Today marks day one of the League of Legends World Championship Series; the pride and joy of the e-sports community. For readers new to League of Legends, it is a MOBA, or multiplayer online battle arena. As MOBA is a relatively new term, it is easily understood as a combination of RTS and RPG type games. The premise is simple enough: teams of five players fight to take each other’s base. The gameplay, however, is intense and complex, as players can choose from over one hundred champions, with more released every few months, each with their own unique design and skills, allowing for each player to develop their own play style.
Worlds is where the best of the best gather once a year for a spectator sport unlike any other. Teams come from all around the world to challenge each other and compete for the grand prize of bragging rights, fame, and fortune (one million dollars). Teams who fall just short of first place can still share in the glory of competing under the eye of the immense e-sports community as well as gain a heaping chunk of the treasure (two million dollar prize pool).
Day one marks the start of one of two stages. In the first stage, the Group Stage, the sixteen teams are placed into one of four groups (which have already been selected) and compete in one game of League with each of the other three teams in their group. The two teams who emerge victorious, continue to the Knockout Stage in order to compete for the grand prize in a best of five tournament format.
The World Championship of League quickly became the largest e-sports event to date. While in the beginning of e-sports streaming, some would say that the anchors were just weighing it down, the commentary has now become an integral part of the spectating experience. As the popularity of e-sports grew, so did the professionalism of the commentary and coverage, offering invaluable insight and explanations to both players and non-players alike. With this coverage, the rapidly unfolding events of the intense battles are now easy to follow and enjoyable to watch.
As a new player and new e-sports spectator, I would encourage everyone who has an interest in gaming to check out one of the many streams broadcasting this year’s World Championship of League. It is certainly an event not to be missed. Even with no prior experience with the game, it’s difficult not to pick a favorite team.
Check back here for more updates as the tournament progresses.
Today’s matchups (viewable on leagueoflegends.com):
Game 1: Fnatic Vs Invictus Gaming 10:30 EDT
Game 2: Cloud9 vs. ahq e-Sports Club 11:30 EDT
Game 3: SK Telecom T1 vs. H2k-Gaming 12:30 EDT
Game 4: Edward Gaming vs. BangKok Titans 13:30 EDT
Game 5: Counter Logic Gaming vs. yoe Flash Wolves 14:30 EDT
Game 6: paiN Gaming vs. KOO Tigers 15:30 EDT
As an enthusiastic newcomer to the e-sports community, I offer my picks for today’s matches:
Game 1: Fnatic
Game 2: ahq e-Sports Club
Game 3: SK Telecom T1
Game 4: Bangkok Titans
Game 5: Counter Logic Gaming
Game 6: paiN Gaming
Who are you cheering for? Head over to our Facebook to tell us what you think about this year’s teams for a chance to win some League-related prizes, like RP! See you on Summoner’s Rift!