On August 7th, Riot Games announced the last two League of Legends US Championship Series (LCS) matches will no longer be held at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. The company said the tournament series was relocated “due to the rise of COVID-19 cases in the United States.”
“We scheduled the LCS Championship as a roadshow with fans and made the decision to move forward based on the very promising roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine in the Spring,” Riot Games said in a blog post. “However, over the past month, we’ve been closely monitoring the ongoing surge of COVID-19 cases across the United States. Given the current state of affairs, we cannot in good conscience conduct a massive fan event at this time.”
At this time it is being reported that the final two matches will take place at the LCS in Los Angeles, California. Individuals that bought tickets to the event in New Jersey will be issued a full refund.
The Profit‘s Take:
I wonder how well these events will work without fans. This will be an interesting barometer for the rest of the gaming market because companies have tried to copy Riot Games and follow in the organization’s footsteps for so long. One of two things will happen: either other companies will follow Riots’ path and cancel in-person attendance for upcoming events, or they will go against the grain and try and prove Riot wrong by hosting events with live attendees.