League of Legends MMO: What to Expect?

In Riot Games’ 10th Year Anniversary Announcement, they announced that they have decided to expand the scope of their projects to develop more games from different genres. So far, we’ve received an Auto Chess, First-person Shooter, Card Game, Tabletop Game, and a single-player RPG from the company all released within the past two years. Last month, one of Riot Games’ lead developers leaked plans about making a League of Legends MMORPG based on the world of Runeterra. Here’s everything we know about the plans so far and what you should expect from it.

Poppy and Tristana charging forward with their weapons
Are you looking forward to the League of Legends MMORPG?

League of Legends MMORPG

MMORPGs have always been one of the more popular game genres in the gaming community but it’s also one of the genres that has found the most difficulty trying to satiate its playerbase. Games from this genre come and go and only become prominent for a few months until 50-80% of the players move on from all the hype. Most MMOs die during this point and are forced to adapt by making unfavorable decisions such as adding premium content that make them purely pay-to-win.

Riot Games developing a League of Legends MMORPG definitely has its perks since we can expect a good economic environment in the game. Over the years, League of Legends’ story has been developing steadily so much so that the world already feels alive. There’s a good layout for how the game would look like because of the countless League of Legends Cinematics and comics. This will be Riot Games’ biggest project and is sure to be one of the biggest topics once they give out a definite release date.

The Development

Let’s get one thing out here right off the bat. MMORPGs take years to develop even with a company as big as Riot Games whose made several games already. The average time that a game company can develop an open world MMORPG would be about 5 years if they’re committing a large team to work on this full-time. Even World of Warcraft takes at least a few years to make an expansion pack when they’ve literally got the best team working on their game.

The good news about the development of a League of Legends MMORPG is that Blizzard’s former lead developer, Ghostcrawler, will be working on the game. This means that we can expect a high-quality game that could be the biggest name in the MMO genre since the release of titles like Black Desert, Elder Scroll Online, and Final Fantasy XIV. One of the most important things to take note is that we should give Riot Games all the time they need unless we want them to deliver an incomplete game filled with undesirable errors.

Subscription Model

Riot Games has yet to released a paid game but the best MMORPGs on the market are often subscription-based games or one-time purchase games so that the developers won’t have to add premium items that break the balance of the competitive community. There are some great free-to-play games out there but as mentioned before they offer a lot of unfair advantages to players that are willing to spend money to get ahead.

Riot Games has always had a heavy emphasis on vanity items being their primary source of income. A free-to-play model that doesn’t involve any gamebreaking premium items might be possible considering that they’ll just likely sell a crap ton of costumes similar to WoW’s Transmogs. That sounds silly but it will likely draw in unimaginable numbers purely because its an F2P MMORPG that’s made by the same developers that made League of Legends. Now that’s hot.

Open World or Linear World

A League of Legends MMORPG definitely has the capability of being open world because of how the world of Runeterra has already been built. However, the biggest downside of creating an open-world game is that it will take significantly longer to develop with the average 5-years being the minimum amount of time to create this instead. Open World would be the ideal game type that the League of Legends MMORPG should have if it wants to attract the attention of the community.

Runeterra map with indicators of the major city | league of legends mmorpg
The massive world of Runeterra

A linear world that involves loading screen portals or invisible barriers would be an absolute disappointment as fans have already been painting a picture of a WoW-like game arriving to the market. Furthermore, linear world games have fallen off in popularity due to more companies being able to develop high-quality open world games both for Single Play and MMOs. On the other hand, it will definitely arrive a lot sooner and there’s likely less people that will “ride on the hype”.

Character Creation

You already know that League of Legends features a lot of different races and classes as well as factions. You can be a yordle, human, vastayan, voidborn, or whatever race is available in the Runeterran lore. It’s pretty exciting to imagine what kind of character we can design using our own imaginations or basing it off already existing characters. Who knows, you might even have one of the League of Legends champions as your class master and will be your guide moving forward.

Speaking of class, you might be able to choose between the pre-existing character classes or maybe Riot Games will introduce a new set of classes in the new League of Legends MMORPG. The best character creation system made was that of World of Warcraft that limited classes per race which made a lot of sense. An addition that would make it even more engaging is to add a “slider” system that would give more freedom in creating faces, body types, and hair/body colors.

Combat System

The next question is whether the combat system will be Tab Targeting or Action Combat. Tab targeting refers to a World of Warcraft-style game where enemies that are selected will be the target of your ability. Tab targeting is pretty popular and easy for beginners and is ideal for PvE based games that require the DPS-Healer-Tank composition. This is a pretty outdated combat system but is still an interesting way to create an MMO in today’s time.

League of Legends character roles and classes
What role do you want to play as?

Action combat is an increasingly popular combat style. The game that made this work successful is Dragon Nest. Action Combat doesn’t require any targeting and skill accuracy is dependent on player accuracy, much like an FPS. Having an action combat system will be really exciting to have especially if they make it work for both PvE and PvP while incorporating the DPS-Healer-Tank system. There’s also the option of using both combat systems to create the ultimate League of Legends MMORPG.

World Development

Imagine being able to visit large cities like Demacia or Noxus or taking a walk at the nature attuned Iona. Dive the undercities of the criminal-infested Zaun or brave the deserts of Shurima. Being able to travel the world of Runeterra is extremely exciting but the best part is being able to interact with the NPCs. Visit the command center of Demacia and listen to Garen give you your first mission as a rising hero of the city. That’s probably what most of the players will be looking forward to.

Whether it’s open or linear world, bringing these cities and areas to life is essential to making this a game that’s beloved by the community. The last thing we want to see is something like Pokemon Sword & Shield that had an absolutely incredible concept but the world development was so horrible that it disappointed so many people. Once again, the fanbase should allow Riot Games to take all the time they possibly need to create this game so that it will become a masterpiece once it comes out.

What to Expect

Riot Games hasn’t given us any substandard games as of yet. All of the games so far have been thoroughly planned and were created beautifully with minimal issues. There could be some needed changes when it comes to balance but Riot Games hasn’t been well known for making anything balanced at all. Kidding aside, they have several employees who are dedicated in giving the community the best experience and aren’t simply doing this for pure profit.

The city of Demacia located at the edge of a giant waterfall
The flourishing city of Demacia

Riot Games is a big company so let’s expect them to finish this game anytime before the decade ends. However, if the game goes over 2030 then there’s nothing much we can do except wait for the results the game to come out. Limit your expectations simply to what’s possible instead of imagining that the game will release with features that might not even be available to other companies that specialize in MMOs.

When will the League of Legends MMO come out?

Riot hasn’t announce any specific release date yet but for an open-world MMORPG, the average time to finish a project as big as this is 5 years minimum.

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