Seeing the Baron come to life as a 13′ tall beast wowed gamers and fans coming to watch the competition.

“Our team worked closely with RIOT`s US based creative team to recreate the Baron in Asia”


RIOT Games’ founders, Brandon “Ryze” Beck and Marc “Tryndamere” Merrill, became friends while business students and roommates at the University of Southern California, where they bonded over video games. Beck and Merrill were frustrated because they felt game developers were not listening to fans. Developers, they believed, moved from game to game too quickly, leaving their passionate communities behind. During their time playing video games together, Beck and Merrill created an idea for a company that continually introduced new features to its games. Rather than follow the video game industry formula of releasing game after game, Beck and Merrill sought to create a company that was player-focused and made games that constantly evolved.

Their inspiration came from Asian video game designers who were offering games for free yet charging for additional perks. Beck and Merrill thought it would be unfair to create a pay-to-win game, so they decided RIOT Games would not sell upgrades that other players receive through skill. Rather, the additional perks would include cosmetic improvements such as new clothes that changed characters’ appearance, so players can personalize their experience.


RIOT Games aspires to be the most player-focused game company in the world. The company released its first game, League of Legends, in 2009, and now RIOT Games is best known for League of Legends, which is a multiplayer online battle arena game and the company’s flagship product. League of Legends takes place in the fictional world of Runeterra. In Runeterra, the champions of League of Legends are a collection of heroes and villains who have a variety of backstories, often related to the political struggles of the various countries of the main continent of Valoran. Additionally, some champions are extraplanar and come from worlds other than Runeterra but are visiting for their own purposes. These champions sometimes clash with each other, roughly reflected in the gameplay of League of Legends.

More than 100 million gamers play every month. Since its release, League of Legends became the game with highest active player count by 2013. It is the most played PC game in the world and a key driver of the explosive growth of esports. Since 2011, 2013 and 2015, respectively, RIOT Games also operates the League of Legends World Championship, Championship Series and Mid-Season Invitational esports tournaments for their game.

What was involved in this event production:

RIOT Games has always sought to change the way video games are made and to support gamers. RIOT is also committed to creating local game experiences worldwide. And, of course, this includes Japan.

In Tokyo, Idea International was part of this expansion. League of Legend’s striking graphics provided a template for Idea International to installing the game environment at the Shinagawa Prince Hotel in Tokyo. Idea International recreated what gamers see on the screen to a 3-D environment. Characters ranged from the “cute” Rammus and Gnar to the threatening Baron. The Baron turned out to be the “star” of the event. For gamers, “The Baron” is an important character from the League of Legends. The Baron is the most powerful neutral monster on Summoner’s Rift in the League of Legends journey. Killing Baron grants Hand of Baron to all living teammates for 210 seconds. The Hand of Baron is a team-wide neutral buff granted upon slaying the Baron. This gives the teammates bonus attack damage, bonus ability power, Empowered Recall, and an aura that greatly increases the power of nearby minions. In the game, the Baron is described as follows: “This is a very powerful hostile monster, approach with caution! Killing this monster will yield great monetary and magical rewards to the team, but it should not be confronted alone.”

RIOT Games Tokyo has been growing steadily, expanding as needed in order to serve the players. Now out of its startup phase, RIOT Games Tokyo is continuing to level up capabilities. With continued work towards new and better features for Japan, they are optimizing and building out the local core gaming scene as best we can.

RIOT Games released League of Legends as a free-to-play game and the company continued to develop League of Legends by allowing players to offer feedback. Their game designers and executives participated in online forums to make adjustments based on player feedback.

In 2012, in response to toxicity and harassment in video game culture, RIOT Games launched a “player behavior team” of psychologists to combat harassment on its platform. RIOT Games’ tactics to address issues on League of Legends, including an opt-in chat function between opposing players, informing banned players of the reasoning behind the ban, and creating a tribunal of players to weigh in on bans, resulted in a 30 percent drop in reported harassment behavior. By 2013, League of Legends has been the most-played multiplayer PC game in the world. From 2014 to 2016, the number of active League of Legends players grew from 67 million to more than 100 million.

Event Host Spotlight

RIOT Games, Inc

RIOT Games, Inc. is an American video game developer and esports tournament organizer based in West Los Angeles, California. The company was founded in August 2006 by University of Southern California roommates Brandon Beck and Marc Merrill, as they sought to create a company that continuously improves on an already released game, instead of commencing development on a new one. RIOT Games was majority-acquired by Tencent in February 2011 and fully acquired in December 2015. As of May 2018, RIOT Games operates 24 offices around the world, in which it employs 2,500 staff members.

Event Venue

Shinagawa Prince Hotel – Tokyo, Japan

Shinagawa is the south entrance to Tokyo. The Shinagawa Prince Hotel, which is in front of Shinagawa Station, has good access to Narita Airport, Haneda Airport, Tokyo Big Site, and the Tokyo Forum, as well as movie theaters, bowling, The Aqua Park Shinagawa, tennis, golf, swimming pools and other entertainment facilities. From business to sightseeing, this is an entertainment hotel that guests can enjoy in many ways.

Event Highlights

To the delight of the Tokyo gamers, while the Baron is diminutive and not very detailed, when Idea brought him to life as a 13′ tall beast, they wowed the gamers as well as the fans coming to watch the competition. The Baron was the centerpiece in the reception hall and the first sight as attendees entered, making it a great photo op. Idea International arranged the atmosphere of the on-screen gaming environment with lighting and faux plants, building a path for the players to follow in real time.

Peace of mind, half a world away ™

Osaka Main Office

Idea International, Inc.
4F Senrichuou Twin Building Bekkan
1-1-4 Shinsenri-nishimachi
Toyonaka-shi Osaka
Japan 560-0083

Phone: (0)6-6170-9571
Outside Japan: +81-6-6170-9571
Fax: (0)6-6170-9572
Fax Outside Japan: +81-6-6170-9572
Skype Call

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