On Monday, esports organization Version1 announced the roster it will be fielding for the 2023 Challengers circuit, which is the new league ecosystem managed by Knights Arena. The announcement was particularly noteworthy, as there are no cisgender men on the V1 roster, a major change for the professional Valorant scene outside of VCT Game Changers.
This team is set to compete in both the Game Changers and Challengers circuits this year. In fact, the Version1 roster will participate in today’s North American Challengers open qualifier to take their shot at earning one of the four available slots left in the main league.
The Version1 Valorant roster is stacked with North American Game Changers royalty, headlined by the duo of former Cloud9 queens Melanie “meL” Campone and Alexis Guarrasi. After six North American Game Changers championships, the duo had their sights set on competing in the Tier 2 and Tier 1 scenes on a co-ed roster. The two parted ways with their former organization after it became apparent that the new league rules would not allow partnered teams — like Cloud9 — to run “academy” teams, which is what the secondary, co-ed roster the duo wanted to create would be classified as. They’re joined by Misfits Black’s former young star Ava “florescent” Eugene, former XSET Purple member Nicole “Noia” Tierce, and Sarah Simpson, formerly of Immortals.
Version1 and their Game Changers counterparts, VersionX, have had several ups and downs during their time in the competitive Valorant world. Both squads saw limited success in their respective scenes’ earlier days, but have since been largely outpaced by their competitors both at home and abroad. By bringing this new squad onto the field for both realms of competition, it looks like Version1 is hoping to change that narrative going forward.