According to Riot Games’ eSports manager Nick Allen’s statement to Gamespot, League of Legends professional players are now recognized as athletes by the United States government and will be allowed visas to compete in tournaments.
Riot Games had to prove to the government that League of Legends is an authentic sport. The US government finally reached this conclusion after a “lengthy process”.
“So the United States government recognizes League of Legends pro players as professional athletes and award visas to essentially work in the United States under that title,” said Allen. “This is groundbreaking for eSports; now we can start looking at international players when they come over. It’s a much easier process because they’re actually recognized by the government. This is a huge thing.
“This was a lengthy process; we had a lot of people fighting for this. It wasn’t something that happened overnight.”
Well, there you have it. No one saw this coming, right? Who thought video game players could be deemed as athletes one day?
The League of Legends Season 3 World Championship will take place on October 4 in California.