4th November 2020 – 6:29pm
Beyond the release of new Agents, the release of new maps is awaited by players. And even more by pro players. In an interview on his YouTube channel, Mixwell, captain of G2 Esports, discusses the subject with Riot Ziegler, Valorant Game Director.
To a question from Mixwell about the number of maps planned for Valorant, Ziegler answers:
We haven’t really determined yet, because we don’t have enough right now, we’ll be the first to admit it. Right now, we’re releasing our fifth map. We have enough, I think, to run a BO5.
But we don’t have enough for some sort of level strategic positioning of how many we’ll have past that. We’re trying to accelerate the next few maps because we feel like getting to seven is a good starting point, to now begin to think how many of these would we want to carry into our competitive map pool.Riot Ziegler
As announced at the release of Icebox, Riot is therefore still determined to speed up the release of new maps. Initially, the developers expected to release one at the start of each new chapter, or every 6 months. But now, with only 4 maps, we quickly had the feeling going round in circles in Valorant. The meta and strategies freeze and the release of new Agents is not enough to provide the variety expected.
One of the peculiarities of Valorant is that each of its maps is built differently from the others. Haven has 3 sites, Bind offers teleporters, etc. Adding maps to Valorant brings new styles of gameplay and new strategies. A new map can shake up the meta and highlight Agents that didn't interest players before.
With more maps, a pick and ban system could be put in place. Such a system would bring an additional strategic dimension to Valorant, allowing teams to play on their strengths and weaknesses.
Ziegler mentions in this regard a rotation of competitive maps.
Once we get past that, we can begin really thinking if we’re going to leave maps out of the competitive map pool if that makes sense. Right now, we’re sort of thinking about how we get to the point of having about seven, just to start that conversation.Riot Ziegler
A rotation of competitive maps would mean that depending on the seasons or the tournaments, only certain maps would be playable competitively. This allows players to focus on a handful of maps in order to develop the best strategies. For the general public, it's also a way of regularly renewing interest in competitions and deliberately shaking up the meta.
Regardless, Icebox release is still very fresh. And yet, it will not be playable in competitive tournaments until the end of the month. Riot Games therefore still has time to consider this kind of system.