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Left: Cyanide, Right: xPeke

Following Rekkles’ move to Alliance, Enrique “xPeke” Cedeño-Martinez and Lauri “Cyanide” Happonen have officially left Fnatic. Three of Fnatic’s 2014 Roster members have left since the end of the season, leaving only Paul “SoaZ” Boyer and Bora “Yellowstar” Kim at the moment.

 

New Team for xPeke

xPeke intends to create his own team, to start from scratch. He wants to build a team the way he envisions, which he could not do as part of Fnatic. It appears as though his new team will be called Origen, as he recently added a photo to his Facebook page, which happens to be present on Origen.GG as well.

 (Origen logo)

xPeke has been with Fnatic essentially since the beginning of his career, even winning the Season 1 World Championship with them.

Here’s his official statement on leaving the organization:

I have a lot of god things to say about Fnatic, and my teammates. But to not make it too long I’ll say there is only one reason for me to leave fnatic and it is fulfill this dream I have had for a long time now… And I think now its the time to go for it and create my own team.
At some point I said that I was gonna stay in fnatic for the next year and that’s because I thought so that way, but with the events that have happened lately I thought that this was the time to have a change in my life and start this new adventure.

 

Cyanide to Retire

Cyanide on the other hand, has stated he feels burned out of League of Legends. He’s made the decision to retire, but has appeared to not rule out coming back at some point.

Here’s his reasoning for leaving:

Ever since season 3 world championships I didn’t like the game as much. I got totally burned out there and really never regained my thrive to play. Entire season 4 I wasn’t able to play as much and stay focused as I was before just due to simple boredom of the game. I tried my best but overall I feel like my season 4 was disappointing from my part and I didn’t play at the level I used to. I had my moments, but I’m incredibly self critical and put a ton of pressure on myself and I considered retiring already during the season as I was unhappy. I decided to play until the Championships as I thought I’d be able to get my shit together and perform as I did in the past.

However, that was not the case. I always told everyone that the time to retire as a pro is when you lose the passion for the game and that arguably happened to me already a year ago but I wasn’t able to recognize it. I thought I could force myself to practice and keep up focus through sheer power of will but I was wrong. That being said, I still enjoy playing League more casually, just not the insane hours required to be a top competitive player in tournaments. I always played multiplayer games with the goal in my mind to be the very best like noone ever was. I see now that is not possible with League as I am now. I hate the thought of playing a game competitively with the goal of being average which I could easily do but that’s not who I am.

After Deman decided to re-join ESL after two years at Riot and Joe Miller took a promotion at ESL, Eefje “Sjokz” Depoortere announced that she will be leaving ESL to work for Riot Games. Sjokz has been the host of EULCS since it’s creation, and is one of the most recognizable personalities in eSports at this point. Interestingly enough, while Deman felt attached to Cologne and chose to stay, Sjokz saw massive opportunity in continuing to work with Riot Games.

She cites Cologne as an incredible home for her, and has enjoyed every event she’s been a part of. Over the past two years she’s become famous around the world in eSports, with LoL fans from North America to Korea all being aware of Sjokz.

Here’s her statement on leaving some of the EULCS crew behind:

In a perfect world our whole team would work on the 2015 season; but by now you know that that won’t be the case. Believe me when I say I’m just as affected by Joe and Deman moving on as you are. Words can’t describe the level of professionalism these two have brought to the scene and how much I will miss them. I wish them both good luck in their new roles and there isn’t a doubt in my mind they will rock it. With that being said I promise that we will work incredibly hard to produce the best EU LCS show possible next year and in years to come.

She also had some final words to say about ESL:

Lastly I’d like to once again thank ESL for giving me a chance two years ago and guiding me through this crazy journey. I will be working with them for some events during the upcoming season, like IEM San Jose next weekend. I’m excited to start the rest of my career at Riot Games and see what League esports has in store for us next season.

 

With that, we wish Sjokz, Deman and Joe Miller the best in continuing to work with the LCS and joining ESL, respectively.

Categories: Esports, LoL News Tags: , ,

After voting, and Curse choosing to pull out of the tournament, ESL has announced who are finalized to play in Cologne from December 18th-21st 2014. At the event, will be:

 

Counter Logic Gaming

Clg logo2.png

They will be debuting their new, currently unannounced mid laner and jungler. CLG has been undergoing tryouts for weeks, with Head Coach William “scarra” Li primarily looking at North American and potentially European talent. He believes there are undiscovered gems waiting for a chance in North America, and whether that’s true may be proven at this event.

