Riot Games’ head of global esports John Needham today officially announced that the 2021 League of Legends World Championship has been moved from China to Europe. While the company hasn’t specified yet where in Europe exactly the Championship will take place, it is clear that now Europe is this year’s location for the LoL eSports event.
The decision to relocate one of the most anticipated Esports events is based on the pandemic situation regarding the vaccination process and concerning the Delta variant, in fear that, due to these circumstances, most teams might not be able to attend the championship in China. Needham claims that “with the Delta variant, travel restrictions and COVID protocols have been even more complicated to navigate in 2021 than they were in 2020.” Furthermore, he adds that “sadly, we’ve reached the point where it’s extremely difficult to guarantee that qualifying teams and their best players would be able to attend Worlds this year. As a result, we’ve made the tough decision to pivot Worlds from China to Europe.”
The reasons are all understandable, although, we can’t say the change won’t upset the Chinese fans, which is the biggest League of Legends fan base on a global scale. However, we are hoping that Riot Games will announce the exact locations soon since the event is only one month away.
In the meanwhile, LoL Esports has extended its license deals with ‘almost’ all European Regional Leagues (ERLs), and have also applied numerous large changes that will add further stability to the leagues and improve the overall experience for the upcoming pro-players. Regarding the distinction between which ERLs will host online and which offline, a new categorization system will be introduced. Leagues will be either Accredited or Non-Accredited as means of determining the type of hosting each region is allowed to have. The accreditation will be determined based on specific criteria.
In the meanwhile, while waiting for the 2021 League of Legends World Championship, be sure to check out our collection of Riot points.