In the press

AdAge: The future of esports lies in its coolness, say League of Legends Leadership

October 19, 2020

AdAge’s Ethan Jakob Craft, interviewed several industry leaders in gaming and media, including Matthew Manarino, senior creative director of esports at Riot Games, David Higdon, global head of communications of LoL Esports and James Draper, Bidstack CEO, to get their take on League of Legend’s rise in the last decade and what the future could hold for not only the game but the esport tournaments too.

After more than a decade on the market, the ever-popular PC game wants to help define the next 10 years of sports.

With the long-term viability of esports becoming increasingly obvious to both gamers and marketers, the team behind League of Legends, one of the world’s most popular PC games, is setting its sights on attracting new fans and cementing brand partnerships as it looks ahead to what’s next.

“We’re really incredibly proud of the past 10 years, and in the next 10 years we want to define the future of sport,” says Matthew Manarino, senior creative director of esports at Riot Games, the California-based developer that created League of Legends. “The old joke is, what if we drop the ‘E’ and were just a sport?”

Esports’ popularity is already on par with traditional sports; its tournaments boast 70% year-over-year increases in peak concurrent viewership, and the 2019 World Championship final had an average of 21.8 million viewers each minute.

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