Riot updates VCT’s map pick-and-ban process with Breeze’s debut

With Stage Three of the VALORANT Champions Tour just over a week away, Riot’s esports team has altered the pick-and-ban process for maps ahead of the introduction of Breeze. With six maps instead of five, the third map is no longer decided by whatever is left after a pick and ban by each team.

Here’s how the pick-and-ban process will work for best-of-three series (the most common match format) for the qualifier matches, according to the freshly updated VCT Competition Rules. The better-seeded team will decide if they’re Team A or Team B. If there’s no seeding, this is determined randomly.

  • Team A bans one map, Team B bans one map.
  • Team A picks Map One, Team B picks a side for Map One.
  • Team B picks Map Two, Team A picks a side for Map Two
  • Team A picks Map Three, Team B picks a side for Map Three.

During the qualifiers, the higher-seeded team will have a choice between either two map picks or two choices of side. Whichever choice they don’t make will be afforded to the lower-seeded team, so the lower seed isn’t at too much of a disadvantage.

The Challengers main event will use a different format for map pick and bans. Prior to the main event, each team will rank all the maps in order of preference and the final map of each best-of-three will be determined by highest average choice among the remaining maps between the two teams. So the format will look like this:

  • Team A bans one map, Team B bans one map.
  • Team B picks Map One, Team A picks a side for Map One.
  • Team A picks Map Two, Team A picks a side for Map Two.
  • Map Three is the highest-seeded map, Team B picks a side for Map Three.

While Team A doesn’t get a choice of two map picks or two side choices, the main event format does allow them to pick a starting side for two of the maps.

For best-of-ones, Team A will ban three maps while Team B bans two. The remaining map will be played with Team B picking the side. For a best-of-five, used in the grand finals of Challengers Main events, the format will be:

  • Team A bans one map.
  • Team B picks Map One, Team A picks a side for Map One.
  • Team A picks Map Two, Team B picks a side for Map Two.
  • Team B picks Map Three, Team A picks a side for Map Three.
  • Team A picks Map Four, Team B picks a side for Map Four.
  • Map five is the only remaining map, Team A picks a side.

Breeze will be available from the beginning of VCT Stage Three, but new agent KAY/O won’t be available until Challengers Two for North America.


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