When first announced as part of Riot Games’ 10-year anniversary stream in October 2019, it was merely known as “Project A”. For those not familiar with Riot Games, they are the company behind the popular MOBA, League of Legends (LoL) and auto chess spin off game, Teamfight Tactics. Fast forward to 2020, on 2 March, Riot Games announced that “Project A” will be known as Valorant.
Valorant had a closed Beta, which started on 7 April 2020. The company used the beta period to bring various servers online across the world. On 2 June 2020, Valorant released worldwide.
To break it down, Valorant is a free-to-play, 5v5 team-based tactical first person shooter. Each match in Valorant consists of 25 rounds, with the first team to reach 13 rounds then declared as the winner. Before the start of each match, players need to select a character (known as agents). Each agent have special abilities for e.g. quick dash, creating pools of smoke, building walls or even call in the airstrikes ala Call of Duty style.
If you are used to playing CSGO’s bomb defuse maps, then you will feel right at home with Valorant’s main game mode. There are two teams, one attacking and one defending. The attacking team has a bomb (referred to as the Spike) that they need to plant on one of several different sites. If the attacking team plants the Spike and protects it until it explodes, they win. The defending team has to stop them by waiting out the clock each round. Each player has one life per round, so if one team’s members are all eliminated, that counts as a win for their opponents.
As for competitive gaming, Riot Games intends to support Valorant’s competitive scene just as it did with LoL. Since the closed beta period multiple gaming organizations (MGOs) such as Cloud 9, 100 Thieves, T1 Telecom, Sentinels, Team Envy and TSM to name a few, have been signing players to be part of their Valorant rosters. This past weekend, the Pop Flash North America tournament concluded which had $50 000 on the line. Sentinels, the tournament favourites, walked away as the winners with Team Envy in 2nd place.
Valorant Matches today
Current and upcoming Valorant tournaments to look forward to include the GLX Elite Series, (Aug 2 – Oct 6), A.W Extreme Masters Pro Invitational (30 Aug – 21 Sept.) and the Mildom Masters (Aug 20 – Oct 16). While prize pools for these tournaments range from $2000, $9406 and $23 520 respectively, as more teams become part of the Valorant competitive scene, prize pools will most certainly increase as time goes by.
As for Valorant, only time will tell how popular the title will become locally without local server support from Riot’s side. It is not that the game is not playable on European (EU) servers, but many people will be put off because they will need to contend with a 150ms-170ms latency when playing on EU servers. For most people, playing an FPS game with high latency is suicide and not a worthwhile experience.
Valorant Tournament Schedule
Valorant is growing like crazy, becoming more and more popular with each passing week. It very well might become the most popular esport of 2021. As such there are plenty of Valorant tournaments taking place. Some tier 1, and plenty tier 2,3 and amateur. We will do our best to list the Valorant Tournament Schedule here.