It’s the climax of the League of Legends calendar. It’s the biggest, most-watched event in all of esports. It is, of course, the League of Legends World Championship.
Worlds sees the planet’s best League of Legends teams of the year battle it out and become world champions. The 2019 Worlds was the biggest yet, breaking esports viewership records, throwing up tasty storylines and producing an incredible final that saw China’s FunPlus Phoenix steamroll G2 Esports to win their first ever Worlds title. This year’s tournament, LoL Worlds 2020 is set to break even more records.
With the entire competition spanning more than a month from play-ins to the finals, there’s a whole lot of LoL to whet your appetite. But how does the tournament work, who have been crowned world champions, how many people tune in to watch, and when is the next League of Legends World Championship? Here’s our full preview of what will be a very unique 2020 League of Legends World Championship.
When is League of Legends Worlds?
The 2020 League of Legends World Championship will take place between September 25 and October 31, meaning there will be five weeks of Worlds action.
Related: The League of Legends ranking system explained
While the venue for the play-ins and group stages haven’t been announced, Riot has confirmed that the brand new Pudong Soccer Stadium will be the venue for the finals.
This also opens up the opportunity for a live audience. While it is yet to be confirmed, Riot says it’s closely monitoring the coronavirus situation in China and if it is safe to allow a live crowd it will facilitate one.
League OF Legends Worlds 2020 schedule
Here are the dates for each stage of LoL Worlds 2020:
- Play-in Stage: September 25 – 30
- Group Stage, Round 1: October 3 – 6
- Group Stage, Round 2: October 8 – 11
- Quarterfinals: October 15-18
- Semi-finals: October 24 – 25
- Finals: October 31
Riot has also now released a full fixture schedule, although the exact times for each match are listed as “approximate.”
Where is League of Legends Worlds 2020?
The League of Legends World Championship will take place in Shanghai, China, with the finals being hosted at the Pudong Soccer Stadium.
The LoL Worlds final will be the first event to ever be held at the brand new stadium, which will be the future home of Shanghai SIPG football club.
What is the League of Legends Worlds prize pool?
We’re still awaiting official confirmation of the total prize pool for the 2020 League of Legends World Championship and how it will be divided among the teams. This is because Riot Games has to add a percentage of the revenue from in-game sales to the minimum prize pool of $2.5 million (£1.9 million).
Which teams are in League of Legends Worlds?
Usually the 16 spots in the League of Legends Worlds group stage are filled by the 12 top seeded teams from China, Korea, Europe, North America, Vietnam, and the Taiwan / Hong Kong / Macao region, with the remaining four spots in the group stages being filled by the four winners of the play-ins.
However, things will be different this year.
The two Worlds spots reserved for the top teams from Vietnam will be empty after the VCS revealed its teams would not be attending the tournament due to travel concerns amid the ongoing pandemic.
This resulted in a change to the format as Worlds would now be going ahead with 22 teams rather than 24. More details on the format changes can be found in this article.
This is what the seeding look like for LoL Worlds 2020:
- Four teams each: LPL (China), LEC (Europe)
- Three teams each: LCK (Korea), LCS (North America)
- Two teams each: PCS (Southeast Asia)
- One team each: CBLOL (Brazil), TCL (Turkey), LJL (Japan), LLA (Latin America), OPL (Oceania), LCL (Commonwealth of Independent States)
- Not attending: VCS (Vietnam)
All of those spots have now been filled. Here are the LoL Worlds 2020 Group Stage teams:
- Rogue, Fnatic, G2 Esports (LEC)
- Top Esports, JD Gaming, Suning, LGD Gaming (LPL)
- DRX, DAMWON Gaming, Gen.G (LCK)
- FlyQuest, TSM (LCS)
- Machi Esports (PCS)
And these are the LoL Worlds 2020 Play-in teams:
- MAD Lions (LEC)
- LGD Gaming (LPL)
- Team Liquid (LCS)
- PSG Talon (PCS)
- INTZ (CBLOL)
- Legacy Esports (OPL)
- Rainbow7 (LLA)
- Super Massive eSports (TCL)
- Unicorns of Love (LCL)
- V3 Esports (LJL)
2020 league of legends worlds play-ins groups
These are the League of Legends Worlds play-in groups:
- Team Liquid
- MAD Lions
- Legacy Esports
- SuperMassive eSports
- LGD Gaming
- PSG Talon
- V3 Esports
- Unicorns of Love
The play-in stage of Worlds 2020 will be hotly contested as the lowest-seeded qualified teams battle it out to earn a place with the big guns in the group stage.
Due to Worlds 2020’s play-ins having just ten teams rather than 12 because of Vietnamese teams pulling out of the tournament, the format was revised to feature two groups of five.
Each team in a group will play each other once, with the top team in each group booking a spot in the Worlds group stage and the bottom team being eliminated. The third and fourth-placed teams of each group then play each other, with the losers being eliminated and the winners playing the second-placed team of the opposite group.
The winners of those matches will earn a spot in the group stage.
2020 League of Legends Worlds Groups
These are the League of Legends Worlds groups:
- G2 Esports
- Suning Esports
- Machi Esports
- Play-in team
- DAMWON Gaming
- JD Gaming
- Play-in team
- Play-in team
- Top Esports
- Play-in team
As you can see, the four groups for League of Legends Worlds are absolutely stacked with talent.
Group B is definitely being dubbed the group of death, with DAMWON Gaming and JD Gaming – two of the favourites for the tournament – and Rogue – the first team to book a spot in Shanghai – all facing each other. Being the only group without an LCS team, this is where Team Liquid could also be placed if it makes it out of the play-ins.
Only the top two teams from each group will progress to the quarter-finals.
How do I watch League of Legends Worlds?
The League of Legends World Championship is broadcast on the official Riot Games Twitch channel. There will be complete coverage of the whole tournament, from play-ins all the way to the final.
Alternatively, you can view all the action from the League of Legends website, where you can also sign up for Pro View. This allows you to watch the action unfold in real-time from whichever angles and perspectives you want, including a POV from any of the players in a game.
Who has won League of Legends Worlds?
The current League of Legends Worlds champions are FunPlus Phoenix from China. They defeated G2 Esports in the 2019 final in Paris to become the second Chinese team in as many years to lift the Summoner’s Cup.
FunPlus Phoenix’s jungler, Gao ‘Tian’ Tian-Liang, was also named as the MVP of the finals.
The full championship-winning roster was:
- Top Lane – Kim ‘Gimgoon’ Han-saem
- Jungle – Gao ‘Tian’ Tian-Liang
- Jungle – Chang ‘Xinyi’ Ping
- Jungle – Xie ‘Minjing’ Ming-Jing
- AD Carry – Lin ‘Lwx’ Wei-Xiang
- Mid Lane – Kim ‘Doinb’ Tae-sang
- Support – Liu ‘Crisp’ Qing-Song
Despite becoming champions in 2019, FunPlus Phoenix will not be defending its title after failing to qualify for Worlds 2020.
This year’s World Championship will be the tenth Worlds since it began in 2011.
T1 (previously SK Telecom) is the most successful team of all-time with three Worlds titles.
These are the teams that have won the League of Legends World Championship:
|2013||SK Telecom (T1)||South Korea|
|2014||Samsung White||South Korea|
|2015||SK Telecom (T1)||South Korea|
|2016||SK Telecom (T1)||South Korea|
|2017||Samsung Galaxy||South Korea|