When you play most any hero-based PvP game, you’ll often find yourself square off against … well, yourself. If a character is good, why shouldn’t both sides field a copy of them? It’s a little weird from a lore perspective, but it’s “just a game,” right?
Riot Games doesn’t seem to think so. Today’s Valorant dev diary shows off a new video, Duality, the highlight of which is one of the agents coming face-to-face with himself. That rattles him as much as it would anyone, and the rest of the video shows off copies of other characters plotting against their doubles and ends with a “split Earth” animation.
Creative Director David Nottingham explained the concept of narrative dissonance in games, which he defined as when games “have characters and a story that feel out of step with the actual gameplay.” He referenced games “with deep lore, sophisticated backstories, and then you jump into the game and you smash each other or shoot each other.” That sounds a lot like a game that’s often compared to Valorant, and while it’s not always a bad thing, it’s not the direction Nottingham wants to go with Valorant. As he put it:
“Could we ground our 5v5 defend/attack conflict, between the ‘same’ pool of Agents experienced in the playspace, and craft a central conflict in which it would make sense?”
The answer appears to be “We’re going to try.” It’s a novel take on a PvP hero shooter, but is it something that players want or care enough to explore? We’ll find out eventually, as Nottingham promised to expand upon the ramifications over the next year and “answer more of your questions and no doubt pose new ones!”