G2 Esports founder Carlos ‘Ocelote’ Rodriguez Santiago believes that Riot Games’ Valorant is following in League of Legends’ footsteps and will comfortably overtake its tactical FPS rival, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
Ocelote had high-level competitive playing experience in World of Warcraft and League of Legends before he founded G2 Esports. Now, his organization has top-tier teams across LoL, Valorant, CS:GO, and more.
As such, he has the business and playing experience to provide a unique perspective on precisely why Valorant can, and will, overtake its similar competitor, the longstanding CS:GO.
In an interview with ESPN Esports, Ocelote was asked what stands out about how Riot has been able to amplify the world of LoL and turn it into such a global phenomenon over the years.
In response, possibly due to his Valorant team’s recent dominance of the European scene, the G2 founder examined why that production and content value is emblematic of Valorant’s superiority over CS:GO.
Ocelote explains that if forced to choose between betting all of his money on Valorant overtaking CS:GO or failing to, he would bet all of his money on the Riot title’s eventual supremacy. His primary reasons for why surround Counter-Strike’s lack of any lore and general unwillingness to change.
“A video game is not just a video game, it’s what happens around the video games,” he 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.”
As Ocelote elaborates, aside from just the beautiful lore cinematics produced by Riot and Activision Blizzard, the developers have even gone so far as to have interesting, modernized experiences like Spotify playlists for each of Valorant’s Agents. These efforts make the game captivating outside of just in-game mechanics, which leads to longstanding success.
He continues on to express that Valorant will “end up destroying, in terms of numbers of people playing the game, Counter-Strike, because in Counter-Strike, the only thing you have going for you is the mechanics and I love the game to death, I really do.”
This point ties into the CS community’s reluctance toward the game changing in any significant way. While its mechanics may be seamless, Ocelote believes that the consistent evolution of League of Legends keeps a fanbase engaged for longer. This pattern of change, coupled with the importance of surrounding content, makes him want to bet it all on Valorant’s eventual dominance.