A Riot Games developer has admitted that the knives in Valorant are currently “shitty.”
In a tweet, lead character designer Ryan “Morello” Scott responded to a player’s concern over the state of melee in Valorant. The gameplay clip they posted showed him wielding the knife and stabbing at an opponent multiple times to no avail.
“Knife is basically really shitty right now. Something we definitely want to fix,” Morello tweeted back.
Knife is basically really shitty right now. Something we definitely want to fix
— Morello (@RiotMorello) July 20, 2020
The knives in Valorant deal 50 damage with the left-click and 75 with the right-click, if players are aiming for an enemy’s front. From the back or side, knives deal 100 damage with the left-click and 150 with the right-click. This is pretty similar to how knives work in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, except that the knives in Valorant are much harder to actually strike with.
“The only difference that matters is the knife in other games (CSGO) applies damage instantly when you right-click whereas in Valorant you kinda have to be a galaxy brain lord pixel-perfect timing machine to hit it with that 0.5 sec delay,” one player responded to Morello.
Many players have found that players have a 50% chance of getting a kill with Valorant’s knife since it doesn’t even register a hit sometimes. That’s due to a very small hitbox and a pretty long delay in the attack landing. Those two issues have together rendered the knife inefficient. Players will often sneak up and get a headshot on an opponent instead of using the knife, since any attempt at a knife kill is considered such a risky proposition.
While some Valorant fans have definitely found luck with the knife, it’s often used just to increase a character’s running speed. Just like in CSGO, switching to a knife will let your agent move faster. But maybe one day players will be able to keep their knife out when they stealthily approach an enemy instead of quickly switching back to a gun once they’re done sprinting.
Morello has yet to explain exactly how Riot will change the knife’s mechanics. Cutting down on the delay before the knife strikes would seem a clear starting point.