Riot has released Valorant patch 1.08. The patch is fairly small (especially compared to 1.07) but does include some significant buffs to the Guardian rifle.

Here are the biggest winners and losers of Valorant patch 1.08.

Winner: Guardian

Riot has reduced the Guardian’s cost from 2,500 to 2,400 credits, and improved its rate of fire from 4.75 to 5.25 rounds-per-second. But we still believe the Guardian’s stats, prior to it being nerfed in patch 1.03, were a viable option with a 6.5 rate of fire, even though it cost 2,700 credits.

The semi-automatic rifle still has great kill potential with 195 damage to the head, 65 to the body, and 48 to the legs. And, paired with its high armor penetration, it can be used to clear corners by wallbanging them.

And with the Guardian’s reduced cost to 2,400 credits, players can buy light shields and some utility, costing only 3,000 to 3,200, if the team really needs to force-buy during important rounds. This also makes it a viable alternative to the Bulldog if you have a good pistol round.

Ideally, players will want to use the Guardian at long range, where it’s most effective because of it’s high damage and one shot potential. You’ll still need to hit your initial shots, since the weapon’s spray pattern after the first three bullets is highly inaccurate. 

What players will need to avoid is close range fights with the Guardian. Even though Riot increased the weapon’s fire rate, it will still lose out to an assault rifle and even an SMG.

Loser: Raze

Credit: Riot Games

Meanwhile, the only agent that was balanced in the 1.08 patch was Raze. Her Blast Pack mechanic has been reworked, needing to land on a flat surface to deal maximum damage. Once the satchel lands, it becomes armed after .5 seconds and will do the max damage of 50.

If it doesn’t land and arm itself, it will only deal 15 initial damage with a .2 meter inner radius, falling off to 5 minimum damage. This change weakens Raze’s ability to clear corners with her Blast Pack from a safe distance. If the Blast Pack is shot before it’s armed, it will deal its current damage amount.

Valorant’s map pool rotations setting has also been changed to reflect a ‘psudo-random’ pattern. This means that it will deprioritize the previously played map from a player’s queue, which prevents players from playing the same map over again.

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