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Parents' Guide to

Ruined King: A League of Legends Story

By David Chapman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Rich story, unique gameplay rewards franchise fans.

Ruined King: A League of Legends Story Poster Image

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For more than a decade, League of Legends has dominated the online gaming scene, creating a universe of characters with a lot of untapped storytelling potential. Now the franchise is working to fix that by branching out beyond its multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) roots, including a Netflix animated series and now the single player role-playing game, Ruined King: A League of Legends Story. For fans of the League of Legends universe, Ruined King serves as a fantastic expansion into lives of many characters they've come to know. The story doesn't just flesh out individual characters, but also refines the relationships many of them share while creating new bonds between others. Unfortunately, unless you're already familiar with the lore behind the League of Legends characters, it's hard not to feel like you're missing something.

A lot of attention went into the presentation of Ruined King and it shows throughout. The game's colorful and detailed, filled with rich visuals that almost jump off the screen. The cutscenes have a distinct comic book style and the voice overs are all well performed, making the story flow together almost seamlessly between exploration and battles. Battles themselves take some getting used to, though. For starters, the turn-based system has players set up actions via an onscreen timeline. But as a bit of a nod to the gameplay in League of Legends, that timeline has three separate "lanes," which will occasionally toss obstacles at party members whose action have them positioned in that lane. It's an interesting gameplay mechanic that adds a new layer of complexity to the usual turn-based fare, but also makes it much more difficult to keep track of exactly which characters are doing what actions and it which lane. Once the player gets adjusted to the flow of combat, things can start to flow a bit better, but it's never quite as straightforward as you would expect.

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