Valorant Designers Pull Back the Curtain on a Much-hyped Game Where Slow and Methodical Can Be a Winning Strategy

Even though VALORANT won’t be officially released until this summer, there’s been no shortage of hype around the game in the past two weeks. The first-person shooter game from Riot hit 165 million hours watched on Twitch its first weekend, with viewers tuning in to catch streamers playing in closed beta.

Today, ESPN Sports is running the Esports VALORANT Invitational, where gaming professionals, former pros, and high-profile streamers have been placed on eight teams to compete against each other. In addition to VALORANT developers, players from League of Legends, Overwatch, CS:GO, Rainbow Six Siege, PUBG, Apex Legends, and Fortnite square off in a round-robin format over the next few days.

Riot Games has described VALORANT as being about more than showing up and blasting away: “Shooting in VALORANT is precise, consequential, and highly-lethal—we want you to win on your skill and strategy alone.”

Today, Riot Games made a couple of VALORANT-related announcements. For those looking to make a little extra cash, the company is offering up to $100,000 to anyone who can identify vulnerabilities in Vanguard, the anti-cheat system that comes with the game.

Second, the company pulled back the curtain on the development process for VALORANT by posting an interview with the game’s lead designer, Trevor Romleski, and senior map designer Salvatore Garozzo.

The two talk about the philosophy behind the game, including being okay with the idea that sometimes slow and steady wins the fight. In other words, you don’t have to hit the ground running like you’ve ditched the Ritalin and shotgunned a six-pack of Red Bull Extra.

“We’re definitely going with a slower, more methodical approach, with a lot of movement in the game,” Romleski says. “So you walk more commonly than you would go for a sprint.”

Watch here.

Mike Usinger once took the better part of two years to finish Grand Theft Auto. Over the course of his career he has written about everything from eSports to music to movies to travel.

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