Industry by Henrieta Hyrlikova March 26, 2020 1.94K

Riot’s 2020 – loaded with plenty of promising releases

A decade after debut of League of Legends, Riot Games is strengthening its presence in the industry, revealing several projects from its production to be launched in 2020. We are looking forward not only to expansion of League of Legends universe in multiple spinoffs, but also a brand new tactical shooter Valorant with a great potential to becoming a fully-fledged esport. On top of that, the Californian publisher has decided to enter markets of other platforms, starting with mobile devices.

Just a few days ago, Riot released Teamfight Tactics for mobile platforms and it makes it their first cross-platform title. The auto-battler, which takes place in the League of Legends universe, is now available for devices with Android or iOS and comes with full cross-play of TFT on PC, allowing players on both platforms to compete together. With this we can expect to see a competitive mobile scene begin to emerge in a similar fashion to that of PUBG.

“When we created League of Legends over 10 years ago, we never dreamed it would become this popular with so many players around the world,” ​said Marc Merrill, Co-Founder and Co-Chairman at Riot Games.​ “Now, as League enters its second decade, we’re thrilled to bring an authentic, competitive TFT experience to mobile, the first of many multi-platform efforts players will see this year.”

Riot placed an extra focus on player experience to be alike on both platforms. TFT mobile edition looks very similar to its PC counterpart. Players can sync their accounts and access the game from mobile device with most of features that PC version offers, ranked matches included.

Dax “Lunchboy” Andrus, product lead of TFT, shared:

“Players have been asking us for more ways to play TFT, and we’re excited to share a mobile version that feels authentic to the PC experience while also keeping in mind the nuances and optimization features that mobile players love”

Teamfight Tactics was released last year, but it quickly gained popularity and with over 80 million individual players became the leading title of the new genre. Even though it is still quite holding back on competitive scene, Riot has previously committed to​ “build a competitive scene for TFT starting in 2020“​. Their goal is to create more “casual” and “”entertainment focused​” esport. It must be said that making esports more comprehensible for audience is one of the biggest challenges of the industry

Riot Games has also recently posted a short video teaser of Valorant, a team-based, first person tactical shooter, that is supposed to be launched this summer. Based on the footage, the game seems to be a combination of ​Counter-Strike: Global Offensive gameplay and character systems similar to those in Overwatch, placed in a whole new world apart from League universe.

Use of clever marketing moves by Riot together with positive feedback from pro players that had an experience with Valorant, created huge hype around the game. There’s no doubt Riot will try to push the title to become a full blown esport.

The game is all designed with competition in mind, and developer’s promise of “​high-fidelity gameplay”​ and “maintaining competitive integrity​” suggests the same. Riot also mentions investing into high-end technical support for the game.

It looks like developers at Riot have a busy year ahead, as they promised to release even more. Another project expected in 2020 is Legends of Runeterra – a strategy card game with dynamic, alternating combat for PC and mobile, set in the LoL world.

Expansion of League of Legends franchise will continue in League of Legends: Wild Rift – a new 5v5 MOBA with identical gameplay as LoL on PC, but for mobile and console. The publisher states that it is not a port of LoL, but rather a new game built from scratch.

And to be complete, Riot even introduced their own League of Legends animated series Arcane. 2020 could be the Year of the Riot!


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