 

Team Dignitas

Dignitas.png

(Who are rumored to have imported Korean Top Laner Gamsu, and Korean ADC Core) – Dignitas is now fully under the leadership of Alberto “Crumbzz” Rengifo, who hopes to lead his team to their first true era of success in years.

 

Gambit Gaming

Gambit Gaming Logo.png

Famous for winning multiple IEMs, including crushing CJ Entus Blaze and CJ Entus Frost after falling to them earlier on in one IEM tournament. First non-continental event to include their new roster. They potentially face the new Moscow 5 at IEM Cologne at well, which will likely be an interesting match even if the skill disparity is large.

 

Fnatic

Fnaticlogo.png

One of Europe’s top teams, will be debuting a new AD Carry to replace Rekkles, who has joined Alliance. Fnatic has fallen off later into 2014, with their European throne being usurped by Alliance. A tournament win here will likely give them confidence going into 2015, especially needed if the new Alliance is able to win the IEM San Jose title.

 

TSM Welcomes Santorin

November 27th, 2014
Comments off

After an extended trial period, Team SoloMid would like to welcome Lucas “Santorin” Larsen as our new starting Jungler. With several weeks of practice together, Santorin said he was “excited to be able to play for TSM and ready to prove [himself] to be the right choice for the team.”

 

D5__OKOY

 

Santorin is no stranger to competition. Having served as Team Coast’s jungler for multiple challenger series victories, his high mechanics and playmaking ability stuck out among the best in the NA Challenger Scene. Ready to play on a professional stage at the upcoming IEM San Jose event, he joins TSM just in time to compete against some of the West’s finest competition, including Alliance and Cloud 9.

Owner Andy “Reginald” Dinh said he was “thankful that we could get Santorin in time for our team to compete.”

Santorin is already living at the TSM house and will be competing at IEM San Jose on December 6th-7th

 

You can follow Santorin on:

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/santorinlol

Twitchhttp://www.twitch.tv/santorinreborn

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/SantorinLoL

 

Current TSM starting roster:
Top – Marcus “Dyrus” Hill
Jungle – Lucas “Santorin” Larsen
Mid – Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg
AD – Jason “WildTurtle” Tran
Support – Jang-sik “Lustboy” Ham
Head Coach – Yoonsup “Locodoco” Choi
Analyst – Dylan (https://twitter.com/lolclashdylan)

Welcome to the first edition of Rift Pulse, a bi-weekly roundup of all things LoL eSports. This week follows the continuation of the EU Expansion tournament, a brand new Vici Gaming, and more.

 

OGN_The_Champions

 

 

North America

 

 

Europe

 

 

Korea

 

  • At the OGN Champions Spring 2015 Qualifiers, the HUYA Tigers and Incredible miracle secured their spots in the upcoming season.

 

China

 

 

OCE

 

 

Events

 

 

LCS Coach Rules Banner

 

Riot Games has announced that LCS Head Coaches will be receiving a salary from Riot of $12,500 per split, and teams will receive an additional $12,500 per split to spend on their coaching staff as they see fit, which may be used to hire analysts, a sports psychologist, or simply pay more to the coach. Head Coaches will be able to communicate with the starting players live, during Pick and Bans to direct their champion choices. Lastly, Riot will only accept a certain LCS week’s starting roster from the Head Coach. Meaning, if a team were to run a 6-man roster, the Coach would have to communicate with Riot who’s playing.

 

Here’s a part of Riot’s statement regarding the announcement:

As we’ve seen teamwork, synergy, and strategy become increasingly core to successful LCS play, we’ve also seen the infrastructure around teams, including coaching, become a critical component to their in-game success. Effective coaches can provide guidance to players and instill and reinforce values such as discipline and teamwork, the benefits of which can extend far beyond the confines of an LCS match or a pro player’s career.

As we previously announced, we’ll be officially recognizing the Head Coach of each team beginning with the 2015 Spring Split. Along with this recognition come many new privileges and expectations for Head Coaches.


