VALORANT Champions Tour 2021 guide: Schedule, results, moments

Here's a comprehensive guide to everything VALORANT Champions Tour.

Image via Riot Games

The VALORANT Champions Tour is Riot Games’ first official attempt at a global circuit for stoking competitive VALORANT. Spawned out of the early success of the First Strike events, the Champions Tour is a year-long circuit of regional competition culminating in a Champions event to crown the first world champion.

Champions is currently ongoing; keep up with the scores, schedule, and brackets here.

For all things VALORANT Champions Tour, including the circuit structure, participating teams, scheduling, notable moments, and more, we’ve created a comprehensive guide to keep you informed.

VALORANT Champions Tour format

The VALORANT Champions Tour is built on Challengers events, regional tournaments pitting a handful of teams from each region against each other. The top finishing teams at each Challengers event will make it to that region’s Challengers Finals. The top teams from that event will qualify for the next Masters event, and the teams with the most VCT points earned per region will qualify for Champions at the end of the year.

For the first set of Masters events, each region hosted its own tournament. Eight teams from North America competed in a double-elimination bracket. Eight European teams used two GSL-format groups leading into a four-team single-elimination bracket, as did the eight Korean teams. Brazil used a basic single-elimination bracket. While all the regions use different formats, the VCT points breakdown is the same for all of them. First place earned 100 points, second place got 70 points, and third and fourth each took home 45. The fifth and sixth-place team earned 20 points, while seventh and eighth each got 10.

The 10 teams competing at VCT Masters Two Reykjavik competed in a double-elimination bracket. Unlike Masters One, Masters Two was an international LAN with teams from around the world attending. First place got 400 points, second place earned 350 points, third place secured 300 points, and fourth place walked away with 250 points. Fifth and sixth place each earned 200, seventh and eighth each got 175, and ninth and tenth took home 150 points.

Sixteen teams competed at VCT Masters Three Berlin, in four groups of four where each group is its own double-elimination bracket. The top two teams from each group advanced to an eight-team single elimination bracket. Teams will earn at minimum 175 VCT points just by attending, and up to 375 if they reach the grand finals. The winner won’t earn any points, but won’t need to, as they will directly qualify for Champions.

Teams that compete in the three Masters events will earn points toward qualifying to the world championship event, Champions. After Masters Berlin, four Last Chance Qualifiers will produce the final four teams for Champions. Here is the list of teams qualified for Champions.

Here’s the regional distribution of Champions teams:

  • Three teams from North America: two via circuit points and one via Last Chance Qualifier
    • Sentinels, Team Envy, and Cloud9 (via NA LCQ)
  • Three teams from Europe: two via circuit points and one via Last Chance Qualifier (CIS, Turkey, and Middle East/North Africa teams will have qualifications through EU)
    • Acend, Fnatic, and Team Liquid (via EMEA LCQ)
  • Two teams from Brazil via circuit points (plus one via South America Last Chance Qualifier)
    • Team Vikings, Vivo Keyd Stars, and FURIA Esports (via SA LCQ)
  • One team from Latin America via circuit points
    • KRU Esports
  • One team from Japan via circuit points
    • Crazy Raccoon
  • Two teams from Southeast Asia via circuit points (plus one via Asia Last Chance Qualifier)
    • X10 Esports, Team Secret, and FULL SENSE (via APAC LCQ)
  • One team from Korea via circuit points
    • Vision Strikers
  • The winner of Masters Three Berlin
    • Gambit (EMEA)
Image via Riot Games

While the esports team at Riot hasn’t given any specific details on the tournament format for specific events, it refers to the Champions event as its own “version of [League of Legends] Worlds.” Will it proceed with a double-round robin group stage or will it go with a format that allows for more best-of-threes? We’ll update this section when that information becomes available.

VALORANT Champions Tour schedule

Image via Riot Games

Here are the dates for the final VCT events of the year:

  • Champions is scheduled for Dec. 1 to Dec. 12.

