The Valorant update which will bring Act 2 of Episode 2 to the live servers is right around the corner.

The Valorant update which will bring Act 2 of Episode 2 to the live servers is right around the corner.
With the Valorant official 2.04 patch notes, Riot will not just be looking to introduce the new agent Astra, but a significant amount of changes to competitive matchmaking as well.
There will be new requirements for reaching Radiant in the game, and the more average players will not be forced to go to a lower rank at the start of a new Act. Moreover, there will be some changes to the Escalation game mode as well.
Valorant fans looking for a detailed description of the patch can look up Riots official website.
For a brief overview, here are all the major highlights.
Valorant Patch 2.04: Full Patch Notes
#1. Valorant Agent Updates
Valorant Map Updates

  • Bind Teleporter exit doors are now permanently jammed openif you want to camp it, get ready to fight for it!
  • There was a frustrating strategy going around where a team would gain mid TP control and thennever leave. The opposite team couldnt reliably contest it without doing a highly coordinated 5-person YOLO TP, or by getting lucky and advancing to nade level and blasting away. We like the focus in this area (youll always find a fight here!), but it can feel unfair if youre not the team inside the TP. With this change, were looking to give you an avenue to contest the teleporter by preventing others from being able to stall a game.
  • Binds pickrate is again evenly weighted
  • During Patch 2.03 we reduced Binds pick rate for Escalation. Were returning it to normal levels, but if Bind continues to be frustrating to play, well look into changing its pickrate again and go back to the drawing board.

#2. Valorant Competitive Updates
This patch marks the start of Competitive Episode 2: Act 2!

  • Placements have changed for the start of an Act. Now, if you have already placed this Episode, then:
  • Your rank will no longer be lowered at the start of an Act
  • If you were Radiant or Immortal rank you will keep your position on the leaderboard, but your Rank Rating(RR) will be reduced by 90% and all Radiant players will be bumped down to Immortal, because you will need to again prove that you are the best of the best in the new Act.
  • Achieving Radiant now requires both being in the top 500 players in your region, as well as having a minimum amount of RR (See below for details).
  • You must finish your placement game to display on the Leaderboard again for the new Act
  • Youre only required to play 1 placement match to display your rank
  • Your RR (and potentially rank) may change based on how you perform in your placement game, but the maximum change will be based solely off of that game.
  • Players who have not previously placed in Competitive this Episode will still need to play 5 placement games to earn their initial rank.

Image via Riot Games
Radiant will be more challenging to earn. You must achieve a certain level of RR before being able to ascend to Radiant. This is adjusted per region based on rank population size and RR distribution.

  • Regional requirements for Radiant cut off:
  • LATAM & KR: 100 RR
  • BR: 200 Rank Rating
  • NA & APAC: 300 RR
  • EU: 400 RR
  • The web leaderboard will be disabled briefly for maintenance at the start of this patch, expect it to be re-enabled within 2448 hours
  • Later this patch, well reduce the total amount of average RR per win/loss by 5
  • This is focused on reducing how often a players Rank gets above their MMR and leads to inconsistent RR games and a wider delta between their displayed rank and MMR. These small math tweaks will be common as we try to find the correct balance for RR based on issues we are seeing in the community.
  • During this patch we will change demotion logic for players to start at 70RR(Previously 80RR).
  • See context above
  • Ranks will no longer be displayed in Agent select or in-game. You will still be able to see ranks on the end of the game screen.
  • You can now queue with a wider group of friends and teammates if you are at the lower ranks (see below image)
  • At the lower ranks we have a very large number of you in our matchmaking pool, so were confident we can make balanced matches. As you rank up, youll find a tighter disparity to ensure we continue to maintain balanced matches and protect the competitive integrity of the higher ranks.
  • We also hope this helps combat smurfing by reducing the incentive to make a new account to play with lower rank friends.

#3. Valorant Quality of Life changes

  • Added Tactical Voice Over
  • In service of improving team coordination and information sharing, weve added more context to some of the automated Agent VO lines that play during the round.
  • Announcer lines like Spike spotted or Enemies spotted will also say a map Super Region afterwards. (e.g., Spike spotted C or Enemies spotted B).
  • We hope to provide richer information to the player with these changes. Tactical VO is not meant to be a full replacement for voice comms, so callouts will be ducked in volume when a teammate is speaking over VOIP.
  • Overall, we hope this helps improve the quality of information that teams not heavily using voice comms are able to expect. We also believe this will improve the experience for those players who have muted another player for any reason.
  • Additionally, weve added an option to place Tactical VO messaging into the Chat window.
  • The toggle for this option is available under Accessibility options. With this enabled, when Tac VO lines are triggered, a Chat message will be sent relaying the information. The lines are modified to best communicate who said what. For example, instead of Sova verbally saying Enemy spotted B, the chat message will read Sova spotted an ENEMY in B.
  • Tactical VO FAQ
  • Tactical VO will not be enabled in modes
  • Tactical VO can be disabled via toggle
  • Tactical VO being ducked by VOIP can be disabled via toggle
  • Tactical VO Chat messages can be enabled via toggle
  • Improved Client framerate by 3% on average for medium to high spec machines in 10-player games, by optimizing inventory management

Valorant Bug Fixes

  • Fixed a bug that caused the Custom game server dropdown to loop infinitely
  • Fixed parts of Reynas Soul Orb feedback triggering when assisting kills on non-players
  • Fixed Reynas Soul Orb timer not properly syncing with its actual duration
  • Fixed issues where teleporting into narrow areas created by Sages wall with Omens Shrouded Step pushed him into a wall
  • Fixed ult active indicators not working for Killjoy, Cypher, Brimstone, Sage, Breach, Jett and Viper