VALORANT, the newest tactical shooter from Riot Games, has generated tons of media buzz over the last year since its release. But exactly how many people are actually playing it?
VALORANT has notched 14 million players, according to Riot. In addition to the raw player count, the esports portion of the scene is thriving. VCT Masters Two Reykjavik had over one million concurrent viewers watch the grand finals between Fnatic and Sentinels, according to Esports Charts.
This player count is solid for a game in its first year. VALORANT attracts a wide variety of players. Its emphasis on consistent gunplay and balance attracts competitive players and its focus on the wider lore and relationships between its characters attracts a casual audience as well. Riot seems to be able to keep the two sides of the coin mostly happy. The lore has never affected the balance and vice versa so far.
“One of our top goals this first year was to earn the trust and respect of the global FPS community, and to prove to them that VALORANT will always uphold the fundamentals of a truly worthwhile competitive tac-shooter,” said Anna Donlon, executive producer of VALORANT at Riot. “To see our growing player community recognize and appreciate what we’re trying to do with VALORANT is beyond what we could’ve expected and we’re thrilled to soon offer the same competitive VALORANT experience to even more global players.”
It’s not hard to believe that 14 million number will increase rapidly, too. League of Legends, Riot’s flagship title, reportedly boasts over 100 million players. With consistent growth fueled by the release of new agents with different abilities, content to keep players engaged in the wider story, and keeping the game balanced for actual play, it’s hard to see VALORANT’s momentum slowing down any time soon.