League of Legends has dominated professional esports since its Season 1 championship back in 2011.
Over the past ten years, we’ve seen the game evolve through different formats, regions, players, and teams.
Here’s a look back at some of the most memorable matches of the past decade.
Fnatic vs against All authority — Grand Final Season 1 Championship (2011)
Fnatic (FNC) and against All authority (aAa) faced off in the Grand Final at the very first Worlds.
The series will always be remembered for Bora “YellOwStaR” Kim’s Enchanted Crystal Arrow snipe in game two, which hit Peter “Mellisan” Meisrimel from across the map, giving aAa the opening they needed to finish off Fnatic and tie up the series 1-1.
SK Telecom T1 vs KT Rolster Bullets — HOT6 Champions Summer (2013)
This was probably the match that first showed why SK Telecom T1’s Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok is considered the Greatest of All Time by many people.
Faker took the spotlight early with his Zed outplay against Ryu “Ryu” Sang-wook who also used the same champion. The two clashed in a 1 v 1, but with his insane reaction time, Faker activated his Quicksilver Sash item to negate the Death Mark from Ryu’s Zed, emerging victorious.
Faker would later go on to lead SKT to the 2013 Worlds Championship title.
Cloud9 vs Team SoloMid — Ultra Rapid Fire Showmatch (2014)
LoL’s chaotic Ultra Rapid Fire (URF) game mode, which grants all players 80% cooldown reduction and removes all ability costs debuted in 2014, originally as an April Fool’s Day joke, but then as a Featured game mode.
Cloud9 (C9) and Team SoloMid (TSM) put on a showmatch using the mode to show off just how crazy it can get, and the event went down as one of the most fun matches in LoL history.
Fnatic vs Oh My God — World Championship Group Stage (2014)
This game between Fnatic (FNC) and Chinese team Oh My God (OMG) made headlines six years ago, as a controversial game-breaking bug ended up saving the game for OMG.
The bug occurred when OMG Yin “LoveLing” Le’s Kha’Zix somehow gained the Homeguard boots buff, even though he was in combat. This let him instantly regen 500HP, which let him survive a Rumble ult from Fnatic’s Paul “sOAZ” Boyer. LoveLing was then able to take down sOAZ just seconds before he was about to destroy OMG’s Nexus.
ahq eSports Club vs Samsung White — World Championship Group Stage (2014)
Korean team and eventual Worlds 2014 champions, Samsung White (SSW), showed off their dominance early in the tournament with an amazing series against ahq eSports Club (AHQ) in the Group Stage.
In game two, the Korean team managed to score an incredible level one Ace, just one minute into the game, losing only one player in the process.
Albus NoX Luna vs ROX Tigers — Worlds Group Stage Day 5 (2016)
CIS underdogs Albus NoX Luna (ANX) made history when they upset Korean team ROX Tigers in the Worlds 2016 group stage, becoming the first wildcard team to beat a Korean team at Worlds.
To this day, LoL fans still remember ANX Likkrit’s inspirational words following their victory:
“We came here expecting 0-6. We came here without real preparation, we didn’t bootcamp in Korea. And we’re like ‘Okay guys, we’ll just come and play our game.’ But today we are in quarterfinals for sure. All I want to say is that, ‘Hey guys, we are from wildcard. And I have told you before, being an underdog doesn’t mean being a loser.’”
ROX Tigers vs SK Telecom T1 — World Championship Semifinals (2016)
Following aAa YellOwStaR’s legendary Ashe ultimate from the Season 1 Championship, another iconic Enchanted Crystal Arrow was delivered by ROX Kim “PraY” Jong-in three years later.
This play has been dubbed “The Longshot,” and it won game two for ROX Tigers.
The play has become so iconic, it even got its own documentary from Riot:
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Fnatic vs Gigabyte Marines — Worlds Group Stage Day 1 (2017)
Vietnamese team Gigabyte Marines (GAM) are known for their unconventional strategies, and this was fully on display at Worlds 2017 in their Group Stage game against Fnatic.
While most teams focus on their midlaner, Gigabyte Marines’ strategy in this game was to power-level their jungler, Đỗ “Levi” Duy Khánh’s Nocturne.
The unusual strategy paid off and GAM picked up the upset against Fnatic.
SK Telecom T1 vs Misfits Gaming — Worlds Quarterfinals Day 2 (2017)
European team Misfits Gaming (MSF) and Korean team SK Telecom T1 (SKT) gave everyone a great best-of-five series during the 2017 League of Legends World Championship Quarterfinals.
While they eventually lost 2-3, Misfits came close to upsetting the three-time World Champions, and showed that Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok and his squad could be beaten.
G2 Esports vs Royal Never Give Up — World Championship Quarterfinals Game 5 (2018)
This match between Chinese powerhouse Royal Never Give Up, and European squad G2 Esports will go down in history as one of the biggest upsets ever.
As the number one Chinese seed, RNG were expected to easily defeat G2, but underdogs G2 were able to hold their own and took the series to the fifth and final game.
In the last game, G2 played the best games of their lives, with Luka “Perkz” Perković carrying the team with his incredible LeBlanc play going 11-0-4.
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