The Operator is considered overpowered by many

Riot’s Latest Blogpost Talks About the OP and Sound Design

Valorant
Ask Valorant 6 blogpost OP sound design

Image credit: Riot Games

Riot Games released another blog post yesterday, this time talking about the popular Operator, the in-game sound and patches coming late to certain regions.

Much like the AWP in CS:GO, the Operator in Valorant is enjoying quite a lot of popularity. As a result, a lot of people aren’t happy and consider the weapon overpowered. You see Riot knew it’d be OP, so they named it the OP. Good thinking. What do Riot Games think about their creation though? We find the team’s thoughts in the latest Ask Valorant blogpost (wall of text warning):

What are your thoughts on the opinion that “the Operator is too OP”?

We think the Operator isn't "too OP" but do believe that the feeling sometimes comes from a lack of personal agency against the weapon (for Agents that don't have tools to break line of sight for themselves), coupled with an overwhelming amount of team coordination to effectively counter an Operator. We're looking into a lot of avenues to help smooth out the experience but we do believe the Operator should be powerful and should encourage a team to thoughtfully enter a space where it might be in play. No changes now doesn’t mean no changes ever.

Truly the most frustrating part when facing an OP is playing with an agent that has no solid crowd control. The number of agents without any sort of wall, smoke or flashbang is low and once you realize there’s an OP on the enemy team it turns into a team effort.

Why do EU/CIS/TR regions get patches and features later than everyone else (like Deathmatch)? Why can’t you just turn things on for everyone at the same time?

For anyone who wasn’t aware, when we ship major patches, we typically patch in 3 regional chunks. The NA/LATAM/BR regional cluster first, then the KR/JP/SEA/OCE regional cluster, then the EU/TR/CIS regional cluster last.

Game stability is the main reason EU/CIS/TR regions typically get big, complicated patches last. We want to make sure if we do hit a critical game-breaking bug, we don’t have to hotfix it across every region simultaneously. EU/CIS/TR regions tend to get more stable patches of all 3 clusters because we can quickly integrate hotfixes before the main patch goes out, rather than having to triage it while it’s already out there. EU/CIS/TR also happens to be the largest population of VALORANT players, so major disruptions have an objectively bigger impact.

Don’t feel bad for playing in one of the regions that get the patch later. Be happy that the updates you get will be much more stable!

Sometimes it feels like sound is off in the game, like footsteps are much closer than they really are, or I hear them in the wrong direction! Am I going crazy? Does VALORANT do something different with sound?

I've also heard feedback around the fact that people have a hard time telling how far away a footstep is, which there is truth to. We optimize for making sure footsteps are heard, as opposed to optimizing for portraying distance. What this looks like is an attenuation curve that is somewhat flat, versus one that drops off a lot over distance. There are a couple reasons we do this. One is that under chaotic conditions where abilities are being used and you are probably hearing a lot of VOIP from your team, it is essential that you don't miss a footstep.

We currently mix the game in stereo, meaning there is no difference between a sound 45 degrees to your left in front of you and a sound 45 degrees to your left in back of you. Some people expect to be able to hear this difference, but that is not currently possible.

Players have been complaining about the sound in Valorant for quite some time now and it’s nice to see that Riot is aware of it. The team seems to be working on a solution, but by the looks of it, further testing is required. Currently, it’s rather hard to tell how close an enemy is but at least you know they’re nearby, so in a way it could've been worse.

What do you think about the Operator and the sound design in Valorant? Share your opinion on our Facebook page!

Stay tuned for more Valorant news and check EarlyGame for everything gaming and esports.

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Tasho Tashev

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