In São Paulo, Brazil, a thrilling weekend of play culminated in one team claiming victory at the 2023 VALORANT Champions Tour (VCT) Game Changers Championship.
Monday (4 December) saw the North American team, Shopify Rebellion, edge out Team Liquid Brazil in a tight five-game series, securing the 2023 VCT Game Changers Championship title.
Both teams had unique paths leading up to this competition.
Shopify Rebellion created a stir in the upper bracket with an emphatic victory over EDward Gaming, achieving a clean 2-0 sweep in the Upper Bracket Quarterfinals. Their winning streak continued by defeating BBL Queens with another 2-0 sweep in the Semi-finals of the Upper Bracket.
During a rematch from the 2022 Game Changers Championship Grand Finals, Shopify Rebellion faced G2 Gozen, coming out on top with a 2-1 win.
However, Team Liquid had a different journey, facing an early setback in the Upper Bracket Quarterfinals as they were swept 2-0 by G2 Gozen. But Team Liquid Brazil stood resolute, clawing their way back through the lower bracket.
They inaugurated their Lower Bracket journey by taking down Evil Geniuses in a swift 2-0 victory in Round 1 and carried the momentum forward by defeating BBL Queens 2-0 in the Lower Bracket Quarterfinals.
The tension mounted as Team Liquid met Southeast Asian team SMG in the Lower Bracket Semifinals. Although they lost one match, they came out on top with a 2-1 win.
In the Lower Bracket Finals, Team Liquid and G2 Gozen crossed paths again. Defying expectations, Team Liquid pulled off a stunning upset, taking a 2-0 sweep and booking their spot in the Grand Final.
The Winning Strategy of Shopify Rebellion
In the starting match, Team Liquid took an early lead, securing a quick 7 wins in the first half. However, Shopify Rebellion fought back, ending the first half with 5 wins.
Going into the second half, Team Liquid continued to lead, but Shopify Rebellion quickly caught up once their opponents secured their 11th victory. The score remained tied 12-12, resulting in the first game going into overtime.
In the end, Shopify Rebellion won the decisive rounds, securing the first game with a 14-12 score.
During the second game on Lotus, Shopify Rebellion carried forward their momentum, ending the first half with an 8-4 lead. Nevertheless, Team Liquid made a comeback, clinching 9 victories in the second half and winning the round 13-11.
On Breeze, the third game was largely dominated by the North American team, as they took the first half 9-3. They won four more rounds in the second half, winning the second game 13-5 in a compelling display of skill and strategy.
The third game saw Team Liquid delivering a high-stakes performance on Sunset, winning the first half 10-2, and finishing with three more round wins to take the third game 13-7.
Both teams headed into the fifth decider game with all to play for; Shopify Rebellion and Team Liquid ended the first half 6-6. In the second half, however, Shopify Rebellion took control, denying Team Liquid any chance of a comeback. They swept the second half 7-0 to take the fifth game 13-6 and be crowned the 2023 VCT Game Changers Champion.
Shopify Rebellion emerges as victors, taking home the grand prize of US$180,000.
Ava “florescent” Eugene