Despite a host of new releases on the horizon, Riot Games says it has no plans to follow Epic into creating its own new storefront. During a roundtable discussion at League of Legends’ tenth anniversary celebrations in London, CEO Nicolo Laurent said that “we’re not going to try and be another store.”
League of Legends has existed within its own launcher for years. When Teamfight Tactics arrived earlier this year, it slotted in nicely alongside its older brother as another matchmaking option within the MOBA’s pre-existing infrastructure. Currently, Riot is yet to announce its distribution plans for its five recently-revealed titles, but a Battle.Net or Epic Games store competitor seems to be off the table.
Not only does Laurent “think there are enough” storefronts out there already, but he expressed concern regarding the amount of work that would go into creating a new one. “All the work we're doing on the client, the launcher, is to power our own games, and if we have extra resources, we'd rather put those resources into making our games better, versus making a platform that other people can use to sell their game. That's not what we're trying to do. We're here to make games, we're not trying to make our own thing.”
When it comes to Riot’s console offerings (so far limited to League of Legends: Wild Rift but likely to grow with a fighting game and an FPS on the cards) Laurent says the plan is to steer clear of console exclusives: “We're trying to be a platform-agnostic company. We'll make games wherever players are for the right game. For certain games the right platform is PC, for others it's console, and for some its multiple. We're not going to be attached to or exclusive to a particular platform.”
While Riot had a lot to show off during its celebrations, details are pretty scarce. Only card game Legends of Runeterra has a fully fleshed-out release schedule in place so far, and most titles are still without proper names. It’s interesting to see that the company is so open to moving away from PC, but with so many new games, I’m not sure how that launcher situation will resolve itself.