The latest entry into the growing world of esports has come from Riot Games own FPS title of Valorant that had its release in June of last year, and although offline events have bee a bit of a struggle the game is certainly thriving as viewer numbers continue to increase. Given the number of games that have come before and tried to succeed in the highly competitive space and even break into the big top three games however, many have struggled or fallen flat, so what has helped Valorant to succeed where others have failed?
A wealth of experience – The most important factor is certainly the studio behind it all – you can’t run the most successful esports in the world of League of Legends without gaining a whole bunch of experience that can be passed on – and that’s exactly what happened. Fast balance patches, identifying where things needed to change and what could stay the same, and just the overall development of the online league has helped the success, and it’s all part and parcel with having successfully managed League of Legends for the better part of a decade too, and will continue to be a big part of why Valorant finds continued success.
A transfer of talent – Whilst early on much of the transfer of talent had been within tier two Counter-Strike players and those who were either retiring or already retired to bolster the numbers, there have since been a huge number of players from other big games like Fortnite and Overwatch too. This has brought plenty of fans across from other games and the launch of things like betting when looking here for sites not on Gamstop. It hasn’t just been player talent, however, as broadcasting talent have also made the change and helped to develop the streamed side of content which has been just as, if not more impactful too.
A big desire for change – As a whole, the first-person shooter category in esports has been rather stale since its inception – with only one big title really holding any scene in Counter-Strike, change was inevitable at some point. Whilst still a huge scene within CS, there has certainly long been a desire for a tactical shooter title that offers something a little different, and Valorant certainly delivers that whilst offering much of the familiarity for the former too and has helped bridge the gap for many players.
This year in particular will truly show how big the game can be with the Masters & Champions events kicking off the official esports push, and with the potential for offline events showing international competition which has been vital for games like this in the past, numbers could certainly grow very quickly as there are opportunities for both viewership and player numbers to increase with the exposure that big events always inevitably bring.