For a second year in a row, the North American League of Legends Championship Series has failed to make it out of the group stage at the World Finals. For the first time in history, Team SoloMid has made history by being the only 1st Seed Team from a major region to go 0-6 at the group stage. People have been joking about the capabilities of North America as a region since the early days of League of Legends. With such a disappointing run, we must as what is the biggest problem of the LCS at Worlds.
The LCS at Worlds
The North American LCS is considered one of the four upper-standing major regions in the Riot Games’ League of Legends competitive scene. They are considered the 4th best performing region and have retained their standing as such since Season 1 League of Legends. Despite being the 4th strongest region, NA has yet to make it to the Worlds Grand Final stage, with their highest achievement internationally is making it to the Finals of the 2019 Mid-Season Invitations after beating Invictus Gaming.
The LCS at Worlds has performed as expected throughout the years where they were able to compete against lower-standing regions but falling to the stronger ones. There are three years where the region has failed to compete in the Top 8 Knockout Stages at the World Finals – 2015, 2019, and 2020. This year was especially tough for the North American teams since they faced a defeat that no other team has ever experienced before – going 0-6 despite being the first seed.
The LCS’ Biggest Problems at Worlds
There are a lot of reasons that the LCS may have problems at Worlds, but these are merely assumptions seeing as how most of their teams consist of the Worlds’ greatest talents from across the globe. Talented players that compete for World titles are suddenly being smashed to the ground by players they used to compete with. Who is at fault when it comes to LCS’ failure, is it the organizations or the players?
1. The Free-Spirited Organizations
It’s no secret that Western League of Legends Esports Organizations have more free-time than other regions. NA in particular has the most free-time, being able to spend a lot of it in streaming, playing solo queue, or playing other games. While others might think that solo queue helps the team develop the necessary skills to compete, it’s not enough for a heavily team-based environment to be able to learn significant skills to help them win.
2. Dying Competitive Spirit
Competitive spirit is the main driving force that helps players win their games. Competitive spirit is more prominent in younger player compared to those who have been playing for more than 5 years. Most veterans are content with how they perform, but still mention that they want to win the World Championship before retiring. Unfortunately, their words speak louder than their actions since they show weakness in performance.
3. Localized Scrims
Scrims are an important factor of learning important competitive tactics and improvement of the region as a whole. When the scrims only take place in your own region, other tactics become inaccessible to you. While Europe also localizes most of its scrims, the region itself is made up of multiple countries that contribute to the success of the region as a whole. North America is stuck scrimming against each other, limiting the competition on the domestic level.
4. Academy vs Regulars Disconnection
The NA Academy is a competition made up of the best performing rookies in the LCS recruited from the prestigious NA Scouting Grounds. There have been accusations claiming that the LCS refuses to scrim the Academy Rosters vs Regulars to prevent them from outshining the veterans. Organizations are adamant about keeping big names in the starting lineup over rising talent to keep the team more appealing to sponsors. Worlds 2020 has proven that the rookies have more than what it takes to take over.
What about complacent imports?
There are no such thing as complacent imports. For the longest time, the imports have been the best performing players in the region. Players like CoreJJ, Broxah, PowerOfEvil, and Impact have brought glory to the LCS at Worlds. Their commitment to the game has never wavered, even though they have shown a significant decline in performance since arriving. Even players like Doublelift has expressed their burnout in playing.
What can the LCS do to bounce back?
The best thing the LCS can do now is to re-shuffle their rosters and talented rising players like Tactical and Spica a chance to make a name for themselves. Unfortunately, eSports is still a business and the most important thing a business should think about is making money. The closest they can do is make an import superteam that will be able to compete for the Worlds Trophy using sheer mechanical skill to brute-force their way to the top.
Join the LCS, Save the LCS
The LCS may have a system that makes it difficult for rookies to show their potential in the World Stage, but the recent years have shown a great deal of progress in terms of abolishing this system. This year’s rookies have showcased how good they are compared to the veterans in their teams, which will hopefully make it easier for organizations to embrace such a change. Fans have been watching LCS Academy more, which means they know how good these upstarts are.
The invitation to this year’s NA Scouting Grounds have already been distributed, but if you’re a hopeful who wants to make the cut next year then you better start now. The NA Scouting Grounds invites players with outstanding achievement in solo queue and local competitions. Try purchasing a Level 30 NA Unranked Smurf and get the tools to climb your way easily to the top of the Challenger ladder and make your dream come true.
What is the worst year of the LCS at Worlds?
The worst year for the LCS at Worlds is 2019, where the region went 5 wins and 13 losses during the main event. The LCS went 6 wins and 12 losses in 2020.