Jess Colwill, March 10, 2017

League of Legends Rules Controversy Brewing at EU LCS Over Game Glitch

A small storm is brewing at the EU LCS with a highly contentious decision by Riot referees that may have changed the outcome of a match, all thanks to a visual glitch.

The glitch occurred during game two of a match between Giants Gaming and Vitality. Giants were already up one, having taken the first game, and had a considerable lead at the 26-minute mark when the glitch occurred.

With a 9k gold lead, a seven kill lead, three dragons and three turrets under their belt, the Giants were getting ready to take Baron Nashor and sweep the game with the resulting buff.

That’s when Vitality mid laner Erlend “Nukeduck” Våtevik Holm, playing as Orianna, noticed that The Ball -- Orianna’s key companion and damage-dealing item -- had stopped rendering and was no longer visible to him or his team on the screen.

Riot rules for visual bugs during tournaments

Riot referees acknowledged the bug and, as is standard practice during such events, offered a rematch to the team affected. This is where it gets controversial, because such a rematch clearly benefited the losing Vitality, while throwing the hard work of Giants away and forcing them to start again.

Needless to say, Vitality accepted the remake, even over the protests of Giants. Vitality went on to win the remade game, and then take the third game as well, clinching the match 2-1. The result caused great uproar among Giants fans, who believed they had been unfairly robbed of a match victory - a sentiment acknowledged by Vitality.

The decision is strictly in line with Riot’s rules. Riot’s Marc Schnell outlined,“We understand that GIA had the gold lead at the time the bug occurred and that VIT accepting a remake when behind can feel unfair.”

“However, in this case the bug was significantly game impacting and for both teams a fair completion of the game, the outcome of which was not decided yet, would not have been possible.”

This particular match had more than just the thrill of victory on the line: both teams were fighting to stay out of the last place spot in their respective groups and avoid being relegated, which would cost them their spot in the LCS.

Jess Colwill

Jess is a writer and dog-lover from the eastern coast of Australia, who loves playing games (particularly anything by BioWare), listening to metal, baking, and fostering rescue dogs while they wait for new homes. You can find her on Twitter at @notsocryptic.