While the start of Episode 2 of Valorant brought about some pretty big changes to ranked, Riot Games clearly isn’t done yet with improving the competitive experience. In a blog post outlining some of the competitive changes coming with today’s patch 2.02, Riot’s senior designer John ‘EvrMoar’ Walker also gives players a look ahead to the next patch and changes that will be made later in Episode 2.
While 2.02 now scraps five-stack teams sooner in the climb up the Valorant ranks and makes tweaks to MMR and rank convergence, 2.03 will prove to be just as big. Ranked players will be pleased to know that the penalties for going AFK are being increased, and that more features to combat unfair RR loss due to AFKers will be coming soon.
2.03 will also bring about changes to how your end of Act rank is calculated. Your Act rank will now be determined by “the highest triangle rank in your Act Rank Badge, instead of your top nine wins.”
Beyond today’s patch and 2.03, Riot is also promising a “less punishing” approach to rank resets throughout Episode 2. Rank resets between Acts will now be far less severe than before, and will require only one placement match if you hit a rank in the previous act. EvrMoar does however state that there will still be one big rank reset at the end of each Episode, so expect your rank to only take a real hit every six months or so.
This new approach to rank reset should be in place for Episode 2 Act 2.
Jon Walker, aka @RiotEvrMoar, shares some extra detail behind the changes to Competitive in Patch 2.02 and the ranked changes the Competitive team is working on for the rest of Episode 2.
— VALORANT (@PlayVALORANT) February 2, 2021
Also billed for Act 2 is the ability to hide your rank both pre-game and during a game, to remove any pressure or expectations teammates may have of you if you are a high-ranked sharpshooter. There will also be a loosening of matchmaking restrictions in lower ranks, allowing for a wider disparity of ranks to play with each other towards the bottom of the ranked ladder.
It’s hard to keep up with all the changes coming to ranked (that’s why we wrote a Valorant ranks guide, you see) as they’re coming thick and fast, but Riot certainly seems keen to act quickly and make Valorant the perfect competitive experience in as little time as possible.