The final stage of the 2022 VALORANT Champions Tour is upon us. For the second time ever, 16 teams will meet to determine a world champion at VCT Champions 2022, this time live in Istanbul, Turkey.
Last year, a superstar Jett player from Turkey led his team to a world championship when cNed propelled Acend to becoming the first world champions of VALORANT. This year, 16 teams will meet to determine a new champion, months before the entire scene shifts to a Riot partnership model in 2023.
Here’s how all 16 teams qualify:
- Top two teams in VCT circuit points from North America
- Top two teams from EMEA
- Top two teams from APAC
- Top team from Brazil
- Top team from Latin America
- Top team from Korea
- Top team from Japan
- Two teams from the South American Last Chance Qualifier
- One team from the NA LCQ
- One team from the EMEA LCQ
- One team from the East Asia LCQ
- One team from the APAC LCQ
The impressive performances of a handful of teams have already been noticed. Six different teams officially qualified for Champions before VCT Masters Copenhagen even began.
Here are all 16 of the VCT Champions 2022 teams.
The reigning Masters Reykjavík champions from North America all but assured their trip to Champions after their triumph in Iceland. There was a small chance of OpTic getting sent down to the LCQ if two other NA teams reached Masters Copenhagen and finished top two, but OpTic secured their Champions spot decisively with another qualification to Masters. With that result, the OpTic secured a trip to their fifth consecutive international event as a roster.
Once the gatekeeper of the top tier of NA VALORANT, XSET finally silenced the doubters and broke free of their chains with a stellar Stage Two performance in North America. Thanks to The Guard’s Masters Reykjavík stumble, XSET winning Stage Two meant that their spot in VCT Champions was secured before even making their international debut at Masters Copenhagen. Their two teenage sensations in Cryocells and zekken look to propel the team from “forever 4th place” to world champions.
Fnatic has arguably been the most consistently good VALORANT team in EMEA between 2021 and 2022. While that international trophy has still eluded them, they’ve been a consistent threat at any LAN where they’ve competed with their full roster. They are propelled forward by a dynamic duo in Derke and Alfajer, and led by a never-ending source of joy and excitement in Boaster. The kings of Icebox are on their way to Champions.
FPX has been consistently denied the opportunity to shine on the international stage fully. Travel bans prevented them from competing in Reykjavík this year despite winning EMEA, and they even had to enter the group stage of Copenhagen with a substitute. But when they’re at full strength, they could be considered a contender for the best team in the world, led by one of the most aggressive and well-regarded IGL’s in ANGE1.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise to see the team that’s dominated Brazil secure Brazil’s lone dedicated Champions spot nice and early. LOUD have absolutely ravaged their domestic competition, having only lost one map against Brazilian teams across both stages. They’ve only lost six maps all year, and four of those came versus OpTic at Masters Reykjavík. They are one of the most skilled all-around teams in the world, with all five players capable of putting on strong performances.
Similar to how LOUD has dominated Brazil, the DRK players remain the kings of Korea, having finished first in both Stage One and Stage Two this year. Like LOUD, DRX has dominated domestic competition; of the eight total maps they’ve lost this year, five of those came against international competition. They also posted a flawless map record in Stage Two. DRX is another strong all-around team, but are led by a fearsome trio in BuZz, Rb, and MaKo.
A stellar Stage One showing for Paper Rex ensured them a playoff spot at Masters Reykavk, and while they stumbled in the first round versus DRX, they rallied with two straight 2-0’s against The Guard and G2 to earn some extra circuit points. But another dominant showing for the team out of Singapore in Stage Two, capped off by a 3-0 over XERXIA in the final, cemented their spot at Champions as one of two APAC representatives.
There’s no shame in being second best, especially if it gets you into Champions. During both stages in 2022, XERXIA just couldn’t get over the hump that was Paper Rex, losing the Stage One final 3-2 then the Stage Two final 3-0. But with two teams representing APAC at Champions, it was good enough to book a trip to Istanbul. On top of that, they were the only team other than LOUD to take a series off OpTic in Reykjavík.
ZETA DIVISION’s improbable run through the lower bracket of the Masters Reykjavík playoffs set the stage for them to potentially clinch the top spot out of Japan. Fueled by the trio of TENNN, SugarZ3ro, and Laz, ZETA took down the likes of Fnatic, NiP, Liquid, DRX, and Paper Rex en route to a third-place finish in Iceland. They fell short of reaching Copenhagen after falling to Northeption in the Japan Stage Two finals, but Northeption’s group stage exit in Denmark means that ZETA’s work in Iceland was enough to reach Champions 2022.
Prior to the Last Chance Qualifier, no other team secured their spot at Champions in such a thrilling manner as Leviatán from Latin America. By winning LATAM Stage Two, and thanks to KRÜ’s win over NiP in the LATAM vs. Brazil Playoff, Leviatán only needed to win one series at VCT Masters Copenhagen to secure a trip to Champions. After falling to DRX, they came back and won a miraculous three-map series over XSET, thanks to gutsy performance from k1Ngg, Melser, and Tacolilla, booking their ticket to Istanbul.
The remaining teams will be added upon qualification.