Is Neon too OP? New Valorant agent may not be so strong

Fariha Bhatti • January 14, 10:40

Neon’s first look had away many players feeling scared, but the new agent 19 may not be as overpowered as she seems. 

Riot Games has just rolled out a counter for Valorant’s S-tier wind ranger Jett. The electrifying duelist, Neon, can run fast and stun enemies, two abilities that are necessary to execute aggressive plays. Neon’s kit seemed extremely viable in teasers and trailers, but is she really OP in practice? 

Players are still grinding ranked games to determine whether Neon is faster than light and deadlier than Jett. We have taken Neon on a spin, and it seems that she isn’t actually that OP.

Is Neon OP in Valorant? 

Many think Neon is OP in the current Valorant meta, but that might not be the case. 

Neon is equipped with three primary abilities: a speed boost, a stun, and dual barriers. Her stun didn’t get much attention, but it’s her High Gear and Fast Lane abilities that have raised players’ concern. However, both the powers are actually pretty balanced, and here’s why. 

The Fast Lane that creates two barriers for a safe route that also invites enemies to take one versus one duels with Neon. When she lifts the curtains, enemies know that the agent will sprint through the safe opening. This will allow them to ambush her at the portal. Her Fast Lane puts her at significant risk of duels where enemies would have an advantage most of the time, as she’s the one who lacks intel due to the barriers in her way.

The same is true with her High Gear ability. While Neon may run faster than other agents, she won’t have any weapon equipped while moving. In High Gear, Neon moves quickly, but she also becomes highly vulnerable. Unlike Jett’s dash, Neon can be shot down easily while in her High Gear, making it a more balanced ability. The only way these two abilities are powerful is when they’re paired together. For example, creating barriers and then using them to speed into the site. 

Valorant streamer Michael “shroud” Grzesiek also agreed that Neon isn’t that “insane,” She might not even see high time in professional Valorant matches. 

“I don’t think this character is going to be insane in the meta or anything. It’s going to be really fun to play, and probably kind of annoying to play against because she’s so fast,” shroud said.

Is Neon’s ult too powerful? 

Neon may have the most potent ultimate ability in the game so far. The agent can run fast and shoot laser blasts from her finger that deal heavy damage when using her ult. An oceanic electricity tank that stores enough power helps her draw energy and zap enemies at sonic fast speed. 

Her overall kit may not be as OP as players first believed, but Overdrive is possibly the best ult in the game. However, Riot will likely deliver some further tweaks for her kit to balance her out. Her damage rate should remain the same, but her tank that refills upon killing might see some changes. 

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