Here are the competitive changes introduced in VALORANT Patch 1.05

The competitive spirit of VALORANT burns brighter.

Image via Riot Games

VALORANT Act II went live with Patch 1.05 earlier today. In addition to adding the 12th agent to the game, Killjoy, the patch also brought nerfs to Raze, bug fixes, and quality-of-life changes.

Though each improvement directly affects the game experience of VALORANT players, the competitive tweaks included in the patch notes look aspiring to increase interaction between friends and the level of competitiveness in VALORANT.

Riot Games talked about most of these additions in a blog post in July. Here’s the full list of all the new competitive changes that made it into the game with Patch 1.05.

VALORANT Patch 1.05 competitive changes

  • Act Ranks have been added to the game; read our deep dive for more.
  • Patch 1.05 marks the end of Competitive Act I—Competitive Act II starts. 
    • If you earned a rank in Act I, play three more games to show your rank again in Act II. If you are a new player, you will still need to play five initial placement matches, so we have more time to calibrate to your skill
    • Expect a conservative initial placement, ~2 rank tiers lower than your prior Act I rank, so we are confident you are at or above that skill in Act II. The performance will have a more substantial impact in your early games, so you will be able to gain rank if you play well and win quickly
  • Competitive matchmaking now will have a higher chance to match solo and solo/duo players against similarly sized premade groups at the cost of queue times being slightly longer.
    • Regardless of premade sizes, match balance is sitting reasonably close to 50 / 50 for which team wins, but there is often a more considerable skill disparity between the best and worst players in the games with large premade sizes. This change should reduce the chance of solo players getting into games where there is high skill disparity.
  • Rank indicators have been modified on a loss to provide more granularity into how your rank was changed— You can now receive:
    • Rating decreased slightly (one down arrow)
    • Rating decreased (two down arrows)
    • Rating greatly decreased (three down arrows)
      • Previously we showed very little info about how much rank you lost on a loss to limit the already painful experience of a loss. This was leading to issues, however, where a player may have had a really rough game (think decisively lost the game and played poorly) and then would win several games and not rank up. This should help alleviate this problem somewhat by providing more transparency on a loss and your amount of rank lost.
      • We are also looking into ways to give additional transparency around rank changes in future patches.
  • Match History will now show the rank you went into the match with for that game, versus the rank you ended the game with
  • You can now view your friends’ career tab via the context menu in the social panel. This means you can see your friends rank, Act Rank, and Match History. 
    • You can now see how awesome your friends have been doing in their matches and their rank gains, or reach out and console them if they have had some rough games.
  • Custom Games now allow the leader to select your target game pod location and see players ping to that game pod.
    • For custom games, when all players are opting into the game, we want to allow the leader more agency around what latency players will have. Hopefully your custom game leader will try and find the best DC for the game and for all players, but if they are greedy, you can always leave without penalty.

Highlights of the competitive changes in VALORANT 1.05

Image via Riot Games

The majority of the changes seem spot on to address most of the issues that VALORANT players were addressing throughout Act I. 

Not knowing how much their rank was decreasing, or increasing, was confusing to the player base and the new arrows provide more information to players. These arrows will be based on your performance and whether you lose or win a game.

The return of the calibration matches with fewer amounts indicates that Riot decided to go with a soft reset for the new Act. Returning players who unlocked their rank during the first Act will only have to play three matches while new players will need to go through five calibration games.

The state of the parties in VALORANT’s ranked mode has been the center of debates since the full introduction of the game mode in June. Players were extremely displeased with playing against stacks of five players while queueing as a solo or duo. The latest patch increases the chance of solo and duo players matching against each other. 

Though this could still not be the case if you enjoy playing at off-hours, VALORANT will always try its best to compile teams with a winning chance of 50-percent compared to the opposing side.

One of the most welcomed changes is the improvements that the friends list tab received, however. The old friends list was only good enough to invite players to a lobby but had a lot of untapped potential. You can now view your friends’ ranks, match histories, and their recent performances. You’ll be able to tell how your friends have been performing without you now and measure the skill level in your friend circle.

The last notable change was to the match history, which also looked dull before the patch and was hard to navigate through. Players had no way of knowing what their rank was before a game, which made keeping track of your ranked process harder than it should be. Patch 1.05 allows players to see what their rank was at the beginning of any given game from their match history, allowing them to better understand how they’ve been performing lately.