What happened on Ascent? Release date, lore of the popular Valorant map

Fariha Bhatti • February 3, 2022 12:40 pm

Ascent’s is Valorant’s most lore-heavy map after Fracture. Here’s everything you need to know about this scenic location. 

Valorant was originally released with three maps and a practice range. Soon after the beta, Riot dropped Ascent with a bang, featuring a scenic spot set in Italy, Venice. However, not many players know the story behind the floating huts in Ascent. 

When did Ascent come out? 

Ascent was part of the original map pool, but it was released after beta due to some necessary iterations. The floating part of Venice was officially released on June 2, 2020. 

Only a few Valorant maps are as balanced as Ascent. Almost all players admire the visually pleasing location due to its classic shooter-game map layout. Vast bomb points divided by an extensive mid-area allow for complex executes in a balanced way. Its entertainment value is also vested in calming visuals and antique architecture.

However, Ascent isn’t all roses. There’s some dark history behind the devastation on this map. 

What happened on Ascent?

Ascent was the first Valorant map to deliver the game’s lore directly to players. In Valorant’s first cinematic, “Duelists,” an epic duel between Pheonix and Jett showed what really went down in Italy. 

Duelists wasn’t just an introduction to Valorant’s aggressive agent category. It was the first time Riot showed how deadly Radianite could be. In Duelists, Jett was chased down by Phoenix, who was pursuing a secret package. The package was likely a Spike, a dangerous device used to cause detonation and steal Radianite from Earth-1. In lore, the hostile Jett was fighting with Phoenix to steal the Spike fueled with powerful energy. Phoenix fails to capture the mirror agent, which leads Jett to destroy the location in her pursuit to steal Radianite. 

The cinematic suggests that Ascent is Jett’s doing. The hostile agent likely destroyed a chunk of Venice while trying to steal Radianite. The Spike explosion blew the area into the air, which still floats to this day. Something similar was about to happen in Bind, as shown in Duality. Luckily, Earth-1 agents were there to save the day. 

Currently, Fracture and Ascent are the two lore-heavy maps that affirm the importance of Radianite. The developer continues to expand the lore through cinematics, Brimstone’s secret room, and messenger box on Fracture. It remains to be seen how Riot’s next geodome location ties to the base laid out through the other two maps. 

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