New Expectations

With officially recognizing coaches, Riot has outlined some more rules for Coaches and teams to follow:

  • All prospective Head Coaches must pass the same behavioral checks that prospective players do in order to be admitted into the LCS, and will be held to the highest standard of conduct both in and out of game.
  • All teams will be required to have their Head Coach physically present at all of their LCS matches, barring emergencies.
  • Coaches will not be subject to the Interregional Movement Policy, however, they may only coach for one organization at a time.

To read Riot’s announcement, head over here

 

Follow NewsofLegends for more eSports and LoL coverage.

Categories: Esports, LoL News Tags: , ,

Voyboy Leaves Curse

November 11th, 2014

In a Facebook post, veteran Team Curse member Joedat “Voyboy” Esfahani has made the decision to part ways with the organization. Voyboy has decided to take a break from competitive play, however will not be officially retiring and will not leave the LoL eSports scene. He intends to stay at the top levels of solo queue and continue teaching players about the game on his stream.

 

Storied Career

Dignitas

Voyboy has played for numerous teams during his career, all long-standing North American squads. Voyboy started out on a team called Rock Solid, that was later picked up by Team Dignitas. Joining Dignitas, their roster was:

  • Voyboy (Top)
  • Jatt (Jungle) – Now an LCS Color Commentator
  • scarra (Mid) – Now Head Coach of Counter Logic Gaming‘s LoL team
  • Imaqtpie (AD Carry) – Retired, currently a full time streamer
  • L0cust (Support) – Most likely retired, no official information on the matter

Dignitas/Rock Solid always placed at NA tournaments, with their biggest rivals being Counter Logic Gaming and Team Solomid. Both CLG and Dig constantly fell to the dominant TSM during Season 2, with both squads always falling short.

 

Counter Logic Gaming

During a legendary roster swap, that saw:

  • Dig Voyboy joins CLG
  • CLG Saintvicious joins Curse
  • Curse Crumbzz joins Dignitas

Out of the three, Crumbzz is the only one to still be on the original team (although Saint is on Curse Academy, Team Curse’s sister team) and the only one still in the LCS.

 

Voyboy joined CLG hoping to truly rise to glory, namely above TSM. CLG tried to accomplish this with their second trip to Korea, where they fell short again due to incessant arguing and lack of preparation. Meanwhile, CLG.EU finished second at OGN’s Champions Summer 2012.

With the amount of conflict that occurred within CLG, and a desperate attempt by HotshotGG, Voyboy and Doublelift to keep their sponsor, Own3d.tv afloat, CLG flopped at the Season 2 World Championship. Despite that, they were the only NA team to win a match at the World Championship that year, with a cheese strategy executed against SK Gaming.

Soon afterward, CLG decided to kick Voyboy from the team, who soon joined Curse.

 

Team Curse

After being benched by CLG, Voyboy joined two other former CLG players on Team Curse: Elementz and Saintvicious. Team Curse came up huge at the 2013 LCS Spring Split, dominating the league. However, just because you kick the player off of CLG doesn’t mean you kick the CLG out of the player. Elementz and Saint could never agree, which led to a late-split move where Elementz was moved to a substitute position, ultimately leading to TSM winning the split.

Voyboy has seen many a roster change on Curse, from Edward to Piglet. Now, he’s made the decision to leave.

 

We wish Voyboy the best of luck in the future.

 

 

Kespa Banner

 

 

 After months of collaboration, KeSPA, Riot Games and OnGameNet have announced the final version of their ’2015 Season LoL eSports League Reform Plan’. Key topics include switching formats to a league system in the vein of the Chinese LPL, renaming the NLB to League of Legends Challengers Korea, introduction of a 20 million Korean Won (KRW) minimum salary for professional players, and establishing a promotion/relegation system. The full press release is available below.

________________________________________________________________________________

Greetings.
Korean eSports Association (“KeSPA”), Riot Games, and OnGameNet (“3 Parties”) would like to announce the final version of the ‘2015 Season LoL eSports League Reform Plan’.

 During the past 3 months, the 3 Parties have been aware of the many issues inherent in the current LoL eSports system and tournament format, and have been trying to prepare a springboard for the Korean LoL eSports to leap one step further through the newly launching 2015 Season.

