Legends of Runeterra

LoR Masters Europe: Chronicles of Bandlewood - Moments and Memories

Oct 22, 2021

LoR Masters Europe: Chronicles of Bandlewood - Moments and Memories


Throughout a riveting three week period we’ve seen the European server set ablaze by intense competition as the top countries battled to become the Legends of Runeterra Masters Europe champions.

In past editions, the overarching theme seemed to be that of the underdog. The triumphant rise to the occasion of a team that exceeded expectations and proved that their country deserved to be among the elite powerhouses in Europe. This time around, we saw quite the opposite as Germany, the undisputed top country in Europe, dazzled fans with clean calculated plays and unmatched strategic precision when it came to assembling lineups and countering their opponents to become the third-ever LoR Masters Europe champion!

The #1 seeded country entered the tournament with high hopes and an all-star team led by the #1 ranked player after the ladder qualification phase, “Teddy314”. Alongside were seasoned veterans “Quabatchie” and “Kuraschi” rounding out the squad. Despite consistent performances from all members throughout the past year, there was some reluctance to dub them as favourites considering Germany’s performance in the last edition of LoR Masters Europe. Although Group A featured incredible performances from the eventual champions, Turkey, and the dark horse of the tournament, Lebanon, more was expected from the strongest country in Europe. This time around Germany rose to the challenge and managed to finally proclaim themselves as the champions of Europe!

Group Stage

Following the qualification period, the stage was set with 16 of the top countries in Europe ready to battle it out in four different groups. The goal was clear, finish among the top two countries in each group to guarantee a spot in the Top 8 championship bracket. Teams were put to the test with a truly unique format, including 7 deck lineups with two champion bans.

Group A saw tournament favourites Germany and Czechia pitted against newcomers Belarus and Greece. On paper, this seemed to be a clear-cut group, with an overwhelming advantage in experience from consistent top players such as “Pokrovac”, “Bajatak”, and “TomasOW” for Czechia, alongside the eventual champions Germany, suggesting it was clear what teams would end up advancing.

Both teams started with two wins, but, following Germany’s victory over Czechia on Day 3, Czechia fell into a downward spiral with three consecutive losses. Greece and Belarus both proved that they have what it takes to compete among the best, and the final group stage day ended in a nail-biting tiebreaker rematch between Czechia and Greece, where Czechia ultimately was able to emerge victorious, but not as unscathed as they might have expected.

As is customary within Group Stage formats, there must be at least one “Group of Death”, and as if following a repetitive pattern, it was once again composed of three of Europe’s elite competitive countries; Poland, Belgium, and Sweden. The only difference from the last edition of LoR Masters Europe was France being replaced by Italy, but with “Broken Ball” once again qualifying Italy as their team captain, this was far from good news for the group’s participants. Following Poland’s recent dominance during LoR’s first-ever World Championship, it was clear they would be the team to beat, even in a highly competitive group such as this one. Despite this, Poland faltered right out of the gate, and the remaining teams scrambled to take advantage as we ultimately saw Sweden’s “Arren2398”, “ImSoHumble” and “Pyrokz” perform at an exceptional level right until the final day, qualifying as first in the group with Broken Ball’s Italy barely eking out an advantage over Belgium to make it into the Top 8.

Group C was certainly harder to predict, with an unusual assortment of teams with wildly differing storylines. Russia was the clear favourite, with a top 4 performance in the Chronicles of Shurima edition and recent world championship participant “Ragnarosich” once again leading them into battle. Although France has historically been one of Europe’s top-performing countries at an individual level, in the last edition of this unique 3v3 tournament series they did not manage to meet expectations, although with seasonal champion “Den” as team captain many expected this to change. Norway returned to the LoR Masters Europe tournament series after failing to qualify for Chronicles of Shurima, and veteran players “Markus” and “Trishfangirl69” seemed eager to prove they deserved to be among the best in Europe. To round out the group, we have the newcomers Morocco, considered by many as the dark horse of the tournament with “Gouda ddy” as team captain.

