Riot Games Introduces NA Challenger Series Changes | League of Legends

Riot Games has introduced multiple changes in its NA tournaments and Challenger Series isn’t the exception. Earlier this month they announced that Challenger Series will be replaced by a new competition called Academy League. The new League of Legends tournament and replacement of well-known CS come as a part of restructuring the North American LCS next year in order to make the competitions more exciting for both fans and players. Also, they introduced a few updates in NA Challenger Series this season.

League of Legends Icon New Challenger Format 2017/2018

Riot Games worked with teams participating in Challenger to determine whether format in this competition prepared players for the pro play adequately. Information gathered from different teams and players and extensive discussions led to one conclusion – it is important to change the format of the series.

Their feedback was pretty clear, it would be better to swap the current Bo2 format to Bo3 (best of 3) taking place over two days each week starting Summer Split. The reason behind this format change is to mirror the NA LCS format and give teams and players more practice. This way, they can easily adapt to pro play than they were before.

League of Legends Icon Content and broadcast

Besides format, Riot Games updated the content and broadcast of Challenger series as well. During the last split, they broadcasted 4 games, including full Bo2 series, the second game of Bo2, and the second game of the third Bo2. Bearing in mind that this competition will be replaced by League of Legends Academy League next year, Riot Games is focusing on the new tournament which is why they will only broadcast the same amount of games as in Spring Split. Only one of the series will be broadcasted in its entirety.  Basically, a lot less action will be shown to loyal fans and enthusiasts.

There’s more, new updates also include retiring Challenger VODs. Both decisions enraged fans who took to forums to complain that Riot Games is running the game and the competitions. Some users wrote these changes are, actually, a step in the wrong direction and it is pointless to have games an entire week but refuse to broadcast most of them. Additionally, League of Legends fans expressed their frustration with the fact that Riot Games never makes changes they’d like to see.

Regular season schedule

You can find the complete match schedule here, Challenger Series will take a break for a week for LoL Rift Rivals in July. The regular season schedule is as follows:

Week Date
1 June 7-8
2 June 14-15
3 June 21-22
4 June 28-29
5 July 13-14


League of Legends Icon Challenger Playoffs and promotion schedule

It is important to mention that NA Challenger Series Playoffs will stick to Bo5 format and it will be played onsite in order to allow teams to prepare better for Promotion Tournament (August 11-13).

Spring Playoffs semis will be held on July 19-20, while the finals are on Thursday, July 27.

Live broadcast games

Week Date Game
1 June 8 eUnited (EUN) vs. Gold Coin United (GCU)
2 June 15 Delta Fox (DFX) vs. Big Gods Jackals (BIG)
3 June 22 CLG Academy (CLA) vs. Tempo Storm (TS)
4 June 29 Tempo Storm (TS) vs. Gold Coin United (GCU)
5 July 13 eUnited (EUN) vs. Big Gods Jackals (BIG)

Bottom line

Riot Games is well-known for constant changes in competitions and tournaments. These changes and updates aim to increase competitiveness, quality, and excitement. Their latest updates regarding Challenger Series were met with a stream of criticism from fans who accuse Riot Games of going in a wrong direction and ignoring the wishes of fans. New updates limit broadcasting, change the format, and cancel VODs.

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About the Author: Aman El TawilAmna El Tawil is a news reporter and a technology blogger. For the past five years, she has worked for major publications and TV networks in the Middle East, covering one of region’s hotspots. When Amna is not chasing after the truth amidst gas canisters, she can be found cheering her favorite football team on, or unwinding with some online gaming.

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