Riot Games has announced the launch of VCT Game Changers, a new VALORANT programme that focuses on creating opportunities and exposure for women and other marginalised genders.
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Game Changers will consist of two core competitive initiatives, the VCT Game Changers Series and the VCT Game Changers Academy.
The VCT Game Changers Series will include a set of top tier competitions that will take place in multiple regions during 2021. According to Riot Games, the series will be of a similar scale to its Ignition Series last year. The publisher has revealed that the first event will be its North American tournament, which will take place in late March.
In addition, the VCT Game Changers Academy will create monthly tournaments, which are expected to provide more opportunities to semi-pro and grassroots level players. Academy events will be organised in partnership with Galorants, an all-female VALORANT community. Galorants partnered with Riot Games in the past to organise the publisher’s For the Women Summer Showdown tournament last September.
In the announcement, Riot Games has stated that both the VCT Game Changers Series and Academy will seek to develop new players for the VALORANT Champions Tour.
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During the publisher’s announcement video, led by Anna Donlon, Executive Producer of VALORANT, she explained how the positive feedback from the For The Women Summer Showdown was a factor towards making Riot Games move forward to create a healthy competitive environment for women.
Over the last 12 months, a variety of organisations have also supported VALORANT’s female player base, with some teams, such as Dignitas and Cloud 9 acquiring all-female rosters. In Brazil, INTZ also has INTZ Fire Angels which is the organisation’s only VALORANT roster, meanwhile, Gamelanders recently announced Gamelanders Purple.
Esports Insider says: VALORANT has a huge female community of players and Riot acknowledging that with VCT Game Changers is a brilliant move. Game Changers provides female players with opportunities that will only strengthen VALORANT’s competitive ecosystem as a whole, whilst also creating more inclusivity in esports.