The LoL World Championship is still some months away as the 8th season has just begun and the fans are watching the LCS 2018. Also before the LoL Worlds, the Mid-Season Invitation (MSI) 2018 will take place again in spring. Last year, some changes were made to the format of both tournaments, which meant that instead of the annual Wildcard qualifier, the MSI and LoL World Championship are now divided into two stages, the Play-In Stage and the main event.
Riot has already published details about the international tournaments in 2018 and has confirmed, that the format will stay the same. It is also appropriate to go so far to predict that a South Korean team will once again win the World Championship title this year, and probably both participants of the LoL World Cup final will come from the LCK as well. Triple world champion SK Telecom T1 has a lot to make up for after the lost final at LoL Worlds 2017. The team, however, lost some of the top performers and, despite good performances by Faker, has big problems in the Korean league at the moment. It is also interesting to see whether the gap between western teams and those from China and South Korea has narrowed or widened further.
LoL Worlds 2018 Facts (World Championship Season 8):
- Location: South Korea
- Teams: 24 Teams
- Expected Format:
- Play-In Stage 1: 10/01 – 10/04 2018, Seoul
- Play-In Stage 2: 10/06 – 10/07 2018, Seoul
- Groupphase: 10/10 – 10/17 2018, Busan
- Quarterfinals: 10/20 – 10/21 2008, Busan
- Semifinals: 10/27 – 10/28, Gwangju
- Grand Final: 11/03 2018, Incheon
- Regions (expected number of teams based on last year's event):
- South Korea (3), Europe (3), North America (3), China (3), Taiwan/Hong Kong/Macao (3), Vietnam (1)
- Turkey (1), CIS (1), Southeast Asia (1), South America South (1), South America North (1), Japan (1), Brazil (1), Oceania (1)
- one Wildcard team from MSI 2018
- Prize pool: TBA + TBA (most likely 25% of Championship Skin sales)
- Patch: TBA
- LoL Worlds 2018 betting odds available
- Tickets: purchasable some weeks before the tournament
- Livestream for all matches
There are 24 teams in the World Tournament, placement and qualifying is quite different according to the region:
- 14 places go to all summer split winners: from China (LPL), Europe (EU LCS), Korea (LCK), North America (NA LCS), Taiwan/Hong Kong/ Macau (LMS) and since 2018 also Vietnam (VCS) qualify directly for the group phase. While the split winners from Brazil (CBLOL), CIN (LCL), Oceania (OPL), Southeast Asia (SEA TOUR) and Turkey (TCL) qualify for the play in event and only a selection gets the ticket to the group phase.
- 5 places will be awarded based on the Championship points: The points are given for performance and good table placement in the respective Spring and Summer Splits. So all independent regions also send another team to the Worlds: China (LPL), Europe (EU LCS), Taiwan/Hong Kong/ Macau (LMS), North America (NA LCS).
- 5 places will be awarded for the Regional Finals Tournament: Here, the winner of the Regional of Korea (LCK) also qualifies directly for the group stage. The regional winners of China (LPL), Europe (EU LCS), Taiwan/Hong Kong/ Macau (LMS) and North America (NA LCS) must also qualify through the play-in event.
The actual tournament consists of Play-In Stage 1 and Play-In Stage 2, followed by the group stage and then the playoffs. In the Play-In Stage 1 all 12 teams are divided into four groups and they play against each other in the Double Round Robin format in Bo1. The top two in each group qualify for the Play-In Stage 2, where a random matching of the 8 teams takes place. Each match in Stage 2 will then be played in Bo5 – the winner qualifies direct for the group stage.
The group phase will then consist of 16 teams; 12 direct candidates from the independent regions and 4 teams that have made it trough the play-in stage 2. Also here there will be 4 groups and it will be played in Double Round Robin Bo1. Best 2 of each group will qualify for the Playoffs. Finally the playoffs take place – as always in a single elimination bracket and in Bo5 mode.
LoL Betting and Odds for Worlds 2018
Already around February 20th the first betting markets for the World Championship have popped up. Bet365 and Pinnacle are the first eSports betting operators to offer odds for Worlds 2018, and this more than 7 months before the tournament. You can read more about the first betting odds for LoL Worlds 2018 here.
In addition to the honor of being the world champion, there is also a lot of money to win for the participating teams. It is not yet known how much prize money will be distributed. It is expected that the total prize money will exceed USD 5 million.
In the previous year, the prize pool reached a total of $4,596,591 and thus did not exceed the $5 million mark, as opposed to 2016, when prize money of $5,070 million was distributed.
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