 While preparing the 2015 Season Reform Plan, we tried to collect various opinions from pro-players, teams, industry stakeholders, and our players, but some of our efforts were not entirely satisfactory. We assure you, however, that we placed utmost priority on the long-term growth of eSports and the protection of players’ rights and welfare when we finalized this 2015 Season Reform Plan. The 3 Parties will continue to heed to the voices of many fans who love and support eSports.

 We would like to ask for your continued support for the upcoming 2015 Season of LoL eSports.

Thank you.

 

2015 LoL Champions Korea League Reform Plan

 

New League Format

 2015 LoL Champions Korea will change from its previous tournament format to a full-league format. This change to the league format, which was adopted to help teams and players participate in competitions more consistently, will also help improve the welfare of pro-players. ‘2015 LoL Champions Korea – Spring Split’, which will launch in early January, will be run as a full-league for approximately 4 months.

 

Promotions/Relegations

 While the full-league format has the advantage of providing pro-teams and players a stable source of competitive activity, it also has the disadvantage of being less entertaining compared to the tournament format. In order to minimize this disadvantage and additionally offer an opportunity to players in the semi-pro tier who are aspiring to be promoted, the 3 Parties have agreed to adopt Promotions/Relegations immediately following the end of ‘2015 LoL Champions Korea – Spring Split’. When the Spring Split is finished, pro-teams and semi pro-teams will compete in Promotions/Relegations to secure their spot in the next ‘2015 LoL Champions Korea – Summer Split”.

 

Participants

 As we are transitioning to a full-league format, there are not many stable company-owned or club teams that can fully operate and manage their teams throughout the whole split. Thus, 2015 Season Spring Split will first kick off with 8 teams. 6 out of 8 teams (Samsung, KT, Najin, CJ, SKT and Jin Air) have been awarded spots for the Spring Split based on their past performance (accumulative circuit points in 2014) and history of stable team management. The remaining 2 teams will be determined through ‘Seed Qualifier Tournament’ (please refer to (6) below for details on Seed Qualifier Tournament).

 For 2015 Summer Split, we plan to increase the number of participating teams to 10 teams in order to expand opportunities for pro-players to participate.

 During the Promotions/Relegations following the 2015 Spring Split, bottom 2 teams from Champions Korea and top 4 teams from the semi-pro tier will compete to determine the final 4 teams that will join the 2015 Summer Split.

 

League Regulations

We would like to inform you of the following new regulations that will be newly implemented to protect the eSports pro-players and improve their welfare.

 

A) Mandatory Roster

 While first planning the launch of the league system, the 3 Parties became aware of the necessity for two corporate teams to be combined to one, so we reviewed the possibility of requesting corporate teams to incorporate a 10-person roster requirement to allow pro-players to stay in their original teams. However, having listened to many fans’ opinions and criticisms that the 10-person roster is not suitable for the current LoL eSports market, we decided not to forcefully adopt this policy. All LoL eSports teams may participate in the pro tier and semi-pro tier leagues if they can secure the roster of 5 players to play the game.

 

B) Minimum Salary Policy

 In the past, there have been many instances where eSports pro-players were inadequately compensated for their talent. The 3 Parties are planning to incorporate a “minimum salary of KRW 20 million” as a rule for teams participating in the league to follow, after having decided that the pro-players active in the pro field should be warranted a minimum level of welfare. Every pro-player entering a contract with pro-teams will earn a minimum salary of KRW 20 million (~$18,000) as income. This amount does not include profit generated through streaming or prize(s) from tournaments/league.

 

C) Mandatory Contract Term

 Similar to the minimum salary policy, “mandatory contract term of at least 1 year” will also be introduce. In other words, pro-teams will need to sign with pro-players for at least a one year in the future. This will help pro-players lead a stable professional career.

 However, teams may act as the principal agents of pro-players in transfer negotiations since they will possess the right for the said signed pro-player for the duration of the contract. If a team wishes to release a player against his will during the duration of the contract, the team is obligated to pay the remaining salary of the said player.

 

Supporting Measures

 

The 3 Parties will continuously invest beyond what we have invested and provided thus far for the advancement of LoL eSports to not only strengthen the league but to improve the welfare of pro-players.

