Riot reveals “perfect” number of Valorant Agents they plan to release

Published: 11/Sep/2020 6:03 Updated: 12/Sep/2020 10:28

by Andrew Amos


There might be only 12 Agents in Valorant now, but Riot are shooting high. They are in for the long haul, with the hopes of releasing dozens of new characters over the next few years to hit their “perfect” number.

There’s not much variety in Valorant Agents right now. With only 12 to choose, there’s a limited number of compositions you can make. When you look at pro play, it’s even lower, given Agents like Cypher and Omen are pretty much must-picks.

However, in the near future, that might not be the case. Riot have already said they are pushing to release six Agents this year ⁠— one with every Act. So far, they’ve hit that mark with Reyna and Killjoy. A third is on the way on October 13.

Killjoy in Valorant
Riot Games
Killjoy is only Riot’s 12th Agent for Valorant in their quest to fill the roster out.

They are planning on continuing that for as long as the game exists, although there’ll be a time where they might slow down. There’s one range of numbers on Valorant devs’ lips that would be the perfect amount of Agents for their game: 50-60.

“The perfect Agent roster balance…honestly I think we’ll start to understand how flexible the Agent roster is as we inject more in, so I don’t think we can say ‘100 is crazy’ or ‘100 is great.’ Personally I think ~50-60 feels about right ⁠— let’s say 5 per role,” developer ‘Pwyff’ told players on Reddit on September 10.

At a rate of six a year, it’ll take Riot approximately six to eight years to hit that mark of 50-60 Agents. It’s an easier goal than Siege’s 100 Operators (currently at 57, releasing four a year), but still a relatively daunting task when you consider the sheer volume of it.

Dota 2 heroes
Valorant devs have cited Dota 2’s hero system as a potential model for the FPS title.

Valorant devs have cited Dota 2’s Hero system as a potential model for the FPS title.Riot has developed over 150 champions for League of Legends, so you’d think there’d be some inspiration drawn from there. Ironically though, Riot aren’t exactly modelling their Agent system on League of Legends. Instead, they’re looking towards Dota 2.

Given they’ve made recent balancing decisions, like the huge Sage nerfs on Patch 1.07, based on freeing up space to release future Agents in certain categories, it makes sense to look towards Valve’s MOBA for inspiration on how they manage character choice and the flexibility around that.

If Riot are going to be in for the long run, they best start building their cast of characters far and wide, which will only add to the game’s strategic depth.


Valorant Split map guide: Callouts, strategies, more

Published: 24/Jan/2021 5:30 Updated: 24/Jan/2021 6:12

by Bill Cooney


In Valorant, where you are and how you move around the map matters just about as much as your gunplay. So to help you in your quest for Radiant, we’ll be going over the ups and downs of Split in this guide.

Split has two Reactor Sites – just like Ascent and Bind – but what makes it special are the yellow ropes that let you move up and down from one level to another. You can actually hang out on the ropes and, with a little practice, pop up like a whack-a-mole to punish unsuspecting enemies.

As always, we recommend familiarizing yourself with the Reactor Site locations and callouts on the map below, since chances are you’ll be hearing at least a few per match.

Riot Games
Callouts for Valorant’s Split, according to the in-game map.

You don’t need to memorize every single callout, that would be a bit ridiculous, but getting the hang of what certain names like Tower, Rafters, Sewer, and Garage are referencing will definitely help you out in the long run.

Split can definitely lean towards favoring defenders over attackers, due to the bottlenecks you have to make your way through on offense, so let’s start out by looking at what you can do to make planting the spike a little easier before we move on to defense.

How to play Attack on Split

Reactor Site A

We’ll start with A, which can be tricky to take on as an attacker because defenders have plenty of places to hide and catch you as you move in. A Lobby, A Main, Ramp, Rafters, and Screens all the way in the back are all common spots you’ll see defenders posted up in as you push. 

Valorant Split A Tower
Riot Games
The changes to A Tower make it a must-take if you are attacking A Site.

To counter this, Omen’s smokes can work, but another option is to use Viper’s Toxic Screen to dissect the point and reduce the enemy’s line of sight.

