Valorant‘s immensely popular closed beta is coming to an end, leaving everyone watching on Twitch—a number that soared to almost 2 million on its first day—with a lot more free time. It’s concluding on May 28, but the full release won’t be far behind. It’s launching on June 2.
Between May 28 and the release date, Riot will be resetting accounts, so everyone will start off fresh, and adding a new mode, agent, and map. It’s also planning to add new servers in Atlanta, Dallas, London, Madrid, and Warsaw to reduce latency.
You can see executive producer Anna Donlon and game director Joe Ziegler chatting about the launch with Geoff Keighley in the stream below, and Riot’s also published a blog post on the state of the game, antisocial behaviour and its controversial anti-cheat system, Vanguard.
Vanguard has been criticised for being too intrusive because it installs a kernel-mode driver that sits, essentially, at the core of your OS. Ostensibly it’s meant to stop people from aimbotting and the like, but it’s so strict that it blocks completely unrelated programs, sometimes when Valorant isn’t even running.
Harassment has also been a problem during the closed beta, echoing some of the issues League of Legends has contended with. Even Donlon recently admitted that it’s why she doesn’t queue solo, in response to a TeamFight Tactics UX designer who posted a clip with where she was repeatedly propositioned by another Valorant player.
But for many, it seems, it’s still a very compelling prospect: A new competitive shooter that draws from Counter-Strike, but with characters and abilities inspired—to the point where it’s a bit uncanny—by Overwatch.
To prepare for launch, you can get a leg up by reading our tips for playing Valorant, our guide to Valorant’s guns and our Valorant characters guide. Yes, it’s a lot of reading, but you’ve got until June 2.