These were the words of esports fans at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Guro-gu, Seoul, on the afternoon of the 19th, the final of the League of Legends (LoL) World Championship, or “Rold Cup,” which returned to Korea after a five-year absence.
The excitement was palpable as it was the first time since the 2018 tournament that LoL was held in Korea, and the first time in nine years that the final was held in Seoul.
In August, more than 18,000 seats sold out in less than 20 minutes in a presale. In the gaming industry, which has recently experienced a downturn in viewership and a shrinking industry, there were hopes that the tournament, which will be held in South Korea, where the fan base is thick and the market is large, would help the industry rebound.
“I’ve been watching Faker since he debuted in the professional league, and I feel like we’re growing up together,” said Lee Jun-kyung, 27, who supports T-one like the two.
I can watch the game at home, but it’s nice to come to the stadium and feel the excitement of cheering for a team together.”
Lim Joo-hye, 27, who came to the stadium with Lee, laughed, saying, “I think the Faker is too much of a ‘namsa wall’ (a four-dimensional wall that can’t be crossed) to grow together.”
The final match, which began at 5 p.m., pitted domestic powerhouse T1, led by Lee “Faker” Sang-hyuk (27), who has won the tournament three times, the most out of the 12 previous Rold Cups, against Chinese team Weibo Gaming, which made a surprise appearance in the final after defeating favorites such as Genji and BillyBillyGaming.
Tiwon, who hadn’t won since the 2016 tournament in Los Angeles, reached the final for the second year in a row.
University students Kang Min-hyuk, 24, and Jung Tae-kyung, 22, came to the stadium wearing hats of the League of Legends character Timo.
Kang said, “Unlike other sports, where a lot depends on physical conditions, esports is attractive because it can be enjoyed by people of all ages without the constraints of time and space or ‘physicality’.
I’ve been watching and playing with Faker since Rold Cup Season 2 (2012), and it’s heartwarming to see the team’s unwavering skill.”
“I didn’t expect T-one to make it to the finals, so I couldn’t get tickets in advance, so I finally got them at a second-hand market for 500,000 won last week.
It was worth every penny.”
There were also many overseas fans who traveled from far away to cheer for Tiwon.
Tim (29) and Michael (28), who traveled to Seoul from Australia to support Tiwon, said, “I started playing League of Legends because of PayPal. It’s been a dream of mine for 10 years to come to Korea, home of T1, and watch Faker play in person, and I’m happy to finally be here. 카지노사이트777
We came to Korea to watch the Rold Cup, but we also visited other cities besides Seoul, such as Namhae.”
Deborah, 28, and Vladimir, 26, from France, came to the game dressed head-to-toe in cosplay as the in-game character “Bai.” “T1 is an amazing team,” they exclaimed.
The opening performance before the finals featured girl group NUJINS, who excited the crowd.
NUJINS drew attention last month when they released the theme song for the competition, “GODS.
A large-scale pre-concert was also held the day before, featuring domestic and international singers such as Girls’ Generation, FT Ireland, and Alan Walker.
On the same day, Gwanghwamun Square showed a live broadcast of the final on a large screen for fans who couldn’t attend in person.
A “Game Show Box” was also operated where visitors could enjoy content from small and medium-sized game companies supported by the Seoul Metropolitan Government, including companies that are tenants of the Seoul Game Content Center.