Los Angeles-based production company We Are Royale (WAR) teamed up with Riot Games to create the brand identity and broadcast package for the game developer’s Valorant Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) tournament in North America. Cloud9 Blue, which won the tournament, now gets to compete against 16 teams from around the world at the Valorant Champions Tour 2021 in Berlin in December.
To hype the event, WAR created a frenetic mixed-media promo set to Machine Gun Kelly’s “Daywalker!” featuring Corpse.
Led by Creative Director Eric Del Greco, WAR established the dystopian world of the LCQ, drawing inspiration from such iconic sci-fi properties as Mad Max: Fury Road, Blade Runner, Dune and Twisted Metal.
“The Last Chance Qualifier is a completely new event for Riot Games, so we got to scribble outside the lines and create an environment that has never been seen within the Valorant franchise,” said Del Greco in a statement. “Only one team will make it out alive, so we set out to heighten the do-or-die stakes in the brief, narratively and visually.”
In total, WAR created 100 CG shots for the film using Cinema 4D and Redshift. For the 3D hero character designs, WAR skinned the 3D hero character designs in hexagon-patterned suits imbued with neon colors. The team extended the hexagonal theme to the coveted 3D horse mask symbolizing the winner. To complement the CG, WAR incorporated live-action footage to give the piece a more emotional and visceral feel.
“There’s a texture with live-action footage that helps to counter some of the slickness of CG,” said Del Greco. “In the right moments, it brings a real-world unease to a film that’s powered by a fantasy-imagined environment.”
WAR layered the Valorant logo and its secondary graffiti-style font into the environment’s architecture, extending the street-style aesthetic to the animated type and iconography peppered throughout the spot.
“Riot Games is one of the best in the business when it comes to getting their community hyped,” said Del Greco. “They put a premium on ambitious visual storytelling and never shy away from going big and taking creative risks. From the get-go, we were all hands on deck as they gave us all the trust and motivation needed to push this project to the next level, day in and day out.”
Client: Riot Games
Design and Production Company: We Are Royale
Executive Creative Director: Brien Holman
Managing Director: Jen Lucero
Executive Producer: Rhys Demery
Head of Production: Eric Zapakin
Creative Director: Eric Del Greco
CG Supervisor: Matt Guzzardo
Producer: Theresa Lee, Lauren Johnson
Production Coordinator: Esther Hwang
2D/3D Designer: Josh Childers
2D/3D Designer/Animator: Ben Hurand
3D Designer/Animator: Eddy Adams
Designer: Brad Mitchell, Helen Jung
2D Animator: Jared Norby, Matt Barretto & Brian Hwang
3D Animator: Edgar Zavala, Farbod Khoshtinat
Editor: Shane McLafferty