Project L by Riot Games is possibly one of the most anticipated fighting games. Part of the reason for that is the involvement of the Cannon brothers, two of the well-respected members of the fighting game scene. With Riot Games finally showcasing tons of gameplay footage for Project L amidst the EVO weekend (August 4 to August 6), here is everything we know about the upcoming fighting game based on League of Legends. We have covered the Project L release date, gameplay features, characters, and more.
Project L Release Date
If we were to speculate, we expect Project L to launch sometime next year with an official name, possibly before EVO 2024. Or, you can even expect an official announcement during the EVO 2024 event, with an introductory tournament.
The game is already in a state where it is playable, with many invited pros from the scene trying it during the EVO 2023 event. Thus, with steady development time, we can expect to hear a launch date soon. Furthermore, it will be a nice nod if Riot Games decides to announce the Project L release date at EVO 2024 next year. Remember the game’s existence was confirmed first at EVO 2019 during a talk show.
Project L Supported Platforms
If you are a fan of fighting games like Tekken, Street Fighter, and Mortal Combat, you would be eager to know if Project L will be available on your preferred platform. Judging how most games have shifted focus towards PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X/S, we expect Riot to follow suit and launch its game on all these platforms.
Furthermore, a tweet by the username @RiotFGC shared an image showing Project L running on PS5 on the show floor demo during EVO 2023. While it certainly does confirm one of the platforms, we assume that the developers are investing their time and effort to make the game available on other platforms as well. Riot Games is yet to confirm the supported platforms.
Project L Price Details
Last year, Riot Games confirmed Project L will be a free-to-play fighting game. But, they haven’t shared in what capacity — whether we will have a seasonal battle pass, how new characters will be unlocked, and more. Earlier, an Xbox-published fighting game called Killer Instinct also followed a free-to-play system, where two main characters were free for players to try. The remaining roster of characters was unlocked for a limited time on a rotation basis. Later, it received an option to permanently unlock the characters. Whether Riot Games will borrow this system for Project L is something to keep an eye on.
Another thing Riot can do is borrow the methods they use for Valorant, including the new Kingdom Points system. Players have character-specific unlocks that they can complete during matches. Once you reach a certain threshold, you can unlock them for free. Outside of that, you can pay money to unlock the characters.
What Kind of a Fighting Game is Project L?
The first thing that will come to anybody’s mind is what kind of fighting game is Riot building with League of Legends characters. After all, we have tons of sub-genres in fighting games. We have tag-based fighting games like Marvel VS Capcom, traditional 1 vs 1 games like Street Fighters, 3D fighting games like Tekken, and more.
That said, Project L will be an assist-based fighting game where players can select two characters from the roster and tag them out mid-match. During the match, you can either call the second character to assist you in extending the combos, or you can tag out and control the other character. It follows the foundation set by titles like Marvel VS Capcom, Skullgirls, Power Rangers: Battle of the Grid, and more.
Additionally, Project L will be a team-based fighting game where a team of two players can duke out against another team, controlling two different characters.
Project L Gameplay Features (Confirmed)
As mentioned before, this game will be a team-based assist fighting game, which means a team of two players can control their respective characters and fight against another team. You can also play it like a traditional assist-based fighting game, controlling both characters in a match at a time. Furthermore, there is also the option to play it 2 vs 1. In the recent video shared by the team, it is confirmed that Project L will be a six-button fighting game.
Buttons and Offensive Options
It will have buttons for light, medium, and heavy attacks. The rest of the buttons are assigned to the two special moves available for each character. These special moves further translate to ultimate, which comes in three variations. Pressing the down button twice and S1 or S2 buttons will perform one of the two level-one ultimate attacks.
Doing this same input, expect you to push both specials together, performing a cinematic level 2 ultimate. Mixing and matching the said inputs will result in you pulling off combos in the game, where the higher the combo, the better the damage.
Defensive Options and Assist Options
For defense, you have different ways to protect yourself. You can do the staple back or down-back block. Additionally, the game adds a meter-based push-block which pushes the opponent away, a retreating guard where you dash back while blocking, and you even have a low and standing parry.
The assist button is used to call your team member to help you. Riot Games has also added a certain depth to it, where you can call in the other character or player quickly during an emergency, call them in whenever you want, and also call them in to help you extend combos.
Finally, before the start of the match, you can choose one of the modifiers from the Fuse System. They can change up your gameplay and adds various advantage to the matchup. For example, one allows you to link your ultimate, while the other provides an attack boost.
Confirmed Project L Characters
With Project L still in active development, the roaster will keep growing prior to the official release. While the final slate of characters for Project L is yet to be confirmed, thanks to the EVO show floor demo, we know the characters that are confirmed to be in the game. These are:
Furthermore, if we have to predict what other characters will join the game, we expect League of Legends characters such as Vi, Caitlyn, Pantheon, Miss Fortune, Lee Sin, Warwick, and Akali to be available in Project L down the road. Each of these characters fits the fighting game archetype perfectly. For example, Vi is a melee-based character in League of Legends. Similarly, Caitlyn can be a zoner/trap-based character, given how she uses a sniper and traps to annoy opponents in League.
One great thing about the League of Legends IP is that nearly every character can join a fighting game. So it is up to the developers when it comes to roster addition and who they want to add and experiment with.
Project L Teasers & Trailers
The existence of Project L by Riot Games was first confirmed during EVO 2019 by one of the Cannon brothers. Later on, during the 10th-anniversary celebration of League of Legends, Tom Cannon officially revealed the game. The video had work-in-progress footage of Jinx fighting against Katrina and concept art for Darius. Check it out here:
Later, we officially heard about the game, now called Project L, during the RiotX Arcane event in November 2021. In the video, the Cannon brothers introduced the title, announcing the name, the nature of the game, and how favorite League of Legends characters translates in a fighting game.
On 27th July 2023, we got another look at the game in its current state. This time, the team announced Project L to be a team-based tag-fighting game. In it, players can either play it together with another player or play it solo like a classic assist-based fighting game. We also saw a polished look at the gameplay, which included the sleek HUD.
Then, during the EVO 2023 weekend, Riot Games confirmed that one of LoL’s favorite (debatable) characters Yasuo is joining the Project L roster. It offered a first look at Yasuo’s move set, his special abilities, and his level 2 finisher. The team also shared the gameplay mechanics and how Project L will play once it launches.
Who are the Developers of Project L?
Another big question many people might have in mind is who is responsible for making the game “Project L.” While Riot Games directly focuses on Valorant and League of Legends, Riot-owned Radiant Entertainment is making this title. Run by Tony and Tom Cannon, both brothers are well-regarded and respected in the fighting game community, with some credible history behind them.
They were responsible for starting the EVO tournament. It is one of the oldest and most prestigious fighting game tournaments, with thousands of players from the world flocking to it every year. Additionally, the Cannon brothers developed the middle-ware GGPO, a rollback system for fighting games where players can play against another player online without worrying about lag or jitter. Rollback net code has become a staple for modern fighting games.
Furthermore, legendary FGC members like Seth Killian were involved in Project L at its inception. Regardless, it is safe to assume that the game is in the hands of people who knows and loves fighting games.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. Riot Games have already confirmed that Project L can be played solo against another player or a team of two players. In such a case, you have to take care of the assist system by yourself, tagging in the other character and controlling her whenever needed.
Currently, Riot Games is only performing closed playtests with prominent invited players, mostly from the Fighting Game Community. If you have traveled to EVO 2023, chances are that you had your run-in with Project L. Otherwise, wait for an official announcement from the developers.