Valorant Community Has Mixed Reactions to New Elderflame Skins

by in Valorant | Jul, 8th 2020

Valorant has been off to a hot start, and Riot wants to celebrate that success by kicking up the heat for its player base, quite literally. The new Elderflame skin set has been revealed, with a price tag that matches its hot nature – $100 for the whole set of guns and knives.

This has led to some division in the community as they try to work out whether or not that’s a fair price for skins, as well as on the appearance of these skins. Many players, while they were impressed with the general feel of them, didn’t feel like the Elderflame skins fit the general flavor that Valorant is going for. 

Mixed Reactions on the Elderflame Valorant Skins

The reaction to the Valorant Elderflame skins has been mixed from the community. Some have compared the skins in the game to skins in Crossfire, the hit FPS title from China which is also Free to Play, while others drew comparison to the high-end CSGO rifle skin Dragon Lore. These are apt comparisons as Tencent, Riot’s owner, is likely looking to corner that very competitive market.

On the other hand, Reddit use Michaaa8 points out that there might be some issues with the skins in competitive play.

“Obviously, they look insane,” they said. “But I think when you play competitively you want less distractions as possible. And that skinpack. I dunno. It would distract me extremely when the weapon starts to jiggle like the dragon does I would maybe appreciate it when there is an option where you turn the Jiggle on and off. Or that the gun looks more like a gun and not that organic.”

Of course, there is also users that think skins are not what Riot should be focusing on right now, rather that they should be focusing on fixing the game’s core issues, including game flow, mobility, and fixes to the game’s anti-cheat. What this person probably doesn’t realize is that the skins team and the teams that work on these systems are completely separate. Still – it’s worth noting that if players aren’t satisfied with the core game, they are unlikely to purchase skins, especially those that run for $100.

“Bruh skin sets are already $71 with like solo knives going for $35,” HardyNoob said on Reddit. “This shit is about to be a down payment for an apartment..”

This sentiment was echoed throughout the thread discussing the new skin, saying that the pricing in general for skins in the game seems a bit high. Each of the Valorant Elderflame skins cost 2475 VP, meaning that a full set will run for $100. As the Redditor says, that’s approaching the down payment on an apartment, or at the very least groceries for the week – which might be too rich for some players’ blood. 

Why Are These Skins So Important for Valorant to Get Right?

Skins for Riots other titles, including League of Legends and Teamfight Tactics, are among the biggest drivers of funds for the company. The exact amount that they make on skins per year hasn’t been disclosed, but purely judging from sale of cosmetics around Worlds and other events, the number is quite likely astronomically high.

Back in 2015, League of Legends pulled in $1.6 billion in revenue for Riot. They’ve not since disclosed how much revenue the game was generating, but given that the game’s momentum has not really slowed down since then, it’s likely to be even higher.

With Valorant, Riot has another opportunity to monetize a completely different part of the playerbase in gaming – FPS players. These players are already used to buying skins in games like CSGO, Rainbow Six Siege, and Overwatch (via loot boxes,) so getting the pricing right is going to be extremely important for Riot to pull off.

With all of these titles being not free to play (with the exception of the more recent CSGO,) it was less important for them to get the pricing on skins right right out of the gate, and they had a lot more wiggle room. Valorant doesn’t quite have that luxury, as free to play titles rely on the sale of cosmetics to generate revenue. Riot clearly has a lot in their war chest, so it won’t be an existential crisis for the game if they need to take awhile to get things right, but it also isn’t great for the company either. 

In good news for gamers, though, we’re likely to continue getting some of the most unique gun skins to ever grace a FPS title, rather than your standard sprays and finishes that you see in the more realistic titles. There haven’t been quite that many games with enough of a fantasy flair (outside of Overwatch,) to offer that, and Valorant’s skins are much more versatile than other titles due to the nature of every character being able to use every gun. 


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