Which Valorant agents are the best at getting kills? When comparing ACS from professional players, how big of an impact does their agent choice have? To answer questions like these, it is helpful to compile statistics to see which agents excel at specific aspects of the game.
In order to get a large enough sample size that is representative of high level professional play, stats were taken from the entirety of VCT 2022. Taking statistics further into the past would have introduced too much error due to changes in agent balancing and the way certain statistics such as assists are calculated. In the 2022 VCT circuit, every agent except for Phoenix, Fade, and Yoru have at least 10,000 rounds played, and some agents such as Sova were played over 200,000 rounds.
Kills, deaths, assists, first kills, first deaths, and ACS are all common stats that are used for analysis and comparisons between players. While most people have a general understanding that duelists get more kills than controllers, the nuances of agent choice are often shrouded in vague and qualitative statements. It is time to quantify those differences.
It is important to note that these statistics do not exist in a vacuum. For instance, rarely do teams put their worst player on Jett. These comparisons have to do with how players and teams utilize the agents as much as the capabilities of the agents themselves.
Kills and Deaths
The obvious statement to be made about kills per round (KPR) and deaths per round (DPR) is that duelists take a lot of fights. Escapability plays a large role for agents like Jett who have high KPR but lower DPR than other duelists.
Duelists get more kills than other roles, but they die more often as well.
Passivity plays a large role in determining which agents die the least. For example, controllers need to stay alive to use their utility for the team, so they naturally take fewer fights than duelists. Excluding Fade and her low sample size, the five agents that die the least all have important post-plant utility.
Unlike the passive initiators, flashing initiators such as KAY/O and Skye are more often closer to the fights. Their utility is not as essential to save for the critical late-round moments, so they are often used more aggressively.
Jett and Chamber top the K/D charts with most of the duelists following close behind. Generally, those agents are picked by star players who are also usually given significant support from their teammates.
Many of the flex agents are given the less favorable jobs like being a second entry to accommodate the best players playing in the best positions, and their K/D suffers accordingly.
A common trend on these lists is Breach near the bottom. His utility is built to support teammates getting kills, and he struggles to make plays off the back of his own abilities. He is often chosen by players that don't rely on their mechanical skill such as many IGLs.
First Kills and First Deaths
First kills and first deaths per round (FKPR and FDPR) are a measure of how aggressive certain agents are. The stats are very similar to KPR and DPR with some notable differences. The disparity between the top and bottom of the standings is more drastic in FKPR and FDPR because while all players usually take fights at some point in the round, only one player per team gets a first kill or first death in any given round. Teams usually take the initiative to have certain players take the opening duel.
Chamber and Jett players are very efficient in opening duels.
The first kill is one of the most impactful moments of the round. Getting an early advantage is so important, that teams spend extra resources to ensure that they get it. A prevailing strategy for teams in the professional scene is to have one of their best players take the opening duel in as many rounds as possible.
Jett and Chamber excel at taking the opening fight and using their escape utility to stay alive to preserve the 5v4. Commandeered by star players, these agents dominate opening duel efficiency by such a degree that almost every other agent is negative.
Other duelists, like Neon, are often used to break open space on the map. While their escapability isn't the same as Jett or Chamber, they are often still piloted by star players and receive resources and support from teammates. But even so, Neon's first kill efficiency is the lowest among duelists and comparable to the controllers, indicating the value teams place on Neon's ability to take space quickly as opposed to getting the early player advantage with an opening kill.
Initiators and controllers rarely take opening duels. The big exceptions are the flashing initiators: KAY/O and Skye. The pair operate similarly to Phoenix and Yoru in function by utilizing their flashes to enter a site; although, the initiators' utility is more useful later in the round than that of the duelists. When the star players aren't in position to take the opening duels, these flex players are often called upon to do the dirty work.
