Riot Games has today announced the Valorant Champions Tour, a season-long competition tour set to take place throughout 2021.
The global tour will feature competitions in Europe, North America, South America, Asia, Africa and Australia, and will crown a single global champion at the end of the year.
The Valorant Champions Tour will feature three levels of competition: Challengers, Masters and Champions.
Teams will begin their journey by first playing in regional Challenger events before advancing to international Masters events.
At the three Masters events set to take place in 2021, top performing teams will accumulate points which will count towards qualification for the Champions event. This final stage will feature the top 16 teams in the world and will crown a single global champion.
There doesn’t seem to be a prize pool revealed just yet. Esports News UK has reached out to Riot Games and will update this article if we get a number.
The initial founding partners committing to the Valorant Champions Tour and the First Strike tournament will be Red Bull and Secretlab, with more to be announced throughout 2021.
After Valorant’s closed beta saw more than 1.7m peak concurrent viewers on Twitch, Valorant quickly established itself as the fastest-growing new esports game of 2020.
In June, Riot Games partnered with more than 20 organisers to create the Valorant Ignition Series, delivering numerous tentpole competitions that attracted the attention of millions of fans.
In September, following the Ignition Series, Riot Games announced its first official tournament for Valorant: First Strike.
First Strike began with a series of merit-based qualifiers across North America, Europe, CIS, Turkey, Asia, Oceania, Brazil and the Middle East to identify the best teams in each respective region.
The event is set to conclude December 3rd to 6th, with live broadcasts taking place on Twitch.tv and other platforms. And the UK has been doing well so far, with teams like SUMN FC and Team Liquid’s Valorant roster on the rise:
The winning teams will earn the right to call themselves the first official regional Valorant champions.
“The Champions Tour is our next step to grow Valorant into a global esport worthy of the passion of our fans,” said Whalen Rozelle, senior director of esports at Riot Games.
“We’ve spent a couple of years now talking to players, teams, fans, prospective partners and other stakeholders, and we’re extremely excited to launch our first official season.
“Our focus will be on elevating and showcasing the creative and talented players who are shaping this game across the globe. Fans and players both wanted high stakes competition, and that’s what the Valorant Champions Tour is designed to do.”
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
As a long-time gamer having first picked up the NES controller in the late ’80s, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Association up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and as an esports consultant helping brands and businesses better understand the industry.