Team-Based Shooter Project A From Riot Games Has Been Unveiled, Titled Valorant

Team-Based Shooter Project A From Riot Games Has Been Unveiled, Titled Valorant
Credit: Blame The Controller - Overwatch via YouTube

Recently we dove into some leaks that allegedly stemmed from Riot Games itself, exploring a character that seemed to have the worst abilities possible and even what appeared to be the title of Project A, Valorant.  While many were hesitant to espouse the apparent title as the official title based on alleged leaks, it has now come to light that the leaks were accurate.  Valorant is Riot Games upcoming competitive team-based first-person shooter.

It appears that the world has IGN to thank for the rather sudden unveiling of a project that has stayed under wraps for a while; IGN leaked several screenshots from what many are concluding was a playtest for IGN.  Riot, shortly afterwards, activated the accounts for the shooter on both Twitter and Twitch.

From what has been seen thus far, it frankly looks like Riot’s self-applied term of ‘Counter-Strike: Global Offensive killer’ was a bit of wild overreach; the title seems to sit comfortably between Call of Duty and Overwatch and is likely to find an audience that already exists betwixt the two.

The screenshots of various maps look startlingly close to Overwatch, or even Team Fortress 2.  The TF2 style is well-earned however; the art director is none other than Moby Francke, who was an art lead for TF2 since around 2005.  Yet the screenshots and characters haven’t necessarily been drawing hype around the title that many have been excited for.

If Paladins is the poor man’s Overwatch then, right now, Valorant is the poor man’s Paladins. – /u/SyleSpawn via Reddit

The character models and maps frankly appear bland to many, although that’s likely a decisive point by Riot; in competitive titles, being able to distinguish players from the environment within milliseconds is vital for coming out on top of a duel, and there’s little room for obnoxious images and cosmetics that blur that outline.  The character models themselves are similarly simplistic, likely to ensure that hitboxes are absolute, and located within character models.  If Riot is actually trying to swing at the juggernaut that is CS: GO, then there is a mountain ahead of them that they’ll need to climb quickly, cleanly, and with intent.

It’s not exactly an industry secret that Counter-Strike is likely the pinnacle of competitive esports, with events regularly drawing crowds of over a million viewers, massive prize pools for players to earn, and a competitive scene that makes everyone jealous, but it’s also far more than having an obscenely low time-to-kill (TTK).

Valorant is currently slated to come out in the Summer of this year (2020), and Riot has its work cut out for them.