Game publisher Riot Games has unveiled new formatting changes for VALORANT Game Changers EMEA 2024 as the company looks to make its top division more competitive.
The main change is a reduction in the number of teams competing in Game Changers’ top EMEA division in 2024, going from 16 to 10.
Similarly to VCT Game Changers 2023, there will be three stages of competition. However before the first stage, Game Changers will have an EMEA kickoff will start the season. The EMEA kickoff begins with an Open Qualifier whereby 128 teams will compete in a single elimination bracket for the four Closed Qualifier spots.
Alongside the four teams, the Closed Qualifier will feature top-division teams from last year’s Stage 3. After competing in a double-elimination bracket, only the top eight will qualify for the first stage.
Stage 1 of Game Changers EMEA sees those eight teams be joined by BBL Queens and G2 Gozens, both of which represented the region at the Game Changer 2023 Championships in São Paulo.
EMEA Contenders will continue to be the feeder event for Game Changers EMEA. It will be made up of two relegated teams, 10 invited teams from regional tournaments and 20 teams from the Open Qualifier.
This system will repeat itself three times until the Game Changers EMEA 2024 winners are decided in Stage 3. The qualification system for the Game Changers Championship remains the same. Two EMEA teams will qualify, one will be the winner of the Stage 3 whilst the other will be decided based on which team has the most circuit points at the end of the year.
According to the VALORANT website, these changes aim to make the tournament and ecosystem more competitive. An excerpt read: “When considering our goals for Game Changers in 2024, we wanted to increase visibility for our players as we aim to see them move beyond Game Changers into mixed-gender rosters.
“By changing the tournament structure for Game Changers EMEA to a 10-teams format, we ensure the highest level of competition and a brighter spotlight on the players and their stories. This will make EMEA Contenders full of teams hungry to be promoted and go further.”
This announcement comes less than two weeks after the American organisation, Shopify Rebellion, lifted the Game Changers Championship trophy in São Paulo. The event’s finals were watched by a peak of 293,000 viewers, which is an increase of around 50,000 when compared to last year’s 239,000 peak viewers.