League of Legends World Championship

League of Legends – World Championship

The league of legends world championship first started back in 2011 and has been running every year since. The World Championship is known as ‘Worlds’ within the Esports community. The world championship moves location each year and usually takes place in a number of different cities within a country/region (e.g. in 2019 it was played in Berlin, Madrid and Paris, in 2016 it was played in San Francisco, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles). The winner of the tournament receives the champion title, a cup known as the Summoner’s Cup and they also receive a large payout for their win. 

Each year varies in terms of the number of teams entered into the World Championship. The range of entered teams is between 8 and 24

Tournament Format 

The world championship tournament format varies slightly each year. Below we will go through the 2018 tournament from qualification to crowning the winner. 


There are 24 professional teams which qualify for the League of Legends World Championship. 14 teams qualify as the winners of the most recent split where a split is one third of the season (3 months). Winning games throughout the split earns each player split points which go towards rewards at the end of each split. Depending on when the world championship occurs depends which split needs to be won in order to qualify for the world championship. 

There are 5 teams that were the top 5 championship seeds based on the spring and summer performances in certain regions: North America, Europe, China, Korea and Taiwan/Hong Kong. 

There are 5 regional finals winners where the winners of North America, Europe, China and taiwan/Hong Kong qualify for the play-in stage.

The winner of the Korea regional finals will qualify directly to the group stages (the next level after the play-in stage).

Play-In Stages:

The Play-in stages take part in 2 stages:

In the first stage 12 teams are separated and placed into four groups (each with 3 teams). The 3 teams in each group then battle it out by placing each of the other teams twice. They only play to one single win for each of the battles with the other teams.The top 2 teams in each group qualify for the 2nd play-in stage and the last team is removed from the competition.

In the second stage, the winners of each group have to fight with a random team that came second in another group and must play to the best of 5 (first to 3 wins). Whoever wins proceeds to the group stages.

Group Stage:

The 4 winners from the play-in stages then join the 12 teams that have already qualified. All 16 teams are then divided into 4 groups (each with 4 teams in each group). Each team then plays each of the other teams twice which is the first to 1 win where 1st and 2nd place qualify for the knockout stages and the 3rd and 4th team are removed from competition. 

Knockout/Playoff Stage:

The remaining 8 teams then have to compete in a knockout competition against each other. All matches played in this stage are the best of 5 (first to 3 wins). There are quarter finals, semi finals and then the main final to determine the winner of the world championship. 

Previous Winners:


Dates Held


1st Place Prize Money/

Total Prize Pool

Venue of Final


APR 2nd – JUN 19th

Fnatic/ Europe

$50,000 / $98,500

Jönköping, Sweden


JUL 26th – OCT 13th

Taipei Assassins / Taipei

$1,000,000 / $2,000,000

Los Angeles, USA


JULY 3rd – OCT 4th

SK Telecom T1 K / South Korea

$1,000,000 / $2,050,000

Los Angeles, USA


AUG 13th – OCT 19th

Samsung White / South Korea

$1,000,000 / $2,130,000

Seoul, South Korea


AUG 14th – OCT 15th

SK Telecom T1 K / South Korea

$1,000,000 / $2,130,000

Berlin, Germany


AUG 27th – OCT 29th

SK Telecom T1 K / South Korea

$2,028,000 / $5,070,000

Los Angeles, USA


AUG 26th – NOV 4th

Samsung Galaxy / South Korea

$1,855,144 / $4,596,591

Beijing, China


OCT 1st – NOV 3rd

Invictus Gaming / China

$2,418,750 / $6,450,000

Seoul, South Korea


OCT 2nd – NOV 10th

FunPlus Phoenix / China

$834,375 / $2,225,000

Berlin, Germany


SEP 25th – OCT 31st

Damwon Gaming / South Korea

$556,250 / $2,225,000



OCT 5th – NOV 6th


TBD / $2,225,000+








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