[UPDATED 9/26] Riot Games adjusts the Pick’Ems website and explains that the previous page layout was unintentional
Source: Riot Games
UPDATE 09/26: Riot Games has changed the layout of the Pick’Ems page on the LoL Esports website for the 2021 World Cup. In addition, a statement from the Digital Director was posted in a tweet on the LoL Esports Twitter account stating that the previous page layout with the language about the play-in phase was published in error and that Pick’Ems was for the World Cup Planned in advance in 2021, the late pivot point in the host region from China to Iceland forced its removal.
Source: Riot Games
Riot Games has confirmed that the 2021 League of Legends World Championship Pick’Ems, which allows fans to make their predictions for the course of the entire tournament, will not include teams in the play-in round.
In what can only be described as a joke, Riot Games stated that “play-ins are happening and we do not support this festival.” to an overwhelmingly negative reaction from the entire community and key personalities in the scene.
The language has since changed following community backlash criticizing Riot Games for using language suggesting that teams in smaller regions are not worth trying to predict because of lower skill levels at best, and language at worst. which invalidates the smaller region teams as a whole.
The criticism of the language of Riot Games around the exclusion of play-ins from the Pick’Ems far outweighs the actual exclusion. Riot has never explained why Pick’Ems play-ins were banned before.
Perhaps no tweet sums up the reason for Riot Games’ ire more than one from Pentanet.GG jungler Jackson “Pabu” Pavone.
Despite zero financial support from Riot Games, the League of Legends Championship Oceania managed to send a representative to the Mid-Season Invitational 2021 on Pentanet.GG who exceeded expectations.
This was underscored by PGG’s win over NA representative Cloud9, which mathematically eliminated the League Championship Series champion from promotion to the knockout stage at MSI 2021.
The play-ins were first introduced as part of the international format in League of Legends Esports to allow teams from wildcard regions to properly test their skills against the top teams from other regions and to give these teams the opportunity to play their To represent regions on the largest international stage. Riot Games almost certainly did no harm in its attempt at joking, but the criticism was justified and the changed language on the website suggests it.