Is Riot planning a League of Legends fighting game?

league_of_legends_fighting_game__round_2_by_iurypadilha-d7hx6wg

Fan Illustration: League of Legends Fighting Game: Round 2 [iurypadilha, DeviantART]

News broke yesterday all over the internet that Riot Games, the developer of the insanely popular League of Legends, has acquired Radiant Entertainment. Radiant had been working on a robo-fighting game called Rising Thunder. The mech fighter was released August 2015 in the form of technical alpha. Having played the game, it was very balanced and fun to play. My one critique at the time was that the characters were all too similar in aesthetics and very shallow in originality. Below you can see the official press release from the Radiant team, and I have highlighted the part that I found most interesting:

Radiant + Riot Games
We are delighted to announce that Radiant Entertainment has been acquired by Riot Games. At Riot, our developers will continue their mission of building incredible games that speak to us personally as players. You’re probably wondering what this means for our games.

First and foremost, Stonehearth will go on, full speed ahead. We’ll continue delivering Alphas at our current pace, with the aim of delivering the final game “when it’s ready.” We’ll continue keeping you up to date on our progress through things like our Twitch streams and Desktop Tuesday blog posts.

As for Rising Thunder, the team will start work on a new game that we’re incredibly excited about. We wish we could say more now, but rest assured you’ll hear more when the time is right. For now, we will be permanently closing Rising Thunder on March 18th. Thanks to everyone who participated in the Alpha!

And more broadly, to everyone who has helped support us by playing Stonehearth and Rising Thunder, backing our Kickstarter, telling your friends, and giving us your feedback: Thank you for helping us make these games as good as they can be. You have been a consistent source of motivation and inspiration for us, and we look forward to continuing to talk and work with you in the future.

– Tom & Tony, on behalf of Team Radiant

Given that while many people had complaints about Rising Thunder, not many of them were about the mechanics or actual gameplay. It’s very doubtful that Riot would have acquired Radiant only to scrap Rising Thunder AND the fight engine/mechanics altogether. Riot has built a multi-million dollar franchise in League of Legends. They are a major player in the world of MOBA eSports, and it would make sense that they would have some interest in doing the same thing to the fight game community. If Riot is going to try and make up ground in the FGC against the likes of Street Fighter V, Guilty Gear or Mortal Kombat, you better believe that they are going to have to leverage an IP that people are already comfortable with… and they just so happen to have one in League of Legends.

League already has a massive following with beloved characters that has a lot of eSports credibility. Mixing what we have seen in the Rising Thunder alpha with the world and characters created by Riot in League of Legends may be a game changer. If this is not the plan over at Riot, it would be a massive let down.

Let us know in the comments if this is a game you would be excited for.

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Cory Vincent
Cory Vincent 434 posts

Forged in the crucible of awkwardness and self loathing, Cory somehow manages to get himself out of bed each day and make it a priority to spend life killing Beef and going H.A.M.