GRAPHIC BY DENISE THUONG
By RENEE WANG
Could this shooter game finally be the new and improved Counterstrike?
On April 7, Riot Games released its long-awaited project, Valorant, into closed beta, allowing the lucky few with access to it into the program.
Valorant is a free-to-play first-person shooter (FPS) video game that is centered around precise gunplay and fun co-ops. Players can get access to the game by watching streamers on the streaming platform, Twitch, and wait for the luck of the draw for a beta key to drop into their notifications.
Given the current living situation—with players around the world stuck in quarantine—Valorant has directed immense popularity and praise to Riot Games for finally producing a new game other than League of Legends. However, some have also found aspects of the game too similar to other FPS games, especially Counterstrike: Global Offensive (CS:GO).
Despite the controversy behind the game’s inspiration, rather than focusing on who copied who, CS:GO players should look into Valorant as a new opportunity to play a game they are already familiar with.
Much like CS:GO, Valorant promises to be easily playable on low PC requirements in order to emphasize on the shooting aspect in the game. In addition, Valorant and CS:GO utilize the same structure within a 5v5 team whose goal is to plant a bomb in a specific location.
Gameplay-wise, players have also stated that the mechanics and movement in the shooting are identical across both applications. From such similarities, CS:GO fans would have no problem integrating themselves into the game as it possesses elements they enjoy already in the original.
But while there are indeed some striking similarities between Valorant and CS:GO, there are also differences that players would find enjoyable.
Specifically, players now have special abilities that can give them an advantage in combat. These abilities allow players to come up with new strategies and tactics as well as improve as needed when they encounter an enemy team. In addition, Valorant is built to take the mistakes of old FPS games and improve on them, allowing players to find a more enjoyable and smooth gameplay experience.
Overall, Valorant will prove to be an important figure for CS:GO players in the long run. For years, the game has had issues with cheating degrading the gameplay experience, which its developer company, Valve, has failed to address.
In contrast, Riot Games has promised players that Valorant will possess an anti-cheat driver to prevent cheating in the game with the improvements of what CS:GO fans demand Valve for. So, if Valorant continues to make up for what Valve lacks, it will pressure Valve to improve CS:GO in response as a competitor in the same genre.
Overall, it might be too early to tell since Valorant is still in closed beta, however with Valorant’s competitive potential, the FPS genre would most likely see itself improving and have more significance within esports as well.