League of Legends professional players can now get US athlete visas

Friday, 12 July 2013 21:18 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

League of Legends are now recognized as professional athletes by the US government and will all them to use a visa to compete in tournaments.

The news was provided to Gamespot by Riot Games eSports manager Nick Allen, who said the decision made by the government was accomplished via a “lengthy process” in which Riot had to prove the game was a legitimate sport.

“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.”

The League of Legends Season 3 World Championship takes place October 4 in California.