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The state of e-sports: LoL, Dota 2, CS:GO, Hearthstone

League Stream

League of Legends

Christopher "MonteCristo" Mykles

Christopher "MonteCristo" Mykles is a caster for the Korean OnGameNet Champions league. He was also previously a coach for team Counter Logic Gaming in the NA LCS, and is frequently brought on to cast international tournaments.

What was the highpoint of 2014 for LoL?

I look back fondly on the series between KT Arrows and Samsung Blue in the Champions Summer finals. Not only did this best of five deliver high quality gameplay, but also some of the most exciting and gut-wrenching games of the year. This was undoubtedly the high point of LoL in 2014.

How would you describe the health of the LoL scene?

Viewership for League continues to grow on average for broadcasts around the world, so it seems to still be going strong. Riot's changes to balance at the end of 2014 and the new Rift should keep the game fresh and strategically interesting as 2015 unfolds.

If you could ask Riot to make one change, what would it be?

I think the main aspect of competitive play currently lacking resides in the limited amount of international competition in the current format. Cross-regional competition provides the most exciting matches for fans and helps fuel rivalries that otherwise remain untapped in a region-locked system.

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In terms of LoL, what do you think was the funniest thing that happened last year?

As an analyst there are many moments of comedy gold, but the hope that springs eternal for Western teams from fans at Worlds perpetually provides amusement.

What is the biggest challenge that the competitive LoL scene faces in 2015?

Given Riot's stellar production and ambitious multi-country Worlds circuit in 2014, I believe that the most formidable challenge lies in somehow topping Riot's production from last year.

Who are the players or teams you think will make the biggest impact this year?

The obvious choice given performance and rosters look like SK Telecom, Najin, and OMG. Faker seeking his second World Championship should form the core of storylines in 2015, though it is nearly impossible to predict a winner at this early stage.

What Champions are you using personally right now, and how are they performing?

I don't play the game much. I watch film.

What do you think are the key components of a good LoL stream?

I do not watch player streams but instead prefer professional matches. For me, a pro game relies on quality casting rather than production wizardry.

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What Twitch chat meme makes you secretly smile?

“ognTSM ROTATIONS ognTSM” gets me every time.

Where do you expect the next big innovation in LoL to come from?

Until they are dethroned in a convincing manner, Korean teams will reign supreme in terms of innovation and quality of play.

What are the consequences and benefits of Riot expanding their e-sports broadcast to the Eastern Hemisphere?

Given Riot's stellar production quality, their expansion into more leagues likely benefits the majority of fans. The consolidation of English broadcasts onto a single channel will likely boost viewership for all leagues and therefore increase sponsorship opportunities for individual regions.

How would you compare the current state of Korean LoL to how it was last year, now that you're a couple weeks into the spring split?

Balance seems great so far, with many more interesting facets of the game unexplored to date. The new jungle remains relatively untapped and itemization options continue to expand.