Riot believes Valorant's Operator "isn't overpowered" and won't be nerfed - Dexerto

Riot believes Valorant’s Operator “isn’t overpowered” and won’t be nerfed

Published: 24/Jul/2020 8:18 Updated: 24/Jul/2020 8:20

by Andrew Amos


The Operator in Valorant is a contentious weapon. The one-shot sniper costs a hefty 4,500 Creds, but in the right hands, it’s unstoppable. Many players have called for it to be nerfed, but Riot thinks otherwise, stating they have no plans to change the Operator.

Getting killed by an Operator in Valorant can be pretty infuriating. It’s a one-shot kill to the body after all, unlike any other gun in the game. However, its cost matches its power ⁠— coming in at a whopping 4,500 Creds.


Despite all the utility Valorant players have at their disposal, many believe that the Operator is too overpowered for its good. Maybe it needs a price increase, or some other stats change, to make it so teams don’t buy two or three of them on defense.

Operator in Valorant on Haven C long cubby
Riot Games
People just love complaining about Snipers.

However, Riot believes otherwise. It’s not an Operator problem in Riot’s eyes ⁠— but a player problem. According to Ryan ‘Morello’ Scott, lead character designer on Valorant, the Operator is in a fine place, and if anything, Riot are looking at buffing other utility first before nerfing the gun.


“We don’t think the Operator is overpowered. We think some portions of utility might be underperforming in mid elos…but not elite elos or expert elos. We don’t think there’s a balance problem,” he said during a July 23 stream.

He explained how some players don’t approach the fights with the Operator correctly. You can’t just dry push through and hope for the best ⁠— with the right utility setup you can deny the Operator. However, in lower elos, and outside of five stacks, the coordination can be lacking.

“There’s a ‘I can’t access the tools I need to fight an operator’ [problem] in a lot of cases. ‘It’s so much harder to do the coordination for an un-coordinated team that we’re getting bodied by Operators. We don’t think the Operator is actually overpowered.”


“It’s doing what it’s supposed to do. You walk around the corner, and an OP is standing on the corner, it shoots you, and you die? That’s by design, we will not be fixing that.”

He also said the meta, which is to run Cypher and Sage while neglecting some of the best Operator counters, is exacerbating the perceived problem.

“If you’re playing double Sentinel, my expectation is that OPs body you. You have some answers, but it’s going to be much harder for you. If you’re running a double Controller comp, I think that’s much better for dealing with OPs.


Instead of nerfing the Operator, Riot are looking at the other solution instead ⁠— buffing its counters. The counterplay Riot has for the Operator might not be working as intended, and might need a leg-up if the numbers trend towards the gun being more powerful than initially thought.

“My worry is that we don’t see people running a Breach, or a Phoenix, or a Reyna who have flash-like utility, because I think our flash-like utility might just not be potent enough compared to some of the guns.


“They pop slower, they are harder to place in the right space, they have lower debuff times, they don’t go smokes ⁠— if you compare it one-to-one with CS, ours are much worse. That’s by design, but it’s maybe too much worse.”


Valorant First Strike Europe qualifiers: Schedule, eligibility, format

Published: 7/Oct/2020 17:06

by Jacob Hale


Valorant developers Riot Games have announced First Strike: Europe, the first-ever Valorant tournament wholly produced by Riot, set to kick off in November with some of the region’s best talent.

Since Valorant launched in June, it has become one of the most exciting games in esports, with players from all different titles migrating to Riot’s first-ever FPS. Some of the biggest competitors from the likes of Overwatch, CSGO and more are looking to make a name for themselves in the new shooter.


As a result, we’ve already seen some incredible talent, tense moments and top performances in a competitive setting, but now it’s becoming a little more official with the announcement of this highly-anticipated tournament.

So, with First Strike: Europe around the corner, here’s everything you need to know to tune in to the tournament, and even get involved yourself.

Valorant First Strike art
Riot Games
First Strike is the first Valorant tournament organized entirely by developer Riot Games.

Valorant First Strike: Europe schedule

Open qualifiers for First Strike take place from November 9-22, giving teams around two weeks to stave off the best competition in the region and qualify for the main event.

The schedule for Open Qualifiers will be as follows:

  • Week 1
    • November 9-10: Qualifier A
    • November 11-12: Qualifier B
    • November 13: Play-In #1
    • November 14-15: Playoffs
  • Week 2
    • November 16-17: Qualifier C
    • November 18-19: Qualifier D
    • November 20: Play-In #2
    • November 21-22: Playoffs
Valorant First Strike: Europe qualifiers schedule
Riot Games
Valorant First Strike: Europe qualifiers schedule.

After qualifiers have concluded, the main stage will be held from December 3-6. Here are the dates for each part of the main event:

  • December 3-4: Quarterfinals
  • December 5: Semifinals
  • December 6: Final
Valorant First Strike: Europe main event schedule
Riot Games
Valorant First Strike: Europe main event schedule.

Eligibility for Valorant First Strike: Europe

As the name suggests, the Open Qualifiers for the tournament are open to (almost) anybody. You don’t have to be a pro player to sign up, but you have to be over the age of 16 and you will need to reach the rank of Immortal 1 by the time you register.

Riot haven’t specified how people can apply and register for the tournament yet, but advise in their announcement that full rules for the event and how to apply will be available in the coming weeks — and we’ll be sure to update this page as soon as we know.

Valorant First Strike: Europe tournament format

Valorant Icebox act 3 new map
Riot Games
Will we see much of new Act III map Icebox in the First Strike tournament?

The tournament format is fairly simple to follow throughout, from the qualifiers right up to the main event. Here’s how the single-elimination tournament works:

  • Qualifiers and Play-Ins: Best of 1
  • Playoffs: Best of 3
  • Quarterfinals and semifinals: Best of 3
  • Finals: Best of 5

With best of 1s in qualifiers and play-ins we might see some upsets, but finishing the tournament on a best of 5 means we really will see the two best teams in Europe fight it out and showcase their talent across all maps, proving how much they’ve mastered the game so far.

With G2 Esports undoubtedly the strongest team in the region since competition started, the main question now is whether they can prove it in Valorant’s biggest tournament yet.