Everything WRONG with C9 Tournament
**TLDR**: The Cloud 9 tournament is very unorganized despite Cloud9 being a premiere esports org in North America. The organizer for the tournament is out of touch with TFT and some of the tournament Invites are suspect. The format and timing of the tournament doesn’t promote a competitive environment. The TFT community deserves better if we want to have a growing competitive scene. I **highly suggest reading the whole post or watching the video before making any judgements on this TLDR**
This write up is not meant to flame players. Just tournament organizers. At the same time, we have to be logical and realize that 1400LP is a bigger amount than 200LP. Also I wish i didn’t have to be so harsh, but when Warcraft 3 tournaments in 2005 are more fluid than tournaments run by Riot and Cloud 9 in 2020, we have an issue.
Let’s talk about this C9 Tournament. I am pretty disappointed so far on so many fronts. We will go over the format, the timing, the transparency, and the invites. We will go over what C9 has done and what Riot has done.
**I HIGHLY suggest you watch the video** because I go in depth and the pictures and websites are much easier to follow along. Play it in the background or second monitor as you play TFT because I may have left some details out in this text post. **I’ve turned off monetization/ads** so I literally don’t gain any money from you watching the video. I just hope a tournament organizer sees this and hopefully doesn’t make these egregious mistakes again. I also hope this promotes the entire competitive TFT landscape and maybe people will start taking the scene more seriously because I enjoy this game and I hope it is here to stay. Here is the link to the video if you want an easier time to follow along: [https://youtu.be/wQG9S40l3BM](https://youtu.be/wQG9S40l3BM)
However, I know reddit likes write-ups, so here it is. Also, I know not everyone is in NA, but honestly NA appears to have the most organizations around TFT, so the tournaments/Worlds **Qualifications in other regions might be EVEN WORSE THAN THIS**, so I highly suggest other regions take notes.
There are almost no TFT tournaments from Riot. For the TFT tournaments that have happened, they have been so unorganized it is crazy. Keep in mind, we are talking about Team Liquid and Cloud 9, the two premiere Esport organizations in North America. Starting with the Team Liquid tournament that didn’t have enough [signup slots for the best player](https://www.reddit.com/r/CompetitiveTFT/comments/gjr1ol/the_registration_process_for_the_liquid_tactics/)s to the [terrible seeding](https://www.reddit.com/r/CompetitiveTFT/comments/gpatwu/tl_tourney_1st_round_groups_grouping_based_on_rank/) they had which plotted every challenger player in the same lobby in the first round. Now we are at the C9 tournament where the organizers show that they are out of touch with the game. This tournament is 1 of 2 tournaments that feed into the NA Regional qualifier for the World Championships. And then they make this tournament an **INVITATIONAL**? This is the tournament where the best of the best are supposed to play and give high level TFT action for all of us to watch. Listen, I’m all for promoting the game by inviting popular players or players who draw different types of audiences, but when I look at the invite list, I’m not convinced that C9 took that angle seriously either. I do not see any **consistency** in the criteria for their invites. Let’s take a look at the list.
**Let me preface** this by saying I am not making this post because I think I should be invited. I do not deserve an invite, I am not in Challenger anymore and don’t play the game that much. I will also say that it is extremely odd that a **Weekend Player** (me) is higher rank than some of the invites. I do however, want the TFT scene to grow and I enjoy watching high level play. When people watch any competition, they usually enjoy watching the best players or their favorite. I will also say that this is C9’s tournament, so I guess they can invite whoever they want **IF** this wasn’t one of the **ONLY** big tournaments with qualifications into the World Championships. I also do not blame the players I am about to call out for accepting the invite because everyone in their position would do the same. I am blaming the tournament organizer for being so out of touch and giving random players a free dice roll for qualifying for worlds.
On another note, I have competed in different games in the past, and there is very little someone who is actually more deserving of an invite can do. If one of these players speaks out or complains, they are seen as salty and probably ruin their chances of being invited to future tournaments if they speak ill of tournament organizers. I am here to speak up for these players—I will mention a few later in this post, and many of them are
1. Better players on Set 3.5 than the invited list. Let’s invite the best players
2. Better players historically (previous sets). TFT is a game of consistency.
3. Have a bigger following. Let’s invite popular players for more sponsorship + viewership.
I would love to hear people’s thoughts on this and am ready to take the heat. If someone is both better historically, currently, and have a bigger following, what could they have done differently to try to get an invite?
When looking at this list, some names are ‘deserving’ of the invite, some I cannot see any justification at all. I am fine with inviting big personalities because this will improve viewership, get more sponsors for the tournament, and hopefully bring different audiences to the game. But looking at the list, I checked the [https://twitchtracker.com](https://twitchtracker.com) which is a stat tracking site for Twitch for all of these players and see that only a few of them pull more than 500 concurrent viewers. Many pull less than 100, some less than 50. **Are streamers who only pull 50 viewers really deserving of a spot through clout?** Let’s assume everyone over 500 concurrent viewers get an invite. This means I believe that inviting Becca, Saintvicious, Emily is fair game. I will also make an exception for Esportslaw since he has a large (21k) Twitter following and reaches a different audience than a typical TFT streamer. The rest of the invites should at least be top players, right?
