League of legends (LoL) has evolved into one of the most popular Moba games on the internet. The game is enjoying massive success, so it is only natural to observe that the game had its own leagues and tournaments as well.
Played, watched and enjoyed with much gusto, LoL leagues such as the LCS, OGN, GPL and LPL have accrued a large number of views from a global gaming audience. It is into these leagues that we will be looking into in this article and of course you can find out where you can place bets on the different LoL Leagues.
Global League of Legends Tournaments
And then we have, of course, the world events themselves! Apart from the obvious World Championship each year, there are also competitions like the All Star events, which are attended by players from all over the world, what is more? The teams and players are voted by fans themselves!
LoL World Championship
Every year, teams from all around the globe and from all leagues stated above come together to play the World Championship. The top teams from all regions are invited, and usually a random team also makes it through to the World Championship by qualifying through the International Wildcard.
Last year (2014) World Championship was won by Samsung Galaxy White, a team from the OGN league. The 2015 League of Legends World Championship will be held in Europe and is running from October 1st to October 31st 2015. The 16 teams competing at Worlds 2015 are seeded from LCK, LMS, GPL, EU LCS and NA LCS. Two additional teams will qualifiy through the International Wildcard Qualifiers.
The LoL All Star Event
The All-stars is a relatively new event which has been going on for the past 2 seasons. It is an invite-only tournament, and invites are sent out by Riot itself. The All Star event for 2014 consisted of the All-star Challenge and the All-star invitational. In the invitational, the top teams from 5 regions battled it out to determine who was the best, whereas in the All-star challenge, a mixed region rooster of teams played in different game modes selected by fans through voting to determine the best amongst them. The All-Stars of Season 5 will be held in December 2015. Read more about LoL All Star 2015.
The Mid Season Invitational
The Mid Season Invitational is scheduled for May 2015, bringing together the 5 winners of the 5 big LoL Leagues plus a Wildcard Team. Read more about the League of Legends Mid Season Invitational 2015
Intel Extreme Masters (IEM)
The IEM tournament series is running season 9 and season 10 in 2015. The IEM World Championship of Season 9 is scheduled for March 13th to March 15th 2015 and is taking place in Katowice, Poland.
The regional LoL Leagues
League of legends Championship Series (LCS) – EU & NA:
Perhaps the most important league for League of Legends (LoL) is the LCS, which is played in the regions of EU and NA. In fact, the league is so popular that many beginners playing LoL think that only this league exists, oblivious to the types of OGN, GPL and LPL.
The league is played throughout the year, taking its break in the preseason and is split into two parts, the Spring Split and the Summer Split. In each split, 10 teams participate (previously 8) and fight for a spot into the playoffs, which are played at the end of each split. The winner of the playoffs gets crowned the champions of that split and the process repeats itself for the next split. The format is pretty simple, and each team gets to play all of the other teams a minimum of 4 times, which makes it interesting for opponents and serves as a healthy competition as well. Before each split ends, a promotion tournament is held to determine who qualifies for the upcoming split. The last two teams in each split are relegated and as such are forced to play the promotion tournament if they wish to return to LCS.
This league format is observed both in the regions of NA and EU, the most popular regions of the game itself, which makes it only logical to observe that the LCS is the most popular league in the game even though both regions failed to make a big impact on the recent World Championships.
LCS Betting Information: All major LoL betting sites are offering odds for all matches of the ongoing LCS Season 5.
Challenger Series – EU & NA
Made for the Amateur scene, the Challenger series serves as a pathway for amateur players trying to break it into the major LCS scene. Remember the promotion tournament we talked about? Well, the relegated teams get to play against the top teams of Challenger series, and the winner proceeds to take a spot in the next split. Pretty simple – just remain at the top of challenger ranked and you will likely make it into the LCS. Well, at least you will have a shot at it…
The format for this league is clear-cut as well. Top 20 teams from the Ranked 5s ladder are selected and grouped into groups of 4, where the top five teams will be placed into Challenger Series #1. The teams will then play in a single elimination bracket; the top three teams from this bracket will advance into Challenger Series #2, where they will be joined by another five teams from another twenty team qualifier identical to the one for Challenger Series #1.
Teams earn points from finishes in each Challenger Series. The top six teams with the most points will compete against each other, where the top three will earn a spot in the next LCS Promotion Tournament.
Reread and you will get it. I know it’s a bit dizzy!
Challenger Series Betting Information: The Challenger Series is not steady enough for the big betting sites. Most sites only have odds for the Challenger Playoffs.
Garena Premier League (GPL)
Region: South East Asia (except Tawain, Hong Kong and Macao)
Garena is the LCS of the whole of South East Asia, and is the biggest LoL league in South East Asia as well. With over 16 teams from 6 countries participating in the GPL per year, it is also the biggest league when filtered by number of teams participating in it.
