Riot has posted the full patch notes for Valorant‘s 1.03 update, and they include a pretty significant change to the game’s Guardian rifle.
While Riot notes that they feel Valorant “is looking fairly stable thus far” after the game’s latest patch, they do highlight the Guardian rifle as one of the biggest issues they feel need to be addressed sooner rather than later. Basically, the team feels that the Guardian wasn’t being treated as the economic, long-range, precision-based option they wanted it to be.
To help address the Guardian’s identity issues, Riot will reduce the weapon’s rate of fire to make it a little less viable in close range situations but will also bump its penetration power up from Medium to Heavy. The price of the Guardian is even being reduced from 2700 to 2500 as part of this renewed effort to help it find a home in the midrange.
The Valorant developers are also making some changes to the game’s recently introduced “Surrender” option which helps teams leave bad situations early rather than have to play out an essentially unwinnable match. Now, you’ll only need 80% of the team to vote to surrender in Valorant’s Unrated Mode in order to for a surrender to be approved. You’ll still need a 100% surrender vote in Competitive Mode, though, as early exits there can have a greater impact on your Valorant rank. The good news is that this latest update will now allow you to vote to surrender in round five in both Competitive and Unrated play. Previously, you had to wait until round eight in order to call for a surrender vote.
Finally, the Valorant team is adding a new orb (Twin Hunters) to the game’s Spike Rush mode. When captured, this orb will release two wolves who track down the “two nearest enemies.” These wolves have 150 HP each, will despawn after 15 seconds, and will “slow and nearsight” an enemy for 4 seconds after making contact with them.
For the full list of patch notes (including a variety of bug fixes and quality of life improvements) be sure to check out this post on the Valorant blog.
Valorant has proven to be one of the better surprises of 2020. While the game’s tactical nature may prevent it from finding as wide of an audience as Fortnite or Call of Duty, it’s shown that Riot is indeed interested in expanding their brand beyond the confines of the League of Legends universe.