Since Deadlock has launched in VALORANT, many have questioned her viability in the game. Being a sentinel, she has a lot of similarities to Sage. Deadlock launched in the game when we were in the sentinel meta. Agents like Killjoy and Chamber had dominated the pick and win rates in many official tournaments during this time. Despite this, in the VALORANT Champions Tour Convergence 2023 and the Predator League Asia Pacific 2024, Deadlock had a zero percent pick rate.
With the recent buffs to her ability pool, though, Deadlock has become more viable. The agent is still missing something to compete with the likes of Cypher and Killjoy, however. In this article, let’s take a look at how Riot can improve Deadlock in VALORANT.
What Buffs Does Deadlock Require To Be Good In VALORANT?
In the recent VALORANT Episode 8.01 patch, Deadlock received quite a few useful buffs in the game. The first is her Barrier mesh becoming larger by 4 meters on each end. Due to this, a lot more area is now covered by the x-shaped wall in the game. This will allow players to make the most of the choke points that are created. Alongside that, her Sonic sensors have also received a major buff in VALORANT.
Deadlock can now recall her sensors in the middle of the round. This allows quite a bit of mobility for the sentinel. In situations where the attackers go to the other plant site, Deadlock can recall her sensors and adjust them for the post-plant. With this, players will be able to keep track of a backstab if there is one.
Deadlock and Sage are quite similar to one another due to their signature ability being a breakable wall. Neither agent has any abilities that will cause damage to the opponents. Deadlock does have sensors that will stun the opponents as well as the gravity net to restrict player movement. For Deadlock to be one of the focal sentinels that is used in the game, though, she would first require an ability that reloads after being used.
This is the same mechanic as the flash of Skye or even the heal from Sage. If Deadlock, in a round, uses all her abilities then there will be nothing left for teams to leverage. Ideally, the Gravity Net bomb could be the ability that reloads after a certain time from its first usage. If VALORANT decides to give this buff to Deadlock, it will be interesting to see her pick rate in the upcoming VCT leagues.