Riot Games has introduced the first partner it’ll promote via the Summoner’s Rift arena banners in League of Legends.
Honda banners will appear in-game for viewers during the LCS Playoffs, as well as the LCS Summer Finals on Sept. 5 and 6, Riot announced . The banners will be located around Summoner’s Rift, including in the shop where players spawn, the Baron pit, and near the top-side inhibitor.
Additionally, a new in-game moment, the “Honda Performance Play,” will begin airing during games to mark “those clutch moments in the race for the LCS Championship title.”
Though it’s a non-endemic company, Honda has staked its claim in esports over the last year. It partnered with Riot in August 2019 for a sponsorship deal for the LCS MVP award, the LCS Scouting Grounds, and other branded content. The automobile manufacturer also partnered with Team Liquid in January 2019 and even created a Liquid-branded Honda Odyssey van.
We're rolling up to the #LCS in style! Say hello to the Team Liquid x @Honda Odyssey 😍#LetsGoLiquid pic.twitter.com/UXivYRofxQ
— Team Liquid LoL (@TeamLiquidLoL) January 26, 2019
Riot announced in May that it’d begin partnering with companies for Summoner’s Rift arena banners. The developer said it wanted to “create an environment that exudes the energy found in traditional sports.”
Many traditional sports sell all types of ad space for companies, so it’s not a surprise that Riot managed to add a partner’s logo in-game. In traditional sports, companies routinely advertise in or around the field of play and on team uniforms. Recently, they’ve added Buffalo Wild Wings as a sponsor as well.
And in the process, the league unveiled a new multiyear sponsorship deal with Buffalo Wild Wings as its official sports bar, Riot Games announced.
As a part of the deal, Buffalo Wild Wings will help livestream LCS action and promote its wings across LCS broadcasts. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, nor was the exact length of the multi-year contract.
The partnership comes at a unique time for Buffalo Wild Wings since social distancing guidelines in the U.S. have stymied restaurants across the country.
This isn’t the first time Buffalo Wild Wings has worked with an esports partner before, though. In 2016, the wing chain worked with Turner’s ELEAGUE.
Earlier this year, Riot announced Caffeine as the newest official streaming partner for the North American LCS. