A few months ago, Riot Games decided to remove Split from Competitive and Unrated VALORANT queues following the launch of the latest map, Pearl. But one of the oldest maps of the game is expected to return, and the developer actually stated at the time that Split would one day return, and possibly, will get some changes.
Here's what you need to know about whether Split is back in VALORANT:
Is Split back in VALORANT Episode 5, Act 3?
On Oct. 18, Riot launched VALORANT Episode 5, Act 3, but before the major update, Riot released a video to promote the the new 2022 Ion weapon skins bundle, and as you can see below, it entirely takes place on Split. This fueled speculation about the return of the familiar Tokyo-based map.
While the Episode 5, Act 3 came with new content such as this new Ion weapon skin bundle. a new Battlepass, and the new water-bending Indian Agent, Harbor, unfortunately, it does not include the return of Split, according to the VALORANT Patch Notes 5.08.
When is Split coming back to VALORANT?
While the new 2022 Ion weapon skin bundle video hyped fans who's been hoping for the return of Split, Riot hasn't officially announced to bring Split back. However, this is a good sign that the classic map will be back in VALORANT soon. It's also possible that Riot decided to use Split to match the new weapon skins' futuristic design of the Ion aesthetic.
While it's still unclear when Split will return, we do know that Riot plans to only ever have 7 VALORANT maps in rotation for Competitive and Unrated queues, so if the development team is working on a new map, and they plan to release it in 2022, Split might make a return. It's possible that maps like Bind or Haven might be removed from the rotation to make room for Split and/or a new map, but for now, we'll have to wait and see.
Update: According to a rumor posted by Twitter user @Valorant_ES on Oct. 26, Split will return in Episode 6, Act 1, which launches in a few months, but Riot hasn't officially confirmed this.
Riot already teased that there will be a map rotation in VALORANT in the next update, which is expected to arrive in early December, so expect Split to return soon.
It's also likely that Split will get some major changes when it returns, so expect the map to get some major improvements when it returns.