VALORANT Champions Tour results

Last Chance Qualifiers

A stacked EMEA LCQ saw some of the most exciting teams out of Europe, Turkey, and CIS compete in an eight-team double-elimination bracket for one spot at Champions. It was a tough showing for the teams from Turkey, CIS, and the Egyptian team invited from Strike Arabia since the three European teams in G2, Liquid, and Guild dominated the top of the final standings. In the end, it was Liquid and their newest addition in former Team Vitality CS:GO player and younger brother of ScreaM, Nabil “Nivera” Benrlitom, who beat both their EU counterparts to claim the spot at Champions.

Ten teams from the Asia-Pacific region competed in the APAC LCQ. The field featured two teams that had previously played at Masters events in Masters Reykjavík third-place finisher NUTURN from Korea and Berlin attendee Paper Rex. But neither team claimed the APAC LCQ spot at Champions. FULL SENSE out of Thailand locked in their trip to Berlin after a thrashing of DAMWON and a grueling five-map grand finals victory over Northeption.

In South America, FURIA Esports out of Brazil claimed the Champions spot after a furious run through their group stage and playoffs. They opened the event with a loss to Australs in Group A, putting them in danger of being eliminated. But FURIA won four straight series in response through the groups and playoffs, punctuated by a satisfying 3-0 revenge series in the grand finals, dominating Australs in all three maps.

After a two-week postponement, the NA LCQ resumed in late October and saw Cloud9 Blue go on an impressive lower bracket run after getting knocked down by Rise. They won three straight series, including a comeback win against 100 Thieves that matched them up again with Rise in the grand finals. This time around, C9 Blue came prepared, defeating Rise 3-0, including a flawless 13-0 performance on Split to snag the final VCT Champions slot and book their tickets to Berlin.

VCT Stage Three results

Masters Three Berlin

To the surprise of few, both North America and EMEA had stellar showings during the Masters Berlin group stage. But fans were still treated to a couple surprises. Both Vision Strikers and Envy finished top of their groups without dropping a map, while 100T won Group C via an impressive comeback against Gambit. The biggest shock of the group stage came in Group D, where Sentinels dropped a 2-0 series to G2 to finish with the second-place spot.

Sentinels’ plan to take on North America in the playoffs backfired since they got stunned by Team Envy in the first round. Envy’s momentum carried them past another NA foe in 100 Thieves, setting them up with a match against Gambit in the grand finals, after they had punctuated their semifinals win against G2 with a 13-0 performance on Icebox. While all the maps were close, Gambit claimed the grand finals 3-0 to advance to Champions.

North America Challengers Stage

Like in previous stages, the open qualifiers for NA Challengers show no mercy to anyone. The only teams afforded any advantage other than seeding were Sentinels and Version1, who got byes to the third round of the open qualifier. They ended up reaching the main event, while a few well-regarded teams like TSM, FaZe Clan, NRG, and T1 fell short.

In the Challengers One main event, some familiar faces punched their ticket to the NA Challengers Playoffs: Sentinels, XSET, 100 Thieves, and Team Envy. It was XSET who ended up making the biggest impact, beating both Sentinels and 100T back-to-back in the upper bracket before losing their Sentinels rematch in the grand finals.

At Challengers Two, two teams that had underperformed throughout largely the entire Tour, TSM and FaZe Clan, put on impressive showings in the main event, through the upper bracket and the lower bracket respectively. TSM went undefeated in the upper bracket, with wins over Gen.G, T1, Luminosity, and FaZe. Despite a loss to open and end their lengthy, FaZe’s lower bracket run consisted of wins over KCP, T1, Rise, and Luminosity. Both TSM and FaZe join Rise and Luminosity in the NA Challengers Playoffs, along with the four previously qualified teams.

In the Challengers Playoffs, Sentinels continued their run of dominance across the entire NA VCT campaign. They went defeated through the upper bracket, only dropping one map to Rise in the opening series then one map to 100 Thieves in the grand finals. 100 Thieves and Team Envy each finished second and third, securing spots in the upcoming Masters Three Berlin event.

