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Are you looking for a versatile agent to pick in Valorant? Someone who knows the enemy’s location and can eliminate them single-handedly? Look no further because KAY/O is the agent to instalock at every match start! Featured as an initiator, KAY/O is a robot that provides ample support to teammates and can clutch during challenging times.
It’s been so long since we saw a jaw-dropping KAY/O performance in the highlights, but he remains a viable pick in specific maps. When it comes to making a significant impact in a game from a distance, KAY/O is the right choice.
With the introduction of the newest map, ‘Pearl’ KAY/O is the ideal defender for the B site.
Here’s a complete guide about the agent – his history, kit, performance, and how to use him to clutch in difficult times.
First, let’s take a look at how KAY/O came to be.
KAY/O – A Killer Machine
KAY/O is a cybernetic organism that hails from an alternate Earth. He is a deadly war machine, programmed to successfully carry out one objective – to kill Radiants. He fought in the Radianite war but traveled back in time to help the humans of the present time. It’s only been a year since he made his way into the Valorant Protocol.
The agent had the codename Grenadier during his development. The agent’s focus is set on saving the planet from chaos.
“We have one job; save this Earth. No excuses.”
– KAY/O, Match Start
KAY/O may be a robot, but he does not lack emotions. While he feels sympathy towards his teammates, he doesn’t shy away from sneering at the enemies in battle, showing just how brilliant his programming is.
KAY/O’s Story Arc in Valorant
KAY/O is an acronym for Kill All Your Opponents. He was the seventeenth agent to join the Valorant Protocol. Using Radianite technology from his time, KAY/O disables the enemy’s unique abilities to gain the upper hand in a fight.
He’s a robot from the future who fought in the Radiant War. It happened about 200 years ago, and the destruction it caused was close to infinite. KAY/O had to kill several members of the Protocol, including Skye, Reyna, and Astra. He also lost some agents in the battle, like Brimstone and Jett.
After realizing the cost of the war, KAY/O traveled to the so-called ‘present’ to fight alongside the Protocol and prevent such events that would lead to the planet-ending fight. He used the teleportal on the map Breeze to arrive at the current time.
As the details suggest that Reyna was behind the Radiant War, KAY/O developed an instant hatred for her. He also managed to take out Reyna and swore to eliminate her from other universes. That’s why the two have such bitter words for each other during a match.
KAY/O is a robot, which means he doesn’t have flesh to hide. The agent possesses a metal body with his legs made from a mixture of metal and leather. KAY/O’s face has a screen displaying the nature of his surroundings. A peak meter appears on his face when he delivers his voice lines.
The agent’s chest, forearms, and sides of the leg also radiate electricity and energy, indicating his source of existence and power.
KAY/O’s personality is also quite simple. Although just a robot, he feels terrible about the losses he’s seen in the wars he fought in the alternate universe. Most of his efforts aim toward a peaceful Earth with no more violence than he’s witnessed. He’s eager to go into combat and win for his team.
“Clear to engage, weapons hot.”
– KAY/O, Barrier Down
KAY/O also has confused ideas about the other agents in the Protocol. Although he compliments his teammates, he’s skeptical about the ones he fought against in his time and now has to work with them as teammates in the present.
One of KAY/O’s biggest enemies is Reyna. Although he accepts her abilities and supremacy, he despises the agent for her actions and the consequences. In the alternate timeline, he was also able to take out Reyna, so he seems optimistic about taking on her when it comes to action in the present.
Brimstone and KAY/O seem to have a blurred history. Many people believe that KAY/O is the robot that Brimstone’s friend created and sent into the past to help Brimstone in his battles.
Therefore, many sources suggest that the two get along extremely well in combat. It also explains why the robot feels empathy towards the humans while doubting the role of Radiants in the Protocol.
In ACT III: Ignition, we got two player cards for Brimstone and KAY/O titled, No One Left Behind and Memory Log respectively. If you take a closer look at the player cards you can see a person carrying a fallen comrade. KAY/O’s player card shows that it’s him carrying someone because you can see his eyes are glowing.
