The League of Legends or LOL Esports scene is a thriving market currently dominated by Riot Games, the company which develops and publishes LoL. The most prominent regions in LoL esports are North America, Europe, China, Korea and South-East Asia. All the following regions are home to some of the most successful esports teams in history, with names such as Fnatic, SKT T1 K/S, Team SoloMid and Edward Gaming being just a few strings on their bow.
It would be an understatement to say that LoL esports enjoys immense popularity among its players. In August of 2017, the NA LCS alone had a viewership peak of more than 1.1 million concurrent viewers during its most watched play off series, more than doubling last year’s numbers. The only problem is that LoL esports has to compete for attention with other popular esports titles such as CS:GO, Dota 2 and Overwatch. These titles are all better suited to esports from a gameplay perspective, with their need for individual dexterity and fast-paced action compared to League’s MOBA gameplay. However, these games lack the stability that LoL offers its players in terms of professional ecosystem.
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Talking about ban implemented in 2016 by Riot Games:-
In 2016, Riot Games issued permanent bans to over 15 high Elo ranked Korean players who were caught match fixing. In the West, this would have been a warning shot from Riot to anyone who even thought about match fixing or taking bribes in any shape or form. This one-strike policy is not a luxury that Valve’s CS:GO scene possesses. Its only real example of a player being banned for match fixing is KQLY from Titan in 2014, a ban that was later reversed after claims of it being unfair.
In the past some following years many games have emerged as potential tabteck to LOL Esports status as a premier esports title. PUBG is the latest contender attempting to overthrow LoL from its throne. PUBG has had more than 1 million concurrent viewers on Twitch at times, but its promising future as an LOL esports title is hampered by its developer’s unwillingness to embrace the competitive nature of PUBG. From prohibiting large prize pools at events where betting is taking place to allowing gambling on its new 3rd person spectator mode, Bluehole has failed to deliver a unified message regarding what it wants from the emerging scene surrounding PUBG.
The most important aspect of any game’s success as an esport is spectator convenience, and League of Legends has this covered in spades with its existing client. It allows everyone with a computer to watch professional LoL with ease through its client or through social media platforms such as YouTube or Twitch. Also this not only makes it easy for the audience to experience what’s going on in professional play, but also elevates LoL above its competitors, such as PUBG and Dota 2, where the only way to watch a match is through external media.
Disadvantages Of LOL Esports:-
The disadvantages of LOL Esports compared to it’s closest competitor, Dota 2 – in terms of viewership and competitive viability alike – are minimal, but it’s still noticeable. Riot Games is yet to embrace the esports scene surrounding LoL Esports as much as Valve has with Dota 2, with most tournaments being operated by 3rd party companies rather than Riot itself. This has led to sub-par livestreaming options for professional players and poor coverage of events on social media platforms such as Twitch. Riot has created an esports scene that runs itself, but the company has yet to embrace it as much as Valve has with Dota 2 or Activision Blizzard has with Overwatch League. Let’s hope Riot will recognise this in 2018 and continue to expand the LoL esports ecosystem for years to come.
Talking About LOL Esports Members:-
Iroh “Hiro” Blomfield is a multi-time veteran of the UK LoL Esports scene, having played since 2012. He has coached and supported numerous teams to championships and other notable placings in League tournaments around the world. In 2016 Hiro became Head Coach for North American Challenger Series team Eanix.
After the organisation dropped their LoLEsports team, Hiro worked with Western Australian team Legacy Esports in 2017 before becoming Manager of British Premier League teams MnM Gaming and Forge.