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VALORANT Devs Find Sneaky Way To Deal With Smurfs

VALORANT Devs Find Sneaky Way To Deal With Smurfs
Riot Games

Written by 

Jack Marsh

Posted 

7th Oct 2021 11:52

Smurfs, for all their cuteness in the animated film adaptations, are a pain in the backside in the gaming world. The term is used for players who are significantly better than the rank they are playing at, usually seen through smurf accounts, where a high-ranked player will start fresh to either boost a friend or "stomp" on public matches. However, VALORANT devs have had enough of the pesky smurfs.

With such a large skill gap in VALORANT, between those filtering over to the game for the first time and the established Counter-Strike pros who have honed their skills for generations, smurfs have quickly become one of the biggest problems in their match-making. 

A tight-knit anti-cheat has left a wealth of developer support with freedom to combat the gnome-like smurfs that are growing in VALORANT's gardens, and it seems like Riot Games have found themselves a savvy repellent. 

According to Riot Employee "EvrMoar", they are working on an MMR calculation method that will completely remove smurfs from low ranks within 5-10 games.

Taking to Reddit, EvrMoar explained that MMR is split between "Encounter" and "Win/Loss" rates, with the former being a stroke of genius. The system "looks at every duel and how you had an impact on that duel/round. Did you use an ability to help take a site, get the bomb down, help a friend win a duel etc."

"In lower ranks encounter is weighted extremely heavily, and if you are a smurf the system is pretty good at detecting this (we've seen accounts get detected and moved in less than 5-10 games)."

As an example, EvrMoar reffered to a certain Tyson "TenZ" Ngo reaching Radiant after just 16 games, as the Encounter MMR system noticed his skill was clearly on par with other top-tier players. 

EvrMoar also admitted that the Win/Loss system comes into play more at higher ranks, especially for those players who adoiopt the sentinel role. He said "you can have an IGL sage drop 10 kills, but be the reason you won for example," which means the win/loss will kick in over the encounter rate.

Unfortunately, there is still a 5-10 game boundary for smurfs to run riot in, but at least the method will hopefully put players off starting smurf accounts in the first place. 

Take that you pesky turquoise toadstool tyrants!

 

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