How well is it performing: Current state of VALORANT esports

Riot Games's FPS game VALORANT, which was officially released on June 2, 2020, brought a new perspective to first person shooter games in general terms. After a 2-year process, now is the time to evaluate how successful VALORANT has been.

What was the game looking like in the beginning?

VALORANT was first released in October 2019 under the name Project A. The beta process started on April 7, 2020, and the game has been constantly revolving since then.

The first big difference that stood out when we look at the early versions of the game and its current state were the drawings of the agents on the agent picking screen. Compared to the latest version of VALORANT 4.01, the big difference and improvement in the appearance of the agents can be seen very clearly.

Other than that, VALORANT was limited to only nine agents (Breach, Brimstone, Cypher, Jett, Omen, Phoenix, Sage, Sova, Viper, Raze).

Agent selection UI of Project A

After a couple of new patch releases, the total number of playable agents became 18 when the last agent Neon was added to the game on 11th January 2022 with 4.0 patch.

In addition to the agents, the maps available in the game have also increased with the new patches, and VALORANT currently has 8 maps. There were only 4 maps when the game was on the Beta, which can be listed as Bind, Haven, Split and The Range, which is available for practice.

When Riot Games released the 1.0 patch, the map that was located on Venice, Italy Ascent was added. The following maps were followed with Icebox on 1.10, Breeze on 2.08, and finally Fracture on 3.05.

VALORANT statistics

VALORANT acquired a strong foothold in the gaming market in a short period 2 years after its release date, which can be proof by the number of players daily or monthly and viewers that VALORANT occurred on the online dashboarding platforms, such as Twitch. It was not after one month of its release that VALORANT received 15 million active players, according to activeplayer.io website.

Credit: Riot Games

On October 30 2022, VALORANT received 13 million active players and even though it seems like they lost 2 million players since their release, the fact that they were able to follow a stable player number in the past 1-2 years, which is a memorable success for a brand new game.

Other than player numbers, VALORANT made its name on top 10 most-watched games on Twitch in 2021. VALORANT achieved 862,137,386 hours of watch time in 2021 and became the fifth game on the list of most-watched games.

VALORANT esports

VALORANT has been involved in the Esports arena in the first person shooter genre in a very short time in recent years. In November 2020, Riot Games announced its first official tournament with three stages (Challengers, Masters, Champions). The tournament is a global one with the participation of teams from various regions offered by VALORANT.

VALORANT Champions 2021 was held in Berlin started on December 12 and ended on 12 January 2021. Acend became the champion of the VCT 2021 and received $350,000 from a $1,000,000 prize pool.

Credit: Riot Games

The first stage of VALORANT Champions 2022 is about to start with the first step of the tournament, Challengers. Several regions will play their Stage 1 Challengers tournaments in February.  

After some elimination and tours, the best teams from Brazil, EMEA, North America, Korea, Japan, APAC and LAS-LAN would come together in the biggest VALORANT tournament and only one team among 16 teams around the world would be the champion.

The game shows all the positive aspects of being a product of a gaming company that has years of experience in the gaming industry and is known for its successes, such as Riot Games.

There is no doubt that VALORANT will continue to grow its potential and become a part of esports competition for a long time.

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