Real talk with a real fan of North American LoL esports.
The Riot Games Arena has been home to some of the most iconic moments in North American League of Legends history. But as the league continues to shift into a new era, some people are wondering if there could be a future where LCS games aren’t played in front of fans.
During a new episode of the Caster Couch podcast, popular North American LoL esports personality Ovilee May dropped a spicy take for fans to ponder as the 2023 Mid-Season Invitational rages on: Could the LCS survive as a fully online product?
The 26-year-old content creator explained that she thinks if the LCS wanted to enter a cost-cutting budget mode, there could be an option where the league moves away from a live audience and a traditional analyst desk. Instead, the show could feature a three-man crew with two casters and a single analystand she believes that the LCS product would not change.
She also brought up that using the Riot Games Arena in Los Angeles is costing the company, in her estimates, “at least 40 to 50 [thousand dollars] a day.” As a result, the company could be saving upwards of $100,000 a week if it simply didn’t have to use the space for the LCS and instead ran the show at a much smaller scale.
Ovilee also believes LCS fans don’t want to watch the games live like in the past, making it more viable for the league to go online since they don’t need the space to accommodate an audience.
Related: LCS organizations reportedly pushing for NACL withdrawal as early as this summer
“You can have a small room, if you really want all the players to be in-person to play together,” Ovilee said. “But I think an argument can be made that the LCS is past that point, and if at the end of the day, all they care about is cost-cutting measures, I think this is the route that [the league] should take.”
CaptainFlowers supplemented this take by saying League is no longer the mainstream popular title that many players and streamers default to on a daily basis. There are multiple other titles, like Riot’s own globally-acclaimed first-person shooter VALORANT, that have taken over as the new hot title that has caught the attention of the NA audience.
Ultimately, the LCS will continue to host the LCS in its Los Angeles studio. But if costs are getting too high to justify the usage of the space, Ovilee’s “downer take” could become a reality in the future.
The 2023 LCS Summer Split is expected to begin on June 1.