Prior to the doors opening to the PAX East masses, I managed to jump in on a game of SmashMuck Champions with the developers at Kiz Studios as they put the final touches on their booth. I was thrown head first into a match of Plunder Ball, an event that feels like a lot like League of Legends meets capture the flag, except every 30 seconds you’re smacked in the face with one of those amazing moments that may occur all of 3 times in a LCS match. It’s fast paced, fun, and involves a tremendous amount of cooperation and boasting before you even set foot into it’s metagame.
The 8 person crew at Kiz Studios understand the things that make eSports and games like LoL exciting, as well as discriminating. When speaking with the devs, we all agreed that we loved LoL, but felt that the complexity and depth turned a lot of players away from even starting. The game features over 22 well-designed champions with a variety of abilities and powers, all which add to an underlying metagame of skill parings and team compositions. Several of us admitted to watching far more LoL than actual time spent in game, but even with a few short moments of playtime I had experiences that were shared over beers later in the evening. In 5 minutes I was able to grasp the controls, discover combos, and create lots of havok throughout the match. Strategies became instantly apparent as I began ganking devs around corners and holding down support for my teammate as they ran the ball back to our base.
In those 5 minutes, I found a new addiction.
There will be more on this later. We promise.