Riot’s one and only FPS game, Valorant, has been out for just over a month, and the growth of the game is spectacular. Professional Valorant teams are already thriving in the competitive scene, and millions of esports fans are playing the game.
What Makes Valorant So Great?
The average salary for a full five-player team ranges anywhere from $15,000 to over $25,000 a month, depending on the region that the player is associated with. Some talented individuals are already being paid considerably beyond the range.
The highest tournament pool prize to date goes up to $50,000, with no leagues running anywhere in the world.
Two years ago, Playerunknown Battlegrounds and Apex Legends each signed players before any official tournament for the game. Valorant has taken the trend to a new extreme by assembling teams while the game was still in closed beta.
Rather than setting up a franchise or closed ecosystem like League of Legends, the Valorant tournaments combined professional teams and qualified amateurs. CEO of Nerd Street Gamers John Fazio believes that amateur ecosystem development is what gives esports longevity.
Why Did It Become Such A Success?
The whole format of the game is not new to the world. Valorant uses similar gameplay of Counter-Strike: Global Offense. It is a free-to-play game where players do not need to spend any real money to buy guns but skins, and the game relies heavily on shooting skills, agility and judgment.
In addition, it holds some characteristics of Overwatch. A major difference from Counter-Strike is that rather than just having an attacking team and defending team, Valorant players have a choice of 11 agents. Each character in the game has unique abilities and skills that can change the outcome of the game.
Three weeks ago, Valorant announced its first major tournament called the Ignition Series. The competitive series took place in Europe, Japan, North America, North Africa, Latin America and Asia.
It was an instant success as many people watched the tournament through Twitch, which streams various Valorant content and held their own Valorant tournaments while the game was in closed beta.
More Ignition Series are set to occur this year. The Vitality European Open will be held where 128 teams can sign in and battle each other to win 15,000 euros.
WePlay! and Riot Games have partnered for an Invitational Ignition Series event where eight teams will compete with a prize pool of $50,000. Brazil is also planning on hosting a tournament from July 17 to July 19.
The ORDER Oceanic Valorant Open, the Mandatory Cup, and Rage Valorant Ignition tournament are all upcoming events to take place.
The last time North America hosted an Ignition Series event, Team SoloMid took home the trophy, and Wardell won the MVP. The event attracted 50,000 live viewers, and the popularity of the game has risen ever since the tournament.
Riot Games partnered with PAX to present the PAX Arena Valorant Invitational. A total of 20 teams, 16 pro and four influencer squads, will battle for a $25,000 prize pool, where the champion takes $10,000. All games will be live-streamed, and the event will take place between July 22 and July 26.