Valorant Episode 5 Act 1 was released with patch 5.0 bringing the new and exciting underwater-themed map Pearl, and brand new Battle Pass to the game, but no agent changes. Riot Games said that they have preserved those for the upcoming patch 5.01, as revealed by the PBE 5.01 test released on June 24, 2022.
Agents like KAY/O, Yoru and Phoenix will go through significant changes in patch 5.01. These experimental alterations are undergoing tests to identify bugs and errors before they finally make their way for the players.
Phoenix might receive a massive buff in the upcoming patch as the agent has been one of the main picks since Beta; but since newer agents are being introduced in Valorant with better utility kit than that of Phoenix, his pick rate has suffered a huge downfall. The once-favorite Valorant duelist saw 0% pick rate in competitive tournaments recently, like Valorant Masters Reykjavík.
The Valorant players have been requesting a Phoenix buff since long after their favorite agent went flying out of the meta, especially when it comes to his ultimate, Run It Back (X) ability. This ultimately puts the agent in a very vulnerable situation if not executed well, exposing his respawn location to the enemies.
Below are the following changes that were brought to his ability toolkit in PBE 5.01:
- Flash Max duration increased 1.1s >>> 1.5s.
- Flash Windup decreased 0.7s >>> 0.5s.
- Phoenix will now equip his weapon earlier if he stops bending his wall.
Run it Back (X)
- Phoenix will now spawn at the marker with the amount of shields he had when the ability was cast.
“We believe Phoenix’s Curveball is the cornerstone of his kit, and as we explored adjustment options it became clear that Curveball being more powerful unlocks his kit as a whole. So we wanted to assess Phoenix in a world where Curveball is more competitive with the rest of the ecosystem to get a sense for the impact of the changes. We view Phoenix as an aggressive entry Agent, so the additional Run It Back and Blaze changes are intended to support his proactive intentions when taking space or fights early on into rounds.”
- Riot Games Developer