There have been three weekends of Featured Matches so far, each centering around one of the three factions in this arc. This weekend, we’ll break from this rotation with a fierce melee of all against all, each faction fighting each other faction once per day on both days. These matches will be worth a base value of 15 points.
Matches will be streamed at twitch.tv/LeagueFactions.
For the official featured matches and tournament rules, please look at the tournament rules page.
The following schedule has been posted around the Institute, heralding a round of special matches. It is rumored that the Council is considering a motion to immediately recognize Shurima’s sovereignty and grant its petition to join the League as an independent nation—a crucial first step in Azir’s quest to restore the Empire to its former glory.
The resolution of Azir’s petition for League membership would also sweep away the stated rationale for the initial truce imposed by the League, bringing a resumption of hostilities on the ground in Shurima.
The Story So Far
The Shuriman Empire fell more than two thousand years ago. It had endured the Rune Wars, though the clash of the Magelords and the Protectorate scorched its once-fertile lands into a desert; centuries later, Azir’s hubris (and Xerath’s treachery) destroyed Shurima’s capital and Emperor in one terrible instant. The Shuriman Empire fractured into numerous feuding city-states and principalities. Perhaps perversely, this disaster bought Runeterra a period of peace—for many years, the remnants of the Empire sufficed to sate the appetites of the Rune Wars’ combatants. The continually redrawn territorial lines covering Shurima have prevented any serious attempt at unification under a sovereign ruler.
The founding of the League merely reinforced these divisions with an additional layer of governance in the form of a League protectorate. The Council frequently used Shurima as a geopolitical buffer, a repository of artifacts and minor territorial holdings that could be doled out to entice warring factions to make peace elsewhere. War came to Shurima during the dispute arising from the Hextech Revolution, and there has been occasional fighting in recent months as Piltover and Noxus hunt for artifacts unearthed by the shockwave resulting from the restoration of Nyroth.
- 16 May, 25 CLE. Azir restores the Sun Disc and raises his capital up from the sands. Sivir’s mercenaries repel a Noxian assault on the capital, while Renekton and his band of nomadic warriors seize the mansion of the Piltovian colonial governor. Azir petitions the League for recognition of Shurima as a sovereign state, and demands the rescission of all territorial claims by member-states to land within Shurima’s borders.
- 17 May, 25 CLE. The fighting continues. Noxus and Zaun vote against all motions to take up Azir’s petition, and Demacia refuses to become involved, still bitter over the prolonged captivity of its king, who surrendered himself to the League as a symbolic gesture of Demacia’s adherence to the rule of law and found himself spending several increasingly less symbolic months in a League jail. Though Jarvan III was recently released, the decision releasing him also maintained restrictions on Demacia’s deployment of troops abroad.
- 18 May, 25 CLE. On Cassiopeia’s orders, Noxus withdraws its objection. The dispute comes before the League of Legends, and a temporary truce goes into effect. While wreathed in aspirational language that suggests the truce should evolve into a permanent peace agreement without further resort to violence, in practice such truces are only meant to last long enough for the parties to gauge each other’s strength on the Fields and agree to whatever rules of warfare concerning which there may be consensus.
- 19 May, 25 CLE. The first match of the dispute is held on the Fields of Justice. Noxus defeats Shurima in this opening battle, though the tides soon begin to turn.
- 30–31 May, 25 CLE. Piltover defeats Shurima 2–1, but loses to Noxus 1–2. The League authorizes Piltover to retake possession of its headquarters facility in Shurima, but orders it to relinquish custody of an archaeological dig on land seized by Noxian troops during their assault on the Shuriman capital.
- 5 June, 25 CLE. The first round of Champion recruitment takes place. Sivir cleverly takes advantage of the more liberal Champion recruitment rules that apply to member-state candidates, and secures the admission of Leona. The Chosen of the Sun pledges for Shurima as a representative of the Solari, heirs to the kingdom of Targos that was once part of the Shuriman Empire. Noxus calls upon one of its traditional mainstays and hires Morgana; depending on whom you ask, estimates of her fee range from “the souls of a thousand yordles locked within black iron forged with the fiery breath of an obsidian-scaled dragon and quenched in the blood of the innocent” to “a lot of gold.” Meanwhile Piltover, grumbling about how hard it is to get anything done while Demacia is off pouting, must exert considerable effort just to get Orianna through the Council’s review.
- 6–7 June, 25 CLE. Noxus loses to Piltover 1–2, but defeats Shurima 2–1. Piltover secures the return of researchers who strayed into Noxian territory while “investigating strange phenomena”, while Cassiopeia confirms Noxus’ right to assert Zaunite territorial claims in the course of the dispute—a somewhat abstract choice of target, taken by many as a sign that she plans to adopt a longer-term strategy.
- 12 June, 25 CLE. In the second round of Champion recruitment, Shurima continues its entreaties to the modern descendants of the Targos by recruiting Pantheon. Noxus hires Warwick, enticed by the possibility that the blood of an Ascended being might stabilize his degenerating transformation, and Piltover recruits Nautilus with a promise to use its scientific acumen to help him find answers about his past.
- 13–14 June, 25 CLE. Shurima defeats all comers on the Fields of Justice, scoring a 3–0 win against both Noxus and Piltover. Azir pushes the Council for an immediate ruling on his petition to bring Shurima into the League as a member-state.
Given Shurima’s recent performance on the Fields, some believe it may be able to secure member-state recognition within the timeframe of the initial truce.
These matches will have a base value of 15 points, half-again as many as ordinary pick-up matches.
Except as otherwise noted, these matches will follow the standard tournament rules. We are continuing with the interim rule that Unranked Summoners (who held no rank in either Season 3 or Season 4, and are unranked in the current season) are treated as Gold.