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Riot Games Announces Major Changes to LEC in 2024

Riot Games Announces Major Changes to LEC in 2024: Age Increase, Revamped Studio, and More

Riot Games recently made a series of announcements outlining significant changes to its top League of Legends EMEA league, the League of Legends EMEA Championship (LEC). These adjustments come as part of the company’s continuous efforts to improve the experience for both fans and players. Amongst the most notable changes are an increased minimum player age, a newly revamped LEC studio, and a shift in the competitive format. These alterations will be in place before the start of the new split on January 13th, 2024.


Minimum Player Age Rises from 17 to 18

In contrast to previous years, aspiring professional LEC players must now be at least 18 years old – a shift from the previous minimum requirement of 17. Riot Games shared that this modification would “enable teams and the LEC to explore additional revenue opportunities,” though no specific examples have been provided.

This change will undoubtedly affect current LEC players who have not yet reached their 18th birthday, potentially causing delays in their journey to pro play. On the other hand, the increase in minimum age could introduce newer players to the league with a more mature mindset and greater commitment to competitive gaming.

New and upcoming players under the age of 18 will need to wait longer before participating in the LEC, with many likely continuing their development in regional, lower-tier leagues. These young talents now face longer, arguably more challenging pathways to entering the prestigious LEC.

A New Berlin-Based Studio with Enhanced Broadcasting Capabilities

Audiences can expect an improved viewing experience with the unveiling of a revamped LEC Studio in Berlin, Germany. The upgraded studio boasts enhanced broadcast capabilities, providing a more immersive and enjoyable experience for fans, players, and staff alike. Riot Games’ investment in this upgraded studio emphasizes the company’s commitment to growing the LEC as a premier esports event.

Changes to the Competitive Format and Calendar

In a move designed to streamline the LEC experience, Riot has merged the group stage and playoffs of each split into a single bracket. This format change aims to make following the competition a simpler and more engaging experience for fans.

The breaks between the Winter and Spring splits, as well as the Spring split and the Mid-Season Invitational (MSI), have been extended by one week to accommodate player and team needs. However, the Summer split and LEC Season Finals break will be one week shorter to maintain balance.

Shaking Up Championship Points

LEC’s championship points system has also witnessed a revamp, with both fifth- and sixth-placed teams, in addition to seventh- and eighth-placed teams, now earning the same amount of points. The Summer split champion will secure automatic qualification to Worlds, while the second and third-placed teams will have the opportunity to participate in the Season Finals.

Riot Games has taken strides to refine the LEC experience for all parties involved, whether they are players, fans, or staff. As these changes roll out, it will be fascinating to witness their impact on the league as a whole. The increased minimum player age could bring with it a new era of esports athletes who showcase sophisticated skill sets and unwavering dedication, while loyal LEC audiences might find themselves even more enthralled by the matches as they unfold.

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