The North American League Championship Series is restructuring to become more like the NFL or NBA with 10 established teams locked into place rather than an ever-shifting lineup of teams each season.
Riot Games announced all of this today, and in an interview with Yahoo Esports confirmed that the buy-in for a spot in the league will cost $10 million. If you’re a player on one of those teams, your new minimum salary will also kick up to $75,000.
These changes will kick in next year and are the biggest alterations to the pro scene around one of the world’s biggest video games—played by tens of millions of people a month—since the game’s championship tour was started in 2013.
Currently, a spot in the LCS is not guaranteed to last. In past splits, teams had to climb their way through various tiers of tournament series to get a chance to knock off one of the lower-rung teams in the league.
Starting next year, those tournaments won’t happen anymore—at least, not in North America. Spots in the NA LCS will be much closer to permanent, establishing a consistent roster of ten teams in the league, akin to traditional sports leagues.