Valorant, Riot Games' New Tactical Shooter, Will Hit 30 FPS on Computers "Dating Back a Decade"

Valorant, Riot Games' New Tactical Shooter, Will Hit 30 FPS on Computers "Dating Back a Decade"

What was "Project A" now has a name and new details, and the CS:GO similarities are only getting stronger.

Back when Riot Games first teased its upcoming tactical first person shooter in October, its influences were pretty clear. The character abilities would seem at-home in Overwatch, while the gunplay and maps appeared to be heavily inspired by Counter-Strike. Now officially titled as Valorant, it seems Riot's shooter will be angling more towards capturing the latter's crowd when it goes public this summer-like CS:GO, Valorant is being designed to run on very low-spec PCs.

Riot launched an official website and social media accounts for Valorant today, simultaneous with the publication of several hands-on impressions pieces from various outlets. At our sister site Eurogamer, Chris Tapsell says Valorant "feels like a surgical piecing together" of the best bits from games like CS:GO, Crossfire, and Ghost Recon: Future Soldier (speaking to press, Riot referenced 12 games in total without naming Overwatch) or, more succinctly, Valorant is like "Counter-Strike in a just slightly more colorful world."

A new gameplay video further illustrates how similar Valorant's core gameplay is to Counter-Strike's: teams of five take turns attacking and defending bombsites, and players amass currency over the course of a game that they can spend on better weapons and armor.

Valorant is really looking to compete with and out-do CS:GO in terms of its performance and latency. On the Valorant website, Riot says that Valorant will run on decade-old computers ("at least 30 frames per second on most min-spec computers") and that by guaranteeing 128-tick servers using datacenters across the globe, it hopes for an average ping of less than 35 milliseconds for most players at launch. This, Tapsell writes, is thanks to a service called Riot Direct which will route your Valorant inputs straight to Riot's servers.

For CS:GO, by contrast, Valve offers a mix of 64 and 128 tick dedicated servers, and having been built on Source, the game can easily run on low-end hardware. Riot engineer David Strailey tells Eurogamer that a $120 laptop with a i3-370M processor can handle Valorant at 30 FPS.

Last month, former Counter-Strike pro Henry "HenryG" Greer shared some thoughts from a playtest of what was then called Project A, praising its map design in particular. "They have been beautifully created and follow Counter-strikesque [sic] familiar lanes and choke points," wrote Greer. From the new footage and screenshots of Valorant several Counter-Strike aficionados have noticed similarities between one of its maps and CS:GO's Mirage.

More folks will have a chance to get their hands on Valorant soon and form their own opinions on how it stacks up against Counter-Strike, Overwatch, and the likes of Rainbow Six: Vegas. Riot will run a closed beta for Valorant ahead of its summer 2020 launch. For right now, Valorant is only planned to launch on PC.

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Mathew Olson


Mathew Olson is a writer formerly of Digg, where he blogged and reported about all things under the umbrella of internet culture (including games, of course). He lives in New York, grew up under rain clouds and the influence of numerous games studios in the Pacific Northwest, and will talk your ear off about Half-Life mods, Talking Heads or Twin Peaks if you let him.

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