Riot Games, producer of the popular eSport League of Legends (LoL), has announced the spring season championship for LoL will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada. This marks the first time that the event will be held outside of Los Angeles. The competitive eSports event will be held on April 17, 2016, at the Mandalay Bay Events Center.
The top four national teams will face off for the title of Spring Champion, beginning with the third vs. fourth place match set for April 16, one day before the grand finale. The winner of the North American League Of Legends Championship (NA LCS) qualifies for Riot’s Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) as a regional representative.
The Mid-Season Invitational will have the top teams from China, Korea, Europe, Taiwan, and North America. Also included in the world tournament will be the winner of the International Wildcard Tournament.
Players that compete in NA LCS also have a chance to rack up circuit points. The top finisher in the NA LCS is awarded both circuit points and a ticket to play in MSI 2016.
This season finale’s circuit points are:
- 1st place – 90 points and a spot at MSI 2016
- 2nd place – 70 points
- 3rd place – 50 points
- 4th place – 30 points
Casinos view eSports as an entry point to millennials
The moving of the spring finale might be due to sparked interest in eSports from the casino industry. Recently, wagering on eSports has become incredibly popular. Betting on competitive gaming also brings in a much different crowd than traditional sports bettors. Younger people are drawn to eSports betting, and casinos most certainly enjoy adding a new demographic to their rosters.
Event organizers have found numerous ways to profit from their possession of a difficult-to-acquire demographic. At most major events it is very common to see sponsors like Coke, Red Bull, Alienware, and Qualcomm. These events are oftentimes shown on the live streaming website Twitch.
Some of the biggest corporations in the world have taken a more substantial interest than sponsorship. Amazon purchased Twitch in 2014, and Google’s YouTube is starting a live game stream channel in an attempt to compete with Twitch.
Major online casinos already offer lines on eSports events
Most major eSports events are available to bet on at major online sportsbooks. Bet365, Betway, and Ladbrokes all have dedicated sections for eSports. The odds offered at each sportsbook compared to the next are often more different than they are with traditional sports events where line making is more refined. Some sportsbooks run promotions specifically geared towards eSports in an attempt to attract this new market.
Although a few years ago it would have been difficult to find any lines at all, they are now so plentiful that some websites have even begun offering odds trackers to compile up-to-date lines at a variety of sportsbooks. The most frequently bet on eSports include League of Legends, DOTA 2, StarCraft 2, Counter-Strike, Hearthstone, and Smite.