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LoR Twitch Rivals Tournament: The $20,000 Timer Rule

Nobody has been more against harsh time constraints in Runeterra tournaments than me, this is something I mentioned multiple times in other tournaments in the past…” - @Swimstrim

Riot and the Legends of Runeterra team partnered with Twitch Rivals today, May 14th, to promote the official launch of Legends of Runeterra on PC and Mobile. And the thing about this tournament is that it wasn’t just for bragging rights, or some useless swag. This was a $100, 000 dollar tournament. With top place banking 20k. That’s big money, especially for a card game that’s still finding its place amongst ccg players.

Today’s tournament saw some of the biggest names in Legends of Runeterra streaming play for the pot. Two names of which are the topic of discussion today. That’s Swim and Mogwai. See this tournament was a swiss style tournament. You bring 3 decks to the table, your opponent bans one. And you must win 2 out of three with the remaining 2. Winning once with each. Where the controversy comes in is that Twitch Rivals set a 50 minute per match rule to prevent matches from going on too long.

So what does that rule mean exactly? Well it’s pretty cut and paste really. Players have 50 minutes to win (or lose) a match. If the timer runs up, each player has a final three turns to secure the game. If after that neither player has won after those turns. The match results in a draw leaving it up to tiebreakers to determine who moves on to either Upper Bracket or Lower Bracket.

This rule has divided the community vastly. Some people saying that in matches where the stakes are so high that time constraints hurt the integrity of that game. And forces players who are otherwise calculated and methodical to rush. And honestly I get both arguments. I play in the Duels of Runeterra tourney where time limits make sense. It's there to prevent matches from dragging out. However, after much thought on the matter. I definitely think that when the grand prize is $20,000. This 50 minutes per match rule was a dumb, and marred what was an otherwise amazing tournament.

Now it's worth noting that a lot of the twitch community has accused Swim of intentionally dragging the match out. Because this Draw between Mogwai and he resulted in Mogwai getting slotted to the Lower Bracket. What's worse is that it was very apparent that if the match had gone on that Mogwai would have won the match.

I think it's also worth noting that Swim found himself in ANOTHER match where time ran out against twitch streamer Kripp. Now in the face of accusations of roping Swim states that he was just as disappointed and upset. He also goes on to say in a somber tone that had the rules permitted it, he'd have conceded the match to Mogwai.

Mogwai did go on to win Lower Bracket, granting him a $5000 prize pot. And Swim went on to lose the finals to twitch streamer DogDog. I watched the whole tournament on the Twitch Rivals stream and it was so much fun. And I don't think this little bit of controversy dulls what the game is, what it can become, and what was accomplished today.

Riot and Twitch just need to get it together. And according to Andrew Yip, Game Director for Legends of Runeterra "We were watching & already talkin about how to improve" This is a great sign and I can't wait to see how the next tournament plays out.

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