Network Failures plague Day 3 of the League of Legends Season 2 Playoffs
Well, if this won't convince developers to implement a LAN mode for tournament level games, I'm not entirely sure what will. On day three of the League of Legends Season 2 playoffs, it took three restarts to not even deliver a quarterfinal result between Counter Logic Gaming EU and China's World Elite. No two teams will have known each other more intimately when all is said and done, since they ended up playing a total of six at least partial games against each other.
Indeed, these restarts changed the meta of the entire series against each other - WE's Fzzf had superb Blitzcrank play throughout game one, which WE won easily, and CLG failed to ban Blitz heading into game two. They were on very poor ground in game two when the first outage hit.
After the game was restarted, the ban phase went entirely differntly for CLG, who had had enough of Blitzcrank and promptly banned him. CLG managed a win in game two perhaps because of this, but also played an extremely skilled game so no one would take anything away from this.
Game three was the highlight of this scandal though. CLG was one team fight and a Nexus away fromt taking the entire series. Maybe it was some bad karma that CLG was saved in Game 2 by a network failure, though it was much less of a robbery than this one. Still, a regame was required. After a long delay Game 3 started again with the same group of champions. And the connection failed yet again just past the 20 minute mark.
The delay lasted almost two hours. The casters and host tried desperately to entertain the crowd online and in person. The teams came back to the stage - but then a PC needed to be replaced. Another long delay before djWheat returned to the stage to explain that Riot no longer felt confident in the venue and had decided to hold the last game of the semifinals on a secure connection somewhere else.
This was a travesty. Not only did Riot give Valve perhaps the best possible smear campaign against League of Legends and only online play, they sent their host out to do it, rather than stepping up to the plate and having a Riot employee come out and explain the situation. Not to mention how the teams must feel. Three regames and eight hours, there's still no result for this semifinal - the result of the entire Season 2 finals could almost be comprimised by this entire scandal.
Also, there's something to be said for this so called "secure connection". Does that mean that the venue's connection was attacked with DDoS? Riot denies it vehemently, but I doubt they would want to admit that to their over 600,000 concurrent viewers, not to mention the live audience.
The entire weekend had great production quality up to this point, so we'll see what they have up their sleeve next weekend for the Season 2 finals - hopefully they choose somewhere that's paid up their entire internet bill. And maybe, just maybe, developers like Riot and Blizzard will see that hosting LAN style tournaments using an online system for the joke it really is.
Dustin Steiner is GameZone's eSports Correspondent! Follow him on Twitter @VGHC_Deitis and check out Video Gaming Hard Corps, where he is a local tournament organizer for the S. FL. Fighting Game Community.