Event organiser DreamHack has revealed that it will be operating the UKLC Spring Split alongside the Nordic Championship.
The returning Nordic Championship will feature a 200,000 SEK (£16,100) prize pool for the Spring 2020 season, whilst the UK League Championship Spring Split will have £60,000 up for grabs.
The UK League Championship had previously been handled by Liga de Videojuegos Profesional (LVP), the largest esports organiser in the Spanish-speaking world. But two weeks ago, a statement issued by Mo Fadl, Head of Esports for Riot Games in the UK and Head of Publishing in the Nordics, confirmed that LVP would not be operating the UKLC in 2020.
Now, it has been announced that DreamHack, a Swedish production company known for organising massive gaming festivals and running the Nordic Championship, will be hosting the league in 2020. Games will be played online, with a live finals played at the DreamHack Studio in Stockholm.
Marcus Lindmark, Co-CEO of DreamHack, forecasted an exciting year ahead: “DreamHack and Riot Games have been partners for many years, and we are avid fans of League of Legends. We are very excited to continue to support League of Legends through the Nordic Championship, as well as expanding to running the UKLC in spring. For the Summer Split and beyond our ambitions are even bigger and we are excited to share more details in 2020.”
The sentiment was returned by Fadl: “We’re really happy to be expanding our work with DreamHack. We’ve been working hard with their talented team to level up the regional league for League of Legends in the Nordics in time for the Spring Split. We’ll also be drawing on DreamHack’s expertise to operate the UKLC over the course of the Spring Split. UKLC is a longer term project and we’re looking to roll out the new-look ecosystem for the Summer Split.”
What that “new-look ecosystem” may involve is yet to be seen, but DreamHack’s announcement does state that further information on the future of the UKLC will be forthcoming in Q1 2020.
For Spring 2020, both the Nordic Championship and the UKLC will feature eight teams and a double best-of-one round robin format, played over seven weeks in February and March. Semifinals and a grand final will follow at the end of March.
Notably, only LEC sister teams Excel UK and Fnatic Rising were named in the announcement as competing teams in the UKLC Spring Split. The remaining 6 teams are to be presented “in the near future.” The Nordic Championships will feature open qualifiers.
Esports Insider says: With LVP withdrawing from the UKLC, and ESL UK undergoing a period of reformation, Riot Games has done well to have at least sorted out the UKLC Spring Split with an experienced broadcasting studio. They’ve done even better to have held on to Excel and Fnatic, the two biggest brands in the league. However, the community is likely to find little joy in this announcement; with next split’s Grand Final moving to Stockholm, the number of local events for UK League of Legends fans continues to dwindle.