VALORANT players looking to itch their trigger fingers while in a queue will have to be a bit more patient.
Riot addressed the fan-requested feature in today's Ask VALORANT blog, explaining that it's "straight up not efficient" to let players jump into the practice range while waiting for a match to start. But there are certain alternatives in the works that Riot hopes it'll get done "early next year."
"A practice range 'match' is currently just as expensive for us to run on the server side as a standard 5v5 match, but the effort is about 10x less efficient per player because it is only serving one player at a time," lead games mode producer Jared Berbach said. "We prefer to preserve our server horsepower for bread and butter competitive matches."
Putting each individual player into a practice range match would take up server real estate to support only one player. Even though Riot asserts the technology is there, the devs are "reluctant" to pursue it.
Riot is working on alternatives, however. A potential aim trainer would help players stay warmed up without stressing out the servers. This would also help build a future solution of letting players get into FFA Deathmatch games while waiting in queue. But Riot cites a need to figure out a "bunch of prerequisite tech" first.
For now, Riot is working on letting players in queue join Deathmatch games that are already in progress with a timeline of some time early next year.
Being able to hit the practice range while in a queue is something many players have asked for, especially those in high ranks. High-rank matchmaking typically takes longer to find a game due to less volume of players, causing lengthy queue times. A feature to give players something to do while in a queue would help alleviate this frustration.