Nick J. September 11, 2020
In Riot's "Ask Valorant #7," a curious player asked an interesting question: what statistics really count when Riot calculates their ranking? Some players might not like Riot's answer.
According to Valorant senior producer Ian Fielding, support mains had better start pumping out the damage if they want to rank up. When asked whether or not Valorant's ranking system takes into account assists that aren't based on damage, such as a Sova Recon Bolt that reveals an enemy and leads to a kill, Fielding revealed that Valorant's current system only takes into account actual damage.
"Your combat score is not just based on kills, although that is a big factor in the score. We also look at damage inflicted, meaning that assists where you help kill an enemy are taken into account, as well as utility that does damage," Fielding replied.
Valorant ranking system doesn't consider vision assists or support abilities
Riot's answer is a gut punch to players who main support characters as Sova, Cypher, and Brimstone. With these agents' abilities based on map control and gaining information for their team, Fielding's response implies that these agents' contributions aren't counted towards a player's end of match scorecard.
So while Sova's bolt might spot a sneaky Omen lurking on Haven, the only players getting credit for taking him out are the ones doing the damage. Even Sage's heals don't seem to contribute to a player's overall rank.
The answer probably isn't what support mains want to hear. In the chase for the coveted Radiant rank, it turns out damage and damage assists are all that matter.
Fielding clarified his statement by saying that Valorant's ranking system does take into account damage from abilities as well as bullets, meaning that a kill shared between players that both inflict damage, like in the instance of an enemy taking ticking damage from a Viper grenade, do count towards a player's overall ranking.
Luckily, Valorant's developers are currently looking into ways to incorporate informational assists like Cypher's Neural Theft ultimate into that player's overall score.
"Longer term, we are looking into ways to incorporate non-damaging assists into your combat score as well," Fielding said.
But that news isn't much comfort to players who have put hours into Valorant in order to find the best spots for Cypher's cameras, Sova's Recon Bolts, or Brimstone's smokes.
Support mains will have to take comfort in the fact that Valorant's senior producer said that the largest influence on their rank is whether or not they win the match.