The VCT Video game Changers initiative aims to cultivate a more varied esports scene.

Riot has introduced a new “VCT Game Changers” effort to motivate more females and “minority gender” players into Valorant’s pro scene.

Revealed today, the Game Changers program consists of two efforts targeted at making Valorant’s Champions Trip more inviting to non-male gamers. The first, a VCT Game Changers Series, includes a variety of local “top-tier” competitions happening this year, starting with a North American event next month.

The 2nd, meanwhile, is an Academy presenting a series of monthly tournaments for gamers contending at the semi-pro and grassroots level. Dealing with the Galorants neighborhood group, the goal of this Academy is to help develop up a generation of potential esports stars who may have otherwise felt omitted from conventional competitions.

” VCT Video Game Changers is a brand-new program which will supplement the competitive season by creating new chances and direct exposure for females and other marginalized genders within Valorant esports,” Riot’s announcement post checks out. “The competitive Valorant community is both diverse and extremely worldwide, and our esports must reflect that. Through Video game Changers, we want to develop towards a Valorant Champions Tour that is more inclusive and representative of our neighborhood.”

Competitive video games can frequently feel very hostile if you’re not a chap, and Valorant is no exception. The game’s own executive producer previously spoke about how she stopped playing solo to prevent harassment, while a League Of Legends community survey discovered a third of female participants reported being sexually bothered by other players.

This sort of harassment is a part of why so few females or gender non-conforming gamers bother engaging with the competitive scene– which in turn fuels the lost idea that they’re merely not as proficient at these kinds of video games. Creating space for these gamers to bend their abilities without fear of abuse is one action towards battling that stereotype, and ideally, it’ll result in a more exciting future for Valorant’s professional scene.

” Competing in games as a woman can be a challenging job, oftentimes leading to a really real competitive downside,” stated executive manufacturer Anna Donlon. “While we’re resolving this challenge in-game, with enhancements to chat, voice interactions, and mitigation of griefing, we also see an opportunity to take another action with esports.”