Competitive games require constant attention from the developers as the players are more engaged and serious about the specifics. A simple change can turn into a meta or a massive disadvantage in the competitive scene. The Spectrum Phantom is such a skin in Valorant that most pro players avoided for a long time, and the developers had no idea about it since nobody thought it necessary to let them know.
This issue was discovered by Robin Silk, Associate producer of Valorant, during his visit to Valorant Champions Tour in Istanbul. Amid his conversation with Valorant pro @Mistic, he (Mistic) mentioned that he avoided the Spectrum Phantom skin. Silk received the same feedback on the skin from a few other pros he talked to. He expressed his astonishment saying,
“I had no idea what he was talking about. He explained to me that the barrel sticks out further than all other phantoms, so it gives you a disadvantage in any smoke, viper ult, etc. because people can see you sooner. At first, I didn’t believe it. how could this be?”
He was amazed that this issue was never reported to Riot, even when the whole professional community avoided this particular skin. After getting back, he fixed the problem immediately with the release of Patch 5.08.
Silk encouraged players to inform about any issue in the game in his Twitter post.
In these notes we mention a fix for the spectrum phantom silencer length, and I wanted to share a quick story about this. At VCT champions in Istanbul I met @misticJK, and while talking about skins he casually mentioned he doesnt use spectrum phantom because its pay to lose (1/5) https://t.co/EkAndE290S
— Silky (@UnderscoreSilky) October 18, 2022
The slightly longer barrel of the skin made it harder to detect enemies in tight corners because the blind spot was a bit bigger. The pros didn’t feel comfortable playing with it after knowing it caused a slight disadvantage.