Scott Kostov | 23. September 2022

Roster deadlines and other franchising details released by Riot

Teenagers can’t participate in VCT 2023 as teams rush to assemble rosters before the October 15 deadline.

Preliminary rosters submitted by October 15

As the days go by, we get more and more information regarding Valorant franchising. The most important one is that organizations have around three weeks to assemble rosters. Riot has notified all franchised teams that October 15 is the deadline by which they need to present an initial roster. The requirements state that they must have at least six players under contract and a coach, with regulated work status by that date.

According to Riot, the pre-season transfer period will last from 26 September to the start of February. This means that teams can make roster changes between the two dates, but requirements must be met before October 15 so there is enough time for everyone to secure a visa. With such short notice, verbal agreements, buyout talks, and salaries are definitely getting discussed at this very moment.

It will be fun to see how rosters turn out, considering the sixth roster spot is meant for substitutions. We have yet to see regulations on this matter, as using substitutions between maps for strategic purposes might be a thing. On the flip side, are players willing to take a substitute role in tier one competition instead of starting in tier two?


The minimum age requirement for VCT 2023 is 18 years old

To be able to participate in a League as a Team Member, an individual must be born on or before March 25, according to Riot. They also mention that an exception to this would be the grandfathering rule. Namely, any player that has competed in a Challengers main event in any VCT League in 2022 and was born between March 26, 2005, and March 26, 2006, can be a part of the league. This exception to the Minimum Age Requirement can be made only if a parent or legal guardian accepts all of the rules and policies of the League on behalf of the individual.

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Fnatic’s young star has a bright future ahead. Credit: Riot Games

Regulations for young stars 

Currently, only Alfajer would need to comply with the grandfathering rule, while Zekken, Less, and Trent will all be 18 when the Leagues roll around. This ruling means that we won’t see anything like these young stars compete on tier one teams, which is also a good thing. Contracted players would live and compete in Berlin, Los Angeles, and Seoul, huge metropolitan areas.

From a logistical standpoint, it’s also better to handle documentation for someone that is classified as an adult. Child labor laws, broadcasting regulations, and everything in between. On the flip side, star recruits must be a part of the Ascension teams for a few years, being denied access even if their talent helps their team promote to tier one.

Challenger leagues rules revealed

With Challenger leagues representing tier two competitions in the VCT next year, they have also been regulated by Riot. Players must be older than 16 years old, all rosters must be finalized before February 20 and no minimum salary is included. This means that agents and managers can bargain more freely, while upcoming organizations won’t have to comply with minimum salary requirements that would hamper their liquidity. Importing in both tiers is regulated by having ⅗ of the players being from the same region the team competes in. Per Riot, the EMEA, Americas, and APAC are recognized as regions, meaning Brazilian teams can field rosters with five NA players!

Header: Riot Games