The Group started with back to back upsets, and Morocco and Norway both gained confidence going into Day 2. Norway matched Sweden’s dominance in Group B, and the Scandinavian duo breezed through the first half of the group stage, with a 3-0 record for each. Morocco on the other hand could not capitalize on the confidence-boosting win they got over France, and subsequently suffered three losses in a row. Despite Russia starting with a loss, they quickly settled into a nice rhythm that eventually took them to the top of the group with a formidable 4-2 record. On the other hand, France was seemingly unable to break their Masters Europe curse, and although Norway seemed to be the clear favourite to win the group at the halfway stage, a truly bewildering turn of events saw Morocco turn things around and force a final day rematch against Norway in which they ultimately came out victorious.

Group D was the host to the reigning Champions Turkey, as well as the familiar pairing of Spain and Romania, both teams which also competed against one another in the very first edition of LoR Masters Europe. As the last seed in the group, we had tournament debutants Serbia joining the battle, with the talented “Boky” as their team captain. Although Spain and Turkey might have been considered favourites, Serbia and Romania quickly proved they were not to be taken lightly. This fierce competition resulted in a tantalizing finish, with the possibility of a four-way tie looming over the competitor’s heads as the final day of the Group Stage commenced. In the end, Spain and Turkey managed to secure their spots in the Top 8, although the group was a single game result away from what could have been a double rematch tiebreaker finale!

The Championship Bracket


Two weeks after the competition’s start, the quarter-finals were set to take place. Germany, Turkey, Russia, Italy, Sweden, Morocco, Spain, and Czechia. Seven of these countries were ready to fight for the title of European Champions, and Turkey was ready to defend it.

As the first quarterfinal was underway, Germany showed no signs of slowing down following their dominant group stage performance, and although Turkey fought valiantly to retain their title as European Champions they could not help but fall to the eventual winners. Russia, another tournament favourite, quickly followed Germany’s lead, and took a dominating 2-0 win over Broken Ball’s Italy in the second quarter-final of the day, including a win with Lissandra/Taliyah Thralls, a deck that Russia had helped popularize throughout the Group Stage phase.

In the third quarter-final, Sweden continued their confident run from the group stage with a Game 1 win facing Morocco’s Gangplank/Sejuani Plunder. Despite this, Morocco’s miraculous “dark horse” run continued undeterred, with an incredible reverse sweep that saw them ultimately defeat Sweden and push through into the semifinals that would take place on Sunday. In the blockbuster super-heavyweight quarterfinal that followed, we got to see Spain vs Czechia vying for one final spot in the Top 4. Both teams had an all-star cast of players, and the level of experience and tournament consistency on either side made the matchup seem more reminiscent of a Grand Final matchup. In the end, it was Spain who prevailed, with Lissandra/Taliyah thralls once again performing exceptionally well and giving Spain that final Game 3 win over Czechia.

With the recent change to a fully Best-of-Five format for all semifinal matches, excitement was guaranteed as the final day of competition took off. In the very first semifinal, we had a clash of titans as Germany’s “Teddy314”, “Quabatchie” and “Kuraschi” faced off against Russia’s “Ragnarosich”, “05WTF”, and “Carnality”. Following the ban phase in which both countries mirrored their Poppy and Sion bans, it was Germany’s Plunder up against Russia’s Shen/Jarvan midrange deck to start things off.

Although Germany’s lack of early/mid game presence put them in a precarious position early on, Plunder’s incredibly powerful champion top end was able to wrestle the game back in their favour as they barely survived the mid-game and were able to stabilize and take the win in game one. This first game seemed to repeat itself again and again, as Russia’s Demacia-heavy strategy seemed to just barely falter and run out of gas right before the finish line, as Lulu/Zed and Shen/Jarvan suffered back to back losses against Germany’s Akshan/Sivir and Darkness. Although the result may seem anticlimactic, each game was an absolute nail-biter despite Germany moving on to the Grand Finals with an impressive 3-0 result.


