The Unicorns of Love have, perhaps more than any other EU LCS team, earned the support of the League of Legends fanbase.
Whether it was through their manager Romain Bigeard cheering his squad on in glorious costumes or the unique and devastating team play of a very dangerous team, UOL captured the hearts of the fans across the globe.
But there have been many changes for the Unicorns heading into 2018, including the loss of the face of the organization, Romain Bigeard. It's now up to the future to decide how the team fares in their predecessors hoofsteps.
Let's take a look at the roster that's taking on that mantle for the 2018 season.
Meet your new Unicorns of Love
In the top lane, the Unicorns of Love lost Vizicsacsi who was perhaps the best Europe had, and have replaced him with former rank 1 WhiteKnight. The Finnish top laner is only 21 years old, but comes to the Unicorns with some experience under his belt. WhiteKnight has most recently played for Paris Saint-Germain and as a substitute for Ninjas in Pyjamas. While WhiteKnight is of course a downgrade from the dominant force that is Vizicsacsi, he has potential to grow into a solid EU LCS top laner, and with so much trust in him from the organization, they may see even more in him.
In the jungle, the Unicorns of Love lose one of their fan favorites in the unique Xerxe, in favor of another high level EU LCS jungler, Trashy from Splyce, who has now changed his alias to Kold. Whether Kold's name change was to signify a new era for the player or simply a preferential move, fans should be excited to give him the clean slate he deserves. Kold put in some strong performances for Splyce during his time growing with the organization, and while some other players may have stood out more at times, Kold still held his own, even helping his team eliminate the Unicorns of Love from Worlds 2016 contention. After a more disappointing 2017, Kold is looking to re-solidify himself in Europe. He may have found just the blessing to do it with.
In the mid lane, the Unicorns of Love retain the feast or famine style young German Exileh. Few European mid laners have seen the lows of Exileh. Often the standout worst performer on his team on their bad days, Exileh has seen some harshly bad games in his time on the Unicorns. But that's not to say he was always a failure in the role. Exileh tempered his worst with a fairly strong potential for duking it out with even international greats in the middle of the Rift. While he had fans shaking their head often, he seemed to have them clapping plenty as well. Exileh is only 20 years old with plenty of room to grow, but if he falters in 2018, no amount of Marilyn Monroe handling at his worst deserve him at his best will save the Unicorns' Spring Split.
In the bottom lane, the Unicorns of Love have retained only half of their previous duo, losing playmaking support Hylissang and keeping AD carry Samux. Filling the support void is the Unicorns of Love first Korean import, former bbq Olivers support Torotoro. Hylissang was often the flashier player in 2017 for the Unicorns bot lane, but Samux held his own in the marksman slot. And in the LCK, Torotoro was facing the steepest bot lane competition outside of the LPL and holding his own as well. While Unicorns will have to face communication barriers in the most critically communicative roles on this team, should these two find some synergy, they could be a dangerous presence in the EU LCS in 2018.
While the story of the Unicorns of Love heading into 2018 is one mostly of loss in dropping standout performers Vizicsacsi, Xerxe, Hylissang, and figurehead Romain Bigeard, it doesn't have to end that way for this squad. The EU LCS overall has seen a rocky offseason, and the Unicorns have come out of it with a new look, and the potential to return to greatness in Europe should they grow into the hooves they look to fill.
They'll have to prove themselves to the rabid fanbase that the Unicorns have put together in their time so far, but don't count this blessing out just yet.
Let us know what you think about the new Unicorns of Love for 2018 in the comments below!