A new cascading method of picking characters could be coming to Valorant in the near future.
On April 26, renowned Valorant leaker ValorLeaks previewed a potential overhaul to Valorant’s pick system. According to the source, Valorant might soon introduce a cascading picking system where players pick their agents one after the other.
Cascading picking could have a major impact on the public matchmaking Valorant metagame.
ValorLeaks mentioned that some of his information came from Valorant surveys gathering thoughts on the mechanic, which means the changes could come soon. Riot Games occasionally sends out email surveys to a small group of players to get feedback. The image included in the post could be a mockup or an actual screenshot.
In Valorant’s specific case, players will have 10 seconds each to pick a character. The order of picking seems to be determined automatically. Players can signal an intended agent choice as well as a preferred alternate. From there, players must wait their turn to lock-in. New characters like the upcoming Fade could still cause some points of contention.
Cascading picking is not confirmed for Valorant and could work differently if it ever does get released. For players, it’s important to know how this system will affect the pub meta.
How will cascade picking change the Valorant meta?
Cascading picking could have drastic effects on public matches across all skill brackets. This change would especially harm “one tricks,” players who only play a single character and no one else. While still able to indicate their favorite agent, one tricks cannot prevent a player before them in the order from picking their character. Cascading picking is more similar to how drafting works in Valorant esports matches, but still simple enough to do on the fly.
Cascade picking could also raise the value of player versatility. Someone who only played a single character before would lose the option to instantly lock them.
The ability to clearly state a preferred second character shows that Riot is aware of this problem. Players will need to cooperate to get balanced team compositions, but that’s already true for the existing Valorant draft system.