Riot Games partners with Carry1st to bring VALORANT to South Africa

24 August 2023


Riot Games Southeast Asia unveils collegiate plans for VALORANT
Credit: Riot Games

South African game publisher Carry1st has partnered with VALORANT developer Riot Games to help launch local VALORANT servers in South Africa on August 31st.

As a result of the partnership, Carry1st will also run player engagement campaigns across various cities in South Africa.

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The partnership between Carry1st and Riot Games aims to boost the launch of VALORANT’s local servers in South Africa, leveraging Carry1st’s local publishing expertise and resources. Carr1st will host VALORANT in-person activations at Comic Con Africa from September 22nd-25th in Johannesburg. During the event, players can learn about VALORANT, participate in tournaments, and win exclusive giveaways.

As an African games and digital content publisher, Carry1st develops, licenses and publishes games in frontier markets. Its proprietary payments and online marketplace, the Carry1st Shop, helps monetise content in the region. This way, the publisher has scaled games such as Call of Duty: Mobile, Mine Rescue and SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off.

Carry1st was also one of the companies chosen for Riot Games’ Underrepresented Founders Programme in 2020. The initiative aims to fight social injustice and drive change within the gaming industry by providing over $10m (~£7.92m) of funds to startups with underrepresented founders.

The launch of VALORANT’s servers in South Africa is not the only international expansion the game has seen this year. On July 12th, VALORANT officially launched in China to much domestic success.

Since the release of its debut title, League of Legends, in 2009, Riot Games has been a driving force in the esports industry. Its game portfolio includes the likes of Teamfight Tactics, Legends of Runeterra, and League of Legends: Wild Rift.

VALORANT is Riot Games’ 5v5 tactical shooter. Launched in 2020, the title has attracted a significant esports following due to its unique mix of FPS and MOBA elements. Its latest esports activation is the ongoing VALORANT Champions, the largest tournament of the VALORANT season with a prize pool of $2.25m (~£1.77m).

Hasan Colakoglu, Head of International at Riot Games, commented on the partnership with Carry1st: “Serving our global player base is a top priority for us at Riot, and this partnership with Carry1st will make meaningful improvements in bringing African players a first-class VALORANT experience.”

Lea Maas
Lea is a business student with too many passions and too little time. In addition to missing her shots in Valorant, she spends her free time advocating for mental health awareness and fostering inclusive esports communities.