NA Game Changers is back for 2023 with new tournaments, formats, and verification partner

A new season of Game Changers brings some pretty big changes.

The wait is finally over and NA VALORANT Game Changers fans finally have more information on what 2023 will look like. There are a plethora of changes this year, but the staples, such as the three tournaments held each year and the Game Changers World Championship, are here to stay.

The NA VALORANT Game Changers tournaments aim to showcase and promote female and non-binary talent from North America. Last year saw the first world champion in G2 Gozen, who came out on top as the world’s best, and teams will be battling it out again to claim that title in 2023.

NA Game Changers 2023 brings changes to verification system

The biggest change that fans and players will notice right away is the exodus of Galorants as a verification resource. The tournament will now use a non-profit partner, AnyKey. Players will be able to verify their gender in a number of different ways using the service, such as providing a photo ID that indicates gender, an affirming doctor’s note, or a well-established social media account with “a public track record of that player’s identity.” Players will also be able to verify their identity by voice chatting with someone from AnyKey’s staff.

All competitors will need to re-verify through AnyKey before they compete in 2023 regardless of whether they’ve been verified in past tournaments. It is unclear if they’ll need to re-verify for every tournament or if a record will be kept throughout the year with their verification status.

A new organizer will run VALORANT NA Game Changers

Another huge change is the tournament organizer. Nerd Street Gamers, the partner that has been used since Game Changers came into existence, is seemingly having a lot of issues, so it’s no surprise Riot chose to work with a different partner this year.

Knights Arena will be the official organizer for 2023. It has hosted many VALORANT tournaments in the past and now will organize the Game Changers NA season this year.

Tournament structure and format

The tournament structure didn’t get much of a change, and the format didn’t see much of a change either. There will still be three larger tournaments in 2023, each earning points toward the final event. Each one will begin with an open qualifier, and teams will battle in a GSL group format to determine the top eight teams.

Teams will fight for a $50,000 prize pool in each of the tournaments and will be able to earn points toward the World Championship.

Here is a breakdown of how points will be distributed:

  • First place: 20 percent or 80 points
  • Second place: 15 percent or 60 points
  • Third place: 12 percent or 50 points
  • Fourth place: 10 percent or 40 points
  • Fifth and sixth place: Seven percent or 30 points
  • Seventh and eighth place: Five percent or 20 points
  • Ninth to 16th place: Two percent or 10 points

This year, the rank requirement has been adjusted as well. Players must now be Ascendant or higher to “ensure stiffer regional competition.” This adjustment was made due to player feedback for the 2023 season.

Full VALORANT NA Game Changers 2023 schedule

The VALORANT NA Game Changers 2023 schedule will look similar to years past. There will be three tournaments that players can use to qualify for the World Championship. Those three tournaments will take place from April to October, with the finale likely taking place sometime in late November or early December.

Here is a full schedule for the Game Changers Series events:

  • Game Changers Series I
    • Open qualifier: April 4 to 6
    • Main event: April 11 to 14
  • Game Changers Series II
    • Open qualifier: July 13 to 16
    • Main event: July 26 to 30
  • Game Changers Series III
    • Open qualifier: Sept. 28 to Oct. 1
    • Main event: Oct. 4 to 8

Players can register their teams via the Knights Arena website when registration opens on March 21.

Changes to Game Changers Academy

The Game Changers Academy events are also getting a big change this year. They’ll now be called the Knight’s Sakura Cup. This bi-monthly tournament will give competitors a chance to showcase their skills in between Series events, and they’ll have a $10,000 prize pool.

There are currently no dates for the Sakura Cup tournaments, but players should pay attention to the Knights Arena Twitter to find out more details about when to sign up.

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