League of Legends Worlds

November 07, 2022

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Arena view of League of Legends World Championships between DRX and T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

I had the opportunity to photograph League of Legends World Championship aka Worlds, at Chase Center.

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; T1 during opening ceremonies of the League of Legends World Championships against DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports Complete with performance by Lil Nas X

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Lil Nas X performs during opening ceremonies before the League of Legends World Championships between DRX and T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Opening ceremonies of the League of Legends World Championships between DRX and T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Lil Nas X performs during opening ceremonies before the League of Legends World Championships between DRX and T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Lil Nas X performs during opening ceremonies before the League of Legends World Championships between DRX and T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

I was somewhat hesitant to take the assignment as I've been trying to reserve more weekend days for my family (especially during fall when most weekends include me working a football game) but I really just wanted to know what it was all about. One of my favorite things about photography, is that it grants you access into whole worlds... and in this case Worlds!

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Arena view during the League of Legends World Championships between T1 and DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

As someone with very limited exposure to video games, I still can't say I know much about LoL. But as someone who has photographed a lot of sports, I gotta say, eSports has everything to offer (and perhaps more) than traditional sports.

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; DRX and T1 compete during the League of Legends World Championships at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

A team based sport, with veteran and up-and-coming superstars, fast action where a game can turn in moments. And despite only being around a decade or so, has all the dramatic player storylines you could ask for. Faker and Deft went to the same high school?!

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Fans hold signs for T1 mid laner Lee "Faker" Sang-hyeok (not pictured) during the League of Legends World Championships against DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Fans bang thunder sticks during the League of Legends World Championships between T1 and DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; A fan holds a sign for T1 mid laner Lee "Faker" Sang-hyeok (not pictured) during the League of Legends World Championships agaisnt DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Fans react during the League of Legends World Championships between T1 and DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; T1 mid laner Lee "Faker" Sang-hyeok before the second game against DRX during the League of Legends World Championships at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; DRX bot laner Kim "Deft" Hyuk-kyu after winning game two of the League of Legends World Championships against T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports And there were no less than 3 marriage proposals, so it really offers everything traditional sports have, for better or worse. ;)

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Fans react after accepting a marriage proposal between games during the League of Legends World Championships between DRX and T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

It offers more in the sense that it is very international, inclusive, and characters can change every game so while the player maybe have individualized skill set and knowledge of the game like a traditional athlete, they are also competing as various characters with different strengths and weaknesses every game. And more commercial viability as the sponsorships can appear on the players attire but also within the game on virtual flags. And while free-to-play, has infinite purchasable options both for players and fans.

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Arena view during the League of Legends World Championships between T1 and DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The drawback for me, is that the "visual" part of the action is on the screen, not necessarily on the players who are mostly expressionless and sit still apart from very fast moving fingers. While fans (who know what's going on) respond through every moment with cheers and gasps, there isn't really much to photograph in the way of action.

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; DRX competes during the League of Legends World Championships against T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; T1 competes during the League of Legends World Championships against DRX at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Though there was some great celebration as the play-in underdogs DRX defeated the highly favored T1 in a thrilling 5-game series.

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; DRX mid laner Kim "Zeka" Geon-woo joins teammates in celebration after winning the League of Legends World Championships against T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; DRX players surrounded by confetti as they hold up the Summoner's Cup Worlds 2022 trophy after winning the League of Legends World Championships against T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

During the translated interviews of the trophy ceremony, Deft (after he gained his composure) said how he had dreamed of the moment and being on stage to say he was the best in the world. But being in the moment, realized he has the best team in the world. Cue the tears!!

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; DRX bot laner Kim "Deft" Hyuk-kyu visibly emotional after winning the League of Legends World Championships against T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; DRX mid laner Kim "Zeka" Geon-woo puts his hand on the back of DRX bot laner Kim "Deft" Hyuk-kyu as he gets emotional after winning the League of Legends World Championships against T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipESports: League of Legends World ChampionshipNov 5, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; A DRX fan with visible tears after DRX won the League of Legends World Championships against T1 at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

 

Thanks for stopping by! I am a photographer based in the beautiful San Francisco Bay Area. Berkeley to be exact. I photograph sports, love, corporate, adventure... and my feet.

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