Viper pick rate at NA and EU VCT Stage 1 and 2 events
Naim "EnKay" Rosinski
4/30/2021, 6:15:27 PM
Agent Viper has become a stellar choice, both in pro play, as well as the Rated mode in Valorant. After seeing an extremely low pick rate at the very beginning, a series of buffs to the agent has made her a powerful Controller to deal with on the battlefield. Valorant patch 2.06 especially, has made Viper an absolute force to reckon with. Due to her smoke and wall reducing an enemy’s health by 50 upon touching even touching them (the effect is temporary), Viper’s power has been increased tenfold.
Valorant’s very own Sam “Flameserpent” Rosenberg has made a nifty graph that showcases Viper’s pick rate during all North American and European VCT events up to date. This does not include the currently ongoing EMEA and NA Regional Finals (at the time of writing this piece). The data was compiled utilizing our very own Run It Back analytical platform.
The graph showcases who exactly selected Viper at each stage of play at the playoff (final) stage of each event. The blue color showcases EU while the red shows NA.
The graph is fully interactive so you can cycle through on your own so go at it!
It is clear that right off the bat Viper’s potential was noticed by the European Valorant scene. Stage 2: Challengers 1 saw five players pick Viper at a 25% pick rate total. Fnatic’s Jake “Boaster” Howlett and James “Mistic” Orfila were one of the first players to capitalize on her potential. Today, she is their signature agent on Bind especially. NA saw only two players go for the venomous agent, with XSET’s Matthew “Wedid” Suchan’s and ANDBOX’s Jake “POACH” Brumleve’s picks. This amounted to a sub-5% pick rate at the event.
Viper’s pick rate dipped for Europe from then on out, reaching a ~17% pick rate and being selected only thrice. NA saw Wedid stick to her and was this time joined by Immortals’ Nicholas “NaturE” Garrison, who is no longer with the team.
Stage 1: Challengers 2 saw only three players in total pick Viper. That was T1’s newest addition at the time, Rahul “curry” Nemani from NA, Mistic yet again, as well as the former Raise Your Edge Gaming team’s (now Acend) Vladyslav “Kiles” Shvets.
Things did not improve at NA’s Stage 1: Masters event in terms of Viper’s pick rate. Nobody selected Viper at the event as 100 Thieves snatched the victory. Over at Europe, however, Viper was beginning to pick up again, with five players over four teams giving her a go. The winners of the event, Acend, saw Kiles as well as Santeri “BONECOLD” Sassi jump on the Viper. FunPlus Phoenix’ Kirill “ANGE1” Karasiow was also starting to become convinced Viper is a solid pick on some maps. Team Heretics’ Auni “AvovA” Chahade and Ballista Gaming’s Mateusz “MORFAN” Świętochowski also saw them pick up Viper. This led to an ~18% pick rate at the European event.
Nothing changed much at Stage 2: Challengers 1. XSET’s Wedid was the only player to still pick her over in NA. At EU, it was once more ANGE1, BONECOLD, and Kiles that whipped out the Viper. They were this time joined by the Ninjas In Pyjamas’ Charles “CREA” Beauvois.
Valorant’s Viper agent saw her first breakthrough in NA following patch 2.06. Stage 2: Challengers 2 was played out in NA on that patch. However, Europe was still playing on patch 2.05 at the time. The event saw NA surprass EU in Viper’s pick rate for the first time at VCT. This included teams such as NRG, BBG, and Sentinels, making their debut on Viper at the playoffs stage in a VCT event. This led to an all-time high 25% pick rate of Viper in NA, matching EU’s initial Stage 1: Challengers 1 percentage. Europe saw Vitality’s Jesse “JESMUND” Terävä, and Team Liquid’s Dom “soulcas” Sulcas pick Viper alongside Mistic and BONECOLD.
If we were to select who we thought saw Viper’s potential in each region, it would have to be XSET’s Wedid and Fnatic’s duo of Boaster and Mistic. Both teams utilized Viper very early on at VCT, showing her future potential early on maps such as Bind and Split.
While Viper was more or less seeing picks regularly in Europe, North American teams did not opt for Viper for the most part until patch 2.06. Stage 2: Challengers 2 is when finally Viper became a must-have agent across the board in NA due to her increased temporary damage dealt by her smoke and wall.
Europe utilized Viper from the very start. Her pickrate drifted between the 12%-25% region. Even before her buff at patch 2.06, Viper was slowly becoming a solid pick on some Valorant maps. Unfortunately, Europe did not get to play Viper on patch 2.06 until the EMEA Challengers, which are ongoing at the time of writing this article.
We will be keeping close tabs on Viper and her pick rate as she continues solidifying herself as a stellar pick throughout EMEA and NA Regional Finals.
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Naim "EnKay" Rosinski
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