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The 7 Reasons to Avoid Playing Valorant (And What I’m Playing Instead)

Avoid Counter-Strike

The 7 Reasons to Avoid Playing Valorant (And What I’m Playing Instead)

Key Points

  • Valorant is a popular first-person tactical shooter with over 28 million monthly players, but it has drawbacks such as a toxic community and limited maps.
  • Unfortunately, Valorant isn’t terribly beginner-friendly and requires a significant time commitment to master, making it less appealing to casual players.
  • Expect a lot of messaging around inn-game currency, which is heavily relied upon for advancement, leading to frustration for casual players who don’t want to spend real money.
  • Matches in Valorant can be time-consuming, with some lasting 30-40 minutes, and the game has been associated with potential addiction issues.

As one of the world’s most popular games, Valorant has a strong reputation as being a solid multiplayer shooter. With over 28 million monthly players, Valorant handily ranks as one of the games most played in the world. A free-to-play first-person tactical shooter, Valorant feels very much like an alternative to Counter-Strike

Even if it’s a popular game with plenty of allegiance from its player base, this doesn’t mean Valorant is worth playing. Given the sheer number of titles available for gamers today, you might want to consider alternatives for Valorant for numerous reasons. 

In fact, let’s look closer at the 7 reasons why you will want to avoid playing Valorant today.

What Is Valorant? 

When it comes to gameplay, Valorant is a first-person tactical hero shooter set in the future. In the game, you play as either a member of an attacking or defending team, each with five players. Every player starts with a pistol with other weapons available for purchase courtesy of the Valorant in-game currency system. 

Released as a beta title on April 7, 2020, Valorant was publicly released on June 2, 2020. Development of the game had begun 10 years prior with the developers at Riot Games taking influence from Counter-Strike

Today, Valorant is one of the more popular multiplayer FPS titles online. While not quite as sizable as Fortnite, Valorant has still found a dedicated fanbase. Even with millions of players, there are still some reasons why you can skip playing Valorant today.

Reason to Avoid Playing Valorant Today

#1: Toxic Community

A surprising top reason why many people have given up Valorant is that it’s home to a toxic community. A quick Reddit search indicates hundreds of threads on players who have given up Valorant because of community nastiness. Whether it’s trolls or negative teammates, all it takes is one negative experience to make any game unenjoyable.

All too often you’re in a match only to be verbally abused by a teammate. There is also a strong flag around “smurfing,” which in Valorant terms is a player who is using multiple accounts. It’s a completely toxic move and ruins the games for those who want to just play and have fun with what should be a really fun online community. 

This “smurfing” behavior leads to teammates leaving games while in the middle of a match or worse, cheating. Cheating is another big aspect of what has created a negative community experience around Valorant

#2: Limited Maps

One of the biggest aspects of any online game is the number of maps available, which in Valorant’s case, is not many. This is a big complaint from plenty of dedicated players to even beginners who have complained that map variety is really limited. More importantly, many Valorant players often complain the maps are too small and don’t give players enough room to move around to get into position for a kill shot. 

When new maps are introduced, there are often numerous complaints about the maps. There is a broad concern that map design isn’t really handled properly by the developers. The result is that players will skip particular maps if they show up in the queue as they are waiting to get into a Valorant match. 

There is no doubt map criticisms are completely subjective, but this concern is raised frequently enough to be a definite reason to avoid playing Valorant. On top of this, players often get frustrated when they are placed into matches on the same map multiple times in a row, which can lead to the game feeling too repetitive. 

#3: Repetitious Gameplay

While Valorant offers 8 different gameplay modes including Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Unrated, etc., players still complain about the repetition of gameplay. As in the case of the limited maps, the lack of a more diverse set of game modes is potentially hampering Valorant’s growth.

Whether it’s constantly being loaded into the same gameplay or into the same map, it’s easy to get the feeling that you have seen everything Valorant has to offer more times than you can accurately count. After a while, fatigue from the lack of a more diverse gameplay set will creep in and cause you to look elsewhere for gaming fun. 

#4: Not for Beginners

In the way titles like Fortnite and PUBG: Battlegrounds are more welcoming to new players, Valorant doesn’t show the same level of concern. It almost feels as if Valorant is trying to lean more into becoming an esports favorite than casual game players had initially hoped it would be. Even with the maps being too small and gameplay being repetitive, learning to master Valorant is still only something dedicated gamers are likely to undertake. 

This means there is no question Valorant is not a pick-up-and-play style of game. Instead, this is a title that requires hours and hours week after week to master. There are plenty of FPS multiplayer titles out there that are better for casual users. Valorant wants players to grind it out and become a hardcore fan that looks to play and spend every day. 

Featured image for the Valorant parents' guide. The splash art of Valorant.
Valorant is a hugely popular game, but it doesn’t always live up to expectations with lots of in-game transactions and repetitive maps.

#5: In-Game Currency

One of these days a game will be brave enough to skip microtransactions before it ruin great games. Unfortunately, for Valorant fans, Riot isn’t going to be the developer that takes a step away from in-game currency. Instead, in order to advance and become better, it will take a lot of time and money.

As is the case with many games lately, it feels like the best way to win in Valorant is to pay. This means spending money on better accessories, gun skins, or anything else Riot wants to sell you. It’s incredibly frustrating for casual players who want to play for an hour at a time to feel as if the only way they can get good is to spend real money. 

