This past weekend, Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok, the most famous pro gamer in the world, captured his fourth League of Legends world championship as his team, T1, defeated rivals Weibo Gaming in front of a home crowd at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul. It was an impressive display but, as always, one of the most exciting parts of the experience happened before the matches even began.
The opening ceremony for Worlds is a chance for developer Riot Games to mash up bleeding-edge tech with performances from some of music’s biggest names. This time around, the event featured K-pop stars NewJeans and some impressive augmented reality. But the biggest star was also, well, the biggest: a 110-meter-long LED display featured throughout.
“Using that surface, we’re aiming to create really immersive environments,” says Carrie Dunn, Riot’s creative director for global esports. “So it’s not just about portraying information. It’s about making the audience feel like they’ve been transported.”
The 13-minute-long ceremony (which you can watch above) was split into a few different sections. It started with a prerecorded cinematic in which a League player made their way from playing the game in their bedroom to being transported through a portal to the Worlds stage. From there, the musical aspect began with Heartsteel — a newly created virtual boy band made up of alternate versions of popular League characters. First, there were real singers and rappers performing the song “Paranoia.” Then, a (virtual) car crashed into the huge screen, shattering it, while AR versions of the group appeared onstage.
It was a chance for Riot to utilize techniques it had already made use of in the past. At the opening ceremony in 2021, for instance, the entireRead more on theverge.com