Lore-wise, LoL is full of untapped potential.

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SonofOrion42

Junior Member

08-30-2012

When I started playing LoL a while back, I immediately fell in love with it, not just for its addictive gameplay, but also for its setting and incredibly diverse cast. However, I feel that it could use more attention. The champions' backstories and the info on all the different locations in Runeterra are intriguing, but there hasn't been much done with them. Sure, there's the JoJ, but that just gave us brief views into the characters' lives and the development of the world. The journalistic style also gave the entries a very impersonal tone that kinda made it hard to maintain interest. The Judgements did a better job of accomplishing the former, but they only focused on a very specific part of the champions' lives... so yeah, you get my point. Lore's been getting the short end of the stick lately. I mean, I can understand why, the competitive scene is massive. However, I was very surprised to see that Riot is still willing to put more attention to it at some point. I know it may not be for some time, but hey, the chance is there. Best not to ignore it.

I've been wondering; what could be done to make the lore matter more again? No guarantees on what Riot will do, but I think I found an option: stories. Nothing like the articles from the Journal sparsely linked in an arc; I'm talking about full-fledged tales, told from the perspective of the champions themselves, rather than columnists from the Institute. Think about it; we have over a hundred characters in this game. They all have their own distinct personalities, backstories, skills, relationships, appearances and beliefs. There are plenty of heroes, villains and neutrals to be found here. Riot said that their goal was to make their cast as diverse as possible, and they certainly succeeded at that. Add a world run by empires and city-states who tend to butt heads quite often over their ideological differences, and are only kept in check by the League, for fear of utterly ruining a world already wounded by the rampant misuse of magic in war, and you've got something special on your hands. Stories focusing on champions could give us deep insight into their lives and make them truly complex. They could flesh out their relationships with fellow champions, along with their aspirations, fears, histories, quirks, and of course, the impact they make on both the League and the rest of the world.. Speaking of which, Valoran is rife with conflict and political intrigue. Plenty of fun to be had there, and that's not even counting places like the mysterious Shadow Isles, the anarchistic port city-state of Bilgewater, and the Void that threatens to consume Runeterra.

If Riot went the extra mile and started churning out good stories, they could really help revitalize the development of lore. Comics or novels, both are fine. I dunno if any staffers will read this, but that's alright. Just wanted to share my two cents' worth. So, what are your thoughts?


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Xulsigae

Senior Member

08-30-2012

Are you familiar with the Black Library of Warhammer 40k? That's a prime example of a game (a tabletop one no less) spawning massive amounts of quality literature from excellent authors. Some of the best series are based upon one model or codex. Gaunt's Ghosts is a classic and is full of characters and 'behind the scenes' bits that don't show up in the actual game. The Horus Heresy is spanning dozens of books and is one of the best origin stories I've ever read.
So from my love of Warhammer to my love of League...I fully agree that Valoran can do with a good story or 100, dealing with everything from the champions to champions that failed to get in to a summoner that started a new strategy to life in Bilgewater etc. The mediums are incredibly variable as well- only today some fans posted a very nice manga dealing with some intrigue and Jax. Very accessible and fun to read.
The money to be made from this I assume would be very great. Dedicated fans will buy quality things that enhance their gameplay and understanding of characters and locations.


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1Eredale

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Senior Member

08-31-2012

Inqisitor Jarva~ I mean, Eisenhorn?

I think that the reason why tabletops spawn quality writing is that they take considerably more time and thought. That, and the fact that if one wants to actually play them, he has to go and meet up with real players (which is a challenge in itself). People just tend to treat computer games less seriously in general, because all it takes is several minutes to several hours of installation, and everything's good to go.

If I ever aspire to be a writer (which I am taking tiny steps towards), I would probably try for a position at Riot. But not yet - not just yet.


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SonofOrion42

Junior Member

08-31-2012

I am most certainly familiar with the Black Library, and that is definitely an excellent example. Warhammer got it right. What's fascinating about it is how varied each of the series are. Compare Gaunt's Ghosts to Ciaphas Cain. Both deal with the IG, but are completely different in tone, style and plot. If Riot could capture the magic that makes the Black Library so great, it would definitely be a real moneymaker for them. There's so much they could do.

Man. How would a story about Corki's time as an ace during the last Rune War sound to you, or one about Malzahar and Kassadin's feud over the Void? I'd read the hell out of them.


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Dorkmuse

Junior Member

08-31-2012

League of Legends MMO. Make it happen Riot.


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Dorkmuse

Junior Member

08-31-2012

Oh, and also, as a relatively new player, I have been pouring over the old Journal of Justice articles, and I regret not being around while the issues were current. I can understand maybe why it was dropped, if the caustic and generally uncaring League playerbase is any indication, but I hope the material won't go to waste. It certainly won't with us newer players!

SO YEAH, my point, League of Legends MMO *cough*


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Oug

Senior Member

08-31-2012

actually, I really hope that they DON'T make an MMO. That style of game is just not suited for story-telling nor meaningful changes

Personally, I thought that the JoJ was better for getting across lore than WoW was (I played way back in vanilla)


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Dorkmuse

Junior Member

08-31-2012

Agreed, but WoW was really great in a visual/sound design sense in really drawing you in to it's universe. I remember the first time I spawned in the Night Elf area and feeling that sense of wanderlust and amazement...It'd be amazing if something like that could be crafted with the LoL lore as the foundation.

Why did JoJ stop by the way?


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SonofOrion42

Junior Member

08-31-2012

Eh, I don't think an MMO would work very well for LoL. Oug is right; the setting is almost entirely based around its champions, who are all unique and very powerful. It should remain primarily focused on them, so it is not suitable for an MMO-style game.

I don't know why JoJ was halted, but honestly, I think it's best to let it be. It was interesting, but I think the lore deserves more attention than that.


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ThorRush

Senior Member

08-31-2012

Well, Riot has said the JoJ was limited. For some people, reading just isn't their cup of tea.

People have been asking for some kind of interaction between lore and gameplay, you know, the Volibear/Zilean type interactions and that one Ionia/Noxus match. In addition, some kind of "story mode" might even be popular compared with Summoner's Rift, considering the reaction to other maps like Twisted Treeline and the Crystal Scar. Maybe an MMO isn't the right way to go, even if Riot has some MMO designers (NMST, Zileas), but I could see Riot adding something to the game client. Besides what the creative team has said, there is one particular post by Coronach about creative's work not being seen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotRaven View Post
Dear fans of League of Legends lore:

You've undoubtedly noticed that we have not released Judgments for our most recent characters, nor have we updated the Journal of Justice within recent months. While we have enjoyed providing you with these additional windows into the Lore of our Champions and the world of Runeterra, we have come to realize that the formats we'd chosen have their limitations. Judgments are stories limited in that they occur only during the intake of a Champion into the League of Legends. The Journal of Justice is limited in that it can only contain in-setting journalistic articles. We have found that these limitations are preventing us from providing you with the background and stories that we really want to share with you, ones that will better appeal to a broad audience.

We have been examining the best way to do this and are still in the process of doing so. However, in the mean time, we will no longer be releasing Judgments. We need to take the time we put into those pieces of fiction and apply it towards finding a better solution. We will be concluding the in-progress storylines and completing the Journal of Justice over two issues, as soon as we spin up the required art resources.


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