LOL: Riot Games design change explained through the history of its workers

After the scandal that has caused Aloy’s facial hair in Horizon: Forbidden West, the presence of a black person among the elves of the Lord of the rings and how little has been spoken of the sexualization of Lost Ark; There are still those who strongly defend the existence of a great conspiracy to introduce “forced diversity” into cultural media. An accusation that did not escape Riot Games with League of Legends , which would have succumbed to the temptation to move a decided political agenda in meeting by the great abstract forces that move the world and stain video games with politics.

The Bilderberg Club, the illuminated Bavaria or maybe the Church of Scientology could be those who have designed this Machiavellian plan for dark purposes. However, tired of mentioning organizations that I do not even understand, I think it’s time to bring such a simple theory that is explained in a single sentence. It is about the Ockham knife . A science of how likely comes to say that the simplest option is usually correct. Literally: “_When two or more explanations of a phenomenon are offered, the simplest full explanation is preferable.”

The simplest explanation for the change of League of Legends

During the past week I had the opportunity to talk with August, head of LEAGUE champions design. With him I could understand a little more about a much easier evolution story to count. Known in the community to carry out live broadcasts and for being the main manager of most of the characters that appear in Arcane, what not many know is that the creator of Jinx, VI or EKKO was in other times known as * Riot Gypsylord *. A chosen name in honor of the Gypsy dog ​​that we could translate as “_Señor de los gypsies.”

When he was maturing and winning a global perspective he changed the nickname that had accompanied him all his life due to the offensive connotations he has in Europe. In the same way that we were not so familiar with the racial conflict (especially if we do not live in large cities) the sensitivity with the Gypsy people barely existed in the United States. After realizing an error that currently has the same weight as a tuit launched in 2014, went from Gypsylord to Groovylord, from there to Jinxylord and finally stayed with August .

The Creator now shows his pronouns on Twitter’s biography and I was surprised with this answer to the question about what it was what had changed most since it came to Riot (2012) so far: “_Une of the biggest changes that We have done in recent years that I think is incredibly good is that we have focused on diversity and representation. League of Legends is a global game and we think it is important that, since we are present at a planetary level, players from all over the world can see themselves in some characters. It is important that you can play lol and there is a champion for you. Not only is it about gameplay. It is about how they look, speak or they are. We have focused a lot on that in recent years and it has been a great change for the development of champions. “

Although there are times when designers receive orders from above, one of the positive aspects of working at Riot Games according to August is “ Having freedom to make infinite things” working side by elbow “_ with artists and writers from the first day.” Far from there to be a great conspiracy that pendors artistic freedom, your favorite artists have changed their mind . It is no coincidence that there is now greater sensitivity with inclusion issues, either that the Genshin Boom Impact Catapultar designs such as Gwen or Seraphine or that the first years were full of beasts, magicians, archers and paladins given the influence of World of Warcraft.

We all fantasize with what interests us, like or matter. Narratives have always been marked by the stories we know and any artist who is not willing to hear constantly is condemned to absolute mediocrity. No one is impervious to ideas, but far from being a great conspiracy based on the “warriors of social justice” we have charged the lord of the rings for making them hire a black actor for the role of elf, the most Probable is that directors or screenwriters feel that everything is better like that.

My Riot Games Interview Experience

GEM “Lonewingy” Lim and the impact of him in Neon and Zeri

Riot Games still has a lot to change and no one escapes that the culture of the company has resulted in compensation of 100 million euros to all the women who worked in the company. However, in the same way that no memory would be an injustice, employees of the company as Kate Chironis ensure that the developer is on the right track thanks to the people who now work in it. According to her own words “” “A lot for still doing”, but at least we have diverse development tables in which opinions are heard and has “The opportunity to fight from within“.

One of the most interesting examples of this circumstance is related to the launches of Zeri (League of Legends) and Neon (Valorant). The design team of both characters was constantly exchanged, collaborating to create a complementary history based on electricity in which one represents the positive burden and the negative. As in Valorant, agents have nationality and are part of an alternative and future version of our real world, it became clear from the beginning that both would be originating in Philippines .

Among the participants in both designs was the aforementioned August, but on as important as the role of him was that of GEM “Lonewingy” Lim , originally from the Philippines. The artist not only had a capital influence on the design of both characters, but also for gameplay. One of her ideas to represent the Filipino players was to allude to a shared experience: the electrical problems of the great cities of the country and their blackouts. In this way, Zeri has a biography in which she can not control the volatile electric powers of her and therefore needs a canyon and neon is limited by an energy bar that is exhausted so that it does not always have its available speed.

The development tables are still dominated by a clear male majority and biases are inevitable. However, In their seats now there are people with very diverse vital experiences that influence how the characters or products we receive. Without GEM “Lonewingy” Lim, a woman from the Philippines, at the forefront of the Neon and Zeri project would not be known as we have known. In League of Legends the same applies to Akshan (India), Samira (Persia), Neeko (Brazil) or Viego (Spain, conqueror era).

This road has not been exempt from errors either. On the road Riot Games sinned to forget the t-shirts of the male characters and has stopped creating monsters. However, diversity in design begins to become evident. Zeri came with anime aesthetics and Filipino origin, it also did Renata Glasc As a ‘Major Lady’ product of the multiculturality of Zaun and soon we will have a monster of the most monstrous that will give even more variety to the game.

Riot Games still has to reconcile with his past, face repair of damage and demonstrate that the new impulse is a reality converting the current in trend. A process that will consist of continuing to grant freedoms to a production team that, if we serve the general photo, seems to embrace what the change involves. I do not have the right or the power to forgive their affronts, but the desire to celebrate what seems like a change that applies to more developers. Because, besides giving voice to vital experiences to mine and correcting historical injustice, too I have understood how boring and surreal that it is a portrait of the world with a single color .

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