The Problems with Lore

First Riot Post
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Xulsigae

Senior Member

04-05-2013

To help with lore, would you ever hold a writing or animation competition? I like the art highlights, so why not add some writing or animation to them? Quality control issues aside. Give players a set of boundaries in what is to be written about (topic, characters, setting, word amount) so it's not just willynilly, and see what people come up with.


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Mestergrog

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Hi kitae, I appreciate all you guys have done to make a more interconnected story, it makes the game much deeper. But, you mentioned that the goal is to advance the stories. So have you (or any of the lore developers) seen suggestions for doing this advancement with Trundle? It wouldn't change his new ice troll king story, it would just make the new story a continuation of his original. One suggestion is at the bottom of here: http://na.leagueoflegends.com/board/...300719&page=25
Many players are fond of Trundle's original story and it would be really great if you could do this, preserving a little bit of the old inside all the new.


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Morec0

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xulsigae View Post
To help with lore, would you ever hold a writing or animation competition? I like the art highlights, so why not add some writing or animation to them? Quality control issues aside. Give players a set of boundaries in what is to be written about (topic, characters, setting, word amount) so it's not just willynilly, and see what people come up with.
YES! Give me a writing competition! Let me dominate the scrubs!

In all sriousness, though; Blizzard has done so at least once and it worked out EXTREMELY well. Riot has plenty of fans that have proven their talent and dedication over and o er again. It would take work to sort through, but the result, I think would be worth it.


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Kyrrion

Senior Member

04-05-2013

+1, a really good read


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Xulsigae

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Morec0 View Post
YES! Give me a writing competition! Let me dominate the scrubs!

In all sriousness, though; Blizzard has done so at least once and it worked out EXTREMELY well. Riot has plenty of fans that have proven their talent and dedication over and o er again. It would take work to sort through, but the result, I think would be worth it.
Oh yes. Let me use my level 30 vocabulary and dunk some noobs to use the colloquial expressions that the natives are fond of utilizing.
I jest.

I didn't know that about Blizzard. Wonder how they managed it.


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AmbushIntheDark

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by kitae View Post
The same line of bull that we've been shoveling onto you for the past year about how we want to tell our stories but cant seem to find a way. But dont worry ! We wont be giving you anything substantial until then, because we stopped writing good lore over a year ago when we had the journal and judgements.
For anyone who wants the short version of that post.


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Xulsigae

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmbushIntheDark View Post
For anyone who wants the short version of that post.
That's not going to change anything. Just makes the rest of the well thought out and calm posts look bad.


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Vongeo

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by kitae View Post
First let me say, thank you for a well thought out articulate post. You obviously put a lot of thought into it.

So your two major concerns seem to be.
  • Conflicts are set up but are never resolved
  • Players don't advance the story while they play the game

Resolving Conflict

I'll agree we haven't resolved many conflicts. I'd say we're in the stage of story telling where we are more revealing our characters and our world, and the conflicts within. Look at Freljord for example - we're just now revealing the full nature of the Freljord.

This is an exciting period in our storytelling. For example, I recently saw a thread asking for more information on the Shadow Isles. There is still a lot of mystery in this faction to be revealed.

But longer term I agree we need to both explore and resolve conflict. Let me use Soraka vs Warwick as an example.

Exploring their conflict would involve telling stories involving them both they help us better understand them as characters. This could include a more detailed exploration of their origin, or stories in which Warwick attempts to hunt Soraka as examples. Most comic book stories are of this sort (two characters are in conflict, and an encounter occurs involving but not resolving that conflict).

But resolving conflict is important as well. There are numerous ways we could resolve their conflict without killing Soraka:
  • Warwick could find another form of cure (what if Soraka used her powers to cure him?)
  • Warwick could dramatially slow his decent into bestiality
  • Warwick could kill Soraka, but she could then be reborn via the power of the stars
I'm not saying we're going to do any of those, but these are examples.

