Last year, one of the most-talked about events in League of Legends was the All-Stars event in Shanghai, China. Teams made up of the top players from every region were pitted against each other to battle for glory, and a bonus spot at the World Championships later on in the year. The Korean team took first without dropping a game.
The event was a resounding success, and many fans enjoyed watching their favorite players from various teams play together to represent their region. But whether the All-Stars event would return for 2014 has since been an open quesiton, and developer Riot Games has been very quiet about its plans.
Finally, this week, the company proudly dropped all the details.
Here’s how the tournament will work: In May, the top teams from all five regions are all going to be invited to Paris, France. There, they'll compete in two very different tournaments over the course of a weekend. First: A five-way battle royale which seeds into a traditional bracket. These five teams will be:
North America - The winner of the North American League Championship Series
Europe - The winner of the European League Championship Series
Southeast Asia - The winner of the Garena Premier League Spring Season
China - The highest-ranked team in the League Pro League Spring Season
Korea - The highest-ranked team in OnGameNet Champions Spring
The prize for the best team in the world? $50,000—and ultimate bragging rights.
However, Riot hasn’t stopped there. They’ve also decided to run a special invitational that pits the top players in each region (minus the ones in the team invitational) against each other. Each region will vote for their favorite players from their region, and the top two be drafted onto opposing teams. With two teams comprised of the top players from each region, there’s bound to be some unique strategies and devious competition.
The All-Star event is viewed by many as a precursor to the World Championships, and international competitions are always a crowd pleaser. Last year, it brought in 18 million viewers, and there’s high expectations that this event will exceed its predecessor.
While Korea swept both All-Stars and the World Championships last year, many are wondering if any other region has improved enough to push the Koreans down into second. The predicted participation of SKT T1 K, last year’s champions, means that each region has a shot at claiming the title. It’ll be the first time since October for a foreign team to play against SKT, and excitement is already growing as fans hold their breath to see who will come out on top.
Image via Riot Games