League of Legends
Call of Duty
Before the VALORANT Champions Tour Masters 2: Reykjavík grand finals, fans of the Riot Games title were welcomed to another cinematic. The short animated videos provide a glimpse into the lore of VALORANT and the backstory of the game’s universe. In the cinematic, DUALITY, which takes place directly after the first short, DUELIST, fans were shown the depths of VALORANT’s story telling.
The lore of VALORANT was further expanded upon, and fans were teased with more hints towards future storylines, in Creative Director David Nottingham and Joe “Riot Parm Cheesy” Killeen’s recent Reddit AMA.
What fans know about VALORANT lore so far
From just the cinematics, fans can discern the complexities and creation of the in-universe VALORANT protocol and the fight over Radianite. In the first cinematic, Phoenix is chasing after Jett and trying to get ahold of a mysterious package. The British agent has Viper in his ear as he chases Jett through a European cityscape. Jett outwits Phoenix as he wakes up to a destroyed city. According to Nottingham’s article on VALORANT’s story so far, this event cause battles across the world.
“VALORANT PROTOCOL — a covert operation set up to prevent just such disasters — scrambles to make sense of the unfolding events,” he wrote. “Analysis of Venice and the remnants of the package suggests the detonation of a device harnessing the power of Radianite, previously thought to be a clean and safe source of energy.”
In the most recent short, fans see Viper, Killjoy and Phoenix diffuse a spike together. Phoenix also runs into his double, prompting questions about multiple universes. Those questions are intensified as the final shot shows an earth spit in two.
From in-game voice lines and map Easter eggs, fans have put together that this all has something to do with in-game company Kingdom. Its logo is strewn across the game and is said to hold the largest share of Radianite in VALORANT’s universe.
Answers from the Reddit AMA
Nottingham and Riot Parm Cheesy answered what questions they could, but mostly teased truths about VALORANT’s lore for the more in-depth questions. As for the eternal quest to find out if Omen is an octopus? The answer seems to be no.
“Omen’s origins indeed trail to great depths. But do they go to ocean depths? That seems a bit fishy.” Riot Cheesy Parm wrote.
As for the origin of the VALORANT Protocol, it seems Viper and Brimstone started the team. The number of each agent also signifies the order they joined. Astra is the most recent member. It also seems like Sage and Omen have a central role in the creation of the team as well. The AMA also fleshed out some themes the DUALITY cinematic touches on. In response to a question about whether there are good or bad guys guys, Nottingham responded with:
“Good/bad. Two sides of the same coin. Is an single person, entity truly good, or truly bad? Or do we ascribe to Jungian theories of the persona and shadow within? Is Duality an external or internal concept?”
According to the AMA, VALORANT will receive a cinematic ever four to six months. The team has plans to add more to the various agent’s back stories while also expanding on current lore. There is a roadmap, according to Nottingham, and other content like comics or animated series are more dreams than reality at this point.
“We want to continue making them but don’t expect a huge uptick in quantity,” Nottingham wrote. “We need to balance our time across a lot of different areas of the game.”
More VALORANT lore will come in the future, either through cinematics, voice lines or Easter eggs.
Declan is an esports journalist and part-time editor for Upcomer. He is an avid gamer and League of Legends player. You can find him at the bottom of the leaderboard in most games or on Twitter.