Valorant competitive season has reached its peak as the best teams in the world get ready to fight for the 2022 Valorant Champions title. Over the next few weeks, sixteen teams will showcase their Valorant mastery in Istanbul, Turkey.
2022 Valorant Champions participating teams:
- North America: OpTic Gaming, XSET, 100 Thieves
- EMEA: FunPlus Phoenix, Fnatic, Team Liquid
- APAC: Paper Rex, XERXIA, BOOM Esports
- Brazil: LOUD, FURIA Esports
- LATAM: Leviatán, KRÜ Esports
- South Korea: DRX
- Japan: ZETA Division
- China: EDward Gaming
Valorant Champions Format
The tournament consists of two stages: Group stage and Playoffs.
Sixteen teams are divided into four groups, from which the top two teams advance to the Playoffs. Group stage matches are best of threes, with a double-elimination format.
Eight teams that advance will be placed in a double-elimination bracket. All playoff matches are best of threes, except Lower Bracket Final and Grand Final, which are best of fives.
Group Stage Preview
Group A: Paper Rex, EDward Gaming, Leviatán, Team Liquid
Group A might as well be the most unpredictable group of the tournament. Copenhagen Masters finalists Paper Rex are favorites to make it out; however, no team in this group can be counted out.
Leviatán had a decent showing in their first international tournament in Copenhagen, while Team Liquid is a very experienced team with great players. When in form, TL can be a dangerous opponent to anyone.
Finally, the biggest enigma of the tournament is the Chinese team EDward gaming. It is crazy that they are even here because China doesn't even have a Valorant server yet. They got invited to East Asian LCQ, which was their first official showing, and they completely stomped it without dropping a single map versus serious competition.
Group B: OpTic Gaming, BOOM Esports, ZETA Division, LOUD
Reykjavik Masters champions and Copenhagen semifinalists OpTic Gaming are coming in as favorites in Group B. Brazilian squad LOUD is looking to bounce back from their dreadful performance in Copenhagen.
Japanese ZETA division missed the last Masters, as they lost to Northeption, but they are back on the international stage looking to replicate their success from Reyjkavik.
The final team in Group B is APAC representative BOOM Esports from Indonesia. BOOM is debuting on the international stage after securing Champions through very competitive APAC Last Chance Qualifiers.
Group C: FunPlus Phoenix, KRÜ Esports, XSET, XERXIA
Reigning Copenhagen Masters champions FunPlus Phoenix are favored to secure Group C. After a very challenging year and many issues with visa and travel restrictions due to the Russian war in Ukraine, FPX is hoping to end 2022 on a high note.
KRÜ Esports bounced back from missing Copenhagen Masters, hungry to replicate their last year's Champions success where they reached the semifinal.
XSET will have the tough task of bouncing back from their poor performance in Copenhagen. Despite being NA's first seed and skipping the group stage, XSET got knocked out by OpTic and Leviatán without even putting up a fight.
Similarly to XSET, XERXIA is hoping for a better tournament than Stage 2 Masters, where they got knocked out of groups.
Group D: DRX, FURIA Esports, Fnatic, 100 Thieves
Korean powerhouse DRX has constantly been performing well internationally; however, they couldn't break into the top four. They completely crushed the domestic competition in 2022 and hope to have a successful Champions.
FURIA Esports qualified for Valorant Champions through the South American Last Chance Qualifier. They will have a difficult task of coming out of Group B as they return to the international stage for the first time since 2021 Valorant Champions.
Fnatic is having a fantastic 2022, especially Stage 2, but they came short in their fight for the Stage 2 Masters title. Their new and rejuvenated roster is looking really scary on top of having young Turkish star Alfajer on the roster, which will bring Istanbul's crowd to their side.
Finally, 100 Thieves are back on the international stage for the first time in 2022. The young roster built around their star fragger Asuna qualified for Valorant Champions by winning the North American LCQ.