 Riot Games will provide the minimum salary for 5 players in each team’s minimum roster. In addition, non-corporate teams without sponsors will receive not only aid for player salaries, but also aid for cost related to team operation and management. Regardless of the changes to the number of players applicable for salary aid, the total amount that Riot Games will be providing for the support of pro-teams remains unchanged. Please kindly understand that specific amount of the support will not be disclosed

 

Schedule

 Please see below for the detailed schedule ahead of the launch of ‘LoL Champions Korea – Spring Split’. For more information on the Seed Qualifier tournament, please refer to future announcement on the Riot Games homepage (http://www.leagueoflegends.co.kr).

Competition Date Category Information
Seed Qualifier tournament (Preliminaries)
11/17~11/18
Eligibility Teams with at least 5 players with own accounts who are 17 years or older
Application 11/11~11/14 (4 days) / Online application*For details, please see the announcement on LoL official homepage
Format Single tournament with 4 groups / Best of 3
Location Yongsan eSports Stadium
(Finals)
11/21~11/22
Teams Top 4 teams to qualify in the preliminaries
Format 4-team full league / Single matches
(with tiebreakers if necessary)
Location Busan Bexco Auditorium

 

(Schedule subject to change pending future circumstances)

 There will also be a Preseason lasting approximately a month with a single-round full-league format starting late November. The final 8 teams that will participate in the 2015 Spring Split will be participating in this Preseason. In addition, full-league format ‘2015 LoL Champions Korea – Spring Split’ will start in early January for approximately 4 months. Once the Spring Split is over, Promotions/Relegations tournament will take place for approximately 1 week.

 

2015 Season Semi-Pro Tier Reform Plan

 

New Title – League of Legends Challengers Korea

 NLB, which has previously represented the LoL Semi-Pro tier in Korea, will evolve with the new title of ‘LoL Challengers Korea’. Challengers Korea will not only become the battle arena for aspiring pros, but also provide another chance for teams that have been demoted from Champions Korea to once again climb up the ladder.

 

Changes in Competition Format

 Two open tournaments will be held during the 2015 Spring Split. Any team with 5 players who have their own Korean accounts with Gold tier or higher may participate in these tournaments. ‘Challengers’ points will be awarded to teams according to their performance, and 4 teams with the highest Challengers points will advance to Promotions/Relegations tournament to compete against the bottom 2 teams from Champions Korea.

 Furthermore, Challengers Korea will also switch to a full-league format in the Summer Split, and teams with the highest Challengers points will be provided seeds to participate in this league. We decided to implement step-by-step changes to ensure the highest quality of games and reliable execution during the transition phase.

 Once Challengers Korea has transitioned to a full-league format in the Summer Split, Riot Games and NGTV will provide participating Challengers teams accommodations and sponsorship opportunities to help establish a stable practice environment for the semi-pro players

 Please refer to the announcement on the Riot Games website (http://www.leagueoflegends.co.kr) for more details.

Lustboy (4 of 10)

 

 

How have you been spending your offseason? Do you still play the game in your downtime?

Yes I do. I’ve been playing at least 3 to 8 games a day and hanging out with my friends. Nothing special.

 

With the conclusion of the 2014 World Championship, how do you feel about your overall performance?

I’m not satisfied that much because I know we could have done better if I did great and communicated better. I’ve been taking English classes and hope to do a lot next split.

 

Who was your favorite team to play against and why? Which bot lane gave you the most trouble? What did you learn most during your time boot camping and throughout the World Championship and how much do you think you improved?

My favorite team to play against is Cloud 9. They are really popular and are believed to be the best, and I want to prove that wrong. It won’t be easy because they are actually a very strong team.

I think the bot lane who gave me most trouble at worlds was Uzi/Zero. WildTurtle and I had never gotten into serious trouble in a 2v2 except against them.

I did learn how to take even just one scrim serious and what true supporting was. I think I improved a lot but I’m stuck in Korea for visa problem so I feel I’m gonna forget what I learned.

 

 The World Championship saw the rise of Janna, being picked or banned a total of 53 times and emerging with a 62% win rate. What do you think contributed most to her popularity and do you believe she will remain a contested pick moving into season 5?

Janna is actually a good champion, but she is simple. I think top 3 S tier supports were Thresh/Zilean/Alistar at the time, but Zilean and Alistar both were must bans or you were forced to play an unbalanced game.

So the next tier was Nami and Janna, though the meta was more fit to Janna. World Championship Season 4 was poke city meta.

