Fade's creation, Neon's wall... Valorant's Agent Designers FAQ

This Tuesday 3rd May, the designers of Agents of Valorant spent an hour on Reddit to answer questions from the community. At the end of this FAQ, we finally got some rather interesting information about the characters already in the game and how they were created or adjusted.

Changes to Phoenix, Cypher and Astra

While it is not clear what this means in practice, the designers of Agents have confirmed that Phoenix, Cypher and Astra were on the list of Agents to be reworked. However, they could not tell us more about the changes that would be made to the Duelist and the Sentinel, or even when they would occur. This is because they want to give themselves time to explore everything that needs to be adjusted on them.

Regarding Astra, Kevin Meier, one of the designers of the game, acknowledged that its strength depended very much on a very good communication within the team and that this was often something complicated in low elo games.

Astra was a polarizing pick that overly limited composition diversity and heavily dictated the pace that attackers could play at. Even before the nerfs, Astra was an underplayed and underpowered agent in competitive queue unless you're looking at higher MMR bands. A lot of her power is locked behind strong communication, where she needs her teammates to constantly deliver information so she can make the right decisions around star usage. This is why we see her best utilized at the high ends of pro play. We accept that she may be less accessible to users across the board, but do want to ensure she exists in a healthy place.

Kevin Meier - Reddit

How was Fade created?

From the very beginning of the Agent, the designers knew that they wanted to work on a character that could do reconnaissance. A paper kit The first step was therefore to produce a kit on which various abilities and potential objectives for this new character were noted. It is from this kit that Fade has started to be built.

The abilities mentioned were then tested to find those that would best fit the Agent and that could create a suitable guideline for building his theme. For Fade, this line was related to the way he collect information and follow up on leads.

Once this hook was found, Concept Art and Concept Narrative were brought into the loop to bring Fade to life, to give it a story of its own.

Early on when playing against Fade, we discovered it was a very anxiety/fear inducing experience, and looked to double down on that with a spooky darker theme.

John Goscicki - Reddit

This process actually takes several months during which everyone proposes their ideas and the team tries to select one that would work in the Valorant universe while respecting certain constraints.

Chamber's nerf

A potential nerf for Chamber, this is the information that has been circulating on social networks for a few days and that we had already told you about. It is now official, the Frenchman will receive a nerve on his trademarked ability during the patch 4.09.

Yes, the plan is still to remove one of the traps for 4.09. We'll still be monitoring how he performs on Defense to make sure he's still a powerful defensive agent, and will adjust if necessary in the future.

Dan Hardison - Reddit

The aim is mainly to retain Chamber's unique characteristics while accentuating its weaknesses compared to other Sentinels with traps and gadgets such as Sage or Cypher.

As a reminder, here is the nerve that should be performed on Trademark :

  • The number of charges would be reduced from 2 to 1
  • Its purchase cost would increase from 150 to 200 credits
  • The trap would make more noise when triggered

However, we will have to wait for the 4.09 patch to know if these changes will indeed take place. This one should normally arrive on Tuesday 10th May.

About Neon's Wall

During the patch 4.08Neon has seen the damage to its wall be removed. Indeed, the designers of the Agents noticed that the damage it inflicted on enemies was quite insignificant. Some people naturally wondered whether it would be better to remove the damage only for allies and have only enemies affected. To which Ryan Cousart replied:

Though the main reason was to reduce disruption for Neon and her allies during the execute phase, what we've found over time was that the damage on Neon's wall became fairly trivial when it came to the decision making of peeking into the wall, unless enemies were already low. We also wanted to keep consistent rules with other walls that did permanent damage (versus decay), such as Phoenix's wall. We'll be keeping an eye on how this affects Neon in the future, though, and will find a solution that helps Neon feel safer in her Fast Lane.

Ryan Cousart- Reddit

In response, members of the Valorant community asked the designers about a possible balancing of the Phoenix Wall. According to Ryant Cousard's answer, the wall should not change in the near future and will continue to do the same damage as it does now.

A new class of agent?

According to Jay Watford, one of the designers of Agents, the team is always open to creating new classes for the characters. However, this doesn't seem to be planned at the moment as he simply mentions that if an Agent who might belong to a new class is created, they will create one for him rather than him having to comply with the classes already in the game.

We're definitely open to finding new classes in Valorant, but we want to make sure that those classes are both healthy for the game and contribute to the tactical space in unique and meaningful ways. If / when we find an Agent that expands what's possible and checks those boxes, we wouldn't want them to be restricted to fit into the classes they currently exists. What classes do you think would be interesting to explore in the game?

Jay Watfort - Reddit

Jay Watford then asked the community what classes they would like to see in Valorant. Some thought of tanks, others of infiltrators... The answers were varied and perhaps this will help inspire the game teams? To be continued.

How are the nationalities of the agents chosen?

When creating each character, a nationality is assigned to it. But how is it chosen? Apparently several factors are taken into account. First of all, the designers look at the origins of the other agents, so that they do not use the same nationality and each one is unique.

They also look at whether the Agent is the best in its field and whether a culture might have elements that fit it. Finally, they look at the different communities in the game around the world and those that do not yet have a character to represent them.

Many other questions were asked but the main ones have been collected here. If you want to read the full questions and answers, please visit Reddit.