The 2023 League of Legends MSI is the first international competition of the year and is used as a measuring stick or a primer for the big World Championship that comes at the end of the year, and in 2023 there are going to be some changes to how the tournament works.
Interest in MSI over the last couple of years has dropped off slowly, can these changes bring back fans and potentially bring new fans to the broadcast? Will there be more opportunities for teams from emerging regions that were not there in the last couple of years?
With these changes, there will most likely be complaints from the global community that it isn’t what they were looking for, but we haven’t seen the changes in action yet, so making any judgment on them will be futile until the start of the actual events. Only time will tell if they were changes for the better or changes for the worse.
In addition to the changes to the event itself, it was also announced that MSI 2023 will be taking place in London, England. The last major event that London held in terms of League of Legends was the LEC finals one time. This will be the first time that a major international event for the esport will be held in the city.
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2023 League of Legends MSI changes: Play-ins
The first of the big changes to the 2023 League of Legends MSI tournament is that, instead of having the Play-ins stage that fans have become accustomed to in the past, there will now be a double-elimination bracket in its place. Playing in this stage of the tournament will be the second-place teams from the LEC, LCS, and LPL. Joining those teams will be the first-place teams from the LLA, CBLOL, PCS, VCS, and LJL.
These eight teams will be drawn randomly to play in two groups of four teams. Each team will play a best-of-five series to see who will move on and who will be sent down to the loser’s bracket. Since this is a double-elimination bracket, if a team does lose their first series, they are not eliminated right away, they are sent to the loser’s bracket instead.
2023 League of Legends MSI: Bracket Stage
After three teams are decided from the Play-ins stage, they will be sent into the Bracket stage, the stage that has replaced both the group stage and the elimination stages from MSIs in the past. In this stage, the three teams from the Play-ins stage will join the first-place teams from the LCS, LEC, and LPL. In addition to these leagues, this year the first and second-place teams from the LCK will be put directly into the bracket stage since an LCK team won the World Championship in 2022.
With these changes, it is hopeful that the 2023 League of Legends MSI will bring more of the excitement that fans have been asking for. There is now a double-elimination bracket, there is more of a chance for teams from Wildcard regions compared to what their chances were in previous years. It also feels like it will streamline the event, preventing it from getting stale like events in the past.
For the full list of changes, you can find them on the lolesports website. What do you think of the changes? Will they bring you back to the event, or are you taking the wait-and-see approach? Make sure to tell us on Twitter how you feel about the changes to the 2023 League of Legends MSI tournament and why!