The new Clash tournament mode is coming to League of Legends on May 25, and Mail Esports has everything you need to know about it.
If you missed the betas, Clash is a three day online tournament where just about any League of Legends player can team up with their friends and try and win a range of rewards.
They’re going to be happening every other weekend, so League players all over the world will be able to get a taste of what it’s like to play in an esports tournament.
Clash is a brand new tournament mode which runs every other week from Friday to Sunday, with various rewards on offer
We spoke to Leanne Loombe, Senior Producer & Product Manager for Riot Games, who has been working on Clash, to find out all the ins and outs about how the mode works.
How does Clash work?
Every other weekend, a new Clash tournament will begin on the Friday, and progress through the Saturday and Sunday. However, the whole process begins on the Monday before when you can start getting your team together, discuss tactics, and start practicing.
A team enters a Clash tournament with either one or five tickets, which determines the level of reward you’ll get. Put more on the line, and you’ll get more out of it if you win.
On Day 1 of the tournament, you’ll be put into a four-team bracket based on the skill level of your team. Higher ranked players will pull your team up tiers, and increase the quality of your opponents. Even if you have four bronze players and one platinum player, you’ll still be placed in a higher tier.
30 minutes before the matches start, your team has to be present and lock in, otherwise, you’ll lose your slot in the tournament. Once you’re locked in, you’ll be able to see the stats of your opponents and scout them accordingly.
Once your team is in place and you’ve locked in, you’ll be able to scout your opponents in the upcoming tournament bracket
All champions are unlocked in Clash, so you can coordinate better in the pick and ban phase, and play whoever you like.
If you win both of your games in the four-team bracket on Day 1, you’ll progress to Day 2, where you’ll be put in an eight-team bracket. If you make it through Day 2, Day 3 will have a 16-team bracket to determine the overall winner.
There will be multiple brackets of all sizes running throughout each Clash weekend.
When do Clash tournaments start?
The first one begins on May 25 (apart from in China), and they’ll be every two weeks starting on the Friday, but you actually start forming your team on the Monday before the tournament. So May 21 is when it all kicks off.
As for the exact times, it will vary by region.
‘We’ve had a look at every single region and done a bunch of analysis to see what time is best for players there,’ said Loombe. ‘The system is very flexible though, so we may change those times based on feedback.’
What’s the point of Clash?
‘League of Legends is a team sport, and it’s best when you play with friends,’ said Loombe. ‘Right now there isn’t a reason to play with your team… We feel [Clash] brings a purpose to team play.
‘Ultimately we want players to feel like Clash is the way League is meant to be played with friends… We’re not saying ranked isn’t important anymore, but League is a sport and a team game and that’s where we want Clash to be the focus.’
Riot’s number one goal with the mode is to bring players together and give them a more intense, tournament-like experience when playing.
If you win all your games on Friday, you’ll go through to Saturday. If you win all your games on Saturday you’ll reach Sunday
Who can play Clash?
Clash is for everyone, but there are still some restrictions on who can play.
You need to be ranked on Summoner’s Rift, and you also need to be Honor Level 2 or higher.
‘These restrictions are to keep Clash as highly competitive as possible,’ said Loombe. ‘We want it to be focused on competition and team play rather than toxicity or negativity.’
It doesn’t matter what rank you are though, as you should always be put into a bracket with teams of a similar level.
‘Bronzies finally have a way to win some pretty amazing rewards and show their accomplishments,’ said Loombe.
She expects the highest tier of Clash to be extremely competitive, and there are no restrictions on pro teams joining either. It may be a little unfair on the teams they enter a bracket with, but in general there should be enough brackets going on at once to give every team a chance to win.
There’s also a mobile phone authentication system in place to stop smurfing, meaning you shouldn’t be coming up against teams in your lower tier filled with top level players.
How much does Clash cost to play?
To play Clash you need to put forward either one ticket, or five tickets, depending on how much you want to risk.
You can get tickets in a variety of ways. You’ll get a ticket through the mission that’ll be in the game at launch, where you must win four flex games. You can also get a free one through the Clash website experience when it’s all set up.
Otherwise, you’ll have to buy them with either RP or 1,000 blue essence.
What are the Clash rewards?
There are three different types of reward in Clash.
