Riot Games today announced the first VALORANT tournament to be organized and operated internally by the publisher.
The developer-run event First Strike will be a series of regional tournaments in North America, Europe, the CIS, Turkey, Asia, Oceania, Brazil and the Middle East.
The global tournament will culminate in a multi-riot-produced event finale December 3-6. Both professional and amateur VALORANT teams will "have the opportunity to qualify for the First Strike Finals through online tournaments run by leading esports organizations," Riot Games said in a statement.
Whalen Rozelle, Senior Director of Esports at Riot Games  commented on the event in a press release: “VALORANT is a highly competitive title with global appeal and the elements necessary to become the next premier esport. First Strike will provide the platform for our thriving competitive ecosystem to showcase their size, build regional heritage, and lay a foundation that will support esports for years to come. “
First Strike is VALORANT's latest contest initiative, following the announcement of the Ignition Series in June. The Ignition series, which the developer won over a number of event operators and esports organizations to host its tournaments, attracted more than 20 partners and won over $ 1 million (£ 784,770) in prizes worldwide .
Anna Donlon, Executive Producer of VALORANT added, “Esports remains one of the best investments we can make to support our community over the long term. As we saw from the Ignition series, there is a great demand and hunger for VALORANT to be played at a professional level and we are very excited to start this journey with fans, players and organizations. As a development team, supporting the competitive world of VALORANT is one of our top priorities and we are committed to this journey. “
Esports Insider Says: Now that VALORANT has had time to intervene in the global esports ecosystem, it seems like it is time for Riot Games to step in and start building its world-class infrastructure. There are high expectations for VALORANT sports, especially given the publisher's exceptional track record at League of Legends, and this is certainly the first of many fruitful plans for the title being worked out at Riot Games headquarters.