The studio Riot Games is currently working on the development of an MMORPG. What about the studio’s philosophy on group play? According to Greg Street, there are some great single-player games out there, but players who opt for an MMO are usually looking for a community to join.
In December 2020, Riot Games studio made it official that it was developing an MMORPG that would immerse players in the world of Runeterra – as popularized by League of Legends. Although the development is still in its infancy, the project’s executive producer Greg Street regularly exchanges on social networks with players interested in the project and thus evokes the philosophy of “Runeterra MMO”.
When asked about the community dimension of the title and the place of single-player in the MMO, he believes that there are many very good single-player games for players who prefer to play alone and that an MMO is by nature more dedicated to group play.
What is your and your team’s philosophy on group formation? I’ve always felt that not having a group finder with strangers is healthier for a game, as it forces the creation of guilds and a sense of community.
Greg Street: This is going to be vague, but our philosophy is that if you want to play a single player game, there are some really good ones. Horizon! God of War! Persona! Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous! But if you want to play a game with a community, with friends, then go for an MMO instead.
While Greg Street claims to be vague in his answer and obviously doesn’t write off group search tools (not always appreciated, but becoming the norm in most modern MMOs), we understand that the Executive Producer also takes into account the community dimension specific to MMOs.
In another conversation, he goes on to discuss the place and influence of the gaming community on the direction of the game in development: are players meant to “take the game as it is and go elsewhere if it doesn’t meet their expectations” or, on the contrary, will the developer be “attentive to the expectations of the community and integrate the features that the players demand”? Greg Street’s answer is nuanced.
Greg Street: “It would be like if we decided to open a seafood restaurant, not a place where ‘whatever kind of food you like, we can serve you’. But we would still pay attention to what seafood dishes are most popular within the seafood community and tailor our seafood menu accordingly.
So we’re closer to the first statement, but it’s not like a piece of art where we wouldn’t care if it appealed or not. We want an enthusiastic, vibrant community that appreciates our art, and we can make changes to make them appreciate it more. But we’re not trying to please everyone. That’s not what leads to great art.”
We’re betting that the development team will deliver more specific data on the project as it progresses – whether or not gamers are involved.