The bigger question is - how will we tell all these stories? We've experimented in the past with Judgements, the JoJ, and now Quinn's journals. These are all valid storytelling medium, but we need something bigger to explore the stories of Runeterra.

So how will you tell stories?

We're still working on that but we are considering all avenues. This includes novels, comic books, video. We're still in the very early stage, but we want to bring stories to players in mediums beyond bios and forum posts with images.

But what about advancing the storyline through playing League of Legends?

So we actually do this a little. I'll give Kha'zix and Rengar's quest as an example. When that quest activates, and a player wins the quest, they are in a sense resolving their conflict. Not in a permanent way. Not in an IP affecting way. But to the players in the game at that moment it is a story-significant moment.

Similarly if Twisted Fate and Graves face off, it becomes a story significant event. The difference is we don't support that in game right now, but we'd like to do more support for these kinds of events in the future, without compromising the core multiplayer experience.

BUT I am not trying to overstate the significance here. This isn't the same level of player-involved story exploration and momentum you can achieve in a single player RPG. So what is the solution?

Well one solution would be producing a single player RPG set in the League of Legends universe that allows for deeper story exploration. This is not a teaser, but this is possible, and it's something I'd like to see happen.

So in conclusion ....

We are looking to advance the story of League of Legends. We're considering many options, including traditional story telling mediums, and other games.

The stories of Runeterra are being introduced through the League of Legends, but they will be fully explored outside of the game.

We're going to continue to work hard to bring you stories within League of Legends through bios, faction events, and careful in-game story integration like the specters in Twisted Treeline.

And we will continue to build a foundation on which we can tell great stories. This includes establishing compelling characters with strong motivations, relationships, and conflict that set up the potential for future storytelling.
But if you resolve conflict, you'll have to replace the characters with compeletly different ones with the same name because the lore will be stagnate otherwise.


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AmbushIntheDark

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xulsigae View Post
That's not going to change anything. Just makes the rest of the well thought out and calm posts look bad.
We have a year of well thought out and calm posts and nothing has changed with those either.


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SoresuMakashi

Senior Member

04-05-2013

Great post OP.

There's a quick point I'd like to bring up that relates to your third suggestion about divorcing the lore from the game. Riot might still be able to tell non-canonical "what if?" stories. In fact, I'd argue that they have done it on a few occasions while managing to keep it within the confines of LoL. For example, Justicar Syndra is a "what if she was good?" skin, although that aspect wasn't really emphasised on launch. In future, skin suggestions such as Eclipse Leona and Diana could convey lore within the framework of the actual game.

I'd also like to suggest a fourth, idealistic solution. What if the game evolves as lore does? You brought up the point that WW will never be able to kill Soraka without ruining the game, thus rendering the story stagnate once you look past the superficialities. Kitae countered by saying that Soraka doesn't necessarily have to die to bring the arc to a close. While you're right in saying that there would be massive community uproar about the removal of any champion from the game, this might be lessened if the champions don't die, but simply evolve. Where aesthetics, kits, and animations progressively (no retcons) change to represent shifting personalities and relationships between champions. Lore progresses, and the game progresses with it. While this sounds good in theory, I do, however, note that this is a farfetched solution. Looking at the negativity that the community has towards large gameplay changes (see: Karma/Trundle reworks), it may be extremely difficult to convince them to accept a constantly changing game, especially when you consider that most of them don't actually care about lore. I'm not even sure that they can be convinced. I'm just saying that it would be easier than convincing them about the need to entirely remove a champion.

Edit: Clarifying above idea with Trundle example. Trundle keeps his old lore, wandering to the numbing cold of the freljord to stop the pain and decay of his body. There, he meets a new troll tribe who is accepting of him. He stays, having finally found a place for himself. Then his new lore continues as currently planned (becomes the leader of the Tribe, meets the Ice Witch etc.). His abilities (and other elements of the game, IF appropriate) change to an ice-inspired theme, and there, lore has progressed with the game supporting it.


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