The 2019 Mid-Season Invitational is heading to Vietnam and Chinese Taipei for the first time in its history.
Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi will be home to the play-in stage and group stage. Taipei will host the semifinals and finals. The move was made to acknowledge the region’s growing interest in League of Legends and esports in general.
Vietnam was announced as a new competitive region for League of Legends this time last year, guaranteeing a play-in slot for international competitions such as the Mid-Season Invitational and the World Championship. According to Riot’s official announcement, that decision was made as a result of Vietnamese teams dominating the last four splits of Southeast Asia’s Garena Premier League. The country also performed better than the majority of other regions that competed in 2017’s Mid-Season Invitational and World Championship.
Before this decision, the Vietnamese league had to compete with other leagues in the Southeast Asia region to win a spot in Riot’s international events. The area’s remaining regions, which include the Philippines and Thailand, will continue to compete for a place in the Garena Premier League.
Taipei has a more established history in the League of Legends scene, starting in 2012 when the region’s Taipei Assassins took home the Summoner’s Cup at Worlds. A disappointing performance for LMS teams at the most recent World Championship and an ensuing exodus of talent to China has raised questions about the region’s future, making this announcement a welcome reprieve for fans in the region.
The 2019 Mid-Season Invitational will see 13 regions fighting for the title of MSI Champion, with each region sending its spring split champions into battle.
MSI begins on May 1, with the finals will take place on May 19. Tickets will be available starting in March. No specific venues have yet been announced.