In a recent blog post, Riot Games’ President of Esports, John Needham, disclosed that this year League of Legends World Championship would include a “Virtual Pass.”
Riot Games’ head of esports indicated in a One Shot blog post that a new product for League of Legends and Valorant fans will be available for purchase starting with Worlds 2023.
The product is a “Virtual Pass” that may include both digital and physical forms such as in-game skins and Worlds merchant (Worlds skin exclusive variant, in-game event pass, plus some exclusive content,…)
The Virtual Pass’s aims are to provide fans with:
- A comprehensive online Worlds watching experience;
- A fantastic value package of products and services;
- More avenues for them to exhibit their enthusiasm and fandom.
Needham went on to state that he plans to expand the product into Valorant esports next year, as well as provide more “experiential features” for fans.
League of Legends Worlds 2023 Virtual Pass
Riot Games stated that the inspiration for this notion originated from the absence of live event income from esports tournaments when compared to traditional sports.
While League of Legends or Valorant matches may easily sell out, most fans would undoubtedly prefer to watch the tournaments at home for free on social media or streaming platforms.
Other possible esports-specific and team-specific revenue activations were also explored in the blog post, such as Riot’s notion to compensate for a lack of broadcast licensing fees for their league by targeting adverts to fans viewing on their platform.
Worlds 2023 is still months away, and teams have yet to compete in the Mid-Season Invitational, thus the specifics of what will be included in the virtual pass may alter or be adjusted in the near future.