Demacia key art in League of Legends universe splash
Image via Riot Games

Riot ‘resetting the direction’ of LoL MMO, warns players not to expect updates as dev team is ‘going dark’

At long last, an update about Riot's most hyped, but most unknown game.

You can exhale. The Riot MMO is still happening. 

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After a little over a year without any full-fledged updates, Riot’s chief product officer, Mark Merrill, provided an extensive look at where the Runeterra-set MMO title is earlier today. Merrill confirmed that the project is still in development, but the team made the difficult decision to completely “reset the direction” of the game in an effort to make it stand out more from the field of MMOs currently on the market. 

Bilgewater Event in League of Legends' key art -- a harbor shown in dark green coloring from the view of an interior cave
It’s likely going to be a few years until we hear about the status of this project again. Image via Riot Games

“We don’t believe you all want an MMO that you’ve played before with a Runeterra coat of paint,” Merrill said. “To truly do justice to the potential of Runeterra and to meet the incredibly high expectations of players around the world, we need to do something that truly feels like a significant evolution of the genre.”

As a whole, MMOs are in a fairly strong spot right now. The genre had a brief renaissance in 2021 with titles like New World, Lost Ark, and the many variations of World of Warcraft and its Classic module, all garnering moments in the spotlight. While few MMOs outside of WoW and Final Fantasy XIV have had much staying power, the Runeterra MMO has always had the potential to become a titan of the MMO landscape, mostly due to how much care Riot has put into its titles. With S-tier games in the MOBA, tactical shooter, and auto-battler genres already, it shouldn’t be too difficult for the studio to enter the MMO genre with ease, either, provided they put in the same amount of effort. By Merrill’s account earlier today, they are. 

To push the genre-defining vision forward, Riot named veteran game developer Fabrice Condominas (Star Wars: Squadrons, Mass Effect Andromeda) as the new executive producer of the MMO. Condominas will replace Vijay Thakkar in the role, who built “key components of the technical foundation” of the game and will stick around as its technical director.  

Despite the update, Riot confirmed that it will be the last one for a while, as the development team will be “going dark” for quite some time. Merrill stated that the game’s creators would be heads-down on the development of the MMO for “likely several years.”  

Riot has never pledged itself to any release date or launch window for the MMO publicly, and frankly, nothing about this title is public knowledge at this point, apart from the fact that it’s going to be an MMO set in the expansive universe of League of Legends. We initially projected that the game would launch sometime around 2025 at the earliest, but that was just about two years ago. We can’t really expect the game to have any set timeline now, especially considering the dev team has fully pivoted its strategy. When it launches, it launches, and we’ll be thankful when it does.


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Author
Michael Kelly
Staff Writer covering World of Warcraft and League of Legends, among others. Mike's been with Dot since 2020, and has been covering esports since 2018.