Aug 5 2016 - 5:56 pm

IEM League of Legends events to feature more teams, no fan voting

ESL is reforming its IEM League of Legends circuit for season 11, moving away from fan voting and adding more teams to the tournaments
Callum Leslie
Weekend Editor, Dot Esports.

ESL is reforming its IEM League of Legends circuit for season 11, moving away from fan voting and adding more teams to the tournaments.

For the 2016 events, ESL will invite eight teams to compete with no teams receiving a bye, rather than the six teams who were invited to previous events.

In six-team events, four teams fought through an initial stage before two more joined. With eight teams, all participants will play the same number of matches to get to the final.

This extended format means the number of matches at each event has more than doubled—from just five to 13.

The new format will be used as IEM travels to two new locations this Winter—IEM Oakland and IEM Gyeonggi. The best performers at these events and at Worlds will qualify for the IEM World Championship, which will once again be held at IEM Katowice.

In addition to the larger competition, the events will now feature more geographical diversity. In previous seasons only EU, North America, China and Korea were involved, but for Season 11 the LMS region and a separate qualifier from the wildcard regions will also take part. At least one team from each of the six areas will be invited.

Removing the fan voting element, teams will also be directly invited by ESL on the basis of performance in the regional leagues and at Worlds. The wildcard regions will have their own separate qualifier to earn a spot.

Details on the invitation criteria and wildcard qualifier will be released next week.

Jan 21 2017 - 10:20 pm

G2 Esports and H2k-Gaming on top after EU LCS opening weekend

Last year's top teams haven't missed a beat.
Callum Leslie
Weekend Editor, Dot Esports.
Photo via Riot Games

G2 Esports and H2k-Gaming picked up exactly where they left off as the 2017 European LCS season got underway.

Both G2 and H2k, who had the most championship points in Europe in 2016, won both of their first two matches of the 2017 Spring Split as they look to win out in their respective groups.

In the biggest match of the weekend on paper, G2 beat Fnatic 2-1 in a thrilling series to the delight of the crowd in the LCS studio. The first game was a cagey affair, with G2 securing all of the objectives and getting a relatively comfortable win, but the second game was far closer.

The game was level for most of the first thirty minutes, until Fnatic managed to take Baron. From there the team's advantage slowly developed despite G2's best efforts. Fnatic broke down G2's defences and left the Nexus exposed, before this daring flash play let Fnatic in the backdoor to win the game.

Fired up by the audacious play, G2 Esports fired back in game three. Though Fnatic were able to secure more kills than G2, 20-14, G2 once again took almost all of the objectives. They wore down Fnatic with repeated attacks on the Nexus until Fnatic could no longer withstand the pressure.

G2 also defeated Roccat 2-0, finishing the week top of Group A.

H2k-Gaming went just one better than G2 in Group B—not only did they win both of their initial matches, they also did without dropping a game. The 2016 World Championship semifinalists defeated Origen in the first game of the season, before knocking off fellow World Championship competitors Splyce.

Misfits and Unicorns of Love were the only other victorious sides on the opening weekend, over Giants Gaming and Vitality respectively.

Jan 21 2017 - 6:44 pm

Riot Games to stage new international League of Legends event

The new event is set to take place this summer.
Callum Leslie
Weekend Editor, Dot Esports.
Photo via Riot Games

Apart from the annual World Championships, Riot Games have staged just one international League of Legends event per year in recent years. Now that is set to change with a new event this summer.

According to a report from Yahoo Esports Ye Qiang, who works for Riot Games in China, spilled some details on the new event at a press conference to mark the start of the new LPL season.

The new event will take place in July of this year, but will not affect the schedule or timetable of the existing domestic league spring seasons.

The event will also take a different form from Worlds or the Mid-Season Invitational, though no concrete details were discussed. Qiang did muse on the idea of a "World Cup-type tournament".

We hope LoL events can be more diversified, can satisfy our audience, and can give everyone a better player experience," Qiang said according to Yahoo Esports' translation. "so this is what we will target for the event this year in July. Wait and see.”

Riot Games are keen to expand the brand of League of Legends in China and widen the audience for the esports events. According to the report, Riot is also considering expanding the collegiate circuit in China and taking LPL league matches on the road around the country.

Though allowing fans to experience regular season matches in person is a priority, the LPL will remain in Shanghai at least through the current season.