The Last Time An NA Team Made it to Worlds Semi-Finals…

Cloud 9’s incredible 3-0 sweep over Afreeca Freecs in the 2018 Worlds quarter-finals means that North America sees a team reach the semi-finals for the first time in 7 years. The League of Legends Esports scene was only in it’s infancy back in 2011, and we’ll remind you just how different it was the last time an NA team made it this far.

The KR server didn’t even exist, and there were no Korean teams at Worlds.

When NA’s Team SoloMid reached the semi-finals in the Season 1 World Championship (eventually losing to sOAZ and YellOwStaR’s against All Authority), there were no Korean teams featured in the tournament. Even more ridiculous was the fact that there wasn’t even a server in Korea yet by this time! Season 1’s Worlds took place in June 2011, however the KR server was not released until December that year. Up until then, Korean players had been playing on the North American server.

PIC 4.jpg

Only 8 teams participated in the tournament, and 5 of these no longer exist.

The first World Championship saw 8 teams battle it out at Dreamhack in Sweden, and of these 8 only 3 are still in competition. EU’s Fnatic and NA’s TSM and Counter Logic Gaming still compete within their respective regions’ LCS, while disbanded teams include against All authority, Epik Gamer, Team GAMED.DE, Xan and Pacific eSports.


The prize money for the winners (Fnatic) was $50,000, this year it will be at at least $843,750.

When Fnatic were crowned as the first World champions they took home $50,000, however by only the next season this had risen to a whopping $1,000,000 as Taipei Assassins took the spoils. The eventual winners of this year’s championship are set to win at least $843,750, however this is still likely to go up with fan contributions made by sales of the Championship Kha’Zix and Championship ward skins.

There were 84 champions in the game, which has since risen to 137.

At the time of the Season 1 championship, the game featured only 84 champions. The newest champion at the time was Orianna, while Yorick was next to be released just days after the tournament ended.


Cloud9’s Blaber was 11 years old.

If we are to take this tweet as confirmation that Blaber was born in January 2000, that would’ve made him 11 years-old at the time of the Season 1 championship. Other ‘youngsters’ still in this year’s semi-final include Invictus Gaming’s TheShy (who was 11 years-old in 2011) and JackeyLove (who was 10 years-old in 2011), as well as Fnatic’s star mid-laner Caps (11 years-old in 2011).


Can you think of any other big differences between the tournaments? Let us know by tweeting @NineTeeSix.