Despite we already know that Riot Games is putting all their efforts so the 2020 League of Legends World Championship can be celebrated, it was expectable to have problems that the videogame company cannot control.
Twenty-five days before the beginning of the Play-in stage, while all the regions start to know the teams and the possible scenarios for their teams in the biggest tournament of the year, we have received some sad news.
According to Gamek, a Vietnamese videogame website, the League of Legends region of Vietnam, the VCS, won’t have any representatives in the World Championship. This information has been supported by another report from ESPN journalists Emily Rand and Jacob Wolf a couple of hours after the first report.
The ESPN report claims that, according to sources, “the two representatives of the Vietnam Championship Series will not attend the 2020 League of Legends World Championship beginning in Shanghai on Sept. 25 amid concerns of players and staff being unable to reenter Vietnam if they leave for China due to coronavirus precautions in Vietnam”.
The reason couldn’t be other than the pandemic times we are living through. Actually, the main concern of the VCS teams is that they might not be able to come back to Vietnam from China after their participation in the World Championship, not even after a quarantine period since the Vietnamese government is applying extremely strict measures to prevent the spread of the virus.
According to Gamek, Riot Games and the Vietnamese League have tried to negotiate with the authorities and put all their efforts to find a solution, but it wasn’t possible, so they finally had to take “the saddest decision”.
Vietnam has two seeds reserved in the League of Legends World Championship, one in the Main Stage and another one in the Play-in stage. Actually, Team Flash had already qualified for the tournament and the second representative would have been known after the series between GAM Esports and EVOS Esports that is happening the upcoming Thursday 3rd.
Since this news seems definitive, people are now wondering what happens with these two spots… The World Championship gathers 24 teams in total from all the regions, and two possibilities could happen: to have a Championship with only 22 participants or to distribute those spots among other regions.
Many people were assuming that Korean LCK and North American LCS could benefit from this distribution, but Jacob Wolf clears this point with the next tweet:
As of today, the plan is not to replace the VCS teams and run a 22-team event instead of 24 at #Worlds2020. Always could change but that’s what @FionnOnFire, @leagueofemily and I were told tonight. https://t.co/FlpEi8ahL1
— Jacob Wolf (@JacobWolf) September 1, 2020
Riot Games still did no announcements, but heads up! Vietnam could be only the first disappeared region in Worlds. Despite Riot Games works closely with Tencent and the Chinese government to allow for participants to enter, there are some countries, such as the United States and Brazil, where COVID-19 cases are among the worst in the world per capita.
It could mean more problems in the near future, not only from the Chinese part but also from other region’s homeland governments that could follow the example of the Vietnamese Health Ministry and forbid the entrance back after participating in the World Championship.
We pray for this not to happen!!