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The Road to Worlds: LEC and LCS Qualification Processes Explained

by zeeh
LEC and LCS Qualification

The incredible popularity of the esports game, League of Legends, has required the developers, Riot Games, to establish regional tournaments. One of the most influential is the LEC (League of Legends EMEA Championship) which caters for the Middle East, Europe, and Africa. In North American territories, players compete in the LCS or League Championship Series. Successful teams follow a path through the annual season of their regional championship that brings them to the Worlds. This is the LoL tournament that decides which team is the most dynamic on the planet.

LEC Worlds Qualification

The format of how the LEC operates is constantly evolving. It currently features ten teams. These compete against each other in three seasonal splits that take place during Winter, Spring, and Summer. Teams play each other in a round-robin format that finds them playing a total of nine games. The two lowest placed teams are eliminated while the remaining eight go through to the next stage.

During each seasonal split, teams play each other in a double-elimination bracket. It’s an exciting sudden death format that instantly eliminates teams that lose two matches. The winners of each split go through to the next stage. They are usually joined by teams that finish in second and third place.

In the final stage, the teams play each other over the best of five matches. The winning team automatically gains a place at the prestigious Worlds Championship later in the year. In total, four teams may qualify for the Worlds. Their placements are based on how they finish in the seasonal splits. Their overall performances are also taken into account.

How LCS Teams Qualify

How LCS Teams Qualify

Teams in the North American league follow a less complicated format to qualify for the Worlds. There are only two splits to compete in, namely Spring and Summer. Eight teams from America and Canada play each other in a round robin style that involves sudden death best-of-one matches. The teams that finish in the top six places during the Spring split are put into the next phase.

The six teams take part in a double-elimination series of matches. These play-offs divide the teams into high and low placed positions. The top two teams automatically qualify for the Mid-Seasonal Invitational. In the Summer split, eight teams are divided into high and low placements. At the end of the series of matches, the teams occupying the top three spots qualify for the Worlds.

Losing Teams may Join the Worlds

The organizers of the Worlds ensure a team that has narrowly lost still has a chance to qualify for the Worlds. The fourth-placed teams in both the LEC and the LCS meet each other in an exclusive Play-In stage. This features a thrilling best-of-one match with the winner entering the Worlds. Check out the LCS schedule for 2024 and find out which teams are involved.

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