I’ve recently been achievement hunting on Steam, in an attempt to try and land some sweet Steam gifts. Still, since I’m a poor college student, I’ve just been chipping away at the achievements that are available for the free-to-play or very cheap games. One of these free-to-play games that have an achievement available is Petroglyph’s Rise of Immortals.

First thing I noticed after opening up the game was that its character selection page had an avatar style curiously familiar to League of Legend‘s champion selection section. No worries. Since they’re both MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena, for those of you who hate videogame acronyms) games, I wasn’t too concerned. I understand. If you can’t beat ’em, imitate ’em, right?

Notice the similarities? Yeah. (LoL on top. RoI on bottom.)

Right.

I had played and closed Rise of Immortals within the next five minutes. Disgusting. Petroglyph didn’t even attempt to hide the fact that they were blatantly copying LoL. Oh, the atrocity didn’t end at the character selection page. The arena set up was the same. The turrets were placed almost in the exact same spots as they’re set up in League of Legends. The playable characters each had four special skills that players could tally up skill points in to improve. Last of all, there was an item vendor sitting at the very of the arena for you to purchase items that endowed advantages in health, speed, and mana. Oh, and these items stacked in a similar way as well.

Petroglyph did nothing to improve the gameplay of Rise of Immortals. Obviously, by “improved”, I meant “changed at least ONE thing.” Nope, nope. Petroglyphs shamelessly copied Riot Games, hoping to ride off of the latter’s success.

I know that it’s a bit naive to separate Petroglyph out from other game developers. Hell, that level of plagiarism has been going on within the videogame industry since day one. I’d go so far as to make the claim that it’s getting worse as the years go by. Innovation is hard to come by, especially when an industry becomes better and better established as the videogame industry is becoming. It’s hard to imagine how to better improve a MOBA game from Riot’s successful formula. There’s still no reason to not try something new.

Innovation is the crux of the videogame industry. Look at how far videogame technology has come in the past few years. Forty years ago, people were playing Pong. Now, we’ve come to full-blown photo-realistic graphics where we can shoot down make-believe terrorists in Call of Duty or strike down a draugr in Skyrim. Maybe the sky isn’t the limit for videogames. There has to be some point in which we absolutely cannot get more realistic with videogames, but that time isn’t now. Our games are still riddled with bugs that prevent us from full immersion. No single genre has been fully perfected to ensure maximum fun and no single genre ever will. However, creativity shouldn’t be staunched because of money.

That’s when videogames begin to fail. Look at games like Homefront. It had so much potential, but in the end failed miserably due to time and money constraints. Can you imagine what it could have been had it not tried to copy every Modern Warfare convention (poorly) out there? It wouldn’t be remembered as the FPS that was so heavily marketed with so much potential, but ended up failing because it was a Modern Warfare imitation. No. It would’ve been remembered as Modern Warfare, if that makes any sense. Or it’d be put in the same place that Modern Warfare would be.

So, it’d be nice. A little innovation please, Petroglyph. Even the smallest thing can move the industry forward.

10 COMMENTS

    • I think you’re missing my point. Yes, LoL is completely derivative of DotA, but notice that it doesn’t do it to the point of copying every aspect of DotA. The gameplay styles are similar, but Riot Games has taken LoL (in my opinion) to a different direction than DotA in terms of gameplay. I feel like you’re much more heavily reliant on itemization in LoL than DotA.

      Whereas RoI… well. The itemization, turret layout, characterization, interface isn’t just based off of LoL but completely copying it. Try it. It’s a little bit scary.

    • I think you’re missing my point. Yes, LoL is completely derivative of DotA, but notice that it doesn’t do it to the point of copying every aspect of DotA. The gameplay styles are similar, but Riot Games has taken LoL (in my opinion) to a different direction than DotA in terms of gameplay. I feel like you’re much more heavily reliant on itemization in LoL than DotA.

      Whereas RoI… well. The itemization, turret layout, characterization, interface isn’t just based off of LoL but completely copying it. Try it. It’s a little bit scary.

    • My article was talking about games in general. Just felt like calling RoI out for it because it has absolutely no original art, nothing. Everything else is extremely similar yes, but RoI copies LoL to the point that I think Riot Games should think about suing.

      • “I had played and closed Rise of Immortals within the next five minutes. Disgusting. Petroglyph didn’t even attempt to hide the fact that they were blatantly copying LoL. Oh,
        the atrocity didn’t end at the character selection page. The arena set
        up was the same. The turrets were placed almost in the exact same spots
        as they’re set up in League of Legends. The playable characters
        each had four special skills that players could tally up skill points
        in to improve. Last of all, there was an item vendor sitting at the very
        of the arena for you to purchase items that endowed advantages in
        health, speed, and mana. Oh, and these items stacked in a similar way as
        well.”

        This is obviously discussing games in general and not just RoL and LoL, right?

        This is the style of game in the MOBA genre people want to play. Blizzard could have thrown out vespene gas when they made Starcraft 2, or added some new resource, but it’s not what people wanted. Changes don’t need to be made for the sake of change. The three-laned map with 3 turrets to a lane, heroes with 4 skills, this is the game people are used to, that people enjoy. All a different MOBA needs is a different set of heroes. Or, in DotA 2’s case, a pretty coat of paint.

  1. I don’t even know how to respond to this.  Have you ever played DOTA, which every single one of these MOBA’s is based on?  Where do you think the term MOBA originated?  LoL didn’t invent this, man.  Their turrets are where they are because that’s where theya re in DOTA.  Petroglyph isn’t copying LoL.  They’re adhering to the formula set out for this style of game.  That’s why Heroes of Newerth and HOLY CRAP DOTA 2 have them placed in the same spots as well.

    Do a little research before you accuse someone of plagiarism next time.

  2. Maybe calling it plagiarism was a little harsh, but the point seems to be that the MOBA genre itself has no innovation. Put another way- calling out RoI itself may be unfair, but mentioning all the other games that make up the genre doesn’t negate her point- rather, it proves it. RoI just represents the last metaphorical straw for the author, it seems. Slapping new skins on the same game and calling it something different isn’t innovative. It isn’t changing the genre at all, for better or worse. Nobody has argued that the mechanics are crunchier, or the gameplay is smoother, or the characters more defined- they have argued that this is more of the same because that is how it always has been. And that isn’t an argument.

  3. Maybe calling it plagiarism was a little harsh, but the point seems to be that the MOBA genre itself has no innovation. Put another way- calling out RoI itself may be unfair, but mentioning all the other games that make up the genre doesn’t negate her point- rather, it proves it. RoI just represents the last metaphorical straw for the author, it seems. Slapping new skins on the same game and calling it something different isn’t innovative. It isn’t changing the genre at all, for better or worse. Nobody has argued that the mechanics are crunchier, or the gameplay is smoother, or the characters more defined- they have argued that this is more of the same because that is how it always has been. And that isn’t an argument.

  4. I haven’t played Rol or Lol but I don’t see *any* similarities between the two pictures you posted.

    “It wouldn’t be remembered as the FPS that was so heavily marketed with so much potential, but ended up failing because it was a Modern Warfare imitation.”

    I don’t think anyone remembers Homefront as a Modern Warfare imitation… and it wasn’t a Modern Warfare imitation in the slightest.  If anything it was a Frontlines: Fuel of War copy.  Maybe the game you wanted to mention was the last Medal of Honor?  Or are you just saying because they both have guns and menus that look similar one is obviously a copy of the other?

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