Professional League of Legends team Cloud 9 continued its dominance from the League of Legends Season 3 North American Summer Season into this weekend’s Playoffs at PAX, going undefeated to win $50,000 and the number one NA seed heading into the World Championships.
Cloud 9 swept both Dignitas in the semi-finals, and Team SoloMid (TSM) in the finals; both teams they have never lost to this season. Cloud 9 is a combined 13-0 in map wins over both teams for the Summer Season and playoffs combined, and 30-3 against all teams in the league.
"We practice with each other a lot, we know what each other’s picks are," Cloud 9 AD Carry Zachary "Sneaky" Scuderi told GameSpot about their finals against TSM. "The first game was probably the closest…but the rest of them were a lot more one-sided. We just played our game."
The win here advances Cloud 9 to the quarter-final stage at the World Championship with Korea’s Najin Sword B, Taiwan’s Gamania Bears, and the winners of the Chinese Championship. These four teams will wait it out as 10 teams face off in the group stages, divided into two groups of five, with the top two teams in group advancing to the quarter-finals.
"I think it’ll be good for us," Scuderi said about their advantage going into the world championships. "The pressure will make us play better, honestly."
TSM and Vulcun will join Cloud 9 as the North American representatives, as TSM was able to get past internal struggles to capture victories over longtime rivals Counter Logic Gaming in the opening match, and Vulcun in the semi-finals. Vulcun won a deciding match against Dignitas for the last spot. Counter Logic Gaming and Curse failed to make it to the world championships.
"We knew without a doubt we’d make it to worlds," said Vulcun’s Benny "SychoSid" Hung. "Dignitas definitely didn’t make it easy."
Tickets for the League of Legends World Championships Finals, held at the Los Angeles Staples Center in October, sold out in less than an hour after first being released. A second batch was sold out within minutes this weekend.
"Last year we sold out for the Galen Center in two weeks" said Riot Games eSports Manager Nick Allen. "People just really want to go to the World Championship…lots of eSports fans from all over the world. We have to keep growing bigger and better. The Staples Center, while big, can’t hold as many fans as we have all around the world. We need to get a bigger space so we can handle that."
The group stages for the World Championships will begin on September 15 at a studio location, with the semi-finals held at the Galen Center, and the finals at Staples Center on October 4. The live broadcast can be watched on GameSpot during the event, and GameSpot eSports will be providing onsite coverage for the entirety of the playoffs.