Fnatic Emerges Victorious in Record-Breaking VCT LOCK//IN São Paulo
As Valorant’s popularity continues to soar, Riot Games kicked off the 2023 competitive season with the highly-anticipated VCT LOCK//IN São Paulo. The tournament attracted an impressive 1.43 million peak viewers and an average of around 430,000, with over 100 hours of on-air time, according to Esports Charts.
The VCT LOCK//IN São Paulo was the second-most-watched event in Valorant’s short history, featuring 32 teams from all three main regions of the game: EMEA, Pacific, and Americas. It was designed as a way to start the new VCT season officially and showcase all the teams set to participate in the VALORANT regional leagues.
Fnatic, the UK-based organization, emerged as the champions after defeating LOUD in a thrilling Grand Final. The Brazilian team, which had home support in São Paulo, gave their all and managed to attract the most viewers to their matches. Interestingly, three of their matches were among the top six most-watched of the tournament.
Despite LOUD’s impressive performance, Fnatic won the VCT LOCK//IN São Paulo in dramatic fashion, with a comeback from an 11-3 deficit in the final map, Icebox, to win the series in overtime.
While the VCT LOCK//IN São Paulo was well-received, some fans and pundits criticized the event for having most matches in a best-of-one format, which may have limited viewership numbers as teams were eliminated after a single loss.
Nevertheless, the tournament showcased some of the most exciting and innovative gameplay in the Valorant scene, with teams experimenting with new strategies and compositions. Additionally, the event was co-streamed by Riot Games-selected partners and had over 200 channels covering the tournament on various platforms and languages.
With Fnatic’s victory in the VCT LOCK//IN São Paulo, Timofey ‘Chronicle’ Khromov became the first player to win two VCT trophies. Khromov, who was also part of the Gambit squad that won VCT Stage 3 Masters in Berlin in 2021, will be a player to watch in the upcoming VCT circuit.
Overall, the VCT LOCK//IN São Paulo provided a thrilling start to the 2023 Valorant Champions Tour, offering fans and esports enthusiasts a glimpse of what’s to come in the world of Valorant esports. It was a competitive and exciting tournament, setting the stage for what promises to be an unforgettable year for Valorant esports.