Here is the standings for NA TFT ladder points: [https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/e/2PACX-1vQzdzlNtoFmTBe6MctHy52wFTzqZ009HzbZuieX85nq_dkWygObHLNtfqq7u3HDiSaYtBQMZBWqts6X/pubhtml?gid=231054574&single=true](https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/e/2PACX-1vQzdzlNtoFmTBe6MctHy52wFTzqZ009HzbZuieX85nq_dkWygObHLNtfqq7u3HDiSaYtBQMZBWqts6X/pubhtml?gid=231054574&single=true)
This document is maintained by Riot and is used to track who the best players are over the months of the NA Regional Qualifiers. If the tournament organizer has no idea who to invite, he can easily take a look at this spreadsheet and find someone in the top 50 who also streams/makes content and invite them. Whatever the case, let’s take a look at the players left
Current Rank: Challenger (~800LP ~275 games played)
Previous Sets: Challenger, Challenger, Challenger
NA Ladder Points: 245
Avg Concurrent Viewership: 176
Notes: Finished set 1 at rank 3
Should he be invited?: **Yes** because he is currently challenger, previously been challenger, very high ladder points, decent size stream.
Current Rank: Diamond 2 (12 games played)
Previous Sets: Challenger, Challenger, GM
NA Ladder Points: 65
Avg Concurrent Viewership: N/A
Notes: I think he took a break since he hasn’t played much recently. However, he finished Set 1 rank 6, set 2 rank 8 so he’s obviously a very strong player.
Should he be invited?: **Maybe/Yes**? I think this invite is justified because he was a very strong contender in early sets and maybe he had other things going on in his life once the Ladder Snapshot points started.
Current Rank: Challenger (~800LP ~100 games played)
Previous Sets: Challenger, GM, Master
NA Ladder Points: 140
Avg Concurrent Viewership: 51
Notes: Has strong tournament results in previous tournaments
Should he be invited?: **Yes**, he’s a strong player. Does well in other tournaments. Has decent ladder points. Is part of C9.
Current Rank: Master (~550LP ~275 games played)
Previous Sets: GM, GM, Challenger
NA Ladder Points: 55
Avg Concurrent Viewership: 22
Notes: 31st in set 3
Should he be invited?: **No**. Low viewership, he’s currently Masters. Only challenger once. While 31st is good, it’s not top 10, and it was only for one set.
Current Rank: Challenger (~800LP ~80 games played)
Previous Sets: Challenger, Challenger, Challenger, Challenger
NA Ladder Points: 180
Avg Concurrent Viewership: 72
Notes: Nothing much, he is high challenger every set
Should he be invited?: **Yes**. Challenger every set, decent ladder points.
Current Rank: Masters (~250LP ~150 games played)
Previous Sets: Challenger, D1, Challenger, Masters
NA Ladder Points: 65
Avg Concurrent Viewership: 86
Notes: Rank 3 in Set 3
Should he be invited?: **Maybe**? Not the strongest resume, not the weakest.
Current Rank: Challenger (~800LP ~400 games played)
Previous Sets: P4, N/A, Challenger
NA Ladder Points: 115
Avg Concurrent Viewership: N/A I have looked everywhere, cannot find his stream or any social media presence. If someone has this, let me know in the comments.
Notes: No one I’ve asked knows who he is. Apologies if you have a large following, but I honestly couldn’t find you.
Should he be invited?: **No**. He’s not a bad player, but there are plenty of better players (both currently and historically) based on ladder points and current rank. For example, he’s never been top 10 on any ladder snapshot, so if there’s an invitee who has absolutely 0 social media presence, you’d expect them to be a top end player.
Current Rank: Master (~350LP ~250 games played)
Previous Sets: GM, Challenger, Master
NA Ladder Points: 15
Avg Concurrent Viewership: 35
Notes: 15 Ladder points
Should he be invited?: **No**, he has 15 ladder points and doesn’t have a big social media following. I even checked twitter, Youtube, and Instagram just in case I was missing something, and he only has 1,000 followers on those platforms
Let’s look at some players that could have been invited instead. Again, I’m not affiliated with any of these players, it’s just some names I’ve noticed in the Rankings that stood out.
**Nhan Tam** has two accounts, one with 280 ladder points, one with 140. His smurf is higher than these other invites. Also I have no idea how he didn’t qualify via points because he has been top 25-50 every week. Maybe he was 21st place?
**Treebeard** has 215 Ladder points and has 218 average concurrent viewers on Twitch. He also has 17k followers on twitch. He is literally better + more popular than some of these invites (even kci who has no social media presence at all)
**RayditzFN** has 125 Ladder points. 270 average viewers on twitch. Again, both more popular + better player than some of these invites.
