Valorant is about to get another Act update which brings in a lot of exciting content. Last time, it was a new Agent in the form of Deadlock and the Team Deathmatch mode. For Valorant Episode 7 Act II, a brand new map, skin bundle, and possibly one of the best battlepasses the game has had.
Valorant Episode 7 Act II will be released on August 29, 2023. Here’s what you can expect.
New Valorant map – Sunset
A brand new map is coming in Valorant Episode 7 Act II. Inspired by the hometown of Riot Games, Sunset will be set in the vibrant town of Los Angeles. It’ll contain some LA’s cultural staples such as food trucks, art decorations and mission style architecture, traffic, and a neon sunset and graffiti spotlighting a few local artists.
Given how VCT Champions 2023 just ended in LA with Evil Geniuses being crowned the winners, the release of this new map seems like a fitting way to cap off another great year of Valorant esports.
Sunset is a 3 lane map that will feature 2 sites and favor teams who go for mid-control. Lead Map Designer Joe Lansford mentioned that while the team is no stranger to developing 3 lane maps for Valorant, they haven’t really made one that favors the middle. “Sunset features a mid that is fairly difficult to control and doesn’t really favor one team or another; it’s generally good for rifle ranges and opens up a bunch of opportunities for whichever team can take it.”
Lansford also mentions how the development team spent a lot of time trying to balance art and design with Sunset. While the LA sunset with pink skylines and long shadows are great aesthetically, they don’t necessarily blend well with Valorant’s gameplay. Making sure that everything is finely tuned to meet both form and function is always a key driving force for everyone involved.
After having some hands-on with Sunset, I can say that matches were a little bit faster given how relatively small the map feels. With all the tight corridors and cheeky angles to finesse with, I can foresee agents like Raze, Sage, Phoenix, Breach, and Killjoy to be very viable. But as always, the meta might change once the map is fully out for the public to try.
Valorant Imperium Skin Bundle
Another Valorant skin bundle, another threat to our wallets. The art team of Riot Games has always been one of the best in the industry and that’s all the more proven by the amount of sales they have garnered selling Valorant skins. This isn’t surprising given how cool a lot of them look. Imperium, the new skin bundle, is continuing that tradition.
For those of you who played during the closed beta in 2020, the Imperium skinline was available to play with and was themed around East Asian weaponry and armor, with the dragon as a central element. Riot Games saw the potential with this and decided to add a few more extra elements to take it a bit further, Senior Game Producer Jean Luc Tin Sive said.
The Imperium Bundle will have:
- Blades of Imperium (dual-handed melee)
- Imperium card
- Imperium spray
- Imperium gun buddy
You better hope you have a healthy stock of Radianite points because there are a bunch of levels you have to purchase. And trust me, you would want to.
- Level 1 – Custom Model
- Level 2 – Custom firing sounds and muzzle flash visual effects
- Level 3 – Custom visual effects and audio for equip, reload, and inspect animations
- Level 4 – Custom Kill Banner and Finisher
- Variant 1 – Red (ruby) design with custom dragon in the Finisher
- Variant 2 – White (pearl) design with custom dragon in the Finisher
- Variant 3 – Black (obsidian) design with custom dragon in the Finisher
- Level 1 – Custom model (one-handed fist blade)
- Level 2 – Custom model (dual-handed fist blade), custom animations, visual effects, and audio. Brand new alternate attack animation (right click).
- Variant 1 – Red (ruby) design
- Variant 2 – White (pearl) design
- Variant 3 – Black (obsidian) design
When designing the look of it all, the team had 4 central thematic goals: Dragon, Cultural, Magical, Beautiful, and Elegant.
“We were inspired by the dragons of the East and jewel materials. We worked with our China team and looked at artifacts from China to see how we could incorporate the gold ornaments into the gun design. Our goal was to make the weapons feel like they were treasures imbued with magic. The variants were inspired by Chinese mythology, with each weapon variant representing different dragon kings and their respective colors,” says Art Direction Senior Manager Kerwin Atienza.
During our hands-on session with the upcoming Act, the Imperium Bundle was the first thing I checked out. All of the Green, Red, White, and Black color variants look absolutely stunning. At first glance, the Imperium bundle seems to combine all the good elements from Reaver, Sovereign, and Oni skinlines into one slick design.
The Imperium Guns also feature one of the biggest and best-looking finisher animations Valorant has ever had at this point. A giant dragon will appear surrounding the enemy and strike a stunning pose to end it all. Now that’s what you call motivation to clutch the round.
The Imperium Bundle will be released on the same day as Episode 7 Act II on August 29, 2023.
Episode 7 Act II Battlepass
It’s easy to discount Valorant battlepasses as a “cheaper” way to acquire Radianite Points and player cards/ titles. The weapons skins that are found in these battlepasses are usually less impressive compared to what can be found on the store. However, with Episode 7 Act II’s battlepass, that narrative might change.
After going through each tier, there were a handful of items that got me excited to grind for. Neon, Yoru, Harbour, and Skye mains will enjoy this one in particular. Even the weapon skins themselves are vibrant and rich in personality that fit in well with the LA theme of the new map. This is a far cry from the bland variants found during Act I’s battlepass.
As always, there will be both free and paid tiers to earn. Here’s what you can expect from both:
Free Track Highlights
- Transition Shorty
- Nanobomb Card
- Mid-Autumn Sweet Buddy
- On The Low Buddy
- Crane Blossom Spray
- Bulletproof Card
Paid Track Highlights
- RDVR Phantom
- Transition Vandal
- Transition Melee
- Ups and Downs Buddy
- Roll On Spray
- Battle Sage Card
- Latest Issue Card
Episode 7 Act II’s battlepass will cost 1000 VP and will be released on August 29, 2023.
Valorant Premier Updates
There’s also fresh news from the team-based competitive system of Valorant, Premier. This update is being rolled out together with Episode 7 Act II. Now, players will come across official divisions, and the weekly matches will encompass all 7 maps in the competitive pool.
Notably, your results will be officially recorded moving forward. And there’s more to look forward to – Premier will soon link up with the VCT. The first round of these changes is set for early 2024. For additional details about the launch or a quick refresher on Premier, feel free to visit playvalorant.com.
And there you have it! Another myriad of Valorant content to lose hours into. Updates like these are always an exciting time for any game. Good luck in your queuing and we’ll see you out there!