Riot Games have announced days, dates and locations for the month-long eSports extravaganza that is the League of Legends World Championships. In 2016 it'll be occupying each weekend in October once again, across four cities in the USA: San Fran, Chicago, New York and the grand finals taking place in LA. Their pitch of 'North American worlds' might be a little grating to Canadian fans, or anyone towards the south of the United States, but they are hiring some immense arenas for the event.
If you start learning the best League champions for beginners now, you might just about understand what's going on by late September.
Riot being Riot, they've even got a fancy little trailer featuring sky-shooting laser beams and dramatic music to announce the cities:
For those not quite up on their North American geography, here's the rundown, along with dates:
- Group Stage: September 29-October 2 + October 6-9 at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco, CA
- Quarterfinals: October 13-16 at The Chicago Theatre in Chicago, IL
- Semifinals: October 21-22 at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY
- Finals: October 29 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA
It'll be good to see, once again, legendary venues like Madison Square Garden and the Staples Center get booked out for lil' ol' videogames. Unless something dramatically changes in the next few months, NA is still the best place to get a big, hype crowd for League of Legends, and they'll be more than happy to cheer hometown heroes until they're all out in the quarterfinals.
Likely candidates to make it that far right now include Team Immortals, the perfect-record squad from the NA LCS. Out of the EU, H2K and G2 Esports look strong, both sitting at 8-2 in the first half of the year's competition. Meanwhile in Korea, titans SK Telecom T1 have struggled their way to 5-3 while last year's runners up on the biggest stage, the rebranded ROX Tigers, are 7-0. The lolesports site is your best bet if you want to follow along, with matches from all the leagues cast throughout the week in English and a variety of other languages.