Sova is once again an anomaly among initiators with numbers that rival the duelists in opening duel efficiency, although that is mainly driven by how passive he plays. His damaging utility is harder to avoid than other agents, and at least before his nerfs, he excelled at finding kills without taking gunfights.
Perhaps one of the most interesting statlines is assists per round (APR) which is substantially driven by the utility of the agents. There are two ways to get an assist: dealing at least 50 damage without getting a kill or utility interactions.
Utility plays a large role in assists per round.
Starting at the bottom, Jett and Chamber stand apart from the rest of the field. Playstyle matters when considering assists, and Operators rarely deal damage without killing the opponent. Jett and Chamber probably notch less assists than if an agent had no utility but used a rifle the whole time.
Most of the agents below 0.2 APR have only inconsistent ways of getting assists based on utility. Raze is significantly above the other duelists because she has multiple abilities that often deal at least 50 damage without killing the target.
Those unfamiliar with how assists are counted might be surprised to see controllers this high, but they get an assist every time an enemy is killed through their smoke or killed pushing out of it. Viper has less versatile smokes, so she is lower than the others despite having damage dealing utility. In addition to smokes, every kill by allies boosted by Brimstones stim beacon gives him assists. That combined with his damage dealing utility help boost him to second place.
KAY/O is the king of assists. Professional teams use his suppression to take fights and execute onto sites, so he racks up assists on suppressed enemies particularly with his long-lasting massive-range ultimate. Sage's healing and revive gives her far more assists than the other sentinels since every kill by a healed or revived teammate gives her an assist.
KAST is the percentage of rounds in which the player got a kill, got an assist, survived the round, or was traded by a teammate. It is often used as a metric for how frequently a player had a positive impact on the round. It is also sometimes used to measure teamplay although it is difficult to quantify teamplay into numbers.
Passive agents that get a lot of assists top the KAST %.
Even though getting a kill in a round and surviving a round increase KAST by the same amount, the KAST ranking resembles DPR far more than KPR or even the K/D ranking. While running at the enemy is a good way to get a lot of kills, it makes it far less likely that a player will have consistent value in every round.
Since assists are fairly prevalent in Valorant due to abilities, several agents that excel at getting assists also have high KAST numbers. Agents like Raze and KAY/O rise above their DPR ranking due to assists.
In general, passive agents that also get a good number of assists dominate the KAST rankings. Getting traded is the hardest number to quantify from the basic suite of statistics, but it does play a small role. For instance, Reyna has a significantly higher K/D than Neon and only slightly less assists, but she has a significantly lower KAST.
Average Combat Score
Average combat score (ACS) has long been a staple of Valorant stat-sheets since Riot introduced it as the primary in-game statistic. As a pseudo-rating metric it has been criticized for favoring duelists and not giving supportive roles an equal footing, but it is still widely used.
Duelists are heavily favored in ACS.
For reference, ACS takes into account damage, kills, and non-damaging assists. Multikills are given bonus points, and the more kills that have taken place in a round, the less each successive kill is worth. That final point essentially means that going aggressive and taking fights earlier is worth more.
The role disparity is apparent with all six duelists in the top six of ACS. There is a massive dropoff between the duelists + Chamber and the rest of the agents. Chamber sits slightly below all the duelists despite beating some of them in KPR and FKPR. His rock bottom assist numbers drag his ACS down a little bit. Similarly, Jett leads in KPR and completely dominates in FKPR, but other duelists close the gap due to assists and a little extra damage output.
Damaging utility helps several agents such as Raze with their ACS. Despite KAY/O and Skye being quite close to each other in KPR and FKPR, the extra damage output and assists from KAY/O really separate him from Skye in ACS.
When judging players by their numbers, it is essential to take their role into account. For instance, 200 ACS would be significantly above average for Sage players but below average for Jett players. Even when looking at different agents of the same role, there are significant statistical differences.
The next time you take a look at some Valorant stats, whether in your own games or professional games, consider the context of agent choice.