The end of the year is always an exciting time for gamers due to the abundance of new releases and gaming content being released before the holidays, but this year, Riot Games are taking it to a new level. November 6th marked the release of the first three episodes of the Netflix original series, Arcane, an animated Netflix original series based on characters/champions from the popular MOBA game League of Legends made by Riot games. This historic partnership shattered Netflix viewership records across the globe and brings the already popular video game League of Legends even further into the limelight as the face of the gaming industry. This was only the release of the first third of the Arcane series though.
Act II (episodes 4-6) of Arcane was released on November 13th, continuing the record-breaking trends and giving Riot the chance to make updates and release new games while they have a spotlight across multiple industries. Release on steam this Tuesday, November 16th, Riot games released two new games with stories based on League of Legends, Ruined King, and Hextech Mayhem, both of which add to the stories complimentary to the Arcane series. The next day, on the 17th, League of Legends has its highly anticipated pre-season update to players across the globe. To top all this off, the final act of Arcane (episodes 7-9) comes out early tomorrow morning, November 20th, finishing off the first season of Arcane on Netflix.
So, what does all this mean of League of Legends?
First off, at the beginning of November, the 5v5 map in League of Legends, Summoners Rift, had elements of it recolored to look just like things in Arcane.
If you would like a more detailed description of all the changes that League is bringing to season 12 of the game, please look at the patch notes. To briefly summarize, new items, bounty systems, runes, and most importantly, dragons were introduced to the game, all of which are heavily influenced by the Arcane series. The new dragons are the more obvious changes that show this. Prior to this update, four dragons had a chance of spawning in every game, ocean, infernal, mountain, and cloud dragons. With the update, the hextech and chemtech dragons were added to the list and they bring mechanics into games that change how the game can be played to a level that really has never been seen before in League of Legends.
For people who may not have seen Arcane yet, hextech and chemtech are two important parts of the underlying story of the series. The effects of these dragons on the map are also very similar to what these things do in the Arcane series, giving players the ability to move across the map faster and go invisible in certain areas of the map. Abilities that were only reserved for a handful of champions are now available to all champions on the rift in certain games you may play in the future.
Bounty systems for objectives. At first glance, this new way of earning gold may not look like it has anything to do with Arcane. It just looks like an interesting way for teams that are losing to be able to get back into the game. It also changes the priorities of the winning team because they should feel the need to protect their own objectives more to not give away too much bounty gold. Games should begin to get longer, and players will be much more controlled in how they play.
Nothing to do with Arcane, right? I am not so sure and it will become much more clear after tomorrow when the final act of Arcane comes out. My thought process behind it is that there is a lot of demolition within the show. The connection is not as strong with this change; it could just be a change to keep games closer.
Finally, runes and items are clear connections to the show. One new item the “Axiom Arc” is an item that I believe is shown in the background in one of the episodes. If it is not, it looks very similar. Runes are the clearest connection to me though. This month, two main runes, predator and lethal tempo, were changed and buffed. These two specific runes are both very good on the two main characters in the show as they correspond to champions in the game.
Jinx uses lethal tempo very well but felt weak as a champion prior to this change. With the change, lethal tempo now stacks up to give more range, and since Jinx already has a very high range, even more range just makes her tougher for her enemies to get to. Predator is a rune that augments your boots to a use effect that speeds the user up towards an enemy and makes them do more damage on the first hit. The other main character of Arcane, Vi, uses this extremely well and with the buff, she can basically be run at people faster and punch hard more often now. Running up to people and punching them is something that happens pretty frequently in Arcane.
The effects of these changes can already be seen. There will most likely be a surge of new players and content creators who know this. For example, on the day of the new update, November 17th, loltyler1 “the face of League of Legends”, well know ex-professional North American player, Doublelift, and number one content creator on YouTube, MrBeast, played the new patch together for a few games and mainly talked and joked about their content while playing together. This is the first time these three have ever played together and MrBeast reached out to Tyler1 and Doublelift to do the collaboration.