Riot discusses its diversity efforts for Wild Rift and the Power Spike update

Riot discusses its diversity efforts for Wild Rift and the Power Spike update

League of Legends: Wild Rift was released in October 2020 and has already amassed over 20 million average monthly players. Wild Rift takes many of the favorites from League of Legends proper, such as Ahri, Senna, Lucian, Vi, Jinx, and Caitlyn, to name a few, and allows players to use them in team matches. mobiles. If you’re unfamiliar, Wild Rift works from the League of Legends core as a core foundation, but uses different mechanics, playtime, and even character choices from the PC game.

The characters, however, stay true to their PC counterparts mechanically and aesthetically. Wild Rift matches last around 15 minutes compared to the typical 45 minutes in League of Legends. Wild Rift is essentially a speeded-up version of playing League of Legends on your phone, but flourishes in its own right, capturing players everywhere with the ease of playing on mobile. GameSpot recently participated in a panel discussion on Wild Rift’s latest patch, 3.14: Power Spike. This patch adds new items, characters, and balance changes to the Wild Rift roster and is available now.

If you want to check out the exact balance changes and character specific buffs/nerfs, you can check out the Champion Changes for Wild Rift 3.4 which details all of your number needs. You can go here for the patch notes, but below you can read more about what’s new and on the horizon for Wild Rift from the developers directly.

New champions

Wild Rift roster additions will be added over time with Patch 3.14: Power Spike. Gwen the Sacred Seamstress and Yone the Forgotten debuted in Wild Rift on September 15 and September 22 respectively. “2022 is going to have a lot of edgelords,” Wild Rift Product Manager David Xu joked of upcoming character releases from Gwen, Yone, Vex, and Warwick.

The latest Wild Rift characters released in September are Gwen and Yone.
The latest Wild Rift characters released in September are Gwen and Yone.

Gwen brings her legendary Hallowed Mist with her signature scissors in hand and is able to crush enemies. Yone brings his dual swords and fiery mechanics to slash enemies with elegance, grace, and quick death. “2022 is going to be very focused on bringing in what we think are some of our big hitters – the in-demand champions,” Xu said. “In 2023, that’s when we’ll start recruiting other niche champions. Champions that fulfill more specific thematics or specific gameplay [mechanics] that we are looking for. Expect to see some of League of Legends PC’s other champion treasures in the next stages.

Gameplay changes

Outside of the Power Spike update, Wild Rift also received its first massive map update with Elemental Rift. “We’ve made huge changes to the objective system as well as the changing map throughout the game.”

The Infernal, Mountain, Elder, and Ocean Dragons of Elemental Rift join in the ferocity.
The Infernal, Mountain, Elder, and Ocean Dragons of Elemental Rift join in the ferocity.

Wild Rift itself has different issues and priorities to address than League of Legends PC, such as the ping system. There are fewer features on a mobile platform to communicate with teammates compared to League of Legends on PC, the developers said. “For Wild Rift, there are often unique challenges and differences for our game that are specific to Wild Rift versus League. We really wanted to address [the] Elemental Rift to help players get better agency on their games and feel better overall when it comes to gameplay pacing and stress levels,” said Adnan Mirza, Gameplay Producer for Wild Rift.

An example offered by Mirza is that communication is generally more difficult between players on mobile devices because the audience doesn’t really like talking or using headsets. Sometimes that means changing things that work in League of Legends to better suit mobile. “Any time [players] would see any content, even if it’s from League PC, we’re still considering how it would best fit Wild Rift. [For example]we eliminated some of the intricacies of the game and some of the decision points because it was causing a lot of fatigue for our players.

In-game communication in team-based games can be strenuous on a mobile platform, but this Wild Rift update will have new ping system options. These new options do not replace the default ones, but are additional preferences. “Improving communication will always be a big [aspect] for us,” Mirza said.

New items

Similar to League of Legends PC, the latest Wild Rift update will also add additional items to the game. New item releases can help provide players with enhanced benefits that previous items could not. Sometimes specific roles need to be given more options of items to equip, so they can be in a better state for the match or the game as a whole.

