Nodwin Gaming, in partnership with video game publisher Riot Games, celebrated the successful culmination of India’s first publisher-supported esports league in the Valorant Challengers South Asia (VCSA) in 2023.

The 60-day Valorant esports showcase from the South Asian zone offered a prize pool of US$140,000. It started with Split 1 on 18 March and ended with the best-of-5 Split 2 grand finals on 10 June.

Popular Indian esports team, Orangutan Gaming, led by veteran esports talent Sabyasachi “Antidote” Bose, established their superiority over the competition from the get-go. The Mumbai-based outfit displayed an unbeaten streak, securing victory in both splits and earning the opportunity to represent the South Asian zone at the prestigious Valorant Challengers Ascension: Pacific.

Spread over an expansive 60-day duration, the Valorant Challengers South Asia 2023 LAN has emerged as one of the best-produced Challenger-level products in the APAC region.

Nodwin Gaming co-founder and managing director Akshat Rathee said, “LAN tournaments are never easy, and a 60-day Challenger standard LAN featuring some of the best esports athletes from across the region is extremely tough in its own right. The challenge of putting something new into action, coupled with the length of the format, the offline nature of the event, and finding solutions that ensure the overall sustainability of the ecosystem were all hurdles that we have had to overcome. That challenge has been met and delivered on by the teams working on this led by Vidushi Singh our project manager and Ekansh Arora our COO.

This year’s Valorant Challengers South Asia has set the foundation, and we can now start building upon this demonstration of capability, and commit our efforts towards hosting a bigger and better event for the entire South Asian esports community next year.“

Commenting on the recently concluded Valorant Challengers South Asia, and Riot’s partnership with Nodwin Gaming, Riot Games India and South Asia esports lead Sukamal Pegu said, “We are proud of what we achieved with the Nodwin VCSA 2023, which was one of the most rousing Challenger Leagues in the APAC region. We are grateful for the positive reception from the participating teams and fans, and we would like to thank our partners for their support. We are always striving to improve, and we will continue to work hard to produce high-quality events. This product is the springboard for our South Asian athletes to be discovered and ascend into our Pacific League. We look forward to making the 2024 season even better and more exciting!”

After the success of the Valorant Challengers South Asia 2023, Nodwin Gaming and Riot Games have joined forces with a common objective of advancing the esports scene in South Asia. Collaboratively, they are dedicated to crafting a viable and adaptable roadmap for organising comparable esports tournaments within the Indian ecosystem, with a strong emphasis on sustainability and growth. Riot Games India and South Asia country manager Arun Rajappa anticipates continued development. He said, “The launch of Valorant Challengers South Asia this year has been an important milestone in the growth of the South Asian esports scene. The talent, passion, and commitment of our players have been truly remarkable. I am incredibly excited about the solid foundation that we have laid for the Valorant community. At Riot Games, we’ll continue to provide more opportunities for our athletes to shine on the world stage. We’re also constantly exploring new ways to engage and entertain spectators. The future is bright for South Asian esports!”

Tournaments of Valorant Challengers South Asia’s magnitude contributes immensely to the overall upliftment of the region’s entire esports ecosystem. It opens up fresh advertising opportunities for both endemic and non-endemic brands to reach untapped customer bases, while significantly empowering regional esports organisations in more ways than one. These mega tournaments provide a world-class stage for local esports organisations to showcase their gaming prowess and extend their influence from the regional level to the global arena while simultaneously bolstering their overall brand.

Speaking on the prospect of the Valorant Challengers South Asia and their journey in the championship, Orangutan Gaming co-founder Jai Shah said, “Winning the Valorant Challengers South Asia 2023 tournament is an incredible honour. Our team’s hard work and dedication paid off, and we are thrilled to represent India on the international stage. I want to express gratitude to Nodwin Gaming, Riot Games, and sponsors for organising this remarkable event. The tournament showcased the immense talent and potential of Indian esports. We are motivated to continue elevating the esports scene in India and make our country proud. Thanks to our teammates, sponsors, and fans for their unwavering support. This victory is just the beginning, and we’re excited for what lies ahead in the world of esports!”