EMEA Challengers Stage

In the European Challengers One event, we saw some new teams take the fast road to the EMEA Challengers Playoffs at the expense of both Reykjavík representatives, Team Liquid and Fnatic. Both teams fell at the final hurdle, losing in the second round of the lower bracket to FPX and the new-look G2 Esports, respectively. The upper bracket road was controlled by Acend, where their Jett star Mehmet Yağız “cNed” İpek continued to make his case for the title of best player in the world. Acend defeated G2 3-1 in the grand finals.

Challengers Two was a breakout showing for Giants Gaming, who’d been MIA for both of the first two stages of VCT. The international roster fielding two last-minute stand-ins in Davidp and Ambi beat both Fnatic and Liquid in the upper bracket with a tough comeback win against Fnatic and a surprisingly dominant 2-0 showing over Liquid. Both of those teams met each other in the lower bracket final, and in another thrilling five map affair, Liquid came out on top to secure the final EU spot in the EMEA Challengers Playoffs.

Both Acend and SuperMassive Blaze secured a top four finish via the upper bracket, securing spots at Masters Three Berlin. The final two spots were filled by Gambit Esports and G2 Esports. Gambit ended winning the event, claiming the 1st EMEA seed in Berlin. The 2nd, 3rd, and 4th seeds were filled by SuperMassive Blaze, Acend, and G2, respectively.

Other regions’ Stage Three results

Turkey: SuperMassive Blaze win Challengers one, advance to EMEA Challengers Playoffs with Oxygen Esports. Futbolist, Fire Flux Esports, BBL Esports, and OtherSide Esports advance to Challengers Two. Fire Flux wins Challengers Two to advance to EMEA Challengers Playoffs.

CIS: Gambit win Challengers One, advance to EMEA Challengers Playoffs with No Pressure (now playing under Natus Vincere). ForZe, One Breath gaming, Axsor, and Team Singularity advance to Challengers Two. ForZe wins Challengers Playoffs to advance to EMEA Challengers Playoffs.

Korea: Vision Strikers defeated F4Q in the grand finals of the Korea Challengers Playoffs. Both teams advance to Masters Three Berlin.

Japan: ZETA DIVISION defeated Crazy Raccoon in the grand finals of the Japan Challengers Playoffs. Both teams advance to Masters Three Berlin.

Southeast Asia: Bren Esports defeated Paper Rex in the grand finals of the Southeast Asia Challengers Playoffs. Both teams advance to Masters Three Berlin.

Latin America: KRÜ Esports defeated Australs in the Latin America Challengers Playoffs, advancing to Masters Three Berlin.

Brazil: Keyd Stars defeated Haven Liberty in the grand finals of the Brazil Challengers Playoffs. Both teams advance to Masters Three Berlin.

VCT Stage Two results

Masters Two Reykjavik

Riot’s first international LAN at Reykjavik, Iceland has concluded. After the second day of action, North America has taken the early advantage over Europe, with Sentinels’ victory over Fnatic and Version1’s stunning win against Team Liquid. Both the NA teams advanced to the upper bracket semifinals, along with Brazil’s Team Viking and Korea’s NUTURN.

Sentinels continued their impressive run through the upper bracket and through Team Vikings and NUTURN into the grand finals. Fnatic, after suffering a one-sided loss to Sentinels early in the upper bracket, went on an impressive lower-bracket run through X10, V1, Team Liquid, and then NUTURN to set up a rematch in the grand finals with Sentinels. Sentinels triumphed 3-0, but Fnatic made all three maps incredibly close, pushing the first two into overtime.

North America Challengers Stage

The open qualifier system has no regard for teams that ran deep at the first Masters. In the final round of open qualifiers for Challengers One, three of the top four at Masters fell shy of qualifying. Sentinels, FaZe Clan, and Gen.G all stumbled at the final hurdle. Four teams earned their spot at the Challengers Final via Challengers One: 100 Thieves, XSET, Team Envy, and Version1.

