Valorant

What is Valorant’s Network Buffering setting?

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And looking deeper into Valorant’s Netcode to find an advantage

To this day, many players have been wondering whether to set it off the default “Minimum” mode.

Riot Games developers have revealed insight into this setting.


Credits: /u/RiotStealthyJesus

Mentioned in a Reddit post back in the BETA of Valorant, a Riot Games developer revealed what changing the “Network Buffering” setting does in Valorant.

“By default, for every player in VALORANT, there is a 7.8125ms ‘buffer’ time on rendering other players on-screen. We do this to smooth out player popping. I’ve attached an image that demonstrates intent”

Credits: Riot Games

By changing the “Network Buffering” setting off Minimum, players rate limit their outgoing packets and increase the 7.8125ms interpolation delay.

  • Minimum” is 1 frame of delay (7.8125ms), and full 128 send rate from your computer to the game server.
  • Moderate” is 3 frames of delay (23.4375ms), and chunked updates to the game server (your move data goes to the server every 64-ticks, not 128-ticks).
  • Maximum” is 5 frames of delay (39.0625ms), and chunked updates to the game server (your move data goes to the server every 32-ticks, not 128-ticks).

In summary, if you are experiencing a lot of packet loss, Riot Games might suggest players use a higher Network Buffering setting.

Credits: Riot Games

What about for players with high ping?

For players whose ping is above > 50ms, it is still recommended to leave the Network Buffering setting to Minimum. Unless you are experiencing packet loss.


Peeker’s Advantage

In a recent article on the Valorant developer blog, Riot Games has revealed the exact amount of peeker’s advantage.

Credits: Riot Games

128 tick servers, 35ms round trip network latency, and a client running at 60FPS will result in 100.6 ms peeker’s advantage.

By running the game at 144 fps and hertz, we can reduce the amount of peeker’s advantage to 71ms.

Below is an image to visualise how far a player who starts fully behind cover is able to peek around a corner before their opponent sees the movement.

Credits: Riot Games

Many players in the Southeast Asian region have expressed that Valorant’s peeker’s advantage is too prominent.

In this game update post back during the Valorant Beta, Riot has addressed some problems brought up by players.

They have admitted that high ping players cause worse peeker’s advantage.

Though, Riot has stressed that having a lower latency is near always superior.

The only tricky bit with a high ping player is that it does cause worse peeker’s advantage, for everyone. But you as a low-ping player have just as much peek advantage on your high-ping opponent as they have against you

They have recommended that players play more aggressively in high-ping disparity games.


Strafe Shooting and running enemies

The topic of strafe shooting involves the screnario where you are killed by a player who appears to be mid-run.

Addressed back in a post from Valorant’s Beta, the developers have acknowledged this issue.

Network Interpolation Delay causes a 7.8125ms desync between movement data and damage data. Otherwise said, when you get killed, the player’s move position is always shown 7.8125ms behind from where they actually fired.

This can make it appear as if the player was moving when they shot you.

So far, the developers have offered a few solutions. Though, players are not sure whether they have been implemented yet.


How do I get an edge with this knowledge?

On the client side, there isn’t much the average player can do to take advantage of Valorant’s netcode.

One thing player’s who have high ping can do to get better performance is to invest in a Premium VPN to reduce latency.

For players in high ping disparity games, it is proven that playing more aggressively will let you take advantage of the increased Peeker’s advantage.

And unless you are experiencing severe packet loss, you should always be setting Network Buffering to a minimum.

As explained above, playing above 144 fps paired with a 144 Hertz monitor will result in significantly lower peeker’s advantage. By around 30 ms.


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