The New Company’s energetic identity system for LoL Esports avoids typical fantasy gaming tropes
Working closely with Riot Games, strategic design studio The New Company, based in San Francisco, have rebranded LoL Esports – the platform for the most influential game and esport of all time, League of Legends. Avoiding the typical fantasy tropes that are associated with the game, The New Company saw the opportunity to develop a vibrant, contemporary identity, achieved by the careful consideration and simplification of the previous identity’s core elements.
Beginning with the reduction of the colour palette to a single hue, The New Company; opted for a bold, fresh-faced blue – a confident decision that successfully translates the mood behind the identity without overcomplicating the design. “We wanted to reduce our colour strategy to a minimum set of core colours,” The New Company; tells us, allowing the colours of the individual teams to comfortably sit in tandem with the overall identity. “The Iceborn blue,” they add, “brought to the identity a vibrancy that allows it to be memorable against a very rich and layered visual language,” and importantly take a secondary supporting role to the typography; laying the foundations to bolster and exaggerate the latter.
Opting for Compacta Regular as the primary typeface, The New Company; note the unique mood of the cut – originally designed in 1963 –; appearing both classic and contemporary. “It expresses the confidence with which LoL Esports is claiming its place in the world of sports and entertainment,” they explain, utilising this graphic pragmatism as the basis for the identity’s adaptable, modular grid; designed to keep an aesthetic consistency in the face of including multiple teams, players and sponsors.
Similar utilised across this system is Shapiro, the identity’s secondary typeface. “Shapiro has opposite qualities to Compacta,” The New Company tell us, championing the typeface’s incredibly extended characters in contrast to Compacta’s more refined and slender features. “This tension between both typefaces represents the opposing forces battling in League of Legends,” they add, achieving a striking and graphically satisfying balance in the process.
Carrying over the prominent logomark from LoL Esports’ previous identity, The New Company sought to refine and solidify the mark. “The logo is based on the iconic shape of the Summoner’s Rift,” they explain, a ground within the game where the opposing teams meet. “The arrows represent their movements across the Rift,” they conclude, “we wanted to bring more clarity to that idea by simplifying the logo and increasing its weight,” in doing so crafting a sturdier and more immediately recognisable mark, that sits comfortably within the flexible typographic system in place.