League of Legends’ lore has taken a big turn since 2020. With Arcane taking screens by storm and the Ruination novel capturing readers globally, Riot are rethinking how Runeterra’s stories will be told with wider entertainment in the future.
League of Legends is going mainstream in some sense. While it’s a video game titan, Arcane brought it to the silver screen in a big way, winning numerous animation awards along the way in a near-historic run.
The developers have also captured the interest of readers, with the Ruination book focusing on Kalista and the Shadow Isles being swept off shelves from the moment it dropped.
Instead of just being in-game short stories and snippet clips, League of Legends lore is now a big project in itself. Players eat it up, it’s easy to get into for outsiders, and it’s always well received.
So heading into 2023, Riot are looking at changing how they tell the stories of Runeterra to give every champion and character better representation.
“We’ve been rethinking our approach to lore,” League of Legends Executive Producer Jeremy ‘Brightmoon’ Lee told Dexerto. “Through seeing the reaction to Arcane, we’re really aligning internally to have a more consistent lore representation that we provide players.
While there’s nothing concrete yet, it’s something Riot were moving toward at the tail end of 2022. With bigger collaborations with mainstream names like Lil Nas X and Porter Robinson, League is further intertwining itself with popular discourse.
Those “connection points” keep building no matter the medium — music videos like the aforementioned, books like Ruination, or TV shows like Arcane — and they are critical to League’s lore success going forward.
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Speaking about Ruination in particular, Lee stated “it was really awesome to have the Ruination come out and for us to get a better look at Kalista in particular.
“In general, you can expect more exciting content that is a collaboration with entertainment and the League of Legends dev team. Arcane was something we collaborated on a bit, and we see even more opportunities to collaborate for in the next season.
“You’ll see more connection points with the other entertainment content Riot is producing with League of Legends in the future.”
However, for those who prefer the more traditional lore approach with short stories and character-building in-game, there’s still going to be something there. For Ixtal in particular, with the launch of new enchanter support Milio, players will learn much more about one League’s least-known regions.
“With Ixtal, we have previously seen only Qiyana’s version — or her life in what Ixtal could be,” lead champion producer Lexi ‘Lexical’ Gao told Dexerto.
“Milio is from a very different background compared to Qiyana, so we hope with Milio, he will bring that perspective of what it’s like growing up in Ixtal, in a very different area as well as a different socio-economic class.”