Meet the eight teams competing at VCT Game Changers
The first Game Changers main event is fast approaching, featuring a fascinating field of established esports organizations and a hungry unsigned roster. Game Changers was announced in late February as part of the ongoing VALORANT Champions Tour. It aims to “supplement the competitive season by creating new opportunities and exposure for marginalized genders within VALORANT.”
This starts with the first series of Game Changers: a double-elimination playoff bracket with a $50,000 prize pool and eight all-women teams duking it out for the biggest share. Ahead of the start of the main event, Here is a look at all eight teams heading into Game Changers.
Moon Raccoons Black
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The men’s Moon Raccoons VALORANT roster may be dead and gone, but the ladies’ performance has allowed the brand to live on. The roster was unveiled just a week before the open qualifier and is touted by Moon Raccoons as “the BEST free agent NA women’s VALORANT team.” Moon Raccoons is, of course, an orgless banner that began competing back in August. The men’s team was one series win against TSM away from competing at First Strike, but all of those players have since left.
Moon Raccoons Black first defeated Lockdown, then rolled over Elysium Rose to earn their spot in the finals. In both series, they were led statistically by their duelists Lorri and Diana. Both players are incredibly deadly on two separate agents; Lorri on Jett and Raze and Diana on Phoenix and Reyna. They are coached by Kevin “Lelicious” Le, who’s coached squads such as Mamba Mode Gaming and Zoomer Academy.
Head Coach Dream
Strategic Coach MoonChopper
The FTW summer Showdown’s reigning champions, the former MAJKL squad, are now competing under the Cloud9 White banner. C9 White arguably has the most pressure on it to perform. Not only is it the reigning Summer Showdown champ, but its had the most time spent with organizational support. The number of eyes on women’s VALORANT during the Summer Showdown was a huge focal point in developing Game Changers. C9 White can reassert its status at the top of the pack in this first GC series.
They’re off to a strong start already, dispatching OWA OWA and fellow participant TSM to advance to the main event. Their win over TSM included an absolute 13-2 thrashing on Haven, with C9’s newest addition Keiti putting on a show on Jett. She had 22 kills over just 15 rounds and only 9 deaths. With an extensive coaching system and firepower off the bench, you can see why expectations for C9 White are high.
CLG Red is one of the most iconic brands in women’s esports. Their CS:GO division is considered one of the most successful in all women’s esports, with over $200,000 in winnings over five years. One of their founding members, a multi-time champion in Benita “bENITA” Novshadian, now leads the new VALORANT initiative.
The ladies in red advanced to the main event with ease, with two 2-0 victories over both Watch This and Man I Love Fwogs. Their win over MILF (nice) included a 13-0 shutout, with bENITA leading by example. She top-fragged for CLG Red in all four of their maps, bringing more than just championship experience to the table.
The Dignitas female roster is a consensus dual-threat; the only roster (male or female) to compete in both VALORANT and CS:GO at the same time. While women’s CS:GO slowly ramps back up, they’re taking advantage of the growing women’s VALORANT scene. It was a semifinalist at the FTW Summer Showdown, losing to eventual champions MAJKL (now C9 White).
Dignitas are locked into establishing themselves as the best two-esport roster on the planet. They rolled over Infinity Val and Saturn Rose in a 2-0 fashion to advance to the main event. EMUHLEET is an elite duelist on either Reyna or Raze, but the entire roster is capable of putting up dominant fragging performances. The competition will heat up in the main event, but Dignitas has fought amongst these flames before.
The start of TSM’s journey has not been perfectly ideal. The new endeavor was announced on March 17, with CS:GO veteran and former CLG Red and Dignitas player Catherine “CAth” Leroux leading the charge. But just three days later, the team unexpectedly dropped Katherine “LunarKats” So, just a day before open qualifiers for Game Changers began. In a pinch, the team brought in ARIANARCHIST, who impressed the team so much that she earned a trial contract during the open qualifiers.
Despite the TSM ladies getting run over by Cloud9 White, they were still able to advance to Game Changers with one more win. They stomped Saturn Rose in two maps, each 13-3, with ARIANARCHIST playing superbly on Omen. CAth broke out the battle Sage on Split, notching 20 kills to secure a spot in the Game Changers main event.
The rest of the field may not have the big names from women’s Counter-Strike or the backing from a notable organization, but they represent the opportunity that Game Changers is creating. The European VALORANT scene is a prime example of this; unsigned teams making a run through open qualifiers into the main event with more and more eyes drawn to them each step.
Watch This is a prime example. It ran into a buzzsaw in CLG Red in the open qualifier’s upper bracket but rallied with two 2-0 wins over Nameless and Lockdown to secure its main event spot. Despite its namesake, the team doesn’t use Jett, but their duelists on Alexe1337 and Chels each had excellent matches on Phoenix and Reyna, respectively.
If Gen.G wanted to make an official dive into women’s VALORANT, they could easily do so with the OWA OWA lineup. The majority of players (maddiesuun, carlee, and hannah) are official pro players/streamers for the Gen.G organization, and the org has been rooting them on via social media throughout the qualifiers. Ideally, Gen.G will pull the trigger on making the lineup official before, during, or after Game Changers 1.
It has every reason from a competitive standpoint as well. Maddiesuun is an electric duelist on either Phoenix or Jett (47 kills and only 19 deaths across two maps versus Unlucky). The two non-Gen.G players are proving their worth as well. Stefanie is a reliable, versatile player on both Raze and Breach. Tiraye is a game-changer on the newest VALORANT agent, Astra.
Man I Love Fwogs
Do I even need to explain how great it would be for this team with their name to make a deep run at Game Changers? I do? Well, it’s because everyone loves fwogs, of course! I love fwogs, you love fwogs, and especially moms love fwogs. And who doesn’t love moms?
All kidding aside (for now), the Man I Love Fwogs roster is tough. After being smacked off their lilypad by CLG Red, they found themselves in trouble after losing Bind 13-5 to Elysium Rose. But you can’t say no to a MILF (I’m sorry), and their triple duelist setup generated plenty of firepower to take Ascent and Icebox en route to the final spot at the Game Changers 1 main event.
The main event for Game Changers 1 begins on March 25.