VALORANT was Originally Planned to Launch Without a Rank Mode

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VALORANT is famous for its competitive scene and rank mode, but did you know that Riot Games' tactical shooter wasn't originally planned to launch with a competitive ranked mode?

While talking about VALORANT at a recent conference hosted by Tencent, the parent company of Riot, the game's executive producer Anna Donlon discussed VALORANT in its early stages, and this included the fact that a competitive ranked mode wasn't planned to be part of the game when it was originally released last year.

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Credit: Riot Games

The developers figured out early on that the game would need some kind of competitive mode through players familiar with games like Counter-Strike and Rainbow Six Siege. The team concluded that they couldn't launch the game without a ranked mode. “We thought we could learn a little more about our players before shoving them into ranked play,” said Donlon, “but the expectation for a competitive queue at launch was really really high.”

Donlon was also surprised by one player being okay with the absence of a ranked mode, as long as it gets added around two weeks after launch. It's surprising to hear that Riot hadn't planned a competitive mode for VALORANT for its launch. Fortunately, the team learned the importance of having a competitive ranked mode during launch as omitting it, even for a short period of time, would most likely negatively affect its reception.

Related: VALORANT Champions 2021 Vandal Weapon Skin and Finisher Animation Revealed

Right now, Riot is gearing up for the biggest VALORANT esports event of the year, VALORANT Champions 2021, which takes place December 1 to 12 in Berlin, Germany. You can watch it live on the official VALORANT Twitch channel, and you can check out the full schedule and the list of teams in each of the 4 groups of the tournament here.