Fixing the West
How can you possibly have a f*cking league system without relegation?
It makes absolutely zero sense. The point of a league system is to determine the best and worst teams over a decent period, but if there’s no incentive to not be the worst, it’s a waste of time.
Franchising has been a complete disaster in the West, and the lack of relegation makes 90% of games uninteresting, unimportant and a waste of time.
How to fix the West
How many times have we heard or seen that nobody cares about the bottom teams?
Why should we?
One thing esports doesn’t have that traditional sports does is any sort of geographical or familial tie to teams. You support the team your Dad supported, traditionally, or your Mom in some cases.
For whatever reason, your father is the one who is the subject of the saying.
That’s why so many people either support the best team in their region, or individual players. But it’s always the best players that people have been ‘following since their early days’, weirdly.
With that in mind, we need to find a way to make worse teams more enjoyable to watch; because lord knows they don’t try very hard themselves. If I have to watch Dignitas pick Lucian/Nami and do nothing with it again…
There are a few ways to do that; and nearly all of them are bolstered by relegation.
New teams stepping up to the top leagues all the time could help.
Seeing players stick together, grind their way up and shock some big teams will quickly garner a fanbase. For broadcast, that’s new storylines, new names, new life.
It wouldn’t even need to be big brands like K-Corp – think about the esports with open tournaments, and the cool stories that come from there. Luminosity Gaming, Bad News Eagles, Team Spirit; these sort of teams would never have a chance in LoL.
Games between bottom teams would also finally have a meaning; Immortals vs Dignitas is boring partially due to the low quality; but if there was survival, money and jobs on the line, all of a sudden it can be a bit more fun.
Then when the bottom teams have to defend themselves against the plucky upstarts from the division below? That’s hype.
That’s where heroes are made.
If I have to watch Dignitas pick Lucian/Nami and do nothing with it again…Honestly, if I have to watch Dignitas again at all I might go mad.
There’s so much that can be improved. Nobody cares about Astralis because they have no intention of going past 6th, and no threat to their existence.
Once they are forced to defend their spot, it becomes easier to care about the players. If Dajor has a popoff game against SK Gaming currently, it doesn’t matter.
He hits a massive Orianna ult to turn a fight in a relegation game? Suddenly, I’m intrigued.
Sadly, this is but a pipe dream. Riot have made their choice; money trumps integrity, and these teams are paying too much to piss off now.
We need relegation, but we won’t get it.