Get ready for the potential overhaul of Astra and Skye, with Riot Games teasing major buffs for the VALORANT agents in the next act.

11:52, 22 Apr 2021

Riot Games is once again looking at reworking its VALORANT agents, and has teased some big buffs for Astra and Skye in the next act. These two newcomers have only been in the hero shooter for a matter of months, but with VALORANT itself being a relative baby to the scene, there's no time to waste in making sure the game is making the most out of is agents. As biggest rival Apex Legends forges ahead with Valkyrie in Season 9, the next act of VALORANT has plenty of work to do if it's going to keep up.

Looking at VALORANT's recent developments, the arrival of the Icebox map was quickly followed by the arrival of Skye - which was supposed to mark a new era of the game. Despite VALORANT's popularity, there have been criticisms that the recent run of agents pale in comparison to the likes of Jett, Omen, and Raze. You only have to look at the figures to see this is more than just a rumour. When it comes to Astra and Skye, they're two of the least played agents. 

 

What's going on with Astra and Skye in VALORANT?

With continued concerns for the welfare of Astra and Skye, Developer Coleman "Altombre" Palm addressed them in a Reddit thread and explained what *might* happen to the pair in the next act. Palm said that while Astra and Skye are seen as "healthy" in the developer's eyes, there is a chance for some potential buffs. The problem is, that even as the agents diversify, the newcomers are struggling to break past the popularity of the old crowd and climb to the top of tier lists.

"Skye is inherently a very supportive agent who relies on teammates to extract a lot of value from her abilities, and Astra is a big-brain agent that scales on coordination, game knowledge, and creativity, so we've always expected them to be on the more niche end for agent picks - that's okay", said Palm. Instead of just saying Riot is content with that, he gave hope to potential buffs and added, "We're always thinking about if there are ways to improve the experiences that we have on live, though, so that doesn't mean we wouldn't explore tweaking aspects of them in the future if we think it'd make them healthier or more fun to play". 

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What's next for Astra and Skye in VALORANT?

Unfortunately, the history of VALORANT shows us that even a complete overhaul of an agent's kit doesn't mean they're destined for the top. Despite the VALORANT patch 2.06. reducing Yoru's flash activation time and increasing its duration, he's still languishing at the bottom of most tier lists. At the time, Riot said, "Although Yoru is a unique duelist on the roster, both in pace and in playstyle, we think he should still be a strong contender for good compositions and want to ensure the value he offers to his team is more consistent throughout a match".

Considering the Yoru buffs didn't exactly set the world alight, it makes sense that Palm is hesitant to put so much time and effort into Astra and Skye if there's going to be so little return. However, as each act of VALORANT goes on, and agents continue to find their own loyal legion of fans, we're hoping the teething problems with Asta and Skye's popularity will soon be a thing of the past. Who knows, could we have the next Sage on our hands?

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