This shows that Brimstone and KAY/O have some past (or future?) concerning one another, while fans predict that KAY/O is in fact; Brimstone resurrected as a robot from the future! Only time will tell what connection these two agents have with one another.
KAY/O is more of a team player, so his kit benefits the entire team, making him a true support player. Much of his gear comes in handy when there’s no Sova main in your squad, so gathering intel falls on KAY/O’s hands.
Let’s talk about these abilities one by one:
KAY/O’s signature ability is an electromagnetic knife, which sticks to surfaces and detects enemy presence in a particular zone. The player receives a free blade at the beginning of every round.
The suppression blade takes around one second to work its magic, after which enemies cannot use their abilities for eight seconds. After forty seconds, the player regains the power, making KAY/O an adequate replacement for Sova.
However, enemies can also shoot and destroy the knife, meaning KAY/O won’t suppress them. So, it’s essential to deploy the blade in a location where it can detect the enemies and takes time to spot.
KAY/O’s Zero/Point is an excellent tool at the beginning of every round. While it alerts the enemy of the agent’s location on the map, it still holds an important place in disabling the enemy’s kit and indicating how many of them there are.
But there are plenty of counterattacks for this detection blade. For example, baiting one player into the knife and eliminating an aggressive KAY/O can benefit the team in many ways. Therefore, one must be careful about using the knife and planning ahead.
This knife is an amazing tool to suppress enemy agents; making their abilities useless for a few seconds, gaining you and your team a huge advantage over your opponents.
The contender for the worst flash behind Phoenix, KAY/O’s Flash/Drive can be a nuisance for both the enemy team and you. Each flashbang costs 250 credits and blocks the vision of everyone who looks at it. That means the enemy, teammate, and even you!
The flash takes 1.6 seconds to blind its victims with the left click, while lobbing with the right click takes only 1 second to detonate. The effect lasts only about two seconds, but the enemy has such tampered vision that it takes longer to recover from it. Therefore, the correct usage of KAY/O’s flashbang can bring the right results.
A KAY/O main can buy two flashbangs in a round. The flashes are pretty fast, and a long throw can hurl them over a long distance, so peeking mid for another player becomes quite feasible. These grenades can also bounce off walls, so creating some sick plays with a flashbang is possible.
KAY/O’s flashes are what make him a true support player. Whether pushing on a defending or attacking situation, KAY/O’s grenades can be pretty helpful in initiating the play. Even if the Zero/Point doesn’t work, these grenades are enough to blind everyone in a site, causing them to retreat and make space for your teammates.
KAY/O’s frag grenade is a bit underpowered. It takes some time to damage the enemies, thereby hindering its impact. For 200 credits, you can use one grenade that detonates four times in a small radius.
The Frag/Ment works for only four seconds. During that time, it delivers damage of 25-60, depending upon the distance from its center. Enemies standing close to the center will receive lethal damage, even eliminating them with just two detonations.
KAY/O’s grenade can also bounce off walls. However, its speed is relatively slow, and after a ricochet, it reaches its destination much slower. So, the only ideal situation is when you corner the enemy into a choke point with no way out.
Whether the enemy stands in the grenade or runs away from it, the kill is KAY/O’s (you’ll have to wait in the enemy’s direction, or else you’ll face worse consequences!)
In the image above, you’ll see when the KAY/O is ready to throw the grenade, you now have a choice to press right or left click to decide the projectile of the grenade. Here’s how the frag grenade looks like when you throw it:
KAY/O’s ultimate ability is quite controversial. Some might say it is a bit too good to be effective, while others may consider its disadvantages more. The power requires KAY/O to gather seven points, after which it goes into an Overload state where the enemies cannot use their abilities as long as they’re within the radius of the pulse.
The ability suppresses enemies for four seconds with every pulse, giving off five of them. The Overload remains for twelve seconds. KAY/O also receives a 15% increase in fire rate, 10% increase in reload speed, and 10% recovery speed. All of these characteristics make KAY/O’s ultimate a difficult one to counter.
