Chamber has confirmed extremely fashionable since becoming a member of Valorant’s roster final 12 months. In contrast to many different Brokers within the recreation, his utility is exclusive in that it’s virtually completely designed round pure gunplay. That is particularly uncommon on condition that he’s truly supposed to fill the defensive, sentinel position. The place different trap-heavy Brokers similar to Killjoy and Cypher use utility to lock down websites, Chamber is envisioned as a sentinel who holds area by out-aiming his opponents.
It’s truly a really attention-grabbing idea and one which actually works nicely in observe. A lot so, in actual fact, that Chamber’s choose charge has been via the roof throughout each skilled and ranked play.
In professional esports video games, his utility is taken into account extremely worthwhile not simply due to its offensive firepower however its passive econ increase — when everybody else is saving, Chamber can show a difference-maker together with his Headhunter and Tour de Pressure, after which he has entry to an enormous pool of cash for the following spherical on condition that he spent nearly nothing within the earlier.
In ranked, nicely… gamers love tapping heads, which is Chamber’s specialty — particularly once they’re freed from any obligation to make use of utility to assist their teammates as different Brokers are.
The web result’s that each different sentinel within the recreation had up till lately seen much less use in skilled play, whereas in ranked Chamber had (and nonetheless is) develop into a type of go-to choose for ego-peeking ranked demons.
Riot Video games’ Controversial Chamber Nerf: Medical, Efficient
Riot Video games needed to act, and act it did, besides the nerf it issued has been controversial. Why? As a result of as an alternative of nerfing Chamber’s firepower, Riot eliminated the one facet of his equipment that many felt made really made him a sentinel: his Trademark journeys, which activate when an enemy approaches and gradual them significantly if not destroyed. They’ve limitless vary and are extraordinarily efficient for flank-watching and/or slowing choke factors.
For a month now for the reason that patch, Chamber solely has a single journey, which massively reduces his potential to carry out standard sentinel duties and usually assist his group past popping off together with his large, shiny, golden weapons.
It’s brought on an uproar, not simply from informal ranked gamers however professionals, too. Why, folks have questioned, did Riot not nerf the extraordinarily highly effective Headhunter, which is actually a Guardian, for a number of hundred credit? What concerning the foolish operator that fires as quick as a Marshall? How is Chamber capable of teleport each 20 seconds?
So that you’re telling me a spherical in Valorant is 100 seconds lengthy, planting the bomb provides 45 seconds so this permits chamber to TP as much as 7 TIMES in a spherical. nerf pls.
— ec1s (@ec1s_) June 5, 2022
Gamers are beside themselves, questioning how the journey, the one defensive, sentinel-like piece of utility, was the facet of his equipment that was nerfed. That isn’t why Chamber is such a well-liked Agent, in any case, proper?
The factor is that Riot’s Chamber nerf truly does make excellent sense and was the right motion to take to satisfy correctly fulfill his supposed position. Should you take into account that he was designed as a sentinel who holds area with firepower (as defined by Riot within the patch notes), the discount within the variety of journeys out there to him has solely leaned him additional into that design.
The issue with Chamber previous to his nerf wasn’t that he was too good at his position; it was that he was concurrently performing a job that he was by no means supposed for: flank-watching, and denying area with utility.
Contemplate the results of the Chamber nerf in skilled play. Killjoy is again, and Cypher has additionally made a return (even when he nonetheless wants a buff). Skilled groups are actually confronted with making a tricky choice when creating their Agent compositions for various maps: Will we go along with a trap-heavy sentinel able to locking down areas of the map and holding the flank, or do give that up and play a extra aggressive defensive fashion with an Agent who fits a participant able to popping off?
There’s a tradeoff with selecting Chamber following the buff, and that’s precisely what you need inside a recreation meta. You wish to encourage totally different Agent compositions by balancing their capabilities and making plenty of combos viable.
Chamber Is Nonetheless a Ranked Demon’s Dream
Okay, so I’ve praised Riot Video games’ decision-making, and the effectiveness of the Chamber nerf on the skilled stage. Now it’s time for a actuality verify: no person in ranked performs Valorant correctly, and no person cares about selecting optimum Agent compositions for a given map. I do know this as a result of I play Valorant scrims, participate in minor leagues and tournaments, and infrequently torture myself by enjoying ranked in Immortal lobbies.
Should you didn’t already know, let me guarantee you that the ranked Valorant expertise isn’t performed with even a tenth of the technique of an expert recreation (or a try-hard group like mine who makes an attempt to play the sport like the professionals).
The difficulty is that Chamber continues to be a ranked demon’s instalock of selection, and nerfing the journeys has solely made him extra insufferable to play alongside in ranked play. Even when Chamber had two journeys, half the gamers who used Chamber in ranked by no means purchased them and by no means felt even barely obliged to place one in a helpful place for his or her teammates. Now there’s just one. Now I’m counting on my common instalock Chamber to “hold map management and defend area,” as Riot places it. Yeah, not taking place. Each spherical is as predictable because the final — 3,2,1, over-peek, and die.
I discover myself wishing we had a Killjoy or Cypher plenty of the time. However who the hell performs these Brokers? Boring, am I proper? Pew, pew Chamber is far more enjoyable!
I’m kidding, in fact. I believe each of these sentinels might be extremely enjoyable to play, however that’s positively a minority opinion and one which’s mirrored in Chamber’s ranked pickrate: 57% versus 23.2% for Killjoy and a dismal 11.3% for Cypher (that’s solely a p.c greater than poor outdated Phoenix, who I wrote concerning the different week as needing a buff ASAP!).
What to Do About ‘The Nice Chamber Downside’
So, regardless of a nerf, which I actually do consider has been profitable in serving to Chamber meet his supposed position and convey different sentinels again into the highlight, there’s nonetheless a problem: the change is efficient on the skilled stage, however roughly ineffective in ranked. And to suppose, skilled esports contains a tiny proportion of Valorant’s total participant base, whereas ranked is clearly the overwhelming majority. Which is extra necessary? Which needs to be given precedence right here?
At its core, the issue feels as if it lies in Chamber’s design, which, as I described earlier, is ingenious and intelligent however provided that we’re assuming everybody is selecting Brokers in accordance to what’s truly optimum for every map. However once more, that isn’t actuality. Killjoy is perhaps meta on Ascent, however I may play 10 ranked Immortal video games as we speak on the map, and I’m virtually sure all of them would characteristic a Chamber.
In the long run, then, the plain repair does appear as if it is perhaps to make the nerfs to his gunplay that everybody needs. Maybe the Tour de Pressure ought to have a slower charge of fireplace or fewer bullets? Possibly the Headhunter shouldn’t hit for 160 in any respect ranges? It’s onerous to say what would truly make sense, and whether or not all however the harshest of nerfs would show efficient. Possibly the repair is to closely buff the opposite sentinels? However would ranked gamers even care? I’m not so certain.
I don’t envy Riot’s improvement group in making the decision, but it surely’s clear Chamber will stay an everpresent drive in Valorant ranked till one thing is finished.