VCT Champions 2023: Qualified teams and Groups

Riot Games have revealed the groups and opening matchups of the highly-anticipated Valorant Champions 2023.  Now that the Last... Shubh | 24. July 2023

Riot Games have revealed the groups and opening matchups of the highly-anticipated Valorant Champions 2023. 

Now that the Last Chance Qualifiers are over, the anticipation for the most prestigious event of the year is at an all-time high. The Champions 2023 will visit Los Angeles as part of Riot’s plan to reward American Valorant fans for their love and support. The Shrine Auditorium and the Kia Forum, two renowned locations in Los Angeles, will host sixteen of the greatest teams in the world from EMEA, Asia-Pacific, the Americas, and China as they compete for global supremacy.

Using the same double-elimination DSL format as Tokyo Masters, the competition will run from August 6 through August 26. Here is all you need to know about the event’s participating teams and their allotted groups:

Group A

  • Paper Rex (Pacific League)
  • KRÜ (Americas LCQ)
  • EDG (China Qualifier)
  • Giants (EMEA LCQ)

The first group of the world championship will kick off with an exciting match between the Southeast Asian Paper Rex and the Argentine team KRÜ. KRÜ finished the VCT Americas regular season with a winless 0-9 record, therefore many analysts and fans doubted if they would be able to earn a spot at Champions. KRÜ, however, went unbeaten throughout their upper bracket run at the Pacific LCQ and earned a spot for the world championship third consecutive time. 

PRX, on the other hand, won the Pacific League and placed third at the VCT Masterzs Tokyo, becoming the most dominant team in the region and a threat to other international teams as well. It is clear from their performance in the prior competition that the team has all the required elements to become the first Pacific team to win an international Valorant competition. The European underdog Giants, who qualified for the competition courtesy of an undefeated streak in the EMEA LCQ, and China’s best Valorant team, EDward Gaming, round out Group B.   

Group B

  • Evil Geniuses (Americas League)
  • FPX (China Qualifier)
  • FUT Esports (Masters)
  • T1 (Pacific League)

Evil Geniuses will begin their journey at the global champs as the Group B favorite after having a fantastic run at the Masters Tokyo. The team has previously dominated teams like Liquid, FUT, DRX, LOUD, and Paper Rex at Master, demonstrating that the concept of a ten-man lineup could deliver incredible results. They will be joined by the Turkish team FUT, who turned in a promising performance at the EMEA League and finished third.

Despite finishing third in the Pacific League, T1 will enter the event group as an underdog and will have much to prove in their first appearance at Champions. Fans questioned the Korean team’s ability after it faltered against stacked European and American teams at recent international competitions, such as the recently finished Masters and VCT 2023: LOCK/IN So Paulo. China’s FunPlus Pheonix team rounds out Group D. The team, which placed third in the China qualifier, will make its international debut at the Champions 2023.

Group C

  • Fnatic (Masters)
  • ZETA Division (Pacific LCQ)
  • NRG (Americas League)
  • Bilibili Gaming (China Qualifier)

ZETA Division, who qualified for the event from Pacific LCQ, would be concerned about finding Fnatic as their opponent in the first game. This year, Fnatic has already won two international competitions, LOCK/IN Sào Paulo and Master Tokyo. They will try to make it three in a row at the upcoming world championship. 

NRG, a dominant force in the North American scene, will have the chance to stop Fnatic early on as they have the firepower and experience necessary to pull off an early upset. Bilbil Gaming, the final team to join the group, will be making its world championship debut after placing second in the Chinese qualifier. Bilbil is entirely untested on the international stage, but Edward’s performance at Master Tokyo showed that the Chinese region has enough talent to shock the world more than once.

Group D

  • Team Liquid (Masters)
  • Natus Vinere (EMEA LCQ)
  • DRX (Pacific League)
  • LOUD (Americas League)

The best teams from each of the three major regions are represented in Group D, making it the most competitive of the four groups. The EMEA League champion Liquid would be a top pick in the group alongside the reigning world champions LOUD. Liquid has been a dominating force at international events since 2021, consistently finishing in the top 8 at a number of VCT events, including the previous two editions of the world championship. LOUD, on the other hand, features a roster of Brazillians who have proven their abilities time and time again.

Yet, the Korean powerhouse DRX would pose a severe threat to their dominance given their extensive LAN experience and track record of success in previous VCT competitions. One of the new favorites in Europe, NAVI, will have one more chance to prove their value after failing to make an impression at the Masters and succumbing to Giants in the LCQ finals. Fans would be expecting a comeback from Navi—the team that swept KRÜ Esports, Team Secret, and Leviatán in a row at VCT LOCk/IN—despite how competitive the group is.

Header: Riot Games