- Riot publishes a report on the changes and stats of its new anti-AFK system for Valorant
- The company boasts the system has halved the number of AFK players
- The system works on a rating principle, decided by the frequency of which players go AFK
Riot is committed to overcoming the problem with Valorant players being AFK, and it seems their efforts this year have paid out.
Riot Boasts about Halving the Number of AFK Players
Everyone has been through the following situation: you solo queue ranked in your game of choice, get into the match, but then one player of your team decides to go AFK, effectively making himself useless and giving the enemy team the numbers advantage.
Fortunately, some game devs have implemented features to ban and punish players who do this too often. Among them are the developers of Valorant, Riot Game’s tactical FPS. The dev team has launched its sophisticated anti-cheat system, called Vanguard, ever since the early days of the game. With an emphasis on busting cheaters and AFK players, the system went through a lot of changes in 2021.
Recently, Riot Games released a detailed report, claiming they have halved the number of AFK players over the last year.
How the New System Works
Riot started working on the problem with the many AFK players in March this year. The report says that the team does not want to punish players who have accidentally left the game (for example their Internet connection breaks), or who have an emergency, or hold flank the entire game.
Instead, the team created a sort of AFK “rating” that tracks the behavior across every game and pings players who break the rule regularly. Players, who have a high rating and have gone AFK just a few times, get only warnings or light penalties. However, serial offenders have their rating lowered, and get harsher punishments the more they intentionally go AFK.
The report says that some punishments, especially for players who constantly rage quit matches, may include receiving a warning, XP denials, queue restrictions, and eventually being banned from playing the game depending on the frequency they break the rules. “Throughout the process of escalating penalties, they’ll have multiple explanations of why we took action, and what behavior they need to change…in case they come crying,” the report says.
AFK-ing annoys and ruins the game for other players, and could even lead to servers being overburdened as it happened with New World a couple of months ago. The report specifically thanks to the Valorant community for reporting AFKs, and called on them to provide feedback and question on how they can improve.