Riot Set To Overhaul LoL Esports From 2025

Shadman Sabik Zaim
By Shadman Sabik Zaim
7 Min Read
Image Credit: Riot Games

In a new press release, Riot is completely overhauling the LoL Esports ecosystem from 2025.

There were always murmurs as to what Riot does with League of Legends Esports going forward. In the past year or so, they have made format changes to both MSI and Worlds. Even with that, there were already rumors of a third international tournament being added to the mix. So, everyone was wondering how the logistics of all of that would happen.

As it turns out, they are doing that and a WHOLE LOT MORE. Here are all the details of the changes throughout the League of Legends Ecosystem.

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Riot Reducing LoL Esports Regions To Five

The first of the major changes is the reduction of regions in LoL Esports to Five. Korea, China, and EMEA will remain as they are. However, LCS, CBLOL, and LLA are merging to form the Americas and VCS, PCS, LCO, and LJL are merging fully merging to form APAC (Asia Pacific). So to recap, the five regions are as follows.

  • Korea
  • China
  • EMEA
  • Americas
  • APAC

While the first three will remain intact in terms of system, the Americas and APAC are going to have some sweeping changes.

The Americas

So Riot is merging LCS, LLA, and CBLOL into the new region called the Americas. From what has been said, there will be two conferences called the North and South Americas. Here are the details

North Americas

  • Six LCS Partners to Retain Slot
  • One LLA Team Added Based on Geographic Location
  • One Guest Team From Promotion and Relegation Through Tier 2 System

South Americas

  • Six CBLOL Partners to Retain Slot
  • One LLA Team Added Based on Geographic Location
  • One Guest Team From Promotion and Relegation Through Tier 2 System

So teams will play in their respective conferences but have some different approaches for the different splits.

In Split 1, Teams will compete in their conferences and the top teams will qualify in cross-conference play. From there, the top team will qualify for the new Global Tournament.

For Split 2, the top teams from each conference will qualify for MSI.

Lastly, Split 3 will have an Americas Regional Championship that will determine the three teams (with at least 1 team per conference) to qualify for Worlds.

As for the Tier 2 system, there will be a Promotion/Relegation tournament at the end of each Americas season against an existing guest team from each conference. Victor earns the spot.

Other details for the Tier 2 System are unknown.

APAC

Riot is merging Vietnam, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macao, Japan, Oceania, and the rest of Southeast Asia to APAC. This means that the PCS and VCS will be absorbed into this from 2025 onwards.

Eight teams will participate in this league but there are no other details for this yet. However, the first guest teams for next year will come from the results of the PCS and VCS Summer 2024 Split Playoffs.

Like the Americas, guest teams will get the same promotion and relegation system.

New Split Structure

LoLEsports Season
Image Credit: Riot Games

This was pretty much mentioned above as Riot is unifying the Split System to three for all regions. Split 1 qualifies teams for the new Global Tournament, Split 2 will end up with teams going to MSI, and lastly, Split 3 will have a Regional Championship for all regions and then go to Worlds.

This synchronizes all the regions and gets LoLEsports into a better timeline. However, there are some other hurdles as LPL, LCK, and LEC are yet to have any changes to their structure.

But, this is a start and Riot is taking the initiative.

Three Global Tournaments

As mentioned above, there will be three Global Tournaments. The new Global Tournament will be for 5 teams, MSI will have 10 teams, and Worlds will have 17 teams will two more teams coming from the winning region and second-best performing region at MSI.

International Event Slots
Image Credit: Riot Games

New Global Tournament

This new tournament will start after Split 1 ends in March. Here are the details.

  • 5 Teams
  • Fearless Draft in a Single Round Robin Best-of-Series
  • Tournament Will Be Six Days Long

Fearless Draft has gotten a lot of traction so this tournament will allow players to innovate and really lock in for the rest of the year. Also, a small number of teams and a short international tournament at the start of the year will do wonders going forward. Lastly, this tournament will seed teams for MSI.

We will have more information on this tournament soon when they have a name and more.

MSI and Worlds

There aren’t a lot of changes for both of these tournaments. MSI will largely remain the same barring a format change for the decreasing of teams to 10. On the other hand, Worlds will have 17 teams, with two teams coming from the best-performing regions.

Also, Play-Ins at Worlds will only be a single Best of Series for a total of 16 teams in the Main Event.

In Conclusion

Overall, the number of Tier 1 teams has been reduced, which increases revenue sharing for the remaining teams, earning them more in terms of profitability. As Riot has said, this marks the start of a long journey for the Esports with more sustainability and organization in mind.

This is one heck of a move from Riot and I personally love how they handled it so far. However, there are still some details left to be assessed and explained, so you will hear more about this from here soon.

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By Shadman Sabik Zaim Deputy Editor
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Shadman is a Deputy Editor of League of Legends and other Riot IPs (excluding VALORANT) at GameRiv. He is a computer science and engineering graduate who got into games pretty early. Also, he takes pride in trying multiple types of games and got into League of Legends pretty early. Games, Board Games, Writing, Music, and Sports are his passions and hobbies.