Riot expands watch party program for LCS Spring 2023

Tina Jo/Riot Games/via ESPAT

Riot Games has announced that it is broadening its watch party program ahead of LCS Spring 2023 to include more creators and more matches.

The developer said that it took the learnings from the first two years of the watch party program and opted to open up applications “to influencers in the larger League of Legends community” after calls for more creators to be given the chance to co-stream matches.

Riot Games introduced the watch party program in May 2021, ahead of that year’s Summer split, with a roster of fan-favorite personalities that included Nick ‘LS’ De Cesare, Yiliang ‘Doublelift’ Peng and Christian ‘IWDominate’ Rivera.

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In 2022, Riot announced some adjustments to the program and limited watch parties to “specific parts of the season”, such as Lock In, Super Weeks, and Playoffs. These remained invite-only, drawing criticism from the League community for leaving out many content creators and influencers.

Riot expands LCS watch party program

In a blog post on the official LoL Esports website, Riot Games said that it will allow selected creators to co-stream every match of the 2023 LCS Spring split on their Twitch or YouTube channel.

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The developer noted that there will be a limited number of slots and that creators will need to adhere to the watch party program policy, which continues to include the three-strike system from previous splits.

Creators have until January 23 at 10 PM PT to apply for the watch party program by filling out the application form here. However, creators wishing to co-stream the first week of matches, scheduled for January 26-27, will need to submit their applications by January 18 at 10 PM PT.

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Coincidentally or not, Riot’s decision to expand the watch party program comes amid fierce criticism from the League community. The developer has come under fire for changing the LCS match days from weekend primetime slots to Thursdays and Fridays and for moving on from beloved desk host and analyst James ‘Dash’ Patterson.

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