Heads up, Valorant players!
Riot Games officially issued a warning towards players who frequently go AFK (Away from Keyboard) especially on ranked matches.
There will be strict penalties and consequences in place to urge players to avoid abandoning their matches, their teammates, and everyone’s in-game experience.
Valorant developers officially announced they’re working towards increasing the penalties for AFK players, and it will be more severe than the previous one.
We're shipping a change that increases penalties for AFKs, which include longer queue restrictions for folks to AFK for multiple rounds. We'll keep an eye on these restrictions when there's service instability, but please commit to the games you queue up for.
— VALORANT (@PlayVALORANT) May 13, 2020
“We’re shipping a change that increases penalties for AFKs, which include longer queue restrictions for folks to AFK for multiple rounds. We’ll keep an eye on these restrictions when there’s service instability, but please commit to the games you queue up for.”
In case you missed it, being AFK in-game implies you’re engaged in a game but is not physically in front of your computers.
This renders players incapable of responding or moving around in-game.
What are the penalties?
One particular penalty in mind is the prolonged queueing limits for players who are frequently AFK in their matches.
Riot claims AFK players will have to deal with queuing penalties in the lobby, which will increase in severity each time the system detects they are MIA (missing in action).
This is considerably great to implement at a time where AFK players often do the offense during the game’s beta testing stage.
Riot’s official website lists the current punishment for AFK players as:
“You’ll receive a time penalty of increasing severity each time you’re determined to be missing in action. There will be a timer counting down, so take a deep breath and remember not to duck out once you’re back in game.”
The rules might be changed soon, though. Players have to watch out for the full extent of the new punishment for going AFK.
Not AFK on purpose
But of course, Riot also believes there must be considerations to take in place.
Not all players who go AFK in their matches are doing it on purpose, hence developers aim to look deeper into players’ AFK behavior before they implement justifiable punishments.
For instance, an unstable internet connection or device issues such as blue screens might cause some problems for a player. They might not be able to continue the game because of such problems.
With the lengthy duration of one match in Valorant plus the fact that an AFK player cannot be filled in (in contrast with other famous FPS shooting games), this could be a great change to implement.
There might be other penalties for repeating offenders, but fans can only wait for an official announcement at this point.
Other options include banning a player in matchmaking for a certain amount of time, or lowering his rank by deducting progress points.
However, none of these penalties are confirmed yet.
There’s only a few months left before Valorant’s official launch this year.
Developers are working towards making some in-game system changes, penalties, and even fixing bugs or glitches.
The community has been praising the update so far:
“Good. There’s no reason you should even queue up for a game if you plan to neglect the match while your team wants to win. Normal people hate losing, you bums. Enjoy your increased penalties. Well done”
“My last 20 unrated games had someone leave mid game. Hopefully this helps”
“LMAO just punish and ban afkers/leavers does not matter it’s a beta. They are wasting other people’s time.”
Hopefully now that stricter penalties await, AFK players might have to think twice before they abandon their matches!