Comms-restricted players won’t be able to play Valorant ranked matches any more

Valorant agents Sova and Astra stand in front of a red and black background

Valorant’s latest patch will further punish players for bad behaviour in matches. Players will be penalised for consistent offences in the game chat or for being AFK during matches.

While major discretions and “zero tolerance offenses” will result in automatic bans, for minor infringements the penalties will scale based on what you’ve done and how often you do it. For instance, if you’re AFK once because you lose internet connection, you might lose any XP you would have gained from that match and incur a small penalty to your ranked rating. However, if you often queue dodge or go AFK on a regular basis you could be barred from playing Valorant ranked matches completely.

In Patch 2.05, which went live on March 16, Riot Games explains that the “progressive penalties” will include warnings, chat and queue restrictions, XP denial, competitive queue bans, and game bans. Hopefully the changes should ward off AFK farmers and queue dodgers, and keep your matches fair and even – especially when climbing the Valorant ranks.

Riot also confirms that comms-restricted players will no longer be able to compete in Valorant ranked matches, which should improve communication with your teammates in the game’s most competitive mode. It is worth noting that, while this is mentioned in the blog post’s introduction and featured on the infographic, it doesn’t actually appear in the patch notes.

While the patch focuses on social updates, players can now use unique keybinds for Sova and Astra when they are in their respective flying modes, Owl Drone and Astral Form.

Competitive players at the pinnacle of Valorant’s ranked leaderboard will also be happy to hear that Riot has made changes to the Radiant Rank Rating, to make gains and losses “more consistent with Immortal rank rating behaviour.”

You can read the full blog post for a list of every bug fix in this patch, but the major changes are the scaling penalties for AFK players and those who are abusive in chat. Hopefully this will go some way to making Valorant a more pleasant experience – everybody gets salty now and again, but there’s no excuse for taking it out on your teammates.