Have you ever tried to uninstall Valorant but found you simply couldn’t remove it from your computer? This is a common frustration many players experience when they want to free up space or remove the tactical shooter from their PC.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explain exactly why Valorant is so difficult to uninstall, the steps you need to fully delete it, and answer some frequently asked questions around the uninstall process.
Valorant is a free-to-play multiplayer tactical shooter developed and published by Riot Games. Since its release in 2020, it has become one of the most popular games in the hero shooter genre.
The game stands out for its precise gunplay, unique agent abilities, and competitive 5v5 matches. As a free game, one of the ways Valorant makes money is by encouraging players to purchase weapon skins, agent skins, gun buddies, and more cosmetic items through microtransactions.
This business model is quite successful, with Valorant grossing over $300 million in its first year. However, it also leads to an unintended consequence – Valorant is incredibly difficult to uninstall.
Riot wants players to keep the game installed so they can continue purchasing cosmetics. As a result, the uninstall process is obscured to retain as many players as possible.
If you want to remove Valorant because it’s taking up space or you simply don’t play anymore, it can be a major headache. But don’t worry, in this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know to successfully uninstall Valorant.
Why is Valorant Hard to Uninstall?
There are a few reasons why Valorant is so difficult to remove from your system:
Valorant Uses Anti-Cheat Software
Valorant uses extremely invasive anti-cheat software called Vanguard that runs at the kernel level of your operating system. Vanguard is always on, even when you are not playing Valorant, to identify and prevent cheating.
This deep system integration makes completely removing Vanguard very tricky. Parts of the anti-cheat stay in your system even after regular uninstallation.
Leftover Registry Entries and Folders
Like most software, Valorant stores data in your Windows registry and leaves behind folders even after an uninstall. Tracking down these leftover registry keys and folders to delete them can be challenging for the average user.
Confusing Uninstall Process
The Valorant uninstall process itself is confusing and opaque. The normal remove program functionality in Windows does not work. Instead, you have to go through an uninstaller in the Valorant folder.
This extra step adds complexity and makes it easy to accidentally leave components behind.
Motivation to Keep It Installed
As mentioned previously, Riot wants to keep Valorant installed on your computer so you’ll keep playing and spending money. The difficult uninstall process incentivizes leaving it on your system.
Now that you know why removing Valorant can be so challenging, let’s go through the steps to fully delete it from your computer.
Valorant Folder Remains After Uninstall
If you try to uninstall Valorant through your Windows Control Panel, you’ll notice it still leaves behind a folder called Riot Vanguard in your program files.
This is because the standard Windows uninstall does not remove Vanguard anti-cheat or all of Valorant’s data. The remaining folder can take up over 1GB of space on your drive.
To properly uninstall Valorant, you cannot use the Control Panel. Instead, you have to use the uninstaller located in the Valorant folder itself, at C:\Riot Games\Valorant.
Delete Valorant Using Control Panel
Follow these steps to uninstall Valorant using the Control Panel:
- Open your Windows Control Panel
- Click “Programs and Features”
- Find Valorant on the list of installed programs and click “Uninstall”
- Follow the prompts to uninstall through the Control Panel
This will remove most of the program, but will leave behind the Riot Vanguard folder, registry entries, and other data. To fully delete Valorant, continue reading.
Remove Valorant Files Manually
To completely remove all Valorant components from your computer, you’ll need to manually delete leftover folders and registry data. Here’s what you need to do:
- After uninstalling through the Control Panel, press Windows + R to open the run dialog
- Type in “%ProgramData%” without the quotes and press Enter
- Delete the entire Riot Games folder
- Press Windows + R again
- Type in “%AppData%” without the quotes and press Enter
- Delete the entire Riot Games folder
- Press Windows + R one more time
- Type in “regedit” and press Enter to open the registry editor
- Delete any registry keys related to Riot Games or Valorant
- Restart your computer
This will wipe away any remaining Valorant files leftover from the incomplete Control Panel uninstall.
Note: editing the registry can cause issues if not done properly. Only delete Riot and Valorant related keys to avoid problems.
Fully Removing Valorant with Third-Party Software
Manually finding and deleting all Valorant registry keys and folders can be tedious. For an easier solution, you can use third party uninstall software.
Uninstallers like Revo Uninstaller scour your system for any leftover files, folders, and registry entries associated with a program. It then allows you to easily delete them all for a clean uninstall.
Here is how to use Revo Uninstaller to fully remove Valorant:
- Download and install Revo Uninstaller
- Open Revo Uninstaller and click the “Uninstall Programs” button
- Select Valorant from the list of installed programs
- Click “Uninstall” to remove Valorant with Revo’s advanced scanning
- Revo will scan your system and find any leftover Valorant files and registry entries
- Review the list then click “Delete” to remove all Valorant leftovers
- Restart your computer
This automated approach eliminates the need to manually hunt down Vista remnants. After restarting your PC, Valorant will be completely erased.
Reinstalling Valorant After Uninstall
If you change your mind later on and want to play Valorant again, reinstalling is quick and easy. Just follow these steps:
- Go to the Official Valorant website
- Click the “Play Now” button
- Install the Valorant installer and follow the prompts
- Valorant will be freshly installed on your system
Your account progress and any purchased cosmetics will be unaffected even if you fully uninstalled Valorant before. Those are saved on Riot’s servers so you won’t lose anything.
And that’s it! Within a few minutes you can have a fresh Valorant install ready to play.
FAQs About Uninstalling Valorant
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about removing Valorant from your computer:
Does uninstalling delete my account progress?
No, fully uninstalling Valorant does not affect your gameplay progress, unlocked agents, or purchased cosmetics. Your account data is stored on Riot’s servers.
Can I uninstall Vanguard separately?
No, Vanguard can only be removed by fully uninstalling Valorant. There is no way to specifically target Vanguard alone.
Is it safe to delete the Riot Vanguard folder manually?
Yes, manually deleting the remaining Riot Vanguard folder after an incomplete uninstall is safe and required to fully remove Valorant.
Will Valorant still work if I don’t fully uninstall it?
Valorant may still function if you uninstall it improperly and leave components behind. However, this is not recommended as you’ll unnecessarily take up hard drive space.
Is it better to use Revo Uninstaller vs manual deletion?
Yes, using a third party uninstaller like Revo is safer and easier than manually finding and deleting leftover files yourself. It automates the entire process.
What happens if I delete the wrong registry key?
Improperly editing the registry can cause stability issues or programs to stop functioning. Only delete keys related to Valorant to avoid any problems.
Removing Valorant completely is tricky due to invasive anti-cheat software and hidden uninstall processes. However, by fully deleting leftover files manually or using a third party program, you can cleanly wipe Valorant off your computer.
The frustrating uninstall experience is an unfortunate side effect of Valorant’s free-to-play business model. But with the steps in this guide, you can successfully remove every last component of the tactical shooter.
Your gameplay progress is unaffected, so feel free to reinstall later on if you change your mind. Now you know exactly what it takes to answer the question – why can’t I uninstall Valorant?Sharing Is Caring: