VCT Game Changers Paves Way For More Female Esports League

by | Jun 12, 2023 | Esports, News, Valorant | 0 comments

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This was Valorant’s first-ever all-female international LAN. A $500,000 prize fund, a comprehensive Riot Games media push, and eight international teams will compete. Co-streaming rights were generously distributed, the tournament was promoted in-game and had it’s own cinematic, and Ashley Washington, the head of Game Changers in EMEA, visited numerous media sources to promote both the event and the program as a whole.

However, the tournament was not without controversy as some players and spectators objected to the venue’s size in comparison to prior Riot-run events. In addition, Bob “bob” Tran of Cloud9 White received numerous transphobic remarks during the team’s opening match against KRÜ Fem in the main broadcast’s Twitch chat.

Valorant Game Changer
SOURCE: Riot Games

Nevertheless, the event started off well, with a peak viewing of 151,000 viewers for Cloud9 White vs. KRÜ Fem on the first day of competition, according to Esports Charts. With six consecutive victories in their home competition, Cloud9 White entered the competition as the clear favorite. KRÜ were also household names in their own region, having won their domestic competition twice in a row. Due to C9W’s second-round elimination and Shopify Rebellion’s upset victory, the tournament’s statistics and plots would only get better as it went on.

G2 Gozen Made History

G2 Gozen, a formidable European team with the most seasoned players in the competition, eliminated Cloud9 White to send them into the lower bracket. The team’s primary players, Julia “juliano” Kiran, Petra “Petra,” and Michaela “mimi” Lintrup, are legendary in the Counter-Strike genre and have already won major international women’s competitions.

“We know how to deal with the pressure, we know how to communicate together and which things we should and shouldn’t do. And I don’t think that all of the teams always know what they should do,” Mimi stated during a news conference prior to the event.

G2 easily defeated X10 Sapphire, C9 White, Team Liquid Brazil (who themselves exceeded expectations with a top-three result), and Shopify Rebellion on their route to winning the Game Changers competition.

The grand final itself pulled in the highest peak viewership of the event at 239,334. The head coach of Shopify was disqualified from the game for making an offensive gesture against Cloud9 White during the team’s victory celebration over their domestic opponent. This added some extra spice to the final. As players in the primary VCT circuit did the same gesture on air with little to no consequences, many criticized Riot’s move as being hypocritical.

The only people that seemed to agree with the Riot ruling were the G2 Gozen roster.

“Obviously, this must have been the worst feeling I can imagine for him, seeing his team and not being there. You’re just going to take the consequences of the things you do… Rules are rules,” mimi said after the grand final.

Overall, the competition was a success for the teams, and (probably) Riot Games, as measured by the number of hours watched, it is the most popular tournament for female esports. The international Game Changers competition will return in 2023, according to Riot Games’ Global Head of Valorant Esports, Leo Faria, who made the announcement prior to the start of the championship match.

After waiting for a tournament like this for two years, many of the players were excited to make the LAN event and compete against the finest women’s teams in the world. All they want now is more competitions like this so they can demonstrate their skills in a LAN setting.

“I’m hoping to have more open LANs, I would say, and fewer online tournaments,” G2 Gozen player Maryam ‘Mary’ Maher said. “I think just having the LAN environment and the LAN experience is phenomenal, honestly. The energy and everything about LAN are just amazing.”

After VCT Game Changer’s success, do you think there will be more female esports leagues?

Let us know what you think.

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