Challengers Two presented an opportunity for four more teams to book their ticket to the Challengers Final. At Challengers Two, Sentinels returned to their Masters One form, Cloud9 Blue continued to thrive after adding floppy, NRG rode the momentum of duelists Tex and ANDROID, and Andbox continue to rise after signing vice and mada.

At the North American Challengers Finals, Sentinels recovered and showed their early stumble was just a fluke, winning four straight series and only dropping three total maps to book their ticket to Iceland. After losing to Sentinels in the first round, Version1 went on an impressive run of their own in the lower bracket, winning four straight themselves to secure the second NA spot. They would fall to Sentinels again in the grand finals, but both teams now advance to Reykjavík.

EMEA Challengers Stage

For the second stage of VCT, Europe altered the format of their Challengers events, given they share a Challengers Final with the Turkish and the CIS regions. Both Europe’s Challengers events would feature a single-elimination bracket, with the top two teams from each qualifying for the EMEA Challengers Final.

Both FunPlus Phoenix and Guild Esports locked in their Challengers Final spots, with FPX’s 3-0 defeat over Guild in the Challengers One final serving as icing on the cake. Team Liquid and Fnatic both advanced to the Final after finishing up top at Challengers Two.

Both Liquid and Fnatic continued their impressive runs at the EMEA Challengers Finals. They both finished top of their groups with consecutive wins, then dominated their respective competition in the semifinals to earn their spot in Reykjavík. Between the two teams, they combined only lost one map before the grand finals. With their Masters spots secured, they both competed in a tremendous grand final series that went to five maps, with Liquid edging out the 3-2 win in the end.

Other regions’ Stage Two results

Korea: NUTURN Gaming defeated DAMWON Gaming 3-0 (13-10 Bind, 13-11 Split, 13-11 Ascent) to advance to Masters Two.

Japan: Crazy Raccoon defeated Absolute JUPITER 3-1 (CR 13-3 Ascent, CR 13-5 Icebox, AJ 14-12 Bind, CR 15-13 Haven) to advance to Masters Two.

Southeast Asia: X10 Esports defeated FULL SENSE 3-1 (X10 13-6 Ascent, X10 13-10 Icebox, FS 15-13 Bind, X10 13-9 Haven) to advance to Masters Two.

Brazil: Team Vikings defeated Sharks Esports 3-1 (SE 13-10 Ascent, TV 13-2 Haven, TV 13-11 Bind, TV 13-9 Icebox) in the grand finals. Both teams advance to Masters Two.

Latin America: KRÜ Esports defeated Infinity Esports 3-1 (KRÜ 13-9 Haven, KRÜ 13-6 Ascent, IE 13-5 Bind, KRÜ 13-1 Split) to advance to Masters Two.

VCT Stage One

North America

In the second Challengers event, both Team Envy and Sentinels stole the show, looking like the two most dominant teams in Europe. XSET and Immortals joined them in qualifying for Masters One first. In Challengers Three, FaZe Clan came alive and decimated the competition, with no one able to generate an answer for their aggressive Smeag style. 100 Thieves, Luminosity, and Gen.G joined them in qualifying for the final four Masters spots.

At the first Masters event, all eyes were on two teams: Sentinels and FaZe. Sentinels needed to field a sub at the last minute and widely considered the best available option in Tyson “TenZ” Ngo on loan from C9. Fans also wanted to see if FaZe’s Smeag style was sustainable. Sentinels surprised everyone with how fluently TenZ adapted to playing with the team and vice-versa, while FaZe continued to rampage through the competition.

It wasn’t until the two teams met in the upper bracket final when Sentinels really demonstrated how good their team is, when they became to first to finally slow down FaZe, defeating them 2-0. They impressed even more in the grand finals, defeating FaZe again 3-0 to claim victory at Masters.

