Despite the abandonment of Riot Games announced in early October 2020, with the justification of being an unsustainable league from an economic point of view in the long term, thehe League of Legends ocean league will continue to exist thanks to the close collaboration undertaken between ESL and Guinevere Capital. Following the announcement in December, the world’s leading tournament organizer and Swiss-based investment fund, already active in Australian and New Zealand esports (as well as advisor to the UK Excel team, currently participating in the European LEC) , today presented the League of Legends Circuit Oceania.
The new LCO will start on February 23 with eight teams at the start, historically the best in the region: ORDER, PENTANET, CHIEFS, DIRE WOLVES, LEGACY, MAMMOTH, AVANT and GRAVITAS. The teams will compete in a competitive format organized in two phases. The first will be the usual regular season with a five-week round-trip Italian round, so that each team faces the other twice during the championship. The worst three will finish the season early, while the best five will advance to the playoff stage with the double elimination draw system from March 30 to April 7. Finally, on 10 April, the final of the LCO.
Most importantly, the ocean league is made in accordance with Riot Games, thus officially returning to the international competitive circuit of League of Legends. The winner of the inaugural season, in fact, will not only win the first ever LCO title but also a seat at the Mid-Season Invitational, the first world event of the competitive season.
Peter Du, Senior Project Manager at ESL Australia, will cover the role of LCO League Manager: “Raise your koalas, the League of Legends ocean competitive scene is back. We are thrilled to have maintained and re-created one of the most important competitions the region has ever had. This is a great opportunity for local talent to get noticed and stand out, playing in one of the leagues that every fan dreams of watching.“
Of the same opinion Dave Harris, Managing Director of Guinevere Capital: “It’s certainly great to see so many Australian and New Zealand talent competing in other regions, such as the North American LCS, but we have a goal to create new players and grow them in their region. It has taken a long time and a lot of effort to get to this point and we want to thank the players, the teams, the brands and all the fans: it will be a great 2021 for the competitive oceanic scene of League of Legends.“
All LCO matches will be broadcast on multiple platforms, including the new twitch.tv/LCO channel, live from ESL’s new Sydney studios. The best casters in the region will comment on the matches, some in the studio and others remotely (due to Covid-19 restrictions). Fans can rest assured: they will find familiar faces to welcome them on 23 February.