The upcoming League of Legends fighting game, Project L, was confirmed by devs to be free-to-play, with even more details to follow later in the year.
Project L, a new 2D fighting game from Riot Games, was an exciting announcement from Riot Games back in 2019. I will not lie, I forgot all about it because MultiVersus had taken over my fighting game time. Now, Riot has dropped a new dev diary video which emphasizes how the game would be free-to-play. This would mean that Riot Games would be sticking to their successful free-to-play successful formula.
Project L has been a working title for the longest time, and there’s still no confirmed title for the game as yet. It was first announced in 2019 with Arcane and Riot Games’ other titles related to League of Legends: Legends of Runeterra and Valorant (a little less related to League of Legends). The first trailer for the game was shown in November 2021 and the dev diary video showed Twitch streamers reacting to how good the new fighting game could be.
Riot Games said Project L would be “an assist-based fighting game with two fighters per team.” They also stated how the mechanics would be simple but require time to truly master their different variations. In the dev diary video, Riot Games executive producer Tom Cannon was excited to announce the game would be free-to-play.
He shared that they wanted Project L should still feel familiar to players who have played League of Legends or Valorant where the free-to-play aspects and gameplay would be clearly defined. He also explained how their team wanted to “be respectful of players’ time and wallets” in their monetization system. This could be a shot fired at Activision Blizzard’s controversial gacha monetization system in Diablo Immortal, or a reassurance that in-game purchases would be worth it.
Cannon also noted how the Project L team was currently finishing up the core mechanics of the game and building out different game modes like competitive play, as well as its social system. Another important element he touched on was how they wanted to create “a diverse and inclusive roster” of characters available to play. The latest addition to roster from League of Legends was Illaoi, the Kraken Priestess.
Illoai would be joining the roster currently listed as Ahri, Darius, Ekko, Jinx, and Katarina. I was surprised Vi was not added yet with Jinx already being in the game and with the success of the wonderful Netflix animated series, Arcane. This could be a great opportunity to bring in more brawler-like characters from the series as well.
Sadly, there was no official release date for Project L but Cannon confirmed there would be one final update for the year, which could mean they will finally drop some big details and a release date. At this point, I know I am going to love it because I have been playing League of Legends for the last 12 or so years, and Valorant since its launch in beta.
My confidence has been so high with Riot Games that even though I get frustrated with fellow players sometimes, their titles have some alluring, addictive effects that keep me coming back for more. Cannon described the team behind the game as passionate fighting game experts that would not put out anything they would not enjoy playing, stoking hope that this could be the perfect fighting game.
While MultiVersus recently launched with very positive reception for a free-to-play 2v2 fighting game with similar mechanics as Super Smash Bros., a free-to-play 2D fighting like Project L could be something that blends the best of all fighting games that have come before it. The League of Legends roster of characters and lore has already been well established and I cannot wait to see what Project L will have in store, and we have only seen two maps based in Piltover and potentially Targon. My wallet will always be open for more skins!