- Riot Games is relocating the 2020 Spring Finals to its Los Angeles studio
- Electronic Arts joins the containment efforts by suspending all offline esports events
- More competitions and events are affected by the spread of COVID-19
As COVID-19 continues to spread largely undetected throughout the world and new cases continue to be registered day in and day out, esports organizations have stepped up their efforts to limit he spread of the illness by cancelling all offline events.
Electronic Arts and Riot Games Suspend All Offline Esports Events due to Coronavirus
Riot Games and Electronic Arts have joined the global effort to combat the spread of COVID-19 illness, a new mutated form of the coronavirus which causes severe respiratory problems and pneumonia in the older population – although new cases in younger people have also been registered.
Due to the global state of emergency declared by national governments and the World Health Organization (WHO), Riot and EA are stepping up their own efforts in fighting the potential spread of the virus among the younger population.
Riot Games will be suspending, changing the format of, or postponing most of its League of Legends competitions. The LCS and LCS Academy League have already suspended all activity. Meanwhile, Electronic Arts has put a number of events to a halt, including:
- Apex Legends Global Series
- FIFA 20 Global Series
- Madden NFL 20 Champions
To make sure everything is under control, Riot Games will also relocate the 2020 LCS Spring Finals back to its studio in Los Angeles, but no specific date as to when the event will be held has been given.
The Spring Finals are scheduled for April 18 through April 19, but this subject is yet up for debate depending on how the novel coronavirus is spreading across the world and the United States in particular.
In a late statement on Friday, Riot Games also assured fans that any tickets that might have been bought would be refunded:
For those who have already purchased tickets to LCS matches or to the Spring Finals, you will be fully refunded.
Riot Games’ LCS Commissioner Chris Greeley said that the company appreciated fans’ support and understanding. EA has also suspended all offline competitions bar broadcasts that can be produced remotely.
More Games and Esports Events Affected by COVID-19
The list of publishers and events suspended has grown exponentially – not least because the seriousness of the situation has aggravated. Dota 2 and Counter-Strike’s ESL One Los Angeles events have been cancelled for live crowds.
Meanwhile, the Overwatch League (OWL) has suspended all events throughout March and April for the time being. Other least prominent titles include Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds which cancelled the PUBG Global Series in Berlin.
The Rocket League World Championship for April 24 – 26 was also cancelled and whether it takes place depends on how quickly health authorities and government can contain the disease. The Hearthstone Masters Tour in Indonesia has been relocated to Los Angeles, but the event will now be played online.
The list continues to grow every day as organizers scramble to find a way out of a difficult situation. COIVD-19 has brought the world to a standstill – and so it has affected esports.