League of Legends surges above 30 percent in Korean PC Bang play for the first time since June

In the latest returns of an almost yearlong tussle with Overwatch, League of Legends has eclipsed 30 percent in Korean PC Bang play for the first time since June.

According to a report from Daily eSports, League of Legends surged to 32 percent, up from 28 percent the previous week. Overwatch dipped to 18 percent, an eight-point drop from the previous week, when it was at 26 percent. This week marked the highest percentage for League of Legends at PC Bangs since June 13. It is also the first time since May 30 — only a few days since the game’s release — that Overwatch’s play percentage was below 20 percent.

It’s worth noting the drop comes 10 days after Blizzard mandated foreign Battle.net accounts to hold the licenses of Blizzard games in order to play in different regions. That means a North American account must purchase a copy of Overwatch before it can play in a PC Bang, while Korean accounts can still play Overwatch for free in PC Bangs.

The mandate was done in an attempt to curb hacking, as if a user was banned in Korea, they could make North American accounts, which don’t need the personal verification of the user (unlike Korea), and play Overwatch for free in PC Bangs. Another explanation for the drop is the conclusion of the third competitive season of Overwatch, with the next season beginning this week.

Since the release of Overwatch in May, League of Legends’ grip over Korean PC Bangs eased. Overwatch overtook League as the most game played in PC Bangs for months, with League of Legends occasionally re-taking first place spot in gaps between Overwatch’s competitive seasons.

Cover photo courtesy of Riot Games

Slingshot staff writer and Korean League of Legends expert who also owns a Pikachu-themed iPhone case. You can reach him at Andrew@slingshotesports.com

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