Valorant

Riot Games Expands Valorant Challenger Circuit for VCT 2023

Riot Games will hold 21 Challenger leagues, offering non-franchised teams a shot at international competition.
Riot Games will hold 21 Challenger leagues, offering non-franchised teams a shot at international competition. / Courtesy of Riot Games

Riot Games announced Tuesday plans to expand its competitive Valorant offerings worldwide, upping the number of regional Challengers circuits to 21 for Valorant Champions Tour 2023.

Challenger leagues will begin with open qualifiers, feeding the best teams into two splits of multi-week competition regular season play. Those seasons will culminate in a new event series called Challengers Ascension, where the best team in each of the three regions will be promoted to the next year's international league.

As teams win promotion through Challengers Ascension, the three international leagues will expand up to a cap of 14 teams in 2027. Promotions will last two years, during which time teams will compete in Masters and Champions, and receive benefits from Riot Games similar to those given to the permanent members of the league. When the two years run their course, promoted teams will return to their Challenger leagues.

Pacific will be home to the most Challenger leagues.
Pacific will be home to the most Challenger leagues. / Courtesy of Riot Games

Here are all the leagues in each Challenger region:

Americas

  • North America
  • Latin America North
  • Brazil
  • Latin America South

Europe, Middle East and Africa

  • Northern Europe
  • Southern Europe (Spain, Italy and Portugal)
  • France & Benelux
  • Dach (Germany, Austria and Switzerland)
  • Turkey
  • Eastern Europe
  • Middle East & North Africa

Pacific

  • South Asia (Including India)
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam
  • Malaysia & Singapore
  • Korea
  • Japan
  • Chinese Taipei and Hong Kong
  • Philippines
  • Indonesia
  • Oceania
The path to promotion for Challenger teams.
The path to promotion for Challenger teams. / Courtesy of Riot Games

"Throughout the past few months, the overwhelming demand from teams to compete in the VALORANT esports ecosystem led us to expand our plans for VCT Challengers," said Whalen Rozelle, Head of Esports Operations at Riot Games. "A strong Challenger ecosystem is a key part of VALORANT esports’ long term success and we believe connecting every level of the pyramid is the best way to give aspiring stars the chance to shine and teams to participate in meaningful high stakes competitions."

Riot Games will provide more information about each region's open qualifiers and schedules later this fall.