Valorant announces more severe punishments for AFK players

Michael Gwilliam

Teammates who are away from their keyboards in any game can be a real pain. Now, Valorant developers have announced new incentives to make sure players who queue remain glued to their seats.

On May 13, Valorant posted an announcement indicating that they were shipping a change that “increases penalties for AFKs.”

AFK is common internet slang for “away from keyboard,” meant to classify an individual who is logged into either a chat or game, but physically away from their computer – and therefore unable to respond.

Going AFK in Valorant will have bigger punishments.

One of the punishments listed will be longer queue restrictions for people who are AFK for multiple rounds.

Not every person who is AFK is doing so on purpose. Sometimes, the person could be having internet or computer issues that keep them from playing the game, something Riot is aware of and will take into account before administering a levy against an account.

“We’ll keep an eye on these restrictions when there’s service instability, but please commit to the games you queue up for,” Riot concluded in the announcement.

Given the length of a Valorant game, and the fact it doesn’t allow players on the team with a disconnected player to invite a friend to fill in, this should be a welcome change to the title.

So far, many players in the Valorant community are praising the increased penalties.

“My last 20 unrated games had someone leave mid game,” Cloud 9’s PVPX wrote. “Hopefully this helps.”

It’s unclear what further consequences there will be or how repeat offenders will be dealt with. One other question players have asked is if the penalties are the same for ranked and unrated matches.

Nonetheless, it’s a nice update that should help keep games competitive – and hopefully free of leavers.

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