Riot Games revealed that the 2021 League of Legends World Championship, the year-end tournament for perhaps the world’s most popular esport, has been shifted from China to an unannounced venue in Europe. The change comes mere weeks before the competition begins.
Travel limitations and COVID rules made it difficult to conduct the event in China, according to John Needham, Riot’s global head of esports. An upcomer broke the news of the relocation on Monday.
Needham added, “After reviewing all feasible choices, we felt that shifting Worlds to Europe presented the best opportunity for the most teams and their best players to participate.” “We haven’t decided where the World Championships will be hosted this year in Europe yet, but accessibility for the largest number of teams and their greatest players will be the deciding factor.”
Following the Mid-Season Invitational in Reykjavik, Iceland in May, this will be the second major League of Legends tournament to take place in Europe this year. Riot’s Worlds is usually a huge annual showcase for the company, with past events incorporating a hologram-powered opening ceremony and a mixed reality stage. It’s unclear whether the change in venue will have an impact on Worlds next year, which is set to take place in North America.
The world final of League isn’t the only esports tournament that has been rescheduled in recent months. The International for Dota 2, which begins in October, was originally slated to take place in Stockholm, Sweden, but was shifted to Bucharest, Romania due to esports event regulations.