League of Legends Publisher Bolsters Esports Support With Association

Riot Games, the maker of League of Legends, has launched a new association to support the game in the esports world—largely among high schools and colleges.

The company behind one of the most popular multiplayer games on the planet is boosting its esports efforts. Riot Games’ new offshoot, the Riot Scholastic Association of America (RSAA), has a mission to promote the growth of its popular League of Legends game at the high school and college levels and will govern official interscholastic competitive play.

League of Legends is built around a battle arena that is well suited to team play. The launch of RSAA comes on the heels the game’s 2019 college season.

“League of Legends is currently one of the most established college esports, and we want to take a more proactive role in working with schools and other stakeholders to ensure that it meets more than just Riot’s needs,” RSAA said in a blog post.

Riot’s current team supporting the scholastic market for the game will immediately begin operating under RSAA. The group’s board of advisors includes esports directors at schools such as the University of California, Irvine, Robert Morris University, and the University of Utah.

RSAA will focus on three issues: fostering a student-first mindset that enriches the school experience; building stability throughout the egames ecosystem; and ensuring that the games are inherently fair and transparent.

Kurt Melcher, executive director of esports at the marketing firm Intersport and the current director of Robert Morris’ esports program, noted that the new organization’s goal is to bring together perspectives from multiple stakeholders.

“As an increasing number of high schools and universities across the country build esports programs, it is important that a broad range of co-curricular perspectives are included to help shape the future of campus esports,” he said in a news release.

RSAA joins several other organizations that have formed to support high school and college esports. But it stands out in part because League of Legends is considered a defining game in the world of esports.

“When we established the first varsity college esports program in the country in 2014, I was largely inspired to do so because of League of Legends,” Melcher added.

Maryville University, winners of the 2019 League of Legends College Championship. (Handout photo)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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