The League of Legends Mid-Season Invitation will not be happening this 2020, following the massive impact of COVID-19 pandemic. Riot Games will instead take the time to focus on Worlds 2020.
The coronavirus pandemic cancels another highly anticipated big event this year. eSports followers were hopeful that the League of Legends 2020 MSI would still push through after being rescheduled in July.
The Global League of Legends Esports team has weighed in the pros and cons of pushing through with the international event, and it may only result in an event that would not meet the team’s standard.
Therefore, Riot Games decided to officially cancel MSI.
Riot explains cancelation
John Needham, the Global Head of League of Legends eSports at Riot Games, issued a press release explaining the status of MSI.
According to Needham, the team has analyzed the behavior of the COVID-19 impact and took in the input of relevant people such as local government officials, health authorities, travel experts, and many more.
Based on the modeling of our external risk advisors, however, it appears highly unlikely that either the global spread/impact of COVID-19 or the restrictive travel and public gathering policies responding to the crisis will abate significantly by the time of MSI’s current planned dates (July 3-19).
Needham further explained that the decision is imperative for the safety of everyone who will be involved and gathering in this event.
Aside from the pandemic, Polygon cites that pivoting MSI online won’t be plausible considering the ping for an international competition, and the unfair advantage on servers.
League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational Canceled for 2020 pic.twitter.com/jJt5MNSrny
— GyroEsports (@esports_gyro) April 24, 2020
focusing on Summer Spits, Worlds 2020
Fortunately, the 12 regional leagues have continued to operate online. Reportedly, the teams in all other regions, including Europe, North America, and China, are now done with the final matches online.
Needham points out that the cancelation can now allow the respective leagues to focus on the Summer Splits schedule without the MSI interruption.
Riot Games plans to amplify the weekly play of the regional league teams, as it’ll be the qualifying basis for the 2020 League of Legends Worlds Championship.
Needham confirms that the team will be taking the time to instead work on preparing for Worlds 2020. This year marks the 10th year of LoL Worlds, and Riot is planning on great things for this fall.
We are totally committed to delivering the biggest spectacle we’ve ever produced in China to celebrate our sport’s 10-year anniversary. While we must remain nimble with our plans, we are eager to celebrate everything that we love about League of Legends with a memorable Worlds 2020.
Make sure to check out the upcoming updates on the changes that Riot will be imposing in the absence of MSI for qualify in 2020 Worlds.
Image courtesy of LoL eSports