 

IEM San Jose is fast approaching. How do you plan to prepare for the tournament? Where do you feel you need the most improvement?

I’m going to continue practicing in Korea with solo queue games or high elo premade matches. I feel I still need to get better at English and communication.

 

Piglet was recently announced as Team Curse’s new ADC. What are your thoughts on this move and how strong do you think the Xpecial/Piglet bot lane will be? Are they your biggest threat in the NA LCS?

I like both of them but I have heard a lot about Piglet’s personality and I don’t think him and Xpecial would make a good combination. I’m actually way more worried about Doublelift/Aphromoo.

 

When you initially made the move to NA, how was your English? Is it difficult playing a team game with a language barrier? What did you do to overcome any communication issues? How much has your English improved?

My English wasn’t that good and even now is not great. However it has improved a lot and I continue to improve it. My team and coaches are also helping me, and I am really glad to be here.

You and Locodoco were friends before joining TSM. Is it difficult to maintain both a professional and personal relationship with someone you’ve known for so long?

I’m pretty sure he doesn’t mind our friendship when he is coaching. I think that’s the right way of doing things and hope it will continue.

 

 You’ve been playing with TSM for several months now. What is the biggest difference playing in NA vs. Korea? Is there anything you would change about LCS or OGN format?

The biggest difference thing is people speaking English, kappa. Actually, people have so much fervor compared to Asia. They really enjoy playing the game. I don’t think format matters but LCS format gives me less stress.

 

What is your favorite food in the US?

In & Out Double Double burger. I like the seasoning.

 

 

Solomid would like to thank our fans and sponsors for supporting us. Shout out to Alienware, Logitech, and HyperX.


About the author: Tim Kimbirk is an eSports Journalist and writer with Solomid. Stay up to date on the latest interviews and features by following on twitter: @CaymusNoL 

ZionSpartan Joins CLG

November 8th, 2014

 

Zionspartan Banner

 

Counter Logic Gaming has announced that Darshan “ZionSpartan” Upadhyaha will be their starting top laner for the 2015 Season. ZionSpartan was previously the top laner for Team Dignitas, known for his solo-carry playstyle. He hopes to break the tradition of CLG’s top laners historically being left to the wolves, a trend starting all the way back when team owner George “HotshotGG” Georgallidis was in the top lane. HotshotGG was famous for a very selfless top lane playstyle, so his team has always favored allocating resources to star AD Carry, Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng.

He will be replacing Shin “Seraph” Wooyeong, after a mutual agreement not to re-sign him, citing CLG not being the right environment for him. Until the post-season, Seraph’s English level was not at a point where communication could be optimal. By then, without former Coach Christopher “Montecristo” Mykkles working with the team, Seraph felt even more isolated and opted not to re-sign with CLG. 

 

No Koreans for CLG

New CLG Head Coach William “scarra” Li intends to turn CLG from a group of five individuals to one, cohesive unit, something which CLG has never really been. CLG has always had internal issues, and hope to fix that by bringing in players that will have a friendly relationship with the current team members. This is why CLG has opted not to import a Korean player, as they feel it’s necessary to have a translator to effectively utilize them. Good examples of this are Starhorn Royal Club and Team Solomid:

  • SHRC have a Korean support staff and an English-speaking support staff, allowing their two Korean members to work well with the Chinese members. Funnily enough, Insec and Zero have stated that they (in Korean) decide how to rotate, and then use pings to tell the rest of their team where to go. They claim it works because the Chinese players are unable to argue since they don’t speak the same language.
  • TSM have Coach Yoonsup “Locodoco” Choi to help out Ham “Lustboy” Jang-sik, who is consistently prodded to improve his English. 

In comparison, on CLG Seraph was always isolated, especially since it was Montecristo’s influence that allowed him to join the team. Seraph was found to be a very emotional player, and had issues playing on LAN matches.

 

Since CLG have historically always had internal issues, scarra has prioritized teamwork and friendship over raw skill. He claims almost every CLG lineup ever had the raw skill to be a top NA team during their era, however always had internal strife and were unable to succeed.

 

Zion’s Vlog

After CLG’s statement was released, they posted a vlog for their sponsor iBUYPOWER’s website:

 

Categories: Esports, LoL News Tags: