VALORANT, Riot Games' first-person shooter which was released in June 2020, has captured the imaginations of countless men and women around the world. Despite this success, and the successes of others like it, the issue of the gender imbalance in esports remains a topic of fierce discussion both on and offline. Amidst the furore, a number of organisations promoting gender diversity and inclusivity in esports have taken root. A leader amongst this is GALorants, a community dedicated to encouraging and publicising women's participation in the VALORANT community.
Partnered with Nerd Street Gamers, a company advocating for greater access to the esports industry, GALorants is hosting the FTW ("For the Women") Summer Showdown, its first all-women VALORANT tournament on Saturday 12 September 2020. The FTW Summer Showdown boasts a $10,000 prize pool and support from global brands Comcast and G Fuel. With whispers that Godsent, the first all-female pro VALORANT team, will be joining the roster, the teams are preparing for what is shaping up to be a fierce competition.
As more tournaments like the FTW Summer Showdown take to the main stage, we all reap the rewards, creating opportunities for women in an historically male-dominated space and paving the way for the next generation of gamers.