Changes to EU CS Format Includes Banning Sister Teams in 2017 Summer Split
Starting 2017’s Summer Split, Riot Games’ European League of Legends Championship Series will be enforcing a ban on sister teams in the Challenger Series.
Sister teams will continue to be allowed throughout the Spring Split, but organizations will no longer be allowed to field teams for both the LCS and the CS. This means that organizations such as Fnatic, who has Fnatic Academy competing in the Challenger Series as well as a main team in the LCS, will be forced to sell their spots in one series or the other if they wish to continue competing in Riot’s league.
Although they failed to explain their reasoning for the policy change, it’s one of the biggest, and most impactful, changes outlined in the EU CS format update released by Riot on Tuesday. The announcement gave no hint towards whether or not the change will be coming to the NA LCS, but former lead of the NA Challenger Series and current lead of uLoL, J.T. “Tiza” Vandenbree, posted to Twitter back in December that NA LCS teams with sister teams in the CS wouldn’t be permitted to compete in the Promotion Tournament.
Also worth noting- as of this year, LCS sister teams are not allowed to participate in Promotion. The incentive to "farm" a CS spot is gone.
— J.T. Vandenbree (@RiotTiza) December 1, 2016
It’s possible that Riot could be testing the change with the European scene before changing the rules for its rival league, but following Tweets implied that the decisions were being made independently and without the incentive for experimentation for one or the other.
Other major updates to the EU CS include the implementation of the 10 ban system, which debuted in the LCS in January as a major success. Riot created the new picks and bans system to encourage diversity in the game’s meta and to avoid the pro scene becoming stagnant as players continuously default to the same twenty champions. Unlike the previous change, the 10 ban system will be implemented in Week 1 of the CS Spring Split and follows the following pattern:
Additionally, Head Coaches are now covered under the same poaching protections and contract requirements. Their organization affiliations and contract expiration dates can be found in Riot’s Global Contract Database.
The promotion tournament will also be facing new skies this year. Now, only four teams will compete in the tournament, those four being the top two teams from the CS and the bottom two from the LCS at the end of their seasons. The two who participate in the promotion will be determined by the playoffs, which has been changed from a semifinals-to-grand-finals system to a single day of playoffs with two best-of-fives between top four.
FC Schalke 04, Millenium, Fnatic Academy, Misfits Academy, Paris Saint-Germain, and Team Kinguin will be the six teams competing in the European Challenger Series for the 2017 Spring Split. The full schedule, including playoffs and the promotion/relegation tournament, is as outlined below:
|Week 1||February 5|
|Week 2||February 12|
|Week 3||February 19|
|Week 4||February 26|
|Week 5||March 5|
|Promotion Tournament||April 6th-7th, 13th-14th|
A certified weeb that passionately live-Tweets his reactions from esports events, Sian is one of those people that hasn’t seen the sun in weeks. You can find him on Twitter @FriendlySenpai