Valkyrie is undoubtedly one of the strongest and most picked Legends in Apex Legends, and Season 14 will feature a significant nerf for this character. The patch notes revealed all the Legend changes coming next Season. Mad Maggie and Newcastle received massive buffs, and all of Valkyrie’s abilities were modified. While the decision comes as a relief for the majority of the community, players who main Valkyrie are thoroughly disappointed. Looks like this little Viper has finally got her wings clipped!
In ALGS 2022, Valkyrie dominated the meta and had an astounding 98.05% pick rate with 1,159 picks. The Winged Avenger was selected most often with other Legends like Gibraltar, Caustic, and Seer. Valkyrie's Ultimate became the perfect tool for teams to relocate, and also recon opponents from mid-air. A nerf was inevitable and necessary to balance the character. However, the question remains if all of Valkyrie's abilities needed changes.
Professional players and community experts weighed in on these changes, and while some felt the nerfs were too harsh, others highlighted that Valkyrie is still a top-tier Legend. The majority of the community wanted to see Valkyrie's Ultimate Skyward Dive nerfed with the recon feature removed. However, the passive recon while using Skyward Dive is Valkyrie's only scanning ability. It's true that this character can gain height by using her Passive, but that often makes Valkyrie an easy-to-shoot target.
Skyward Dive was nerfed with a height reduction, and its launch time speed was reduced as well. This means Valkyrie's Ultimate will now travel upwards at a slower speed. Similarly, Valkyrie's movements with the Passive VTOL Jets were significantly nerfed. Acceleration upon activating the Jets was decreased by 8%, and fuel consumption on activation was increased by 33%. This not only increased the skill ceiling for using Valkyrie’s abilities but also ensured that this character gets punished for blindly relying on the movement mechanics.
While these changes might affect Valkyrie’s pick rate, they will definitely make players more decisive while using these abilities. Some feel that Valkyrie needed a nerf, but all of her abilities did not need changes. Valkyrie was one of the few Legends with a get-out-of-jail-free card allowing players to utilize traversal abilities to quickly move in and out of combat. However, this nerf is bound to make players use Valkyrie’s abilities tactically with very little room for error.
A section of the community feels that such a massive nerf for a popular character was a little unwarranted. Valkyrie's Heirloom was released last season itself, and countless players, including myself, spent around $160 to acquire the Sukazu Spear. While it upsets the fans who bought Mythic cosmetics for the Legend, Valkyrie getting nerfed was inescapable and had to happen at one point or another.
I feel every Legend needs to be regulated when they reach the peak of their prowess, and the developers were quick to nerf an overpowered Legend that dominated casual and ranked lobbies alike. This was implemented to ensure equal viability for every Legend, and it is too early to say that Valkyrie will fall off the meta. Considering Valkyrie is the only character that can freely maneuver with aerial abilities, it would be unwise to jump to a conclusion about this nerf.
It finally boils down to the question of whether Valkyrie will be still viable in ranked game mode, and the obvious answer to that is a yes. Realistically, players who have mastered this Legend will stick to using Valkyrie all throughout the next season. Similarly, players who are new and want to learn this character will have to practice more to adjust to Valkyrie's kit. The skill ceiling has definitely increased for this Legend, and perhaps it is for the best. You can check all of the changes to Valkyrie's kit below.
All Valkyrie changes in Apex Legends
All of the changes coming to Valkyrie's kit are highlighted below:
- VTOL Jets
- Acceleration while activating VTOL Jets decreased by 8%
- Activating VTOL Jets now has a 33% increased fuel consumption
- A mid-range orange state is added to the fuel meter UI between green (more than 60%), and red (less than 30%)
- Strafing and aerial boosting take a 20% debuff when struck by slowing effects
- Missile Swarm
- The explosion radius reduced from 175 to 125
- Aim/turn slow removed
- Move slow duration decreased from 2.5s to 2.0 seconds
- Skyward Dive
- Height reduction of 25%
- Valkyrie's ultimate will now travel upward at a slightly slower speed as launch time is reduced from 5.5s to 5 seconds
Wondering what diminishing returns means in Apex Legends? Check out Ranked changes include diminishing returns on eliminations in Apex Legends Season 14 on Pro Game Guides.