There are many more examples than I have listed, but I’d love to hear from the tournament organizer to see what the criteria was for the invites. There is no logic behind some of these invites. I really think you have to be delusional to think that on paper these players are deserving of an invite and it brings up the question of **foul play**. I certainly hope there is none of that, but when invites are sent like this, it brings up that question.
Now lets talk about the format. Check out MismatchedSocks’s post. A tournament with this importance shouldn’t be a “you had a bad day, too bad, you are out.” It’s easy to criticize, let me propose a format Cloud 9 could have used instead.
July 8: Group A 2 games, Group B 2 games
July 9: Group C 2 games, Group D 2 games
July 15: Group A 2 games, Group B 2 games
July 16: Group C 2 games, Group D 2 games.
Was that hard? I wish TFT had a higher sample size than 4 games, but I understand that time is a factor, so I proposed a solution that has the same amount of games played as the current tournament.
Let’s not even mention that the release date for each TFT patch is public knowledge [https://support-leagueoflegends.riotgames.com/hc/en-us/articles/360018987893-Patch-Schedule-League-of-Legends](https://support-leagueoflegends.riotgames.com/hc/en-us/articles/360018987893-Patch-Schedule-League-of-Legends)
Why did they make the tournament the day of a patch + a hotfix? Literally 2 patches in a day and they decide to hold the tournament on this day.
Now let’s talk about Riot and their spreadsheet. [https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/e/2PACX-1vQzdzlNtoFmTBe6MctHy52wFTzqZ009HzbZuieX85nq_dkWygObHLNtfqq7u3HDiSaYtBQMZBWqts6X/pubhtml?gid=231054574&single=true](https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/e/2PACX-1vQzdzlNtoFmTBe6MctHy52wFTzqZ009HzbZuieX85nq_dkWygObHLNtfqq7u3HDiSaYtBQMZBWqts6X/pubhtml?gid=231054574&single=true)
This spreadsheet was not updated all of June. It’s updated once a month, and the C9 tournament uses Cycle 4-8 according to their website. WHERE IS THE 8TH CYCLE IN THIS SPREADSHEET? At the time of writing, this is blank. Is it that difficult to update this sheet for transparency so that those who barely missed the cut can actually see that they missed out? I looked up some of the qualified players, and they are MUCH lower on the point total than some of the people who missed out (less than 125 points, vs the 200+ of some people who weren’t invited).
Here is a comparison of all the players’ points:
[Note that C9 only cares about points in Cycle 4-8, but Cycle 8, which ends on June 30 isn’t publicly posted at time of writing on July 10th. THG SPENCER HAS 205 POINTS](https://preview.redd.it/d9hnxg4fmy951.png?width=421&format=png&auto=webp&s=8abee7d81b6f93b666124fef1bfdec8b13161192)
Were the qualified players even qualified? We have 0 clue because Riot doesn’t put in the effort to update their spreadsheet more than once a month. Note that I couldn’t find THGSpencerZ’s account in the spreadsheet, so let me know if you know who that is.
That’s it, sorry for the long post. Check the video if you want more details and clarity since it is MUCH easier to follow along to the video. I’m not here to flame other players. I just want to hold Competitive TFT to a higher standard and promote a more competitive environment. And yes, I realize that thatsPRIMAL just qualified to the next stage of the tournament. But honestly, anyone can high roll on any day, and many other players were more deserving of this free dice roll to try to get into the NA Regional Finals. For example, I’ve faced top challenger players on ladder myself and manage to do decently or even win in some games. You would be a fool to think that a Master player will outplay Top 20 players in a bigger sample size. Again, I’m a weekend player, and my weekend account ([https://lolchess.gg/profile/na/lunarprincessd](https://lolchess.gg/profile/na/lunarprincessd)) is a higher rank than some of these players, and I strongly believe that **there is an enormous skill gap between a random GM and a top 20 player**. It’d be like a GM playing in low Diamond or Plat. But hey, in 4 games, anything can happen because the sample size is so small.
Again, **none of the other players who probably should have been invited should speak out because they will be seen negatively in the community and hurt their invite chances in the future**. Since I don’t care about invites, I hope I can speak up for those players who should probably remain silent. I’d also like to reiterate that **the players who got invited aren’t at fault—it’s the tournament organizers** whose actions make it look like they are out of touch with the TFT scene.
I’d love to hear more from the C9 Tournament Organizer about the format, invites, and timing.
Edit: updated chart to include Spencer’s points
Some people say “they are trying! give them a break!”
Here’s an article from C9 that implies they would do weekly updates for the Ladder Point standings on June 5: [https://cloud9.gg/latest/cloud9-tft-nebula-na-qualifiers-kick-off/](https://cloud9.gg/latest/cloud9-tft-nebula-na-qualifiers-kick-off/) It appears they couldn’t afford to pay an intern to write one article per week to update the standings. We don’t even need a write up, we just need the points updated (as of 7/10 Cycle 8 is still not visible)
I’d also like to reiterate that this isn’t some random tournament. This is one that affects world championship opportunities for players