League of Legends Empyrean Cup Exhilarates Filipino Gamers
Riot Games has rekindled the passion of the Philippine League of Legends (LoL) community with the Empyrean Cup, the first official LoL tournament in the country since Riot regained publishing rights for both League and Teamfight Tactics earlier this year.
The Empyrean Cup, a competitive League of Legends esports tournament, was met with enthusiasm by the local LoL community, drawing over 200 team registrations nationwide. As a Gold Exhibitor and supporter of the Electronic Sports and Gaming Summit (ESGS) and the local gaming scene, Riot staged the grand finals of the tournament at the event pitting the top eight teams—Guardian’s Hive, We Dominate Botside, Looking for Sponsor, Surrender at 20, Nobles, Godsend Esports, Montalvan, and Ninja Alpha—against each other.
After a thrilling competition, Guardian’s Hive emerged as the Empyrean Cup champion, defeating We Dominate Botside in a 2-0 victory at the finals. The winning team took home P500,000 from the P1 million prize pool.
Guardian’s Hive’s Darwin “GH MIDKING” Santos, Michael Jay “GH Austerity” Gawala, Christian “GH Celest” Grecia, Marc Jazztine “GH Moopz” Barrion, Cruise June “GH Cruise” Tilos, and Clarence Paul “GH Renascence” Layoso were all elated with their victory, with Gawala crediting his past international LoL esports experience for his winning moves.
“I was less nervous. I was more familiar with giving the right ‘shot-call’ to my teammates,” Gawala said.
Santos, also known as GH MIDKING, considered Guardian’s Hive’s victory as a major milestone in his gaming journey.
“Personally, it’s quite a big deal for me because I stopped playing LoL. I went back to playing it when the Empyrean Cup was announced. I went on a solo grind. It’s a good thing there was a chance and an opportunity to enter [the cup],” Santos shared.
Guardian’s Hive initially joined the first leg of the Empyrean Cup qualifiers but failed to make it to the top four. However, they made a roster change in the second leg that proved to be a game-changer, leading them to the grand finals at ESGS.
Riot Games is encouraged by the enthusiastic response and excitement of Filipino gamers for the Empyrean Cup, and sees it as a positive sign to continue engaging with and strengthening the local LoL community.
Kimi Salazar, MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) Brand Manager at Riot Philippines, said that paying attention to the voices of the LoL community has paid off.
“Since Riot Games Philippines was established here last year, we’ve been constantly listening to what the community and what the players are saying. We want everyone to know that we hear you, we’re listening and this is why we’re doing this now. As we are scaling, building our team and all of our capacities here, the Empyrean Cup is only the first of what we’re going to do for the community. For us, it’s very important that our Filipino players see that the Philippines is a priority market for APAC for League of Legends. We will continue investing, not just next year but also for the next couple of years, to elevate the competitive community and the gaming community again for League of Legends. This is but a first. Stay tuned,” Salazar promised.
The Empyrean Cup is a significant step forward for the Philippine LoL community, and it is clear that Riot Games is committed to supporting and growing the competitive scene in the country. With continued investment and support, the Philippines has the potential to become a major player in the global LoL esports landscape.