Guild Esports out of First Strike after being caught using a bug exploit

Published: Nov 17, 2020 - Last Updated: Jul 11, 2023

The UK based esports organization backed by David Beckham have received a forfeit loss in the Valorant First Strike: Europe playoffs after using an exploit in their match against G2 Esports.

During their qualifiers match against G2, Guild used a so-called “illegal boost” on Ascent by placing Sage’s wall on top of a Killjoy turret at the B site. By using this height boost players could see into B hall and allow them to identify and kill the enemy team before they could reach B.

This controversy has seen Guild exit the competition rather unceremoniously. Before the exploit was noticed, they had won the game and were due to play Ninjas in Pajamas (NiP) in the playoffs. After the bug was noticed, they were handed a loss and G2 went on to face NiP.


Both Guild Esports and Riot Games put out statements regarding the controversial decision. Riot posted on Twitter stating that exploits are prohibited from professional competition and that as a result, Guild has forfeited their win.

“Exploits are prohibited under Rule 7.2.6 of the Global Competition Policy and as such Guild have been handed a forfeit loss.”

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In response to the statement from Riot Games, Guild Esports released their own:

“The team is devastated by this decision, and we believe we deployed an innovative use of abilities that was permitted. We request now that this tactic has been identified as an unintentional exploit, this is communicated to all teams and removed from the game”

This is a huge blow for Guild Esports. We recently reported that they signed the all-Swedish Valorant squad Bonk. To be handed a disqualification so early in their career at Guild after the announcement that the organization would, “coach and support them to become world champions” is very disheartening.

This is the first time in the short history of Valorant esports that a team has received a major disqualification from an official event. Despite this initial disqualification, Riot has confirmed that Guild will still take part in the next round of qualifiers. They still have a chance to make it to the First Strike event.

What can they learn?

This strike was seen as a controversial move by some because of the vague rule set. I don’t believe that Guild was knowingly flouting the rules of the competition, rather, it looks like they were genuinely confused as to what strategies they could use. While this is nowhere near as serious as the recent spectator bug scandal in the CS:GO scene, Riot Games would do well to look at the serious anti-cheat measures that have been put in place by tournament organizer BLAST. By implementing a rigorous and dedicated anti-cheat and exploit system in place, this recent controversy in Valorant could have been avoided.

This will affect esports betting odds going into the First Strike event. Guild was favored to win against G2 and without the disqualification, they would have. Now with G2 advancing to the event and beating NiP, there will be an element of uncertainty.

Featured Image Credits: VALORANT
Andrew Boggs

Since: September 11, 2020

Andrew is a Northern Ireland based journalist with a passion for video games. His latest hobby is watching people speedrun Super Mario 64 and realising how bad he is at platformers.

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