Updated on April 14, 11:15 a.m. (GMT+8): Added more relevant links.
Riot Games introduced an intriguing character concept to Valorant when they released KAY/O — a robot who comes from an alternate future.
The competitive first-person shooter’s fourth initiator agent has the ability to suppress his opponents, preventing them from using their abilities for a short amount of time.
Besides silencing his opponents, KAY/O also has a flash and a molly, making him a versatile addition to any agent comp. When all of his abilities are used properly, he can be played as a hybrid agent who supports his team and also win stand-alone duels.
Here’s everything you need to know about agent 16.
Who is KAY/O and what role does he play in Valorant?
This war machine’s backstory is similar to that of the Sentinels from X-Men. The murder bot was built for one reason: to neutralize radiants.
His agent-select animation is also reminiscent of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator, but with a Shotgun (Bucky).
He is listed as an Initiator whose abilities are quite different from Breach, Sova, and Skye. He can use his abilities to scout out enemy agents, but it would be best utilized to disrupt the enemy team’s set plays.
100 Thieves’ previous team captain, Spencer “Hiko” Martin even described KAY/O as a hybrid duelist who could replace Phoenix or Raze’s roles in the competitive scene’s agent composition meta.
All of KAY/O’s abilities
FRAG/MENT is a single-charge explosive fragment that activates once it hits a horizontal surface.
It is different from other mollies because it does pulse-type damage. It has four pulses, which last four seconds. Three pulses of FRAG/MENT are enough to kill an enemy agent.
FLASH/DRIVE is a blinding ability that works similarly to other throwable flashes in the game. It has two charges and can be thrown two different ways.
Using left-click will throw the flash further with a longer fuse of around two seconds. Its right-click drops it closer to you and has a one-second fuse.
This is KAY/O’s main ability, and he gets one free charge at the start of the round. It is replenished automatically, similar to other agents’ main abilities.
ZERO/POINT functions as a thrown suppression blade that sticks and explodes on impact. KAY/O will know which agents were caught in its sizable blast radius, but their locations won’t be revealed.
Agents hit by ZERO/POINT’s blade will be suppressed and will be unable to use their abilities for eight seconds.
The suppression blade does not affect teammates and does not stop already-activated abilities. You cannot suppress an ability by targeting them. You must hit the enemy agent to suppress their abilities, like Trapwires and Turrets.
You can also remove Jett’s Blade Storm or Raze’s Showstopper ultimates with the suppression blade.
The NULL/CMD ultimate overloads the agent with polarized radianite energy that pulses four times with a massive radius. Enemies hit with pulses are suppressed for four seconds per pulse.
KAY/O gains a fire rate boost while NULL/CMD is active. He can also be re-stabilized if downed.
Allies have about 15 seconds to revive the him from his downed state. When in a downed state, KAY/O has 850 health points and can be eliminated by the enemy team if he loses all those points again.
Yes, this means Jett can finally revive someone. Thank you, Riot Games.
Strengths of having versatile abilities
The best use of KAY/O will be to stop site rushes. Enemy agents who are hit by his ZERO/POINT suppression blade won’t be able to use their entry abilities when they attack sites.
The number of agents revealed in its radius will also give you a better understanding of which parts of the map are open.
KAY/O is a viable alternative to a duelist because he has similar abilities to them. Equipped with two flashes and a molly, this robot can help teammates enter sites and clear corners while on the attacker’s side.
Hiko even compared the NULL/CMD ultimate to Phoenix’s Run It Back as an ideal entry ability because KAY/O’s team would have an extra life if they manage to revive him.
How do you play against KAY/O?
Simply put, you’ll need to rely on your shooting mechanics and team communication to play around KAY/O. The best way to catch the agent by surprise is to go after him right when he’s about to use his abilities.
There are three key visual indicators when the suppressing robot is about to use his abilities: The colors on the robot’s body change when he’s about to use an ability. Light blue for the molly, red for the flash, and purple for the suppression knife.
The screen on his head also shows the corresponding abilities he has equipped.
Is KAY/O broken?
Countering the enemy team by silencing them is innovative content that will force players to think and play differently.
From what we’ve gathered, KAY/O is an agent that will be viable and versatile on almost all maps because the agent can play many different roles.
For players who want to use KAY/O as their main agent, you’ll first need to master his abilities, and put in the effort to read opponents well.
Just remember: in Project A, shooting matters. You don’t kill with abilities, especially if there’s a murder bot on the enemy team.
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