Riot fighting game Project L will be free-to-play - Upcomer
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Project L senior director Tom Cannon shared Monday that Riot Games’ upcoming two-dimensional fighting game will use the free-to-play model. The update came in an announcement ahead of Evo 2022, the biggest fighting game tournament in the world, which will take place this weekend in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“One of our goals is to remove as many barriers as possible from you enjoying Project L,” Cannon said in his video update. “We want you to be able to play no matter where you live, what your skill level is or how much money you have to spend on a game.”

This decision to release Project L at no cost is an unsurprising one for Riot Games. The company is best-known for free-to-play games like League of Legends and VALORANT. In those games, players are able to spend money to buy cosmetics and more quickly unlock or level up characters. However, spending money is not required to play either game.

More about the free-to-play Project L

Project L will likely look to match or even exceed the success of the free-to-play platform fighter MultiVersus. With a peak of more than 153,000 concurrent players on Steam alone, MultiVersus is already the most-played standalone fighting game of all time. With the backing of an established powerhouse like Riot Games, Project L could break that record whenever it launches.

As previously announced, Project L will be an assist-based fighter; players will control two characters that they can switch between and even use collectively for combos. In addition, the game will feature rollback netcode, which many players consider a necessity for a good fighting game.

Cannon did not share any updates about a potential release date for Project L, instead suggesting a significant amount of the development process still lies ahead. However, he did confirm that Illaoi from League of Legends will join Project L as a playable champion. Cannon also shared a blog post detailing the process of implementing Illaoi into the game.

Dylan Tate is an alumnus of the Hussman School of Journalism and Media at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a gaming journalist with a love for Nintendo esports, particularly Super Smash Bros. and Pokémon.