Riot Games revealed last week that they will be holding a new esports event next year with the 2021 Valorant Champions Tour. The event will be structured as a season-long competition featuring bouts in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia. A kickoff date hasn't been set yet, all we know is that it will be sometime in early 2021 featuring three levels of competition in 5-v-5 tournaments. Those three levels will be Challengers, Masters, and Champions. The Regional Challenger events will features teams playing to advance to three international Masters events. The Masters events will have teams working to accumulate points to qualify for the Champions event. Finally, the Champions event, which will take place sometime near the end of the year, will feature the world's top sixteen teams who will compete to be crowned the global champion. You can read more about it below from the announcement as we wait to see how this will play out in a COVID-19 world.
The Valorant Champions Tour will feature three levels of competition: Challengers, Masters, and Champions. Teams 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 sixteen teams in the world and will crown a single global champion. The initial founding partners committing to the Valorant Champions Tour and the First Strike tournament will be Red Bull and Secretlab. Both have been long-time supporters of esports operated by Riot Games and will play a vital role in growing Valorant from its foundational years. Additionally Red Bull has a storied history of developing unique community focused tournaments to elevate esports players like Red Bull Solo Q. More partners for the Valorant Champions Tour will be announced throughout 2021.
"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."