Riot is planning yet another competitive overhaul in Valorant — the second since its release earlier in 2020 — revamping ranked to “make it easier to climb out of the lower ranks” while also giving higher elo players something to strive for. Here’s how.
Valorant’s ranked system has been a contentious topic since the game’s release. It was widely criticized by players early on, forcing Riot to implement major changes in Act 3 that reduced the maximum rank gap for pre-mades from six to just three.
There’s also been the promise of a leaderboard for quite some time. That’s confirmed for Episode 2, giving high-ranked players something to play for, but there are more changes in the pipeline that could affect everyone.
Riot promises another Valorant ranked shake-up to help players climb
Riot has expanded on their plans somewhat for Episode 2 in a December 24 blog post, addressing players’ concerns about the “harshness” of the ranked grind.
“Too often one bad day of play can result in significant rank loss and a good day doesn’t help you climb as much as you’d like. Our rank distribution bands are unforgiving and we have limited protection against rank demotion,” Senior Producer Ian Fielding told players.
While Riot made some progress in Patch 1.14, moving the bell curve to help players rank up faster, they’re aiming to put in “more substantive changes” — not just Band-Aids — in Episode 2.
“We’re going to add increased protection for rank demotions, while giving you some initial buffer room after you gain ranks. There are also going to be a ton more changes to the rank system with Episode 2.”
What exactly those changes are hasn’t been confirmed yet, but players have their suspicions.
New points system potentially replacing “arrows”
The leading theory is Valorant’s opaque “arrows” system that gives players a vague indication of how far they are away from promoting or demoting is being replaced by a more traditional points system. This is also backed by leaks from dataminers.
Prominent dataminers ‘ValorLeaks’ and ‘Shiick’ uncovered a section of Valorant’s code that gives players a specific points value within a rank. This is used to promote or demote players, not the arrows system. He even created a script so you can find your current rank too.
Remember the preview of Leaderboards? Well, The Number rating system seems to be heading to the game after new strings were added to the game. Points will possibly be taking the place of the ranked system in Episode 2. (Thanks to @Shiick for finding the strings) #VALORANT pic.twitter.com/ju6ApbX5OW
— Valorant Leaks (@ValorLeaks) December 12, 2020
As with any leaks, players should take this information with a grain of salt. However, it’s a good indication of where Riot wants to take Valorant’s ranked system. In conjunction with leaderboards and other things, Episode 2 Act 1 is shaping up to be the best yet.