League of Legends Worlds: dates, winners, prize pools, and more

It's the biggest esports event of the year. Here's everything you need to know about the League of Legends World Championship

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. 2020’s tournament may have seen viewership fall just short of 2019’s viewership record, but it still saw 3.8 million tune in to the final between Suning and winners DAMWON Gaming – and that’s excluding audiences in China.

The entire tournament spans more than a month from the play-ins to the grand final so there’s a lot of top-tier competitive League of Legends to whet appetites. But if you’ve never tuned in before, or want some more information about what is the esports calendar’s biggest event, we’ve got you covered. From dates, to format, to previous champions, here’s all the info you need around League of Legends Worlds.

When is League of Legends Worlds?

The 2020 League of Legends World Championship took place between September 25 and October 31.

Initially billed to take place across six different cities in China, all of the action actually take place solely in Shanghai due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Related: The League of Legends ranking system explained

The final of Worlds 2020 took place in the Pudong Soccer Stadium in Shanghai and saw a live audience of over 6,000 watch DAMWON Gaming lift the Summoner’s Cup. This was the first time a live audience has watched a major esports event since the scene shifted online due to the pandemic in early 2020.

Over 3 million Chinese fans applied to get a seat for the final, with the tickets having to be distributed via a random lottery.

 

League OF Legends Worlds 2020 schedule

These 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

League of Legends Worlds 2020 location

The League of Legends World Championship took place in Shanghai, China.

The final was hosted in the Pudong Soccer Stadium, and was the first event to take place in the brand new arena, which will be home to 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 were slightly different in 2020.

The two teams that qualified from the Vietnamese VCS league unfortunately did not attend Worlds 2020 due to travel concerns amid the ongoing pandemic.

This resulted in a change to the format that saw Worlds go ahead with 22 teams rather than 24. More details on the format changes can be found in this article.

This is what the seeding looked 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)

These were the teams for the LoL Worlds 2020 group stage:

  • 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 were 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 were the League of Legends Worlds play-in groups:

GROUP A

  • Team Liquid
  • MAD Lions
  • Legacy Esports
  • SuperMassive eSports
  • INTZ

GROUP B

  • LGD Gaming
  • PSG Talon
  • V3 Esports
  • Unicorns of Love
  • Rainbow7

Due to Worlds 2020’s play-ins having just ten teams rather than 12 because of Vietnamese teams pulling out of the tournament, the usual format was revised to feature two groups of five.

The best four teams from the play-ins would qualify for the group stage.

 

2020 League of Legends Worlds Groups

These were the League of Legends Worlds groups:

GROUP A

  • Suning Esports (4-2)
  • G2 Esports (4-2)
  • Team Liquid (3-3)
  • Machi Esports (1-5)

GROUP B

  • DAMWON Gaming (5-1)
  • JD Gaming (4-2)
  • PSG Talon (2-4)
  • Rogue (1-5)

GROUP C

  • Gen.G (5-1)
  • Fnatic (4-2)
  • LGD Gaming (3-3)
  • TSM (0-6)

GROUP D

  • Top Esports (5-1)
  • DRX (4-2)
  • FlyQuest (3-3)
  • Unicorns of Love (0-6)

2020 League of Legends Worlds knockouts

 

Heading into the knockouts of Worlds 2020, Chinese side Top Esports and Korean top seeds DAMWON Gaming were widely billed as favourites.

While DAMWON charged through to the final, taking out DRX and G2 Esports, Top crashed out in the semi-finals to fellow Chinese team Suning.

 

Suning’s surprise run to the final also saw them take out the second seed from the LPL, JD Gaming.

However, it could not manage another upset and was defeated by a clinical DAMWON three games to one.

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 champion is LCK team DAMWON Gaming. It took down Suning 3-1 in the 2020 Worlds final in Shanghai.

DAMWON jungler Kim ‘Canyon’ Geon-bu was crowned Worlds final MVP.

 

Historically, 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:

Year Team Nation/Region
2011 Fnatic EU
2012 Taipei Assassins Taiwan
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
2018 Invictus Gaming China
2019 FunPlus Phoenix China
2020 DAMWON Gaming South Korea

When is League of Legends Worlds 2021?

It is currently not known exactly when LoL Worlds 2021 will be, but it will almost certainly take place at a similar time to Worlds 2020. This means you can expect it to kick off at the end of September/ early October and wrap up in late October/ early November.

Worlds is slated to return to China in 2021.

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