Vaevictis female roster experiment ends in expulsion from LCL

Vaevictis frontal with fan
The now infamous Vaevictis female roster. (Image credit: Vaevictis eSports)

Last spring, Vaevictis eSports, a team in the League of Legends Continental League (LCL), took a controversial step and hired an all-female roster. After an abysmal showing, the CIS region league has kicked them out.

In the final act of the now year-long drama, Riot Games Russia has recently announced that Vaevictis will not take place in the LCL 2020 season. The article states that while the organization has had significant success with its previous rosters, in 2019 it had an “unacceptable level of competitiveness in a closed league.

The wrong roster

It is a harsh statement but it cannot be denied. Vaevictis’ decision to field an all-female roster was controversial from the start. In February 2019, the organization dropped its previous squad and fielded the following roster:

  • Diana “TR1GGERED” Ivanchenko as top laner
  • Aida “Merao” Kazaryan in the jungle
  • Elena “VioletFairy” Koval in the mid lane
  • Nataliya “Ankote” Zayko as support
  • Ksenia “Trianna” Meshcheryakova as AD Carry.

However, this was widely seen as a publicity stunt and the roster was given little chance to perform at the LCL level. The players were ranked Diamond in the CIS region solo queue and four of them were support mains. The one exception was VioletFairy, a Katarina one-trick. The roster swap came alongside rumors that the organization leadership had tried to sell the spot. After being unable to do so it attempted to raise its visibility with no intention to compete seriously.

A disastrous run

These low expectations were unfortunately confirmed all around by the games Vaevictis played. The squad lost all their matches in both splits with the shortest average game time in the League at 22 minutes and 11 seconds.

In the games themselves, Vaevictis had an average of 27 deaths per game, over a third more than any other team in the league. Even these numbers do not paint the full picture: Vaevictis’ opponents were often taking non-meta picks and sometimes borderline trolling such as picking Teemo or AP Nunu in competitive games.

It is telling that after the first several games, the league organizers issued Vega Squadron a warning after the team visibly delayed its win against Vaevictis and ended with a staggering 52 kills. Vega apparently took this to heart and in their next game against the all-female team, they set the record for the fastest game in the LCL: 13 minutes and 4 seconds.

It was a sad situation for many fans who were hoping to see more female players in professional League of Legends. It nevertheless was quite obvious that the Vaevictis roster did not belong in the LCL. The players were simply not at the level required and that was clear from the start. None of them had any competitive experience and their solo queue ranking was fairly low for pro players, especially as several of them had to swap roles as well.

While female players are significantly fewer than male players in LoL’s ranked queues, there have been female streamers in the higher Master division and some have even temporarily cracked the elite Challenger tier. Female pro players, however, are extremely rare, and only a handful such as Nancy “Electra” Rubio and Maria “Remilia” Creveling have been active in the top leagues of their region. To add to that, it was quite clear that the Vaevictis organization did not take this roster seriously. In fact, many fans and analysts were surprised that the team was not punished earlier.

Who's next in line?

Vaevictis’ position in the 2020 LCL spring season will be taken by Team CrowCrowd, an organization that has been active in the semi-competitive circles since 2016. Its owner and strategic director is Kirill “Likkrit” Malofeev, a former pro player. Fans may remember him from the 2016 Albus Nox Luna roster that eliminated G2 and Counter Logic Gaming to become the first wildcard team to reach World Championship playoffs.

And this is how the Vaevictis saga ends. If you love League of Legends and esports, don’t forget to check with us for the latest LoL esports news!