It's no secret that Riot Games is working on expanding its portfolio. In particular, they want to make more games based on the League of Legends universe. Their popular MOBA title has been the company's main moneymaker since the studio's foundation and it continues to go strong with its competitive scene set to see its 11th straight World Championship later this year.
However, while it's general knowledge that Riot Games is working on expanding the League of Legends universe to other non-gaming media with the upcoming anime series, Arcane, a recent job posting suggests that Riot Games has even grander plans.
League of Legends Cinematic Universe in the Works
The live-action productions listing on Riot's career page details their need for a Global Head of Live-Action TV and Global Head of Live-Action Film. The specifics of each job differ, as they rightfully should. Either way, both share Riot Games' intention to create a League of Legends cinematic universe reminiscent of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Perhaps what stands out the most about all of this is that the job listings both specifically refer to live-action properties. Even more surprising is that it includes the words "new franchises". This could mean that whoever takes up the position won't work on just the League of Legends cinematic universe. The individuals could also get a chance to spearhead Riot Games' cinematic endeavors for their other franchises.
So far, Riot Games' other video game franchise, Valorant, is off to a great start. Numerous known pros from other shooters like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive already switching over with the game esports' scene all but expected to flourish.
With that said, it's interesting that this is only happening now. Riot Games has constantly produced cinematics for League of Legends, doing it whenever they release a new champion, if there's an event coming, or for their esports branch. The competitive scene is effectively Riot Games' main method of advertising League of Legends.
True enough, a two-minute cinematic isn't the same as a full movie or episode, let alone a live-action film. But, you can't deny that the success of such cinematics proves that there's a demand for longer and bigger productions. Not to mention, many audiences are familiar enough with League of Legends, as it's been out for longer than a decade now.
With so many stories already told and more to tell, there is a clear foundation for a League of Legends cinematic universe. Whether or not it'll become successful is a different story altogether.
As of the moment, Riot Games is still working on releasing the League of Legends animated series, Arcane. It would have released in 2020 if not for the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, the situation forced Riot Games to push the launch back to an undefined 2021 release window. However, with Valve's own MOBA, Dota 2, seeing a successful turnout from its own anime series, Riot Games may be inclined to work harder to prevent being one-upped by their main rivals.
The rivalry of Valve's Dota 2 and Riot Games' League of Legends runs deep. Both are based on the Warcraft 3 mod, Defense of the Ancients and both also share developers with Steve 'Guinsoo' Feak.
Feak formerly worked on Defense of the Ancients before the eponymous IceFrog took over. He then moved on to work on League of Legends until reportedly leaving his post in 2016. As of the moment, it is currently unknown if Feak is still with Riot Games.