Riot doesn’t think VALORANT’s Operator is overpowered

"It's doing what it's supposed to do."

Image via Riot Games

When playing FPS games, there’s always a chance you can be killed by a sniper, which can be frustrating. In VALORANT, some players think the Operator is just too overpowered. Riot doesn’t agree, however.

During lead character designer Ryan “Morello” Scott’s latest stream, he said this is a player problem and not an Operator problem. He said Riot is looking at buffing other utility first before nerfing the gun.

“We don’t think the Operator is overpowered," Morello said. "We think some portions of utility might be underperforming in mid Elos, but not elite Elos or expert Elos. We don’t think there’s a balance problem.”

The Operator has the highest damage per bullet out of all the weapons in the game due to its one-shot kill potential to the body. To compensate for that, its weapon cost is high at 4,500 credits.

“There’s a ‘I can’t access the tools I need to fight an Operator’ [problem] in a lot of cases,” Morello said. “It’s so much harder to do the coordination for an uncoordinated team that we’re getting bodied by Operators. We don’t think the Operator is actually overpowered.”

Players need to consider evaluating their gameplay style before blaming their deaths on the gun.

“You walk around the corner, and an OP is standing on the corner, it shoots you, and you die? That’s by design, we will not be fixing that,” Morello said.

Morello thinks playing with agents like Cypher, who's focused on surveillance, and Sage, who's dedicated to supporting, while leaving aside other Operator counters is highlighting part of the problem.

“If you’re playing double Sentinel, my expectation is that OPs body you," Morello said. "If you’re running a double Controller comp, I think that’s much better for dealing with OPs. My worry is that we don’t see people running a Breach, or a Phoenix, or a Reyna who have flash-like utility, because I think our flash-like utility might just not be potent enough compared to some of the guns."

Riot is focusing on other solutions ⁠by buffing counters to the sniper. But the counterplay Riot has for the Operator might not be working as intended and may need a boost if the numbers trend toward the gun being more powerful than initially thought.