Riot Games says controversial ‘League of Legends’ cinematic “missed the mark”

League of Legends. Credit: Riot Games.

Riot Games has released a statement regarding the League of Legends cinematic launched alongside Season 2023, claiming it “missed the mark” due to “unprecedented circumstances” cropping up.

Yesterday (January 10), Riot Games shared The Brink of Infinity – a cinematic marking the launch of League of Legends‘ Season 2023.

While traditionally each season is kicked off with a fast-paced animation showing the game’s characters doing battle, 2023’s cinematic has drawn heavy criticism for instead being a 3D tour of the League of Legends map.

Though the cinematic was narrated by Arcane star Mia Sinclair Jenness, it was widely criticised by League of Legends fans for feeling “generic“, “underwhelming” and a “downgrade” of previous cinematics, which have been incredibly well-received by fans in the past.

As a result, Riot Games has issued a statement explaining that it needed to take an “alternate approach” to the yearly tradition.

“This year, there were some unprecedented circumstances that had us choose an alternate approach to the Season 2023 video,” shared Riot. “However, we believed it could still embody League’s broad universe and competitive spirit while celebrating the start of a new season.”

“But we’ve heard your feedback, and we want to acknowledge Brink of Infinity missed the mark for the action-packed, champion-led trailer you expected and has led to further speculation about our investment in League,” added the studio.

The cinematic has sparked a wider discussion regarding the effort that Riot Games has been putting into League of Legends in recent years. While some of these perceived issues are more recent – such as the cinematic itself, or a controversial change to the professional scene’s new schedule in America – others feel there are longer-standing problems with the game’s battle passes and events.

Riot admitted that it “should have been more communicative” over the topic, and added that “We do believe that League has a bright future and we are investing in that, but we can do a better job of sharing those plans with you.”

The developer plans to provide “more details about what that investment looks like in the next couple of days.”

Splash art of Gangplank from League of Legends
League of Legends. CREDIT: Riot Games

Separately, League of Legends developer Ryan ‘Reav3’ Mireles addressed claims that League of Legends is in “maintenance mode,” and said that while they can understand the concerns, they disagree.

“I can understand why people would draw that conclusion, though I can assure you that we are not,” Mireles posted on Reddit. “Me saying it isn’t going to convince anyone of that though. Like many companies we lost a lot of talent during Covid, where many people took the WFH situation as [an] opportunity to look for different paths in life. It was rough all around the industry and Riot was no different. It wasn’t because Riot intentionally cut budget or scope for LoL. To put it more eloquently, shit happens.”

Mireles went on to say that Riot has been “investing into so bigger things that won’t ship for quite some time,” but acknowledged that “the only thing that will change people’s opinion is when we ship content.”

On Monday (January 9), Riot Games outlined some of the content that is planned for Season 2023 – including two new champions.

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