Europe

Alliance, Ninjas in Pyjamas, FunPlus Phoenix, and Team Heretics all qualified via Challengers Two. Challengers Three was a showcase for both new and smaller esports organizations, as Guild, DfuseTeam, Ballista Esports, and Acend all booked their ticket to Masters One.

The grand finals of EU Masters One came down to the dominant looking, First Strike champion Team Heretics taking on the rising roster of Acend. What took place was a tremendous, back-and-forth series that went to all five maps, with Acend sneaking out a win in the final round of regulation on map five, Ascent.

Other regions’ Masters One results

Brazil: Team Vikings defeated Gamelanders 3-0 (13-9 Haven, 13-9 Bind, 13-11 Ascent)

Japan: Crazy Raccoon defeated Absolute JUPITER 3-0 (13-11 Bind, 13-4 Ascent, 13-5 Haven)

Korea: Vision Strikers defeated NUTURN Gaming 3-2 (NU 13-11 Bind, VS 13-2 Icebox, VS 13-6 Haven, NU 15-13 Split, VS 13-3 Ascent)

CIS: Gambit Esports defeated forZe 3-0 (13-7 Ascent, 13-10 Bind, 13-10 Split)

Turkey: Futbolist defeated BBL Esports 3-0 (16-14 Bind, 13-8 Split, 13-6 Ascent)

Latin America North: LDM Esports defeated LAZER 3-2 (LDM 13-7 Icebox, LDM 13-11 Bind, LAZ 13-6 Haven, LAZ 13-10 Ascent, LDM 13-4 Split)

Latin America South: Australs defeated Wygers Argentina 3-0 (13-5 Ascent, 13-5 Icebox, 13-5 Bind)

Southeast Asia: X10 Esports defeated Team SMG 3-2 (SMG 13-10 Icebox, X10 13-6 Bind, SMG 13-8 Split, X10 13-10 Ascent, X10 13-9 Haven)

VALORANT Champions Tour Points Leaderboard by region

Here are the circuit point standings for all regions in VALORANT Champions Tour.

VALORANT Champions Tour teams to watch

As we enter the final stretch before Champions, all eyes turn to the upcoming Last Chance Qualifiers that will determine the final four teams at the first official world championship. In NA, 100 Thieves will be playing without steel for the first time, and with the biggest stakes imaginable. We will also see vanity lead Cloud9 Blue during VCT play for the first time.

All this lead to Champions. Waiting for December is Gambit, the winners of Masters Three Berlin who only looked more dominant as that event progressed. They might have wrestled the title of “best in the world” away from Sentinels, who looked mortal after losses to G2 and Envy sent them home in the first round of playoffs. Envy, Vision Strikers, Acend, Team Liquid, and Fnatic are all teams to keep an eye on when Champions begins.

VALORANT Champions Tour roster change tracker

We’ll be tracking the major roster changes before and throughout the VALORANT Champions Tour. Our tracker begins at the start of December when First Strike ended.

November 2021

October 2021

September 2021

August 2021

July 2021

June 2021

May 2021

April 2021

March 2021

  • March 31: TSM adds brax as sixth member of roster.
  • March 30: OG adds Kuba as a stand-in, moves aKm to temporarily inactive roster.
  • March 29: Excel Esports announces full roster: davidp, B1GGY, Honeybee, Happy, Ale, coaches Jumpy and Fields.
    • beastcoast signs KOLER.
    • TSM Female ends ARIANARCHIST’s trial.
  • March 28: Team Vitality signs JESMUND and LoWkii
  • March 27: Illuminar Gaming signs Chakalaka roster
    • Rise signs Shanks and c4Lypso.
    • Dignitas moves psalm to inactive roster.
    • Spacestation Gaming releases insky, sign DXN and Derrek to trial contracts.
  • March 26: Andbox signs vice and mada, move Rebo to inactive roster.
  • March 25: 100 Thieves releases Silenx after standing-in for Nitr0 in Challengers 1.
  • March 24: NRG sign tex.
  • March 23: Team Heretics temporarily moves niesoW to inactive roster.
  • March 21: Team Vitality moves M4CHINA and feqew to inactive roster.
  • March 20: TSM releases LunarKats from women’s roster, adds ARIANARCHIST on trial.
  • March 17: TSM announces women’s VALORANT roster: cath, athxna, LunarKats, Zoessie, mle.
  • March 16: Cloud9 parts ways with vice.
  • March 15: CLG Red enters VALORANT, adds bENITA as captain.
  • March 12: Cloud9 White adds Keiti after successful trial.
  • March 10: Sentinels and Riot suspend sinatraa after allegations of sexual abuse. Tyson “TenZ” Ngo will compete in his place NA Masters One on loan from Cloud9.
  • March 8: Excel Esports adds Davidp from G2 Esports.
  • March 3: Equinox releases entire roster of cute fat boy, Paincakes, tex, mina, and DXN.

