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Now that content creators have had their hands on Fade for a few days, the community is already forming conclusions about the Turkish Initiator. For instance, her kit gives offers tools that pair well with other agents. And, although Fade feels strong, it’s rare for an agent to excel on every map. Just by nature of the game’s design, even the strongest agents like Jett and Sova sometimes get relegated to the bench depending on which VALORANT map is on the table. All this begs the question: what are Fade’s best and worst maps?
First off, a disclaimer. This list was put together from playing Fade, watching other creators play Fade and even a Q&A with Nicholas Wu Smith, a gameplay designer for Fade at Riot Games. It is almost certainly subject to change as Fade become more fully integrated into competitive VALORANT.
Best maps for Fade
From early play tests, it quickly became clear that Haven will be one of Fade’s best maps. Info-gathering agents are pretty powerful there, since three sites means defenders have to take more risks and commit to more re-takes. On Attack side, Fade can use her Haunt (E) in combination with her Prowler (C) to find the defenders and help coordinate the rest of her team’s utility. Her ultimate is also extremely powerful for coordinated site hits. The same goes on Defense side. Her Haunt can land on the low roofs and mark almost anyone in site, just like a Sova recon dart.
Many of the reasons Fade is good on Haven also apply to Ascent. You can make mincemeat of enemies marked by Haunt through the many spammable walls and apply devastating site hits with your utility. Fade also pairs extremely well with Omen, whose best two maps right now, according to recent pro play data, are Haven and Ascent.
It should also come as no surprise that Bind is a strong Fade map, as well. There will be a lot of interesting counter-play against enemies using Fade’s deafen — on Seize (Q) and her ultimate — with Bind’s teleporters, which usually emit a loud audio cue. Bind is also one of the few maps where Yoru is viable. Fade and Yoru can be a deadly duo with a little bit of team synergy. The same goes for Raze, whose Paint Shell grenades can kill enemies caught in Seize. And, once again, Bind is a great map for Haunt to land many key marks from positions above the enemy.
The last map Fade excels on is a bit more of a surprise. Split is typically a map where Sova rarely saw play because of its tight corners that nullified the value of his recon dart. Many teams opt out of info-gathering agents altogether on Split, instead relying on agents with utility that can block off the small chokepoints on the map. Well, Fade gives you the best of both worlds. Her Seize can shut down a site hit through a narrow corridor and her Prowlers can help provide valuable info. Fade’s ultimate, Nightfall (X), is also great because it covers almost all of Split’s smaller sites.
Worst maps for Fade
One of the core issues with Fade is her restricted range. Her Haunt and Seize fall down after a set amount of time, meaning they can’t travel very far. For these reasons, Fade is incredibly weak on Breeze, the biggest map in the pool. Players can easily avoid her utility and her Prowlers rarely cover enough ground to be useful. It is highly unlikely any Initiator will overtake Sova’s dominance on the map.
Too soon to tell
There are two maps where it’s still too early to tell if Fade is strong or not: Fracture and Icebox. On Fracture, pro teams rarely run Initiators like Sova and Skye. However, Fade provides value that those agents don’t. Her Seize lets defenders take space aggressively if they do it together. And on Attack, her Prowlers and ultimate are a great resource to clear out sites.
As for Icebox, that map has historically been a strong map for Sova. Long range arrow lineups provide a lot of value and his drone is great for clearing out all the nooks and crannies on the map. Fade’s Haunt will probably have limited use on Icebox, but her Prowlers could be useful in a similar manner to Sova’s drone or Skye’s dog. Like Fracture, it’s still too early to tell if Fade can be played here.
Coby Zucker is Upcomer's resident CS:GO writer. He's also played League of Legends at the collegiate level and is a frequent visitor in TFT Challenger Elo. He's a firm believer that Toronto should be the next big esports hub city.