Week 1 of the World Championships is over. It’s left some fairly predictable results in its wake. Despite this, there has been the occasional shake-up. We’ll examine all the ups and downs of the LoL Worlds 2017 Group Stage.
Just because Worlds underway doesn’t mean there isn’t more news from around the globe. We’ll also pick up on one or two other newsworthy stories from the past 7 days.
LoL Worlds 2017 Group Stage
South Korean teams are again at the forefront of the World Championships. Their teams top the number of wins for any region. The two favourites Longzhu and SKT T1 seem unstoppable.
Other parts of the world have made improvements, most noticeably in the North American LCS. To date, the NA LCS teams have performed better than expected and all have the possibility of qualifying for the next stage. TSM may potentially even win theirs.
LoL Worlds 2017 Group Stage: Group A
SKT T1 are doing their best to put the disappointment of the Korean finals behind them. They currently lead the first group with 3 victories and 0 losses. Cloud9 find themselves in a surprising second place, having only lost to SKT.
Meanwhile, Edward Gaming sits in last place, having failed to win a game. Their hopes for qualifying are dim and they’ll need nothing short of a miracle to progress.
AHQ E-Sports Club is performing admirably but the first of their next round of games is against SKT T1 and you have to wonder what that will do to their morale. I expect we’re looking at a league that will finish as it is now. SKT in first, Cloud 9 second, AHQ third and Edward in last place.
LoL Worlds 2017 Group Stage: Group B
Group B is in a similar situation to A, with the Korean giants Longzhu undefeated with 3 victories. The only team that looks good enough to beat them are their Korean rivals SKT T1 who will be out for revenge. Still, it’s League and sometimes strange things happen.
Second place is a North American LCS team once again, with Immortals staking their claim to greatness on the world scene. They had an incredible NA LCS season and are showing it was no accident. Like Cloud9, the only team they’ve lost to is a Korean juggernaut.
GIGABYTE Marines are in third place and are tough opponents, I wouldn’t rule them out just yet. If they beat Immortals in their final matchup we may see them snatch second place from the North American team.
Last but not least are Fnatic. As entertaining as they are to watch in the European League, the EU scene has some glaring weaknesses. Fnatic’s weaknesses were exposed in style during the EU LCS 2017 Summer Split. They have done nothing to fix them.
Fnatic will have to beat Longzhu if they want to qualify, something I believe is impossible. The second place fight will be down to GIGABYTE Marines and Immortals, it’s anybody’s guess who will snatch that qualifying spot.
LoL Worlds 2017 Group Stage: Group C
Group C finally sees a change in the status quo. China tops the results with team Royal Never Give Up. It’s a deserving performance that should have Longzhu and SKT T1 looking over their shoulder wondering if China has a giant killer up its sleeve. Royal Never Give Up is only one of three teams with an unbeaten record.
Second place is Samsung Galaxy. While they may finish first if they beat the top place team in their next game, they are definitely beatable.
G2 and Fenerbahçe fill out the division in third and fourth place respectively. I think it will be difficult for either one to gain a win over the top 2 teams, but you can be sure they will try.
Despite a great showing in the Play-in series, it has been a tough welcome for the Turkish team Fenerbahçe. They should count this valuable experience and build on it for next season.
The big question mark over Group C is who will finish first and who will finish second. I think we already know who the two qualifiers are.
LoL Worlds 2017 Group Stage: Group D
Group D is the closest group of all. There are no Korean teams, and TSM, Team WE and Misfits are all fighting it out for the right to qualify and claim the Group D top spot. Each of them has two victories to their names and one loss.
For Misfits, this is truly remarkable. A UK based team that stated at the beginning of the year their wish was to make it to Worlds, they’ve already achieved that goal. Now, they could knock out the NA giants TSM and Team WE in the process.
This is TSM’s best chance to qualify for the next round of Worlds since they started competing. Misfits taught them it won’t be easy and it is truly easy to imagine a scenario where they qualify and one where they don’t.
Team WE are representing China well and, just as with Misfits and TSM, their season could end here with heartbreak or hope. I think it’s fair to say there is very little between the three of them.
At the bottom of the league are Flash Wolves who have not done so well. That’s not to say they aren’t capable of victory. However, with 0-3 so far, their qualifying chances are next to none. They will have to win all three of their next games and hope one of the top three wins all of theirs, with the other two gaining only one victory. Even then, it’s a long shot.
LoL Worlds 2017 Group Stage: Stats
The longest game of the World Championships comes courtesy of TSM and Flash Wolves. It clocks in at a little over 53 minutes, proving just how tight Group D really is.
Longzhu dispatched Fnatic in just under 21 minutes, showing a wide disparity in the meta and how it’s played.
Fnatic also took part in the bloodiest game of Worlds so far. There were 33 kills in Fnatic vs Gigabyte Marines. This comes as no surprise to those fans that have followed Fnatic for any length of time. Their playstyle is consistently aggressive.
Ardent Censer Still Rules
The most picked champion of the World Championship is Janna. Cho’Gath and Lulu are just behind. You can thank Ardent Censor for the Janna picks, and it’s sure to have both its critics and supporters.
Kalista and Galio are the most banned, proving their strength in the current meta. Galio, Trundle and Taliyah find themselves with the greater victory percentage. The troll may be a surprise to some.
Royal Never Give Up
The players on Royal Never Give Up have some impressive stats to their names. Ming has the best KDA to date, Uzi the most kills and Ming also has the highest number of assists.
There are some other interesting stats. Kalista hasn’t been given a chance to play in any game during Worlds Week 1. Ming and BDD have not died during the World Championship and it will be interesting to see if they can make it out of the group stage without giving up the ghost.
Riot says Dodge Trolls
In what seems like a reversal from an earlier stance, Riot Games have publicly stated they are okay with players dodging some games when there is a troll in champ select. There still remains a penalty for dodging. Most noticeably, the forfeit of a game during your playoffs, but there’s some indication they are looking into a potential solution to this.
It’s not too hard to imagine a scenario where the forfeit is not given if the rest of the team agrees it was a trolling situation.
Patch 7.20 drops on October 11th.None of these changes will come into effect for the professional scene until after Worlds. There will be another Evelyn rework. There will be tweaks to the base stats of a host of champions in either this patch or the next few.
Potential Item Changes
Riot is taking a look at all the items during the preseason. Rumour has it there may be the introduction of an item called “stopwatch”. This will work like a Zhonyas but provide no ap or ad. It’s a ‘get out of jail free’ card.
We’ve talked about the Runes Reforged system in depth before. It could be live in 7.20, and we will, of course, let you know everything that is in the patch for certain as soon as it drops. Essentially, they will be combining the runes and mastery pages into one united system that will hopefully make all those last minute changes in champ select easier.
As with most patches, there will be a host of new skins, most noticeably with Evelyn, although we may see some for Annie and Gnar.
Keep your eyes peeled and be sure to keep checking back for all the latest news about League of Legends and the World Championship. We’d love to hear your own thoughts about the current state of Worlds and any upcoming changes. You can find us on twitter @esportsranks or leave a comment in the space below.