What is Valorant? R20 Premiere explains the tactical first-person game

Teams compete for a chance to go to a traditional elimination-style Finals in April

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SAN ANTONIO – Valorant is a free-to-play 5v5 (five people versus five people) tactical first-person game published by Riot Games. It is unique from other mainstream FPS (first-person shooter) titles due to the combination of ability-based characters (called agents) with an economy structure that rewards teams for winning rounds. Winning rounds allows teams to buy better weapons and abilities for the next round.

Teams have sites designated to them in a game as either A, B or C. For teams to earn points, they must plant the “spike” in the defending team’s defensive site. The first team with 13 points wins the game.

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Each round has a halftime break after round 12. The teams then switch roles – attackers move to defense and defenders become attackers.

R20 Specific Format

Teams compete monthly in round-robin, best-of-one matches. A win is worth two points, a draw is worth one, and losses are worth zero. The point totals are finalized in March, with the top half of teams going to a traditional elimination-style Finals event held in April.

Each game begins with a coin flip – one team gets to remove a map from the map pool, and the other team gets to choose whether they attack or defend to start the round. The winner of the coin flip can defer the map ban and choose attack or defense.

Reasons to ban a map are: lack of experience, the opposing team has a very high win rate on a given map, or certain map layouts are problematic for the characters that a team plays. The map pool changes monthly – and the season begins with the full map pool; the two most played maps are removed each month until we are left with three maps. The map cycle resets in January, and again for the Grand Finals.

Keep following us as we will have our Valorant analyst John “Zombees” Moses guide you through the events throughout the year.

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