League MMO head explains early reveal logic: “There was actually a strategy”

Terry Oh
League of Legends MMO

In a recent Twitter post, Greg ‘Ghostcrawler’ Street outlined the predicament of revealing too much information regarding the League MMO currently in development, and explained why the team is currently choosing to trickle things out instead.

It’s no secret that the League of Legends MMO has been in active development for a couple of years. It was, after all, announced alongside the Riot Games Fighting Game: Project L in 2019. But despite the MMO having been publicly announced, there hasn’t been much news ever since.

Riot Games‘ VP & EP of the upcoming MMO title, Greg Street, recently provided some insight on how balancing reveals and teasers becomes tricky — especially when regarding a massive project such as an MMO.

Since the game is still under development, the team wants the creative freedom to change various things along the way, rather than being locked into certain plans.

“Another consideration is usually framed as ‘protecting the team.’ You need the ability to pivot your direction, sometimes massively, in response to internal testing and external market forces,” Street said on a massive Twitter thread.

“When developers are under a lot of pressure because they know players are so eager, it can make it harder to toss out designs that aren’t working.”

The fan base for an upcoming game may grow attached to the first aspects of the product teased to them — resulting in unnecessary controversy when the final result is something rather different. In Greg Street’s words, “players and media may again interpret this as ‘something must be wrong’ because they aren’t used to seeing those changes (which are very normal) in public.”

For MMOs especially, changes are inevitable, Street reminded fans. “One bad feature can topple the whole experience. If dungeons are based on combat, and the combat is mediocre, then the dungeons are mediocre.” This results in the developers changing various aspects of the game simultaneously in order to find the perfect harmony.

League of Legends MMO
The League MMO will explore new regions in Runeterra.

Another big variable as to the sparse communication is the team at Riot wanted to target the incredibly excited MMO community over the mainstream. In essence, they are looking to hire those enticed by the MMO project, while also building a committed fan base, rather than appealing to everyone possible right away.

“We thought it made sense to low key announce to help with recruiting (we need a lot of MMO vets), to excite players, and because we thought it would likely leak anyway,” Street continued.

“We still vow to talk to you early and often, I am a huge believer in communicating to players. We want you to understand why we chose to do things in a certain way.”

He then continued to discuss the game’s future roadmap, elaborating upon the game’s release. “We don’t want to be in the position of trying to “save” a game after a rocky launch. We want you to jump in and say ‘yes, this was worth the wait.'”

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