Even with play continuing online for League of Legends, Riot Games announced today that 2020’s Mid-Season Invitational is canceled. The cancellation adds MSI 2020 to the long list of live esports/gaming events that shuttered due to the Coronavirus. Riot originally pushed MSI back from May to June but their projections of the virus’ spread put the safety of the event into question.

In a normal season, MSI marks the break between Spring and Summer Splits. The event functions as a mixture of an All-Star Game and international tournament. At MSI, fans get to see players from outside regions and players get international experience. Pundits use MSI as a way to theory-craft on what teams might make it to the Worlds. Riot’s Global Head of Esports, John Needham, said the decision should put the Summer Split back on track.

By making this decision now, our regional leagues can revert to their original Summer Split schedules without the disruption of a multi-week, global event in July. We want to support and amplify the weekly play of the regional league teams and players as they now compete to win their Summer Splits and qualify for the 2020 League of Legends World Championship.

John Needham, Riot Games Global Head of Esports

With no MSI 2020, the seeding for World’s is changing. MSI determines which teams are in the top pools and which regions get extra berths. Because of the cancellation the seeding for Worlds is as follows:

Worlds 2019 Seeding

  • LPL (China), LEC (Europe): 4 Teams each
  • LCK (Korea), LCS (North America): 3 Teams each
  • PCS (Southeast Asia), VCS (Vietnam): 2 Teams each
  • CBLOL (Brazil), TCL (Turkey), LJL (Japan), LLA (Latin America), OPL (Oceania), LCL (Commonwealth of Independent States) : 1 Team each

The VCS region gets and extra slot because of previous performance and the new PCS region has only one slot. As a result of the new format, the Summer Split this year is the sole deciding factor in who makes it to the big dance.


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Featured Image: TAIPEI, Chinese Taipei – May 19: — during the 2019 League of Legends MSI Semifinals Stage at the Taipei Heping Basketball Gymnasium on May 19, 2019 in Taipei, Chinese Taipei.

(Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)