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Here’s what the VALORANT competitive community talked about in 2022

Here’s what the VALORANT competitive community talked about in 2022

Brandon "Mothman" Moore

12/21/2022

It is safe to say 2022 was the biggest year of VALORANT so far. Of course, 2023 will rival that when the partnered era of the VCT begins. Still, 2022 left us with plenty of memories and a lot to talk about. Our friends over at r/ValorantCompetitive give you the place to discuss what goes on in the scene. Most of the chatter revolves around the various competitive events of the year, such as Masters and Champions, so we’ll go ahead and skip those.

What we will focus on are the most upvoted posts on the subreddit that aren’t a post-match thread or discussion about a specific VALORANT event. Let’s take a look.

Sideshow and Bren have some fun

The most upvoted r/ValorantCompetitive post of 2022 was all about Josh “Sideshow” Wilkinson and Brennon “Bren” Hook. The casting duo were called out in chat while commentating a match between OpTic Gaming and Pittsburgh Knights. A viewer said they said like old timey radio announcers.

The two of them decided to run with it for a hilarious and beloved moment. They didn’t just bring the accents, but also the lingo. It truly sounded like they were announcing a mid-century baseball game on the radio. And for that, we thank them.

Sentinels take a chance with Shroud

Following the fun moment from Sideshow and Bren in terms of upvotes is the signing that shook the VALORANT world. Sentinels was a team falling from grace. They once dominated NA and international VALORANT, but other teams stepped up and overtook them. For the 2022 NA LCQ, they had to make move no one expected. They had to pull out all the stops.

That saw them surprise everyone by bringing Michael “shroud” Grzesiek aboard. The FPS and streaming legend talked about how serious this was for him. He was ready to step in and take Sentinels to the promised land. Unfortunately, the team had a 5th-6th place finish at the LCQ, essentially ending the wildest experiment VALORANT may ever see.

A farewell to some amazing teams

OpTic Gaming poses on stage at an international VALORANT event in 2022.
(Image via Riot Games)

Next, we saw r/ValorantCompetitive press F to pay respects. OpTic Gaming were the team to beat in 2022. The squad placed in the top three of all international tournaments for the year, including a win at Masters Reykjavik. As well, it was determined that the former Gambit Esports (also known as M3C) were set to part ways heading into the partnered leagues of 2023.

The post was meant as a final farewell to these incredible VALORANT teams who set the bar in their regions during the game’s early years. Thankfully, we’ll still see some of the OpTic Gaming core compete together. And many of the former Gambit players have found themselves on partnered teams. It truly was a breakout year for VALORANT and we need to acknowledge those who paved the way.

Hiko enters a much-deserved retirement

We end on a farewell of another kind. While he still streams VALORANT almost daily, Spencer “Hiko” Martin ended his competitive career in April 2022. This came after a storied Counter-Strike career and a start in VALORANT like no other. 100 Thieves was built and rebuilt around Hiko. And it was enough to see the first major North American tournament end with him hoisting the First Strike trophy.

A name like Hiko comes along once in a blue moon and his insane clutches are missed at the highest level of VALORANT. Everyone always asked him, as he got older, if retirement was looming. That time came, but the mark Hiko has left on the Riot Games shooter is unmatched. There’s a reason that announcement was among the most talked about instances in VALORANT of 2022.

Stay tuned to Run It Back for more VALORANT content!