MSI 2019 arrives in Vietnam, and this is all you need to know

Melany M. May 1, 2019

The Mid-Season Invitational is here, as the first international event of the year gathers League of Legends’ spring champions from around the world.

For the first time ever, MSI is heading to Vietnam. The action begins on May 1 at GG Stadium in Ho Chi Minh City.

Here’s everything you need to know about MSI 2019.

What is the Mid-Season Invitational?

It’s the first international event of the 2019 League of Legends calendar. 13 champions from across the world compete, but only one can take the title.

What is the format for MSI?

MSI is divided into two stages: the Play-In Stage and the Main Event.

During the Play-In Stage, eight teams divided into two groups of four will compete in the first round. This will be a double round robin format in which all matches are best-of-one.

In the second round, the two group winners will face the two directly seeded teams. Seed A plays against Team Liquid from North America’s LCS, while Seed B goes against Flash Wolves from the LMS.

The two winners move on to the main event, while the two losers play an elimination match for the final spot. All matches played are best-of-five.

The Main Event will feature six teams competing in a new group stage, a double round robin where all matches are best-of-one. The top four will advance to the knockout stage, and this final stage is a single elimination bracket with best-of-five matches.

Two teams move to the final, and only one is crowned as champion.

Who is playing at MSI?

13 regional champions are competing at MSI. The ten teams going through the Play-In Stage are:

  •         1907 Fenerbahçe, Turkey
  •         Bombers, Oceania
  •         Isurus Gaming, Latin America
  •         Phong Vũ Buffalo, Vietnam
  •         Mega, Southeast Asia
  •         Vega Squadron, Commonwealth Of Independent States
  •         Detonation Focus Me, Japan
  •         INTZ e-Sports, Brazil
  •         Team Liquid, North America
  •         Flash Wolves, Taiwan

The three teams directly seeded into the Main Event are:

  •         Invictus Gaming, China
  •         G2 Esports, Europe
  •         SK Telecom T1, South Korea

Who are the teams to watch?

As expected, G2, IG, SKT, and TL are the big favorites at the event. This year’s dark horse teams come from emerging regions, and these squads may ready to take the competition by storm.

1907 Fenerbahçe (TCL): Turkey is one of the strongest emerging regions, and on the international stage the Turkish teams always bring their A game. This is the first time 1907 Fenerbahçe represents the region at MSI.

This squad that plays mostly through the top lane and finished the spring season with a 20-match win streak. The players to watch are top laner Kim "Ruin" Hyeong-min and jungler Thomas "Kirei" Yuen.

Phong Vũ Buffalo (VCS): Vietnam became an independent region in 2018. Known for an aggressive and creative style of play, this region is full of exciting teams like spring champion Phong Vũ Buffalo.

With the competition takes place in Vietnam, Phong Vũ Buffalo is ready to make the local audience proud. The team’s player to watch is top laner Phạm "Zeros" Minh Lộc.

What’s on the line at MSI?

The teams are competing for part of a $250,000 prize pool, as well as some major World Championship implications.

The seeding at the 2019 World Championship will be based on the results of MSI. The top four teams from the event will become the top four seeds at Worlds.

The best-performing squad from the Play-In Stage will secure a seed at the World Championship main event, plus a second seed in the Play-In Stage. Bringing two teams to the biggest international event of the year would be highly beneficial for any growing region.