Valorant 1.03 Patch Notes: Guardian Changes, New Skins Teased

Valorant's latest patch makes some minor changes to the game, rebalancing the Guardian rifle and adding a new orb to the casual Spike Rush mode.

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Valorant just introduced competitive play back into the game with their 1.02 patch last week, and Riot has already rolled out a new update for the game. Patch 1.03 takes particular aim at the Guardian rifle, reducing its fire rate to be less useful in close-range situations, but increasing its penetration power to make it more viable as a long-range weapon. Its price was also decreased to 2500 credits from 2700.

The other changes to the game are relatively minor, but worth noting. Players will now be able to surrender during unranked matches with only 80% of their team (i.e. four out of five) voting yes. Competitive surrenders still require a unanimous vote, however. The patch also adds a new orb to the popular Spike Rush mode, which releases two wolves to track down your nearest enemies.

Valorant's Twitter account seemed to tease a new set of skins today. While it's impossible to know for sure, given this image's dragon-esque appearance, it may correspond to the Dragon Collection, which was revealed in name only as part of a substantial leak of new skins several months ago.

Besides rolling out the game's much-anticipated competitive mode, Patch 1.02 made significant changes to the way that some of Viper's abilities work, since she's currently considered to be fairly underpowered. The name of Valorant's top competitive rank was changed from "Valorant" to "Radiant," after fans petitioned Riot to make it a unique label.

Full patch notes below:

WEAPON UPDATES

Guardian

  • Price reduced from 2700 >>> 2500
  • Rate of Fire reduced from 6.5 >>> 4.75
  • Penetration power increased from Medium >>> Heavy
  • Input queue updated from 0.083 >>> 0.1175
    • Up until now, the Guardian has lived in a strange position in the arsenal. Price-wise, it remained close to the premium rifles while not adequately competing with their power, making it too pricey as an alternate economic option, but not powerful enough to be considered as a premiere weapon choice. Its fast fire rate made it more powerful in close range situations than we’d like, given our goals for the weapon’s long-range, precision shot fantasy, and—despite its semi-automatic, heavy-hitting firing style—it matched other rifles in terms of penetrating power. We hope these changes will sharpen the Guardian’s identity as a long-range, versatile weapon, with its heavy penetration values and lower price providing some more nuanced choice competition to the rifle category of the arsenal.

MAP UPDATES

Haven

  • Removed spot where Spike was unable to be retrieved once dropped.

All Maps

  • Fixed multiple spots where players were able to clip inside level geometry
  • Removed more locations where Sova’s sensor arrow was able to go through walls

MODE UPDATES

Spike Rush

  • New Orb: Twin Hunters
    • Capturing the orb releases two hunting wolves to track down the two nearest enemies (from orb location, they will not change targets after spawning).
      • Wolves speed up when they spot an enemy and dash at them when close, slowing and near-sighting for 4 seconds upon impact.
      • Wolves have 150 HP and can be damaged
      • Wolves will time out at 15 seconds, or when their target is killed
  • Split: Orb Location
    • Mid defender side orb has been moved onto mid platform to make it slightly less defender favored

QUALITY OF LIFE

Surrender changes

  • Unrated Mode vote requirements to pass changed from 100% to 80%
  • Competitive Mode vote requirements to pass remains at 100%
  • You can now call a surrender vote starting with round 5 versus round 8
  • A new button in the in-game menu has been added to call a surrender vote
    • We know it can be at times challenging to get a surrender vote to pass given it has historically required an unanimous vote. For Unrated Mode , which is meant to be lower stakes than Competitive (no rank on the line), we have made adjustments so if the vast majority of the team wants to surrender (80%) they can now opt out of that match and find a fairer fight sooner.
    • For Competitive Mode we plan to keep the vote requirement as unanimous, because surrendering has an impact on your rank (all unplayed rounds count as loss credit), we want to make sure the team is in full agreement before a decision is made that will negatively impact a player’s rank. We’ve also slightly reduced the minimum rounds needed to be played so that if players have a particularly bad start, they can opt out of that match earlier.
  • In the Collection screens, there is now a checkbox to toggle between showing all items or only owned ones (additional options and improvements for managing your collection will be coming in future patches)
  • Fixed a bug where the mission “You or your ally plant/defuse spikes” sometimes did not take into account plants and defuses by allies
  • Transition screens and startup screens are now letterboxed
  • Fixed text overlap issues in the Battlepass and Contract screens in some languages
  • Players in custom games with cheats enabled can select a different Agent to use on the next round in the cheats menu.
  • Removing a friend will now prompt a confirmation dialogue
  • Pressing Escape while typing in the chat box will clear the message
  • Revised layout of confirmation dialogs to make primary action larger and always on the left; applied color in various places, like using red for destructive actions; revised the locations of some confirmation and cancel buttons for consistency
  • Minor fixes for visual artifacts on Bind on Intel GPUs
  • Minor render improvements for modern hardware
  • Added an error popup for crashes on startup linking to troubleshooting guide for crashes
  • Patch notes and payment windows will scale correctly on 4K monitors
  • IME input on payment windows will now work correctly (Japanese/Chinese)
  • Players can now view individual skin levels in the collections and store view
  • Updates to censored hit impact effects for better readability
  • Added Agent silhouettes for observers
  • Improved render performance for silhouettes
  • Agent health bars are now visible to observers
  • Fulfilling a buy request while moving will no longer interrupt your movement
  • Custom Games Tournament Mode:
    • Custom games can now be set to Tournament Mode. This allows every player in the game to have access to the Toggle Match Timer cheat in game without having all other cheats enabled. It also allows observers to be flagged as moderators, which grants them access to additional cheats that they can use as necessary. Regular observers cannot use cheats anymore.
    • We'll be looking at expanding the list of moderator cheats in future patches.

BUG FIXES

  • Fixed a Cypher bug where traps that were placed such that they were on the inside of a doorway, would not trigger when someone walked through them
  • Fixed an issue with the Match Timer hitching under unstable network conditions
  • Fixed an issue where players couldn’t jump off ascenders if jump was bound to the mousewheel
  • Fixed some visual issues that could occur when reconnecting to the game while dead
  • Fixed Barrier phase announcement showing up in normal games for observers
  • Fixed various UI issues on observer scoreboard

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