February 2021

  • Feb. 28: 100 Thieves signs Ethan from Evil Geniuses CS:GO, moves Dicey to the inactive roster.
  • Feb. 26: Alliance releases krea6on.
    • Giants Gaming adds Fit1nho, moves Happy to the bench.
  • Feb. 25: Team Liquid signs Jamppi.
    • Dignitas adds rara and ryann after a successful trial.
  • Feb. 24: Luminosity officially signs moose and YaBoiDre.
    • Liquid moves ec1s to inactive roster.
    • T1 signs curry.
  • Feb. 20: NRG signs ANDROID.
  • Feb. 18: Andbox signs Rebo from disbanded Moon Raccoons roster.
  • Feb. 16: Complexity releases Xp3 and ends sharky’s trial.
  • Feb. 15: OG signs Monkey Business roster.
  • Feb. 11: Andbox benches POACH.
  • Feb. 9: Version1 signs PLAYER1, effys, penny, Zellsis, and vanity.
  • Feb. 8: T1 parts ways with brax and AZK.
  • Feb. 4: Cloud9 Blue signs poiz as sixth-man.
  • Feb. 4: Team Vitality signs FrenzyGoKill roster of bramz, M4CHINA, vakk, ceNder, feqew, and coach fragon.
  • Feb. 3: Fnatic signs SUMN FC stack of Boaster, Doma, Mistic, Moe40, tsack, and coach mini.

January 2021

  • Jan. 30: Alliance finalizes full VALORANT roster. kAdavraa, Hype, luckeRRR, and krea6on join the already signed Fearoth. MitchMan joins as an analyst.
  • Jan. 28: Alliance announces first addition to roster in captain Fearoth.
  • Jan. 27: Evil Geniuses announces first mixed roster of potter, Clawdia, aleksandar, Temperature, and Osias.
    • Equinox Esports signs tex to starting roster
    • Rise Nation signs Neptune and poised
  • Jan 26: Cloud9 Blue adds xeta and coach Autumn to finalize the roster.
  • Jan. 25: FURIA finalizes VALORANT roster: Nozwerr, Khalil, Txddy1, xand, qck, coach Carlão.
    • Team Heretics adds RUBINO as sixth-man.
  • Jan. 21: Cloud9 Blue acquires ex-CS:GO pro leaf.
    • Gen.G adds koosta from its inactive CS:GO roster.
  • Jan. 20: Guild Esports adds Sayf and coach BARBARR.
    • Immortals adds Kehmicals and NaturE
  • Jan. 18: G2 Esports adds Zeek.
  • Jan. 16: Giants Gaming signs Orgless core of Happy, Boo, pipsoN, and hoody, as well as Meddo (former FPX). They also bench Fit1nho and donQ.
  • Jan. 14: XSET signs BcJ.
  • Jan. 13: XSET releases Brando.
  • Jan. 12: TenZ steps down from Cloud9’s active roster.
  • Jan. 9: NRG Esports releases KOLER.
  • Jan. 4: Immortals release jmoh and neptune.
    • FunPlus Phoenix signs dimasick.

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