Marvel unveils their first League of Legends graphic novel
Nerds rejoice, as Marvel have teamed up with Riot Games to bring you the first graphic novel based on the hit game, League of Legends. It will be a web-based series that will be called League of Legends: Ashe: Warmother that will begin in December and continue in monthly instalments before you can get your hands on the final print edition of the collection in May 2019.
— Riot Games (@riotgames) November 19, 2018
The graphic novel will focus on the story of the Frost Archer, Ashe, who was one of the original champions in the League of Legends game. Not only will the graphic novel give LoL fans a deeper understanding into the back-story of Ashe, but it’s hoped it could expand on the League of Legends universe so that we can all learn about the massive world of Runeterra.
What will be in the League of Legends graphic novel?
Whilst the print version of the League of Legends graphic novel won’t be released until May 2019, we are already getting a good idea of what will be included in the web-only monthly instalments of League of Legends: Ashe: Warmother.
The first instalment will be online on 19 December and it’s expected to be focussed on the lands of Freljord where we will get to understand how Ashe became the leader of the Iceborn tribe, and see why her mother had such high expectations of her. LoL gamers will know all about Ashe and her ice-enchanted bow, but there are still plenty of black spots in the understanding about one of the game’s best-loved and longest running champions.
Whilst Riot Games had previously created a few short stories and videos about the League of Legends universe, it’s hoped that the partnership with Marvel will deliver a more complete picture of Runeterra. The graphic novel will be created by the Riot Games writer, Odin Austin Shafer, who will be working alongside the acclaimed artist, Nina Vakueva, who has previously worked on Heavy Vinyl and the popular webcomic, Lilith’s Word. And with lettering from Marvel’s own Cardinal Rae, it looks to be the graphic novel hit of 2019.
Exploring the world of Runeterra
All League of Legends fans will know how the video game is set in the world of Runeterra that features a huge variety of landscapes and tribes. From the murky and impenetrable world of the Noxians to the illustrious nation of Demacia, there’s plenty of scope for story-telling in the League of Legends universe, and Marvel seem like a great fit for this project.
Whilst the first LoL graphic novel will be set in the frozen wastelands of Freljord, it’s hoped that if this project is a success, then they might expand to cover plenty of other areas of League of Legends lore. From the chaotic port city of Bilgewater, to the beautiful natural terrain of Ionia, there’s a seemingly limitless amount of landscapes to explore.
But it’s the prospect of learning more about the back-stories of the many League of Legends champions that could prove to be most fascinating. From finding out about how Caitlyn became one of the City of Progress’ most feared peacekeepers, to seeing how Corki got his thirst for flying, there’s plenty of room for all manner of great spin-offs.
Much will depend on how successful the first League of Legends graphic novel is, but with reports that there are over 80 million active LoL players in the world, we think that a good proportion of these will be keen to learn more about the lore of Runeterra.
Why are Marvel getting involved in League of Legends
Marvel are well-known for being perhaps the world’s most famous comic brand. With visionary figures like the much-missed Stan Lee giving us iconic characters like Spider-Man, the X-Men and Iron Man, Marvel have blossomed into becoming a massive multimedia corporation that routinely serves up blockbuster films, video games and TV shows.
But with esports like League of Legends drawing the younger generation away from mainstream entertainment forms, there were fears that Marvel could be at risk of missing out. As a result, it’s no surprise to find that Marvel wouldn’t wait too long in taking advantage of one of the largest competitive gaming titles.
The entertainment brand had previously had middling results in releasing their own video games such as Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite and Lego Marvel Super Heroes, but their partnership with Riot Games marks a particularly ambitious step. Many League of Legends fans will probably be hoping that the upcoming graphic novel could eventually pave way for a full-length LoL movie, and whilst that could be a way off, the League of Legends: Ashe: Warmother looks to be a hugely promising start.