Jacob "valyn" Batio of The Guard competes at the VALORANT Masters Bracket Stage on April 15, 2022 in Reykjavik, Iceland.

Riot Games says it’s working to secure a “positive outcome” for Guard players

By George Geddes


Aug 31, 2023

Reading time: 2 min

The global head of Valorant Esports at Riot Games has said it is working to figure out a solution for The Guard players following the row with the organization.

Yesterday, Leo Faria said that Riot Games is working to find a “positive outcome” for the players at The Guard. A few days prior, it was announced that the organization had failed to sign the team participation agreement to formalize the joining of the VCT Americas league and, as a result, was unable to compete next year in the circuit.

The Valorant community shared its discontent with the decision to remove a Challengers team from next year’s Americas circuit, as The Guard players had played all year and won Ascension to qualify for the prolific international league.

The move saw The Guard players become free agents rather than have a guaranteed spot in the Americas league next year.

Riot to hopefully U-Turn on The Guard decision

The move will likely signal some form of U-turn by Riot, as Faria said there were multiple different options considered following The Guard’s failure to sign the agreement.

One of the options was to allow The Guard players, who are set to become free agents immediately, the chance to play under a different organization in the Americas league.

Faria said that this would enable the purchasing of a slot in the Americas league, which is antithetical to Riot’s approach to the partnership league.

“Allowing an acquisition by a different organization now opens the door for slots in the VCT to be sold, which we do not allow,” he said.

It’s unclear which method Riot will implore to allow The Guard players a guaranteed spot in the league next year since The Guard technically owned the slot, not the players, which was a direct consequence of the partnership model used by Riot.

Regardless of the next steps from Riot, Faria admits that there are “still significant risks our team needs to dig into,” which may cause a delay in finding a solution. Luckily, the offseason has commenced, and the VCT Americas league is set to begin early next year.