For some Red Bull Home Ground teams, it’s all about having fun

Team Vitality Valorant at Red Bull Home GroundRed Bull

Red Bull Home Ground is set in an awkward time in the competitive Valorant calendar, with teams only having a few weeks with their rosters set, so outside of winning the event teams have a few other goals they want to achieve.

Red Bull Home Ground kicked off on Dec. 9 and sees a mix of North American, EMEA and one non-partnered team go head-to-head in a short contest with the rosters they compiled in the offseason.

Every team has said they are coming in to win the event, but most have other goals that they want achieve or to just want to have fun.

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Team Vitality are in the former camp. The Valorant event is on a previous patch, where Chamber nerfs and other changed are not implemented, and the squad has various new members and head coach.

“We just going to focus on like full performance in to the tournament. So we will go and play our best, bring out everything, see how far it gets us and just have some fun to be honest,” Vitality’s IGL Santeri ‘BONECOLD’ Sassi told Dexerto at Red Bull Home Ground media day.

For Cloud9, the team is looking to use this as a barometer for its roster, according to head coach Matthew ‘mCe’ Elmore. The North American organization had some of the best signings of the offseason and has been dubbed a super team by the community.

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“We’re brand new team, whether people want to see that or not, [this event] gives us a baseline on like where we’re at against some of these teams. So we need to focus on like are we going to struggle against slow teams, are we going to struggle against double Sentinel comps. And are we going get to see a ton of comps from around the world. It gives us a little bit of an idea before we go on to Brazil,” mCe said.

Teams set different goals for Red Bull Home Ground

The Red Bull Home Ground tournament winning shot of the analyst desk with confetti rolling downMark Roe / Red Bull
Team Liquid and G2 Esports were the previous winners of the Red Bull Home Ground series.

For other teams, winning and trying their best is the only goal they have due to last-minute substitutions. FOKUS and Team Liquid are both using stand-in players for the tournament due to visa issues for some of their players.

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“We have actually played one day with [the stand-ins] before coming here. So no real game plan, no real prep. We’re gonna come in with five guys hungry to win, calling in the moment,” Team Liquid head coach Emil ‘eMIL’ Sandgren said. “Because I know for a fact we can’t make a better game plan in one day with the teams here.”

While some viewers might find the end result of the tournament boring, Ryan ‘RyanCentral’ Horton a VCT Challengers caster, said the event should be a fun experience as teams go full tilt due to testing out what kind of roster they have and potentially the limits of their playbook.

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“It feels that people can kind of go all out, have a bit of a swan song or old Chamber for example, without feeling that they’re showing too much. On the new patch, it might be a little bit different because people are adjusting or if they’ve seen something that works really well, they might potentially hold on to it till February which would be an absolute shame to see,” RyanCentral said.

The event is ongoing as teams fight for the right to play in the grand final on Dec. 11.