Riot Games has confirmed that five-stacks are returning to Valorant, but it won’t be as simple as players think.
Players have long been complaining about a ranking system that limits five-stacks. The developer has implied rank disparity on full lobby queues, which forces higher-rank players to queue in duos. Leakers suggested that this will change in patch 3.10, and Riot Games has responded with a confirmation.
After the leakers revealed free five-stack queues returning to Valorant, many players were concerned that ranked would become saturated with low-skilled players. A mix of Iron, Platinum, and Immortal players would negatively impact the ranking system, squeezing the fun out of competitive play. By removing the barrier, Riot would be letting high skilled players into low-ranked queues, making it even harder to climb through the levels.
There were many concerns, but the developer has clarified that the new change would with certain limitations to ensure clean play. Senior competitive designer EvrMoar gave an insight into how the new update would be applied.
According to EvrMoar, nothing changes for those not queuing in a lobby of five. For example, old restrictions and rules would still apply if you are four players in a lobby. Players must have five players to be exempted from the previous rank disparity rules. Players over Diamond three rank would not be allowed to queue in a stack of three. Players above Diamond rank would see higher elo deduction upon losing and less gain upon winning.
The new changes would mainly impact higher-rank players, so the developer has tightened lobby restrictions further. Players above Diamond three playing in five stacks would match up against complete lobby players too. While this will positively impact ranked experience post-update, it also means a longer wait time. Finding five stacks for a high-ranked full lobby might take up some extra time.
Whatever the case, players now know that the five-person lobby is returning to Valorant for sure. The change will be applied from patch 3.10, but no one knows the limitations yet. The developer has promised more details to come in the coming weeks.