As Riot looks towards the start of its fourth season of competitive League of Legends, the company has made new adjustments to its League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) regulations which significantly change how professional players can operate their streams.

For those unaware, the LCS pays a salary to professional teams which compete within the series and assists them in getting Visas for tournament travel. Each year these teams must sign a LCS contract which among other things, dictates the rules and regulations they must adhere to as a professional player.

As reported by Ongamers who managed to snag a portion of this years contract, contracted players are now obligated to refrain from streaming over a dozen titles. As you might expect, a large majority of these titles fall within what Riot could classify as a “Moba” and thus competition. Notable titles include: Dota 2, all Blizzard games, SMITE, War Thunder, World of Tanks and even Fat Princess. Gambling games were also banned as was any “non over-the-counter drugs”, tobacco products, and firearms.

The move on Riot’s part makes sense. Riot wishes for LoL to be considered not just a legitimate e-sport, but a legitimate sport in general. To do that it must shape the image of its professional players, those that garner the most attention and effectively represent Riot’s product. Riot isn’t preventing other non-professional League streamers from streaming other content, but only those that now fall under its employment.

The move mirrors what other non-compete clauses look like for figureheads not only representing other “real” sports, but products as well. Someone who endorses Pepsi won’t be found out in public drinking a Coke. You could almost say the LCS players are now “corporate property”. What is your take on the matter?

23 COMMENTS

  1. Haha Riot is telling streamers (who are their own bosses technically) that they can’t do certain things? LOL what a joke.

    • No… riot its telling the streamers under RIOTS pay role NOT to stream certain things… if riot is paying you, you are not your own boss! LOGIC OP NERF PLEASE lol

    • For those unaware, the LCS pays a salary to professional teams which compete within the series

      They pay them money for competing in the series as well as winning

  2. Well they would always stream hearthstone while waiting in soloque. Or worse yet they would stop playing LoL to play that glorified card game. While having LoL on the title of the stream.

  3. Oh and Spunkify if you check back on this post you should add info about Nether, It is in early access and still has a lot of bugs for now but it will be free to play at launch, was inspired by day z no doubt,It is quite a bit better if you ask me though. It evolves most of the stuff it got from day z into a better combat system and has quite a few interesting features. If you haven’t heard anything on it check it out when you get a chance.

    • Oh and if any of you already have early access and have issues with frame rate on it a lot of us who use radeons found slightly underclocking our gpus(need to have a fairly recent card for this to help) got vastly improved performance. They’ve been slowly optimizing to support a broader range of systems but they want this as immersive as possible so it will always be pretty demanding and may not support lower end setups. I also found i got a huge improvement using firepro custom catalyst rather than using the latest amd driver beta. Even with the boost to performance with aa and smaa the catalyst suit is too limited on settings to do much for performance in a lot of games so a get a custom profiler if you can find one to suit your card, this goes for many mmos being released recently.

  4. I believe introducing the quote is good because, “As Riot looks towards the start of its forth season of competitive League of Legends” (MMO Bomb). This allows me to show the mistake and leads me to point out the fatal mistake that was made in grammar. It is fourth, not forth, unless the author was talking about the forth-coming season but reading the quote, I do not think that was the aim of the author. Thank you for your time.

  5. This wouldn’t even be needed if they did more to enforce fresh competition each year, completely custom maps, different rules for play, and maybe a half crazy senile commentator to make things more amusing, if they are putting a stop to streaming matches then obviously they are rehashing identical content for certain matches now. As much as I wish mobas would die out as quickly as they came into existence league of legends is still one of the better moba entries in esports. Which means jack since it’s probably the last one i’d watch since the only thing more frustrating than dealing with the random ass hats who rage endlessly over this garbage is watching other people play it. But, that’s just my opinion.

  6. I think you’ve alll misunderstod the contract they’ve signed. The thing is that they aren’t allowed to stream those games WHILE streaming League of Legends.

    So lets say Wildturtle called his stream: “YOLOQ WITH DYRUS” Then he isn’t allowed to stream those games while in queue, but if he called his stream: “Hearthstone Arena” he can stream it just like any other person.

    • What it looks like, is a non compete clause. Basically, they aren’t allowed to stream a competing game at all so long as they have a contract with riot, regardless of the name of their stream.

    • Uhh wtf are you talking about? ” contracted players are now obligated to refrain from streaming over a dozen titles” where does it say “while” it says they cant period and thats the problem lol

  7. It’s not a big deal people. It’s just business… They don’t restraint all the players from streaming other games… Just a 20-30-40 wich have a contract and receive a monthly/weekly salary from RIOT!!! If those players became popular because of Riot and they are payed by Riot its a normal thing not to use their popularity for advertising other games.. Its simple and logic. If you were in Riot’s place you would do the same…

    Hei these professional players aren’t restricted to play any other game.. They can play other games but aren’t allowed to stream other games. Its not a big deal. They are professionals and are PAYED (BIG money) like that and promoted like that and treated like that.. So in return they ask the players to be loyal and not promote other games… Is it so much to ask? Its not slavery.. If you don’t want to be dictated what to do then don’t sign the contract… But then bye bye money, fame, traveling etc. And then stay at home streaming wtf you want…

    • I think the symbiotic relationship goes a bit further than that. It’s one thing when streamers get popular thanks to a given game, but the truth of the matter is some games actually get attention because of some streamers. One example of it (although I dread to even mention it) is Pewdiepie.

      • In any case I find it normal that the players that are PAYED by a company to not use their influence for making other games popular indifferent if the other games represent a competition or not. Streaming is not mandatory. If you want necesairily to stream anything you want then don’t sign a contract and do like Pewdipie or other examples… But i think Pewdipie is a rare example where streaming anything is more rewarding than being a PRO player with a salary, prize tournament money, fame, traveling etc. Not to say the thrill and adrenaline of being in a competition doesn’t compare with a stream from your home

  8. I think it make sense on a business level.

    They are quite popular people, any game they stream will get some form of attention. If people go play that game that is less time they see all the stuff they can buy from me. Less time = less temptation to buy = less temptation to buy = less sells.

    But then again, why World of Tanks and Warthunder… Fat Princess too…

    • War Thunder is growing quite fast and World of Tanks already invests in the e-sports scene quite a lot, also holding lots of smaller skirmishes and championships that can earn players in game cash/goodies.

      They seem to be holding a very primitive train of though on this matter. People from this genres usually have their minds centered on X game. Those that don’t end up most of the time spending on several titles as long as they like it, so no loss for them either way.

    • It does seem very Pendragonish…there’s been a number of other events with a similar nature to this one where he was involved…

  9. Time to stream Minesweeper then…

    I don’t get why they’d list dead games there as well like Rise of Immortals (Battle for Graxia).

    Tbh, this seems like a follow up to Riot’s attempt last year to stop professional organisations from fielding eSports teams outside LoL (which was received quite poorly and thus failed in the end).

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