When it comes to planting the Spike on A, you usually can’t go wrong by putting it on the side of the blue billboard — denying opponents that might rotate on high from having an easy shot.

This also allows you to keep an eye on enemies coming from A-Screens in the back, as they’ll have to come to where the Spike is, and where you’re posted up.

Valorant Split A site
Riot Games
Planting behind the blue billboard, or the big A on A Site is the way to go.

Reactor Site B

Next let’s look at the B-Site, which can be very tough as there’s only one main way to reach the point — through the bottleneck created by Garage. While this has been opened up somewhat, there’s still a lot of angles defenders can play from.

If you’re going to rush B, putting some kind of smoke up in B Towers to cut off the enemy line of sight is a solid plan. Omen is the best choice, as only one smoke can be used to cut off the entirety of Heaven. Brimstone and Viper can both do the job though.

When it comes to planting on B, it all depends on which side of the point you can/want to defend. The box in the middle of the point is your pivot, but if you have the control, planting under the big red B is the best — you can hold the site down from B Main, making it very hard to retake.

Valorant Split B Site
Riot Games
You can now plant from B Site and defend it from B Main if you plant under the big red B.

Conversely, if you control Towers and Rafters and want to defend from the high ground, putting the Spike on the other side will give you a clear view of any defuse attempts.

Mid Route

Mid on Split doesn’t have a direct point like Haven, but any team that controls the middle of the map early on has a much better chance of walking away with a round win. For Attackers, this means getting the Defense to move around and leave cover — which makes good ol’ Breach and his wallbangs perfectly suited for disrupting and pushing Mid.

Valorant Split Mid
Riot Games
Split Mid is still important to control, as it’s the primary rotate point between sites.

How to play Defense on Split

Reactor Site A

On A, you can either rush up as Defenders and occupy A Main to intercept Attackers, or if you want to play it safe, you can hang back around A Screens to peek out and hit them when they head onto the site and start to feel confident.

If you’re feeling cheeky, you can hide behind the large blue sign in the middle of A Site to surprise over-eager Spike carriers. But if they have a backup with them, the chances of you making it out alive are slim to none.

Valorant Split A Heaven
Riot Games
You can also hold this fine angle from A Heaven looking towards A Main.

As always, Cypher is a great choice on Defense, because he can basically keep tabs on the enemies as they move into the point… so you’ll know exactly when to strike. Omen can also do a decent job at holding things down with his smokes.

Reactor Site B

On B-Site, you really only need one Defender completely committed to the site, with others providing support from Mid. As the lone Defender, you can really set up anywhere you please, as long as you don’t play your hand and show yourself too early. There are simply too many angles and areas of cover for the Attackers to effectively neutralize them all.

Valorant Split B Heaven
Riot Games
There’s now a double-stack box in the way for defenders, but you can opt to play around it.

Good Agents to put on Split’s B-Site are of course Cypher; his Cypher Cam and Trapwire can will notify your teammates of an enemy push. Killjoy also works with her turret, Alarmbot, and Nanoswarms.

A Viper who knows what they’re doing can also do a fine job of keeping things clear, especially when you combine her Poison Cloud and Snake Bite abilities to slow down a push.

Mid Route

Mid might be the most important area to hold for either side of the Spike. If attackers are able to take control, they can effectively rotate to, and control either side of the map. If you’re tasked with holding Mid, the most important thing to remember is to just be patient and wait for the Attackers to peek, because they have to move up, while you can just hang out.

Mid-Vent and Mid-Mail are both good spots to hang out and wait for the offense to make their move. Raze and Breach are best suited to stalling out with their offensive utility, while Sage can drop a wall to really stop attackers in their tracks.

Valorant Split Vents
Riot Games
It’s no longer safe to hold the right hand side of the door on Vents due to recent map changes.

If you haven’t spent a lot of time in Valorant, or similar games before, this can seem like a full semester of information to take in. But don’t worry, because as you play the map you’ll start to pick up on everything we’ve mentioned here from your teammates.

Communicating with your team is one of the most important things you can do in Valorant. So even if you don’t have every callout on the map memorized, working together and talking as a team can help make playing both Attack and Defense a bit simpler when Split comes up in the rotation.