Garena is divided into two halves, the spring season and the summer season. The spring season starts from December and carries on to April, whereas the summer season starts from May and carries on to August. Both seasons have 2 group stages and a knockout stage, after which the season ends. For the spring season, the 1st group stage is from December to February while the 2nd group stage is in March with the Knockout stage being held in May. For the summer season, the 1st group stage is from May to June whereas the 2nd group stage is in July with the knockout stage being in August.
The group stages formats are pretty simple to grasp and points are based on the format of a circuit. Each matchup is a best of 2, if you win both matches you get 3 points, while if you win 1 and lose 1, you get 1 point and if you lose both, you obviously get 0 points.
Both the 1st and 2nd group stages are Round Robin and the knockout stages are single eliminator. There are 4 team groups in the 1st group stage; Group A, B, C & D with 4 teams each. The top two teams in each group qualify for the 2nd group stage, which has two groups, Group A2 and B2. Once again the top two teams in each group qualify for the knockout stages, which are single eliminator. The maximum amount of circuit points you can get are 600 in the spring season and 800 in the summer season. Find out more about the GPL 2015
GPL Betting Information: Pinnacle Sports has odds for selected GPL matches
League of Legends Master Series (LMS)
Region: Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao
The LMS is a part of the GPL, except for the fact that it is for teams coming from Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao regions. There are 8 teams in total and they would be playing for 2 seasons to compete for a spot in the World Championship per year.
The format includes league play, with each team playing the other team at least 3 times, making a grand total of 84 games per season. However, each match is only a best of 1 when compared to the GPL and the top 4 teams advance to the playoffs bracket similar to that of LCS. The whole league is played on a round robin format except for the playoffs which are single eliminator. The two season formats are similar to that of the GPL except for the changes stated in this paragraph.
The combined prize pool for the LMS is an astounding USD ~$182,740 ($5,800,000 NTD). Find our more about the LMS
LCK (aka OGN)
Region: South Korea
Korea has been dominating the Worlds for the past 2 years after consistently beating teams from around the globe. OGN is the league Korean teams play in, or at least used to play in following the recent change in format agreed by Riot, OGN and KeSPA.
In a joint press conference last year, Riot, OGN and Kespa revealed the new “league” based format for the Korean teams and introduced some new rules as well. In essence, to achieve a global transition towards the same league formats, Korea would be embracing a league format similar to that of NA and EU LCS. Two splits will be played, going over 4 months each and playoffs will be played after the end of each split. 8 teams will participate in the first split starting from January 2015 and this number would be changed to 10 for the summer split.
The 6 teams for the first split have been decided on the past performances of teams, whereas the other two teams qualified through a qualifying tournament. The format would be based on a league system, and as stated earlier, the top teams would qualify for the playoffs after each split. Find out more about the LCK (OGN)
LCK (OGN) Betting Information: All major LoL betting sites are offering odds for all matches of the ongoing LCK (OGN) Season 2015.
The Chinese have not remained behind in competitions regarding League of Legends as well. LPL is a league organized by Tencent Games, and consists of Chinese teams from all over China. There are 12 teams in total for the 2015 LPL spring “split”.
In the 2015 LPL spring split, all matches are best of two, and a similar point awarding format like GPL is observed. If you win both games, you get 3 points, if you lose 1 and win 1, you get 1 point and if you lose both, you get no points at all. All of the 12 teams play each other at least twice, and the top 8 teams advance to the playoffs. The remaining 4 teams are relegated and must play a promotion tournament to get back in.
The LPL league format is sort of a mix between GPL and LCS, containing both the circuit point system as well as the playoff and promotion tournament system, which makes it easier for aspiring pro teams to get into the main line LPL itself.
LPL Betting Information: Pinnacle Sports has odds for selected LPL matches
Find out more about the League of Legends Betting Sites:
All in all, the World events are a delight to watch, whether you are a seasoned league of legends pro gamer or just a chilling beginner. Not to mention the numerous leagues for different regions make playing LoL much more enjoyable as well, allowing fans to pitch for their local regions in many sort of competitions. As the 2015 season has already begun, we can only look forward to the infinite amount of fun, enjoyment and action waiting for us in the next couple of months!And if you are interested in betting on LoL you can find betting odds for a lot of matches in Season 5 – more than ever before. Check out our preview articles in eSports betting tips section to find out more about upcoming LoL Highlights!
See you on the fields of justice!
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– Written by Saad Shahzad, fervent League of Legends gamer. Contact-Email: Saad.Shahzad — [at] — hotmail.com