The first is directly related to how many tickets you enter. 1 ticket gets you a Clash Orb, 5 tickets gets you a Clash Capsule. The orb or capsule will upgrade as you win matches and progress through the brackets. They’ll have general loot like in Hextech boxes, and you can also find extra tickets inside.
There are a number of rewards exclusive to the Clash mode such as these banners which can’t be purchased, only earned
Clash Banners are another type of reward. These are only available by playing Clash, and you can’t purchase them. The more games you win, the more victory points you accumulate, and as you hit certain thresholds, you’ll unlock one of the three tiers of banner for each Clash tournament.
They’re physical banners which will show up in Summoner’s Rift games after a couple of minutes, depending on your position. If you’re an AD carry, yours will show up in the bottom lane, for instance.
The final type of reward is the one you get for winning a Clash bracket: trophies. There’s one for each the 4-, 8-, and 16-team brackets, and they’ll look better the higher you get.
Trophies stay in your profile forever, but they’re also physical items you can see in Summoner’s Rift for two weeks after you win. As your characters spawn, you’ll see trophies along the walls of your base.
The trophies are themed differently for each tournament. For example, the launch tournament will be the Demacia Clash Cup, so the trophies will be Demacia themed.
You can also get trophies, which stay in your profile forever but also show up for a couple of weeks in Summoner’s Rift games
What happens if I lose?
Clash is single-elimination, meaning if you lose once, you’re out of the running for the 16-team bracket trophy.
However, you can spend more tickets to re-enter on subsequent days. You’ll just be starting back in the four-team bracket stage.
You can also still earn rewards in consolation brackets after you lose.
How to join a Clash team
Clash is all about getting your friends to play together, so you’ll be inviting people to your team from your friends list.
But, if you can’t put a full team together, or you know not everyone you normally play with will be available on a certain weekend, there will still be a way for you to play.
‘We want to make sure Clash is focused around team play rather than playing with a bunch of strangers,’ said Loombe. ‘But we are partnering with op.gg, who are building a team finding website specifically for Clash.
‘At launch, you’ll be able to go there and search for players or teams, and we’re basing it on your preferences. You won’t just pick a player and get a random person. We want to try and match you with people who have the same competitive intent.
‘You might say “I only care about winning a trophy,” or “I just want to play casually,” or “I can only play one day,” so you’re always matching with similar people.’
What if I can’t play Clash for the full 3 days?
Similarly to if you lose one of your matches, if you can’t make a Friday or Saturday match, you can still enter Clash on a later day. Riot knows that turning up to an entire three day tournament is a big commitment.
No matter when you start a Clash tournament, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, you’ll always start from the 4-team bracket stage.
Enter on a Saturday, and you’ll play a 4-team bracket, followed by an 8-team bracket on the Sunday if you win.
Enter on a Sunday, and you’ll only be able to play a 4-team bracket before the tournament ends.
Can my Clash team make substitutions?
Yes. But there are some restrictions.
There are no subs allowed between matches, you can only make them between days. Plus, you’re only limited to one for each day.
So you can’t make subs on Day 1, but you can make one between Day 1 and Day 2, and another between Day 2 and Day 3.
You are able to make substitutes at certain times during Clash, and there will be a system on op.gg to find like-minded groups
Can I go pro by playing Clash?
‘It’s not been one of our specific goals of Clash to use it as a training ground or a path to pro play,’ said Loombe. ‘However I do think it might happen naturally, and it’ll be super interesting to see if that does happen, because it’s much closer to the esports vibe. The game mode is very competitive.’
So, although there’s no specific system in place, if you keep winning Clash tournaments, the right people might start to take notice.
What has changed since the betas?
Riot has run a handful of betas for Clash, and they’ve learned some lessons along the way.
‘The overall 3-day structure has remained the same throughout the whole test, but we’ve changed a lot of the layer around it,’ said Loombe. ‘The first beta we ran was in Vietnam last June, and since then we’ve dramatically changed the way you get into the tournament.
‘Previously we had an elaborate system of having to check in a few days before, and then come back again on the day of the tournament. We got a lot of feedback about it being over-complicated and confusing, so for the Europe test we really simplified that system.
‘We redid the whole reward structure, even between Vietnam and Europe, then Europe and North America, we’ve redone it a bunch of times. It’s something we really wanted to get right.’
There’s just over a week until the first official Clash tournament begins. So, start gathering your team together, and we hope you have good luck on the Rift.
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