Carlos ‘Ocelote’ Rodriguez Santiago, owner and founder of G2 Esports, has revealed his optimistic thoughts on the future of Valorant as an esport, and he seems to put Riot’s competitive shooter one step ahead of its primary rival in the genre, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
The former professional League of Legends player has stated in an interview with ESPN Esports that Valorant will be “destroying” CSGO in terms of player counts.
According to Ocelote, the in-game mechanics of a game aren’t enough to safeguard its popularity. The cinematics and lore developed by Riot Games and Activision Blizzard for the agents in Valorant should have a lasting impact in the players’ minds.
“A video game is not just a video game, it’s what happens around the video games,” Ocelote said. “In Valorant, you have different characters and each character has lore and background. We, humans, are very empathetic by nature so we want to know about these characters.”
Riot has also built Spotify playlists for each of the agents in the game for the players to enjoy. The songs in the playlist are relevant to the backgrounds of the agents. For example the playlist of Raze features songs from a Brazilian singer while that of Omen features enigmatic music and sounds.
Ocelote believes that the lack of change in CSGO over the years can ultimately lead to its downfall. “In Counter-Strike, the only thing you have going for you is the mechanics and I love the game to death, I really do,” he further says.
Ocelote explains that if he’s asked to bet all his money on either Valorant eventually surpassing CSGO or not doing so, he’d wager on the former choice.