Riot Ends 'League of Legends' Rift Rivals in Some Regions

Certain League of Legends regions will no longer take part in the next Rift Rivals tournaments, a post from Riot Games Oceania explained. Regions including OCE, SEA, and JPN won't continued to hold the Rift Rivals competitions that were designed to pit rival regions against one another to the entertainment of their respective regions' fans. The post from Riot Games said that the decision was not taken lightly and cited low viewership numbers compared to the cost of the event as a driving reason for selectively sunsetting the competition. Posts from other regions expanded on the decision by saying additional regions like Latin America and Brazil also won't be participating.

Explaining the details of the Rift Rivals decision in the OCE post, Riot Games said the competitions between EU and NA and the tournament between LPL, LCK, and LMS will be the only Rift Rivals tournaments Riot continues with. Riot said the regions who are still participating in the competition will hold Rift Rivals tournaments "at times in the season that make sense for those clusters," but the other regions will not.

Citing the viewership numbers as one reason for the events ending, Riot also said that the intended rivalry between regions that the Rift Rivals tournament was expected to capitalize on never truly formed as intended.

"This was not a decision that we took lightly," Riot said in the announcement. "The event was exciting for our region and for the teams, players and fans involved. However the compelling rivalry still never really eventuated (damn you charming SEA/JPN teams!) and the viewership was similar to a regular round of the OPL, but came at a significantly higher operational cost."

Referring specifically to the OPL, Riot said its efforts would better be focused on university and high school leagues as well as other grassroots initiatives. The post said Riot consulted with the respective regions and ultimately felt the decision to be the correct one.

"After weighing the pros and cons and discussing this with each of our regions, we felt this change to Rift Rivals was the right one to make for the long term health of our sport," Riot said. "In the future we also remain open to other globally integrated events."

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