Riot is changing its scheduling strategy in 2023 to help fans catch more games during the week for both League of Legends and Valorant.
As we close the year 2022, the new season of both LoL and Valorant is quickly approaching. And with the success of the latter in 2022 with Valorant Champions and with the new franchised VCT circuit in 2023, Riot is updating its scheduling strategy. In an article posted on lolesports.com today, they talked about why these changes are happening. But before we dive into those, here is the full schedule for LoL and Valorant in 2023 in major regions.
- LCS: Thursday and Friday starting at 12:00 PM PT (9:00 PM CET)
- LEC: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday starting at 6:00 PM CET (9:00 AM PT)
- LCK: Weekdays starting at 7:30 PM KST (2:30 AM PT // 11:30 AM CET) & Weekends starting at 3:00 PM KST (10:00 PM PT // 7:00 PM CET)
- LPL: Monday-Friday starting at 5:00 PM CST (1:00 AM PT // 10:00 AM CET) and Saturday & Sunday starting at 3:00 PM CST (11:00 PM PT // 9:00 AM CET)
- CBLoL: Saturday & Sunday starting at 1:00 PM BRT (8:00 AM PT // 5:00 PM CET)
- VCT Americas: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday starting at 12:00 PM PT (9:00 PM CET)
- VCT EMEA: Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday starting at 6:00 PM CET (9:00 AM PT)
- VCT Pacific: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday starting at 6:00 PM KST (1:00 AM PT // 10:00 AM CET)
The schedule changes are aimed at reducing the overlap
The article mentions that the main goals of these changes are improving fans' experience and bringing esports to more fans by making watching the games easier, by focusing on a couple of things. First is the problem of choice. There are a lot of LoL matches going on on the same day, and sometimes even at the same time. With these games congregating to weekends, and with VCT on the horizon, Riot is trying to make the fans not have to choose between the games they are watching, saying, “[fans] only have to choose ‘to watch’… not ‘what to watch’...”
Riot also gave some data to back up their decisions. With only less than 10% of regional fans following both LoL and Valorant, and with over 45% of people of viewers surveyed reporting that they felt exhausted after watching a full day of LoL Esports on weekends, it is understandable why Riot made the choice to utilize the weekdays. Unfortunately for them, this decision drew a lot of criticism online as they moved the long-standing LCS to weekdays in favor of VCT Americas on weekends. Coupled with an early starting time, fans voiced their displeasure and concern about this move, saying it signals Riot giving up on their North American LoL circuit. LEC games being played on Mondays was another point of discontent among the online communities.
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