If an enemy manages to take out KAY/O during his Overload state, KAY/O goes into a Downed state, where an ally can revive him by stabilizing his Radianite core. The stabilization takes three seconds, and KAY/O is up on his feet in 1.5 seconds. KAY/O also receives 850 health during his Downed phase so that allies have time to revive him, and the bot can take some damage from enemies.
While KAY/O’s ultimate ability may be defining for the agent, it also carries considerable risk. In the Overload state, the pulses can alert enemies that KAY/O is nearby. As the pulses will suppress their abilities, it will be evident to the opponents that KAY/O is in their vicinity, which becomes a big problem during clutch situations.
If the enemy stays silent in corners, it becomes impossible for KAY/O to flush them out and instead get killed. So, using it is only for the best players.
Okay, no need to highlight that I used my ultimate after Jett fragged the last opponent player standing; I already got enough of that in the chat.
KAY/O’s Update History
KAY/O stepped into the battlefield quite recently. By his introduction, the game had entered the Patch 3.0 era. However, it doesn’t mean that the bot had a well-balanced kit since his introduction. He’s received some crucial upgrades during his time in the Protocol.
Here’s a summary of how his updates have been:
- v3.01: No healing while shot down in the Null/Cmd phase.
- v3.06: Flash/Drive windup telegraph on both left-click and right-click reduced to 0.3 seconds, and pulsing continues after being shot down in Null//Cmd.
KAY/O’s Performance in Official Matches
KAY/O was an agent everyone was picking when it was first introduced. But now, it has slowly become an underrated agent. Few players are willing to take on a match with KAY/O due to his mediocre abilities. That’s why his statistics haven’t been the best in a while.
Valorbuff provides a detailed insight into the agent’s performance in ranked matches. KAY/O ranks eighth in terms of pick rate, with just 16.8%. Viper has a substantial lead on the robot with 25.5%. However, he’s still doing better than other competitors like Neon, Yoru, and Phoenix, with a lower pick rate of 14.3%, 11.5%, and 8.5%, respectively.
KAY/O’s win rate is also relatively poor with such a low pick rate. He’s only been able to win 44.1% of matches, a massive difference between him and the leader Raze’s win percentage. Yoru has an equal win percentage as of KAY/O, while only two agents have won fewer games than the bot: Omen with 43.6% and Chamber with 42.3%.
Although he is an initiator, KAY/O fails to compete with the best agents primarily because of his kit. His signature ability makes him comparable to Sova, but his basic utility is slower and can harm the team’s mutual good. Therefore, KAY/O is a risky agent to choose.
When it comes to teammates, KAY/O’s best ally has been Killjoy. On almost every map, KAY/O’s partnership with Killjoy has been the most successful, averaging around 48.4% win. Brimstone has been the best agent with KAY/O on Ascent, while Reyna and KAY/O on Breeze are an unbeatable pair.
Interestingly, Diamond and Immortal lobbies have the highest pick rate for KAY/O, while Radiant players are skeptical about picking the bot. Iron and Bronze players win most of the games with KAY/O, with 46.59% and 46.60% win rates, respectively.
However, the Diamond and Immortal matches also report the lowest win rate amongst all the ranks, at 44.89% and 44.56%, respectively.
How to Play with KAY/O?
Playing with KAY/O can be a bit tricky. His utility is quite variable, and much of it needs careful timing. A good player will only choose to play with KAY/O if they know how the map influences the game. Therefore, choosing KAY/O depends upon a player’s mindset and their teammates.
Choosing KAY/O as an initiator eliminates some other options for the other players. For example, if a player picks KAY/O, there’s no reason to choose Sova, as the information gathered can be sufficient. It won’t be beneficial in bigger maps like Breeze as the radius for his Zero/Point is small.
However, maps like Split and Haven work well for the agent as they provide ample detection within the site—similarly, KAY/O’s ultimate works exceptionally well with teammates.
Giving the opponents no chance to use their kit and push into the area together can bring fruitful results. Even if an enemy knocks KAY/O down, teammates can revive him within fifteen seconds, causing him to use a second life.
