Review: Let’s turn the tide

The hit game “Valorant” welcomed its newest update on Oct. 18, ushering in a new era of the game


Riot Games

“Valorant” from Riot Games, has been updated to include a new interface and new playable character, making it one of the best first person shooters on the market right now.

Kennedy Tetour, Managing Editor

The team prepares with five seconds until the barrier collapses. Once the map is open, chaos ensues as both teams use all of their might to complete their mission. A player rushes towards the site through explosions and gunfire, narrowly making it to the area where the other team has planted the spike, a small device that they must diffuse to win.

“Valorant” is a five-on-five first person shooter game that came out in June of 2020. The game has been rising in popularity ever since and is making its way into the second act of episode 5. 

Update 5.08 has an official release date of Oct. 18, though it was playable on the game’s public beta environment (PBE) from Oct. 14 to Oct. 17. The new act comes with a user interface update and a new agent named Harbor. 

Harbor is a water themed agent that comes from India. His abilities include High Tide, Cascade, Cove, and his ultimate ability, Reckoning. Though his abilities may seem new and exciting, some of them make old agents, such as Astra, seem useless now. Harbor’s abilities create barriers that opponents can’t shoot through, which is oddly similar to Astra’s ultimate ability, Astral Form/Cosmic Divide. Though his abilities make him seem like an unbalanced agent, Harbor is actually an incredibly fun and fair agent to play. His abilities are built in a way that gives allies the advantage while still offering a fair game to the opposing team. 

“Harbor could use some tweaks… But I love his versatility, and [I] feel like he works well with retaking [the] site,” said junior Zach Lobue. “[Harbor] works amazingly with a good team. Any agent that can protect another teammate is super valuable.” 

In addition to a new agent, “Valorant” developers also updated the user interface. This means that update 5.08 came with a new design to the home and play screens, along with new victory and defeat screens. The update is a nice new change and offers a sleek new design to the game. Though some players have compared “Valorant”’s new look to “Overwatch”, both games donning oddly similar looks in their respective updates. 

“The new UI is much needed,” states Lobue, “[it] makes it so much fresher, and everything feels super smooth. [I] love it.”

The game’s popularity has been skyrocketing throughout 2022. Each month in 2021 had about 12 million active players, in comparison, September 2022 had nearly 25 million active players. With the consistent addition of new agents, maps, and other various updates, “Valorant” has made itself a household name in gaming. 

The team’s Harbor quickly deploys a shield around this player. This small act launches the team to victory as the player successfully diffuse the spike and defend the site.