“We wanted to improve the gameplay experience for supports. We’ve made a lot of balance changes to these spaces to add new enchantments, adjust some parts of the game, and now add support items. Supports now have better ability to control their own experience and have more agency, Mirza said.

Player feedback is always given to MOBA developers such as Wild Rift, and the Riot team wants to take into account any feedback or qualms players may experience while playing Wild Rift. ” We saw [increased] success with feedback from both players [and] the other different measures we have,” Mirza said. A prime example is feedback from players having a harder time using supports in-game compared to other roles. The developers would like to bring in future Wild Rift content that doesn’t just come from League of Legends PC or has earlier fundamentals.

Skins

Skins have been a mainstay of League of Legends PC for years. These are meticulously, extravagantly and wonderfully crafted aesthetic themes or modifications for previously released champions. Some of the skins released in the Power Spike update are Space Groove Gwen, Crystal Rose Yone, Bewitching Vex, and Superhero Jayce.

The new Wild Rift skins are Space Grove Gwen and Crystal Rose Yone.
The new Wild Rift skins are Space Grove Gwen and Crystal Rose Yone.

“We still want to continue releasing fan-favorite skins on PC that people have really loved, and making sure Wild Rift players have the option to choose something that really resonates with them or speaks to them in a special way. “, Jared Berbach, game director for Wild Rift, said.

As other Wild Rift developers have stated, Berbach is also looking forward to future releases in 2023: “Our story is really about, how can we make things that feel more unique to Wild Rift and potentially even exclusive to Wild Rift? Just kind of a treat for our player base that we want them to enjoy. Berbach said: “We have a lot of players who choose to stay with us. [exclusively] on Wild Rift, and we want to reward that investment with our time with some really cool new themes that they can enjoy.

History and diversity

League of Legends, and Wild Rift in particular, are played by players from all over the world, with many different color groups, marginalized identities, and ethno-religious backgrounds. In the past, Riot Games has had explicit issues in its character release, where there is widespread whitewashing of the ethnicities of characters of color such as Lucian. The company has even had white characters given very Orientalist aesthetics, tropes, or skins over the years with the Lunar Reveals, for example.

When asked if they induce more forethought when creating skins for Wild Rift, Berbach said, “We know that in order to reach a global audience, we need to be able to represent all of these underrepresented groups. .”

Riot created RIGs (Riot Interest Groups) with the idea of ​​bringing together groups of people to represent people with underrepresented identities. “They are still part of a process that we use in [the] creation of Fields and skins. For example, when we created Lucian, we had a very extensive process between the game team and this RIG to support them specifically, their thoughts on how we could authentically integrate this character and avoid a lot of tropes that [Veerender Singh Jubbal] described,” Berbach said.

Mirza chimed in from a personal perspective: “I’ve worked on a lot of the gameplay and have less direct involvement with the art, but I see the conversations and the feedback. I’m also South Asian and I know colorism happens sometimes and it reminds me of some pretty big marketing slogans in Urdu like “Of Gora hoga”. They will now be fair-skinned or light-skinned. Something that I’m quite aware of, and from my point of view, it was never really intentional on the part of [Riot Games].”

When moving from one medium to another within a company, concerns or issues may arise solely from changing different teams or developers in the creative process. Huge creative effort goes into concept art of a character until it is playable by the public. Errors such as authenticity may not be fully reflected in the whole process.

“Sometimes I think there’s been a loss of an aspect of translation when you go from one medium to another, whether it’s in-game or in 2D. Sometimes those things don’t quite line up quite, but the team is trying to get ahead of them [aspects], and when you’re wrong, you really try to fix it. ” Mirza said. “I have a sense of the sensitivity of my senses because of the culture where I come from. We never claim to be perfect, but we try very hard and try to listen to feedback [to] make changes when these different arts aren’t quite what they’re supposed to be.

The products discussed here were independently chosen by our editors. GameSpot may get a share of the revenue if you purchase something featured on our site.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.