Here we are, don’t turn away now. The Mid-Season Invitationals is upon us and it is definitely going to be a helluva great time. Don’t forget to tune in to https://www.twitch.tv/riotgames on May 3, 7:00 pm EU time to watch the first game, featuring the group stage of four teams: Latin America’s own Southern heroes–Kaos Latin Gamers, one of League esports oldest teams in the Westside—Gambit Esports, Latin America North’s very own Rainbow7 (formerly Lyon Gaming), and last but not the least, the underdog of MSI and Thailand’s local pro players—Ascension Gaming.
This week, starting from May 3 to May 6 will be a heated Group Stage, fighting off in Best of 1 matches. Let’s go over with the brief backgrounds of each of our contending teams on the first day:
- Kaos Latin Gamers (KLG) – KLG is one of the biggest esports teams in Latin America South, branching out to even other leagues such as CSGO and DotA 2. They are also one of the most popular teams in the Latin American region, with players such as Plugo and Fix being one of the main stars of the team. It wasn’t long until they got a new top laner, Nate, who is exceptionally good at playing Gangplank and an overall AD carry that can target squishy enemies with ease. Expect Gangplank to be banned at first pick. KLG’s last most notable appearance was at Worlds 2017 in China but was eliminated fast during the first week of the event.
- Gambit Esports (GE)—GE has been around the League esports scene for a very long time now as long as more than 5 years ago. Veteran players such as Kira and Edward will be teamed up with fresh new faces in the pro scene like Lodik on ADC and Seigimitsu on Jungle. They have been a very beloved esports team especially in Europe and are most likely to win the audience’s favor by their appearance on the stage alone. They have become one of EU’s most successful esports teams with such wins including Intel Extreme Masters awards and shown up in the Worlds Championship playoffs back in 2015. They are definitely enthusiastic about bringing home a W for their fellow Euro fans as well as being the answer to the Asian powerhouse teams.
- Rainbow7 (R7)—R7 is the team that represents Latin America North proudly. They were formerly known as Lyon Gaming; the team that almost got to Worlds 2017 Group Stage if they haven’t lost during the Best of 5 qualifying rounds. They are also the only successful champion of the Northern Latin American region, keeping 10 championships within their grasp. If they win this, the world will now be aware of the great prowess that Latin America North has. The player to look out for here is Oddie—a jungler regarded as the best one in the role in the whole Latin America North. He may not have a main champion but he can certainly adapt to any given situation, be it counterpick or first pick to synchronize well with his other teammates’ picks.
- Ascension Gaming (AG)—Perhaps the only team to qualify from South East Asia, Thailand’s very own AG is sought out by many to be this year’s underdogs at MSI. 2 players make a comeback in this team: G4 and Lloyd. G4, if you haven’t remembered, is the midlaner that Faker and he shocked the world during Worlds 2015 in Europe with the most unusual of midlane champs: Faker picking Olaf and G4 countering with Irelia. Back when G4 was a member of the Bangkok Titans, he definitely proved his spot in the world of professional League players. He is regarded as the best midlaner of South East Asia. Another player to look out for is Lloyd: the former Made in Thailand (MiTH) pro who has transferred his loyalty to Ascension Gaming as, of course, the star ADC. While G4 may be the aggressive type of player, Lloyd is popular for his cool calm and collected playstyle, clutching in the late game with well-placed positioning and priority targeting enemies. He is widely regarded as the best ADC player in South East Asia. The rest of their squad are full of new pros, but that does not mean they don’t have a chance at the MSI finals.
The whole MSI will take place on two locations in Europe: Germany and France. It’s been a while since we’ve seen the world pro scene in EU. The last event there was the 2016 All-Stars, with previous events there being the 2015 Worlds Championship and the 2014 All-Stars. This will be the first time that EU will host the Mid-Season Invitationals.
Do not forget to log in to www.twitch.tv/riotgames at 7:00pm EU time to watch it live. Here is the trailer preview of MSI 2018: