Fan-favorite Valorant map Split is back in the competitive pool, but fans of Bind and Breeze are paying a heavy price for it.
In an update on December 2, 2022, Riot Games announced several upcoming changes for the Valorant map pool. The list of changes coming in January 2023 includes the readdition of Split to the competitive pool, though the new version of the map will include several differences from the original. In addition, Bind and Breeze will take a backseat to make room for the readdition. Here are the details on the changes and when to expect the return of the missing maps.
In an official blog post, the Valorant team revealed its plan for the map pool in 2023. The biggest change of all is the readdition of Split, which was previously removed in June of this year. The map will have been absent for a total of seven months. Split was one of the original three maps of the game, and fans have constantly requested its return ever since it was first removed.
As part of this change, Split will also get multiple changes affecting the flow of its gameplay. The announcement did not say anything specific about the upcoming adjustments, but both bomb sites could get substantial changes to open up new strategies. The long connector featuring the map’s iconic ropes could also get some tweaks. The only way to know for sure is to log in after the Valorant map pool changes go live in January, 2023.
Why are Bind and Breeze being removed from the Valorant map pool?
In the blog post, Valorant maps team member Joe Lansford revealed why Bind and Breeze specifically are being removed for Split. The blog post stated that both removals were due to general stagnation with strategies on the maps.
“For Breeze, we feel like this map has some room to improve in terms of Agents and team comp diversity, as well as some opportunities for simplification of the space,” Lansford explained.
In the case of Bind, the wording of the post implied that competitive teams generally played the map the same as each other. He explained Riot’s plan to open up new lines of play surrounding the central teleporter, which could have drastic effects on community-developed tech.
The blog post ends with a promise that these maps will eventually return to competitive play. Considering the length of Split’s absence, fans should expect several months before they can play the map again. On the bright side, Valorant players can still enjoy both maps in custom games and Spike Rush.