What’s most concerning is in-game currency costs can quickly add up. Yes, games like Fortnite also heavily rely on players purchasing V-bucks to buy more goods. This gives Valorant all the reasoning it needs to want its players to buy Valorant points. The real question is whether you really need a collection bundle or a weapon skin to get better. Ultimately, it doesn’t really matter. Valorant players will make you feel that in order to fit in, you need to own everything. 

#6: Time-Consuming Matches

For casual players looking for a new FPS multiplayer home, Valorant’s popularity is quickly attractive. However, things can take a quick turn when new players learn how time-consuming a Valorant match can be. Depending on the gameplay you are trying, Competitive and Unrated matches can take around 30-40 minutes at a time. 

While this isn’t considered too long by regular game standards for a single session of gameplay, it’s frustrating to think that you have to sit in a match this long before you can leave. What’s worse is that leaving a match early could result in a ban. Any ban results in not being able to play for a certain length of time if you do leave a match early.

#7: Careful of Addiction 

Even though Valorant has plenty of reasons to not play the game, those who do enjoy the game can quickly get addicted. Getting addicted to a title like Valorant can have a detrimental impact elsewhere in your life. Perhaps it’s causing you to spend less time sleeping or less time working.

It could even be that you are pulling back on your real-world social life in favor of online matches. The bottom line is that Valorant is often a title associated with players who quickly get addicted. Regardless of the way, any game addiction could lead to all sorts of issues down the road. 

What You Should Play Instead of Valorant 

#1: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Unsurprisingly, one of the best alternatives to Valorant is also the game it’s most accused of borrowing from. In the case of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, which was first released in 2012, Valorant has a lot of similarities to this hugely popular Counter-Strike title. In the fourth such game in the Counter-Strike world, players either play as a terrorist or a counter-terrorist. Between nine different game modes, rest assured you will find plenty of action to be had with CS:GO.  

Unfortunately, CS:GO isn’t immune from some toxicity either, but it still draws hundreds of thousands of players daily. In fact, it’s often the most popular game on Steam, where many of these titles are downloaded. Plus, it’s also free-to-play.

One other reason for the Steam popularity might be that CS:GO is one of the more realistic titles in the genre. No special moves, big jumps, or extra powers, just pure skill from the players. 

#2: Overwatch 2

Developed by Blizzard Entertainment, Overwatch 2 is yet another hugely popular free-to-play FPS title that rivals Valorant. A 2016 sequel to the original Overwatch game, Overwatch 2 is available across multiple platforms and is fully cross-platform, which gives it a big leg up in this genre. Being able to choose from over 35 different players helps keep Overwatch 2 more engaging overall. 

As of October 2023, Overwatch 2 is currently averaging around 1.7 million players per day. This helps position Overwatch 2 as one of the most popular multiplayer games around the world. 

Designed for six-on-six team combat, there are multiple game modes and maps available. Unlike Valorant, Overwatch 2 offers both a competitive ranked mode and casual play. The latter helps new players get familiar with the controls, the roster of characters, and familiar with the maps before trying their hand at ranked competition. 

#3: Fortnite

If you’re looking for a slightly different gaming experience, Fortnite remains one of the most popular games in the world. With over 30 million daily players, Fortnite is still as prominent as ever in the game space. It’s also available on both console and PC though Android, iPhone, and iPad owners are out of luck.

What helps make Fortnite stand out so much is just how incredibly large the game can feel. While there are some traditional game modes like Battle Royale, Arena, and Zero Build, there are just so many different ways to play this title. It’s this level of varied gameplay that helps keep Fortnite so interesting. 

Yes, of course, you can spend in-game currency for different character outfits and accessories, but you don’t need to do it. If you are completely happy with the emotes you get at the beginning of the game, save your money on extras. 

7 Reasons to Avoid Playing Valorant Summary

Summary
#1: Unfortunately, the Valorant online community can be very toxic and unwelcoming to new players. 
#2: The Valorant map selection is very limited and causes frustration among players. 
#3: Just as maps can be repeated, so too can the limited number of different gameplay modes. 
#4: If you are a beginner looking for a casual game, Valorant is not the right choice. 
#5: As expected, in order to get the best skins or accessories, you need to spend real money. 
#6: Matches can be very time-consuming, which further emphasizes this isn’t a casual player’s game. 
#7: For many Valorant players who look past the above concerns, gameplay addiction is a real concern. 

Wrapping Up

For better or worse, Valorant remains one of the most popular games available today. With millions of monthly players, Valorant is undoubtedly a popular FPS title. Unfortunately, with its popularity comes drawbacks. Everything from a toxic community to repetitive maps should give anyone potentially making the leap to Valorant some pause.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the number one reason to avoid playing Valorant?

The single biggest reason to avoid playing Valorant is its toxic community. 

How many people play Valorant every month?

As of October 2023, Valorant has more than 28 million monthly players. 

What kind of game is Valorant?

Valorant is considered a free-to-play first-person multiplayer online shooter. 

On what platforms can Valorant be played?

For the most part, Valorant is playable on Windows computers, either through Riot’s website or from the Xbox app as part of Xbox Game Pass. 

Is Valorant cross-platform?

Unfortunately, without any other console launches, like the PS5, Valorant is not cross-platform. 

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