changes from the July 21 update.
Valorant Patch 1.04: Agent changes
So what’s new with Viper? Well her Ultimate is now much more powerful, in the sense that being inside the toxic smog not only reduces health, but also obscures your minimap. To top it off, Viper’s near-sight detection has been considerably enhanced and the time permitted outside of the cloud has been increased from five to 12 seconds.
The decay experienced from being exposed to Viper’s poison has also been enhanced (from 10 to 15), while also adding a small 2.5 second buffer before the health regenerates. Additionally, Viper’s fuel reserve will no longer be depleted faster if both Poison Cloud and Toxic Screen are active simultaneously… So overall, Viper has received quite a substantial buff.
On the other side of the fence, both Raze’s Showstopper Ultimate and Brimstone’s Orbital Strike Ultimate has gone from costing six to seven Ultimate Points — reducing the level of impact both have. Oh, not to forget that Cypher’s Cyber Cage can now be picked up and replaced during the buy phase!
Valorant Patch 1.04: Weapon changes
It’s all about the Classic in Patch 1.04, with the trusty Sidearm receiving a generous buff to make it more viable in pistol rounds — move aside, Ghost. Running inaccuracy has been reined in, following a bug that was amplifying the running error curve.
Jumping spread has been increased from 1.9 to 2.3, meaning that it’ll be harder for players to jump around the corner and burst fire headshot you now. Moreover, running spread has been reduced from 3.4 to 2.1, which means your shots won’t go skew whiff as often while on the move.
But for players who prefer to be rewarded for their positioning, a 10% bonus to accuracy while crouching/stationary has also been added, to supplement the overall consistency of the Pistol.
So there you have it, all of the big changes from Patch 1.04… While the Classic’s consistency buff will likely shake up the pistol round meta, it’s likely that Raze’s Showstopper will still be as impactful, especially since she can rack up the Ult Points by landing easy kills with her utility.
Although, with that said, combining Viper’s buffs from both 1.02 and 1.04, it is likely that she’ll be used more often, especially on maps like Ascent, where her Toxic Screen and Poison Cloud can be extremely useful.