Whether attacking or defending, if KAY/O mains know where to land the knife without the enemy destroying it, half of the work is done. There are different lineups for KAY/O’s signature ability. Learning them from some tutorials might be helpful in the beginning rounds.
KAY/O is mainly a support player. There’s no reason to push blatantly with the robot, as his flashes are pretty tricky to use. Moreover, using his ultimate ability to rush will not be that helpful as it continuously alerts the enemies that KAY/O is close.
Therefore, another agent like Reyna or Chamber should be leading the charge while KAY/O keeps an eye out for tight angles and hidden enemies.
KAY/O can throw one of his grenades over the wall, giving his ally the chance to peek and clear out an angle. Even flashing for teammates can be good. KAY/O’s frag grenade is quite sloppy, so it’s best to use it when the enemy is trapped in a corner.
The opponent will either run out of the corner into the line of fire or die. So, using the frag grenade is always a high-risk play.
What Maps are Good/Bad for KAY/O?
KAY/O should’ve been a good pick for every map, yet he’s not the most impactful agent anywhere. Still, there seem to be some places where using KAY/O might get you the victory you desperately want.
Valorbuff reports that Breeze has the highest pick rate for the agent, accounting for about 19.6% of its official matches. The map also notes the highest win percentage for the bot, with 46.1% wins. Lots of open angles and space make it an excellent pick for many agents, so KAY/O remains a surprisingly good pick for Breeze.
Fracture is another large map with many entry options, and it is the following best map to play with KAY/O. It has a pick rate of around 17.1%, the same as Ascent and Icebox, but beats the other two regarding win rate, claiming 46% matches. Ascent and Icebox have a significantly lower win rate with 45.6% and 45.7%, respectively.
Shorter maps like Split, Haven, and Bind seem not very useful for the robot. These three have accounted for only 16.9%, 15.8%, and 13.9% picks, respectively. However, Split and Haven have a higher win rate than Ascent and Icebox, taking the top spots with 45.9% and 45.8%. Bind’s win rate is only 45.2%, the lowest on seven maps.
What Guns are Good/Bad for KAY/O?
Whatever the map happens to be, if your aim isn’t good enough, you’re not going to get better playing with any agent in Valorant and KAY/O is no exception to that. KAY/O is an agent that requires players to act swiftly as soon as they get the information, so there’s no time for players to sit around and camp. It’s better to engage in combat to make way for the objective.
For the pistol rounds, consider a Ghost or Classic. The former rounded up with 7% total kills from an average distance of 17.88 meters. On the other hand, the Classic only has 4.4% kills to its name from 14.51 meters afar. The Ghost has been able to land 27.9% headshots, while the Classic follows with a measly 24.6%.
Regarding eco and half-buy rounds, no other gun has been more successful than the Spectre. It has secured 10.3% of total kills from a distance of 14.44 meters. Other useful guns in this category are the Sheriff, with an average kill distance of 19.4 meters and a headshot percentage of 40.2%.
The two rifles, Vandal and Phantom, are still reigning supreme. Vandal is the weapon of choice for many KAY/O players, bringing in 45.9% of the total kills, an impressive 24.5% of which were headshots. It also stays on top of the kill distance list, with 19.43 meters. Phantom is the next best gun for the initiator, as it has accumulated 15.9% kills from an average distance of 17.39 meters.
When it comes to sniper rifles, KAY/O has been quite successful in that as well. The Operator might have only 2.25 total kills in its bag, but it has achieved a kill distance of 30.05 meters. Its weaker counterpart Marshal, however, has been able to get 1.4% of the kills from an average length of 30.16 meters, with 41.6% headshots, the highest in that regard.
KAY/O Valorant Guide: Conclusion
To summarize, KAY/O is an underappreciated agent because his abilities aren’t that effective. They take a while, and enemies have the time to counteract, leaving few options for the agent to use.
Nonetheless, players willing to push and force their way into the site might find a use out of KAY/O. His flashes are helpful to flush enemies out of hiding and leave their positions. Shutting down enemy abilities with his kit can benefit the agent in several challenging situations, so it all comes down to the players using it wisely.
Plan accordingly, aim for the head, and KAY/O will ensure no one walks away!