LoL, the world's most popular MOBA, just hosted its third world championship last weekend, and Warcry was there for the entire three-day affair.
If there's one thing that can be said about the team at Riot Games, the publisher behind wildly popular MOBA League of Legends, it's that they have style. Few video game companies could come into the Staples Center - home of the LA Lakers, Clipper, and Kings - and put on the same caliber of performance Riot provided at this year's LCS World Championship.
The League of Legends Championship Series, which began back in February, featured teams from all over the globe jockeying for position and a chance to play in the title match for a chance to win $1 million. At the end of the series, the two teams that remained were China's Royal Club and South Korea's SK Telecom. The championship was decided by a best-of-five set, but Riot, who also hosts the LCS, made sure the event was one to remember.
Prior to the match, thousands of fans gathered outside the Staples Center to hang out with pros, get airbrush tattoos of their favorite teams, and to appreciate the stellar cosplay (make sure to check out our full cosplay gallery here).
This year's championship attracted over 11,000 fans, and with Rioters, press, and support staff, more than 13,000 people watched Royal and SKT duke it out live at the Staples Center. Some were fans of the competing teams, having cheered them through months of qualifying matches. Others were simply there to watch some great LoL games provided by the two best teams in the world. Either way, the swag, spectacle, and size of the event were sure to impress anyone in attendance.
After mobbing the front doors for a few hours like the zombie horde in a Romero movie, fans were finally let into the Staples Center, where they picked up some great swag and made sure there was always an inordinately long line at the men's restroom.
Inside the arena the floor was nearly unrecognizable, as Riot had erected a stage with an enormous screen behind it, so even the nosebleed seats could see all the action clearly. Before SKT and Royal stepped out onto the stage, a full orchestra complete with an electric guitarist presented a awesome version of LoL-style instrumentals. And if that wasn't enough, electronica duo The Crystal Method contributed to the teeth-rattling tunes with their own distinct style.
The team introductions were no less grandiose, as two proud gaming nations presented their teams. South Korea's team comes from a long-standing institution in Korean gaming, the SK Telecom multi-gaming organization founded in 2004. SKT was noted for inspiring the so-called "Korean Hype Train," as they won game after game in impressive and convincing fashion. Leading up to the championship match, many wondered if any team in the LCS could match their skill level.
China's team, Royal Club, is much younger, having only been founded last year. Royal was a dark horse going into the semifinals, but managed to eek out a win after a hard-fought best-of-five that came down to the bitter end. In the championship game, Royal was again considered the underdog, with SK Telecom as the clear favorite.
In only three games, SK Telecom would prove just how true this prediction was.
Check out the next page for our recap of each game.