League of Legends: Everything you need to know about the LCS 2022 format update. The League Championship Series (LCS) 2022 will see new updates by Riot Games where the regular LCS, Academy, and Amateur circuits have been modified to suit the requirements of everyone. The Riot team has expressed their views by saying that constant experimentation with different formats can be severely taxing for both players and team franchises. Thus, the format of the LCS, Academy, and Amateur will not have any major changes in format after this in the near future. This will give players, franchises, and fans the time to settle with the current format. But there may still be some scope for minor tweaks for improvement.
League Championship Series (LCS):
The LCS season will kick off with the Lock-In tournament on 14th January. The format of the tournament will be similar to that of 2021, with the only exception being that all the games will be played on LAN at the LCS Studio. The 10 LCS teams will fight for a prize pool of $150,000 US Dollars, with 100 Thieves and Team Liquid, the LCS Championship finalists of 2021, drawing teams for their respective groups for a single round-robin series. The finals of the Lock-In tournament will be held on 30th January.
The Spring and Summer Splits of LCS will be played over eight weeks with a double round-robin format. There will be 5 games played every Saturday and Sunday. There will be two Super Weeks in both Splits when 5 additional games will be played on Friday. The regular season records for teams will not be carried from the Spring to the Summer Splits. The broadcast timings are 12 PM on Sundays, 1 PM on Saturdays, and 2 PM on Super Week Fridays. (All timings are in PT).
The winner of LCS Spring Splits will be the North American representative in the Mid-Season Invitational. The format of the Spring Playoffs and the first seed team will be able to select their opponents for Round 1 from the third or fourth-seeded team. We will finally see fans attending the Lower Bracket Finals and Grand Finals in full attendance at the NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas on 23rd and 24th April.
The LCS Summer Playoffs will also follow the same format. There have been additional week-long breaks provided to prevent players from burning out. The Summer Split will start one week later than previous years while there will also be an additional week-long break between both LCS regular seasons and the Playoffs.
Academy and Amateur:
The Academy Spring and Summer Splits will be played in a double round-robin format with the best of 2 match series and a total of 36 games every regular season. It will be held on Thursday and Friday and will shift to Wednesday and Thursday during the LCS Super Weeks. The Academy matches will be broadcasted by a third-party representative on two channels simultaneously, their own channel and a Riot-owned Academy channel. There will be no more Academy Playoffs as all the 10 teams will advance into the Proving grounds according to their regular-season record.
The Amateur circuit will have two similar tournaments that can be run alongside the Academy Spring and Summer Splits. The tournament will begin with an open swiss qualifier and the top 16 teams will advance further to the main part of the tournament. The 16 teams will be separated into 4 GSL groups from which the top 8 will advance into the Playoffs, which will follow a single-elimination format with points being provided on overall performance. The top 10 Amateur teams from both tournaments will qualify for the Proving Grounds.
The Proving Grounds will have the same format from 2021 and will begin after the conclusion of the League of Legends LCS Splits. The last four Academy teams will face the last four Amateur teams in a single-elimination format with a best of 3 play-in matches to qualify for the Proving Grounds main event. The main event will have 16 teams with a double-elimination format and the best of 3 games. All the games will be broadcast LIVE on the Academy channel. Fans can also get all the Academy and Amateur news by following the @PathToLCS Twitter account.
Champions Queue of League Championship Series 2022:
Riot will also be introducing an exclusive matchmaking system to help high-skilled players further hone their skills against each other. This will be called Champions Queue and will be based on a west-coast server. Only high-skilled players will have access to this for improving their performance. Although this is not the best solution to improve the North American League of Legends solo queue experience, this step shows that Riot is willing to address the situation. Further details regarding who is eligible, or how to apply have not yet been released. Riot has stated that they will be giving more information regarding this in the next few months.