Riot Games and LVP have announced the UK League Championship (UKLC), a League of Legends competition based in the United Kingdom.
The regional competition aims to “ignite the passion of viewers” in the UK and is said to represent the developer’s biggest commitment to the nation yet. LVP has unveiled its first UK-based office with its own broadcast suit, too.
Starting on February 13th, the UKLC will begin with a lower tier of competition in which teams will have to climb the ranks to ultimately earn a spot in the European Masters. The following nine teams will compete in the league:
- Diabolus Esports
- Enclave Gaming
- Bulldog Esports
- Phelan Gaming
- DarkSpawn Gaming
- MnM Gaming
The above teams had to take part in a selection process, including the submission of a business plan, legal information, financial plans, and a brand strategy. They will compete in a best-of-one knockout tournament each and every week, with the team that reaches the highest spot facing off against the previous week’s champion.
Mo Fadl, Head of Esports at Riot UK discussed the league: “The UK esports scene has a tremendous potential but has been neglected in the past, which has meant the audience has gravitated naturally more toward global esports content. By leveling up the entertainment experience and the focus on UK talent, we’re hoping to ignite the the passion of the fans and develop a scene for the UK to engage with and be proud of.”
The UKLC’s Spring Split will stretch over seven weeks, with the top four teams in the regular season advancing into the playoffs ahead of the Grand Finals on March 31st. Whichever team wins, and is subsequently crowned the UK League Champion, will earn a spot in the European Masters.
Benoit Pagotto, Brand Director at Fnatic also commented: “We’re really excited to be part of the UK League Championship – this will offer our loyal base of fans in the UK a new opportunity to support the team they love. A big thank you must go to Riot who have made this commitment to the UK market.
“We know exactly how passionate esports fans in the UK are, so can’t wait to get started on our home turf. Since Fnatic’s first LoL Worlds win back in 2011, the League of Legends Championship Series and affiliated leagues has established itself as the world’s most prestigious and globally respected professional esports league. We’re proud to be a part of this.”
Margot James, Minister for Digital, said: “Esports is one of the fastest-growing global industries, and through our modern Industrial Strategy we aim to help this highly innovative and skilled sector go from strength to strength. UK esports is steadily growing in terms of talent and viewership. Extra investment in the UK, with companies such as Riot and LVP providing a multi-million-pound, multi-year investment, indicates an extremely bright future for the scene.”
Esports Insider says: UK esports is definitely starting to put itself on the map in a number of esports, and League of Legends is one of those titles. Seeing Riot Games and LVP put their faith in the UK – and the community they can potentially cultivate – is an encouraging sign and yet another positive move for the nation.