Valorant is a 5v5 competitive tactical shooter where attackers try to plant the spike while defenders defuse the spike trying to win the round. This game mode is played on various interesting maps, with teleportation, ropes etc.
Valorant’s Beta introduced three maps Haven, Bind and Split with Ascent, Icebox, Breeze, Fracture and Pearl, debuting in the later patches. The total number of maps from three is increased to eight, and one of the most beloved maps has to be Split among all these maps.
Split as a map is simple to play. It follows a traditional map design with an A site, B site and a Mid. The map plays very simple and is enjoyed by casual and professionals alike. There are seldom matches where Split isn’t played.
Set in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan. Split displays the duality of the country, with A site seemingly futuristic while B is reminiscent of old Japan. This makes the map visually appealing while playing the map doesn’t require too much effort.
After being added to the game, Split went under a major change back in Patch 2.01 in January 2021, where the map was reworked to make it more open. The rework only improved the map and has seen a lot of action since.
With the announcement of Pearl in Valorant Patch 5.0, It was also announced that Split, after two years of service, would be removed from the Active map pool. This means players would no longer be able to play Split in Unrated or Competitive.
The map would still be available for other modes like Replication, Escalation and Custom games, but players would no longer get Split in Competitive or unrated games.
Riot said that Split was being removed from the active map pool to ensure new players aren’t overwhelmed with the number of things to learn and get ample time to learn the available agents and maps.
In the case of Professional scenes, an odd number of maps makes it easy for Veto, letting teams ban and choose an equal number of maps. And Split would exit there after the LCQs in August 2022.
While the decision is reasonable and was taken consulting the community, it also needs to be pointed out that Split is one of the oldest maps in Valorant and has been played more than Bind and Haven is. Pearl, The latest edition, is somewhat similar to Split, so to remove, Bind or Haven isn’t vice.
You can read more about map pool and riot’s decision here.
“Split” would eventually return as Riot decided to circulate maps in and out of the pool and maintain a seven-map pool. This would only make the game more exciting and fun, casually and professionally.
You can read about the rest of the changes in Patch 5.0