So you’re new to the League of Legends Championship Series?

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When it comes to talking about computer games, particularly the online realm, it’s rare to find someone who has not heard of League of Legends. The major accomplishment of Riot Games, League of Legends was one of two titans born from Defense of the Ancients (DOTA) and made this type of gameplay into an explosive genre called MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena). Every year, Riot helps orchestrate a unified eSports Championship Series that pits the top teams of the nation towards a grand prize. Like any major sports team, eSports has their multitude of fans!

For those who have the opportunity to see any of the League of Legends matches in person, the one in North America takes place in Los Angeles. Set up in a studio not too far from Riot Games HQ itself, let me share with you some idea of the experience for those that can only see this through digital streaming.

LCS 2014 1If you have ever been on movie film lot, this is just that! The studios where productions are made in Hollywood is right where the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) takes place. Attendees are directed to the studio parking lot, most of whom park on the roof unless you’re overly dressed where you somehow end up parking on the first floor. From there, you are verified by ticketing personnel and held in a line and guided to the studio in batches of a people. The studio where the LCS is held was not massive, so the walk was brisk in such a beautiful sunny day. The portal to Competition Heaven was guarded by the only opportunity of salvation to purchase League of Legends gear, ranging from posters of their amazing artwork all the way to stylized graphic T-shirts. The store would be open in between major parts of the matches, so while one team was selecting their Bans and Choices for the match there was an opportunity for me to snag four posters. A number of these items are limited edition, so the ability to purchase them at events like these are the only way aside from eBay.

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The arena where the matches were held was not too big. Massive images of several League Champions lined the walls where the audience sat. A few hundred people composed the cheering enthusiasts who chose this MOBA as their dish of choice in a smorgasbord of growing options available today. The tickets to the event sold at $15, a very affordable price for a general audience and since the audience for League touches on various walks of life, the audience definitely showed me how diverse the player-base was. Among the crowds watching, there were teenagers up to middle-aged fans, cosplayers and casual fans, dapper folk and metalheads. As with any spectator gathering, it’s riveting to be amongst others who see Braum block attacks with his mighty shield, or see the lights of the arena flash when a Pentakill happens in a team fight!

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LCS 2014 6The stage itself was a very impressive setup. Each teammate had their own station, with a display behind them showing what Champion they chose for a particular match while a screen in front of their station showing their face with their tag-name listed below it. Both teams were divided by a massive screen where the audience watched the match and listened to the commentary. Compared to other eSports venues I’ve seen, this one did not have a sound-proof booth, opting for sound-proof headsets that allowed the team to communicate to each other without the cheers of the chamber. If anyone has the munchies, they have a snack bar in the corner next to the elevated commentator booth.

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If you’re out in Los Angeles and looking to attend the LCS Quarterfinals, tickets are still available here for the event on August 23 and 24. For all information on League of Legends, visit their website at http://na.leagueoflegends.com/.

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Jaynesis Ong
Jaynesis Ong 162 posts

He is currently a graphics designer by trade, illustrator for indie games, fashionisto, film production assistant, socialite, sampler of fine music, and taster of various new MMO games. JB likes destructive walks on the beach, visceral plot points, maniacal villains, and collapsing galactic empires.