On the other side of the bracket, there was a true “David vs Goliath” storyline. Spain’s roster was overflowing with tournament experience, with “Cosimo” having just returned from a Top 8 placement at the first-ever LoR World Championship, accompanied by a Seasonal Tournament Top 4 veteran in “Sergi2Vamos” and one of the few players to have qualified to every single edition of LoR Masters Europe, “CDSFaul”.

A large part of Morocco’s success until this point can be granted to their excellent teamwork and synergy, alongside the leadership of one of the tournament’s standout players, “Gouda ddy”. In a similar fashion to Lebanon and their captain Sorry’s heroic efforts to qualify their country to the tournament in the previous edition, of LoR Masters Europe, Gouda ddy single-handedly made sure Morocco would be among Europe’s best, putting up one of the best performances throughout the ladder qualification phase and drawing much-deserved attention to his name.

As the second semi-final began, everyone’s attention was immediately pointed towards an unexpected champion combination in Spain’s lineup, Elise/Vi. Although SI/PnZ Control Archetypes have been a part of the meta in the past. This new take featuring the recently added Sentinels package was sure to pack a punch. Spain instead chose their Poppy/Lulu rally deck to start things off and managed a quick Game 1 win against Morocco’s Plunder deck. In game 2, Spain locked in the aforementioned Sentinels Control deck while Morocco chose to switch to Zoe/Lee Sin. Through a combination of control spells and mill strategies with the ever-popular Aloof Travellers Spain managed to take Game 2 just as Morocco drew their very last card.


With their back against the walls Morocco was forced to pull off yet another miraculous reverse sweep if they wanted to keep their tournament hopes alive, but Spain’s clean and calculated execution of Akshan/Sivir’s gameplan managed to end those dreams and result in yet another 3-0 sweep as Spain advanced to face Germany in the grand finals.

The Grand Finals

As the highly anticipated Grand Finals arrived, no one could be surprised to see the two teams who had made it this far. Although, historically, the LoR Masters Europe tournament series has been full of surprising results and underdog stories. In this latest edition we had the chance to see the tournament favourites perform to their expected level and dazzle viewers with their near-perfect strategic play throughout.

As the ban phase was underway, once again we saw both Poppy and Sion banned for either team. Germany opted to lead off with Darkness versus Spain’s more aggressive GP/Twisted Fate deck, and once Darkness was able to stabilize in the mid-game the burn gameplan Spain was aiming for collapsed, giving Germany a 1-0 lead to start things off. As we moved into Game 2, Germany chose one of the best performing tournament decks, Akshan Sivir, as Spain decided to pick their unique Elise/Vi Sentinel Control list in response. After yet another quick win and a 2-0 lead for Germany, the fear of an anticlimactic 3-0 sweep as had happened with every single other series on this day began to grow. Spain was now forced to perform a reverse sweep manoeuvre if they were to retain their hopes of becoming the next LoR Masters Europe champion.

As it could not be any other way, Germany chose the ever-powerful Nami/Zoe deck to try and seal the deal with a final Game 3 win, while Spain opted to run it back with Elise/Vi Sentinel Control. Spain managed to find some breathing room with a Game 3 win, and after locking into a Nami/Zoe Mirror in Game 4 and winning, Spain tapped into a newfound trove of confidence and hope as they equalled the series 2-2. In the nail-biting Game 5, Germany confidently locked in their Nami/Zoe deck for a third time in a row, while Spain chose the ever-reliable Akshan/Sivir. The game came down to a constant back and forth until Spain felt forced to commit a Concerted Strike in an attempt to remove Germany’s key champion Nami, but Germany had anticipated this plan and was able to counter with a well-timed Sunblessed Vigor. With Nami surviving the interaction, Germany was able to snowball the lead and finally defeat Spain in Game 5 to become the LoR Masters Europe: Chronicles of Bandlewood champions!


This third edition of the LoR Masters Europe tournament series saw many new teams rise to the challenge, featured a constantly evolving and unique metagame and ultimately saw some of the most consistent and experienced players finally rewarded for their near-perfect gameplay decisions. You can revisit all of the action in this complete VoD playlist on Youtube.