Riot Games’ popular multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game, League of Legends, has continuously experimented with how players can create characters that look different from one another. Some players like the current system where players are able to choose from a pre-selected set of character skins with various looks and color schemes, while other players prefer to create their own character and choose a skin that suits their tastes.

The Runeterra community is in love with all things League of Legends, and that love has been passed down to the director of the recently launched game. Senior game designer Dustin Beck recently sat down with Geeks of Color to talk about his work on League of Legends and how his team is using character customization to give players more agency in the game.

The Runeterra Universe, the world of League of Legends, is a place rife with conflict and intrigue. From within the backdrop of the game’s lore, a grand campaign is being waged for the control of a massive continent called Runeterra. The conflict is driven by the game’s main characters, and the players who have chosen to follow one of two factions: the Order of the Rune, and the Shadow Isles.

legends-of-runeterra-very-bad-fencing-form-696x229

Mark Yetter, the director of the in-development MMO set in the universe of Runeterra, seems to be thinking about character creation in a number of tweets from his personal account, in which he presents a TDG-style question:

“Having the ability to create a character identity that is uniquely you is a rare ‘have your cake and eat it too’ scenario in game design. What can be done to encourage gamers to attempt new things and differentiate their looks, is a question I’ve been pondering a lot. (To avoid everyone seeming like a cookie cutter)”

The query sparked a flurry of responses and reactions on Twitter and Reddit (the latter of which was quickly derailed by what was described as “gamer angst” in the comments). Most individuals mention having nice slider options, while some mention transmog systems as a method for characters to stand out. Others knit their brows in amazement, as if Yetter had never played an MMORPG before. In any case, it provides some food for thought.

To refresh your memory, Riot’s MMO has had a strange and tortuous development path. While the game was first officially confirmed in December, there was a lot of “will they won’t they” before that, with Riot’s co-founder asking if the studio should make an MMO, then claiming he was joking, followed by a tease, a flat denial, then the reveal of Project F, and finally the December announcement. In a list, we’ve gathered all of the connected tales.

What can be done to encourage gamers to attempt new things and differentiate their looks, is a question I’ve been pondering a lot. (To avoid everyone looking like a cookie cutter)

10 August 2021 — Mark Yetter (@MarkYetter)

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What if you could create a custom character and use them in the world of Runeterra? You would be able to build a character from scratch and truly change their appearance and customize everything about their look. You would also be able to have a unique name and a backstory that no one else would have. What if you could do all this in a persistent MMORPG world, so that your character would actually exist in the world and be able to interact with other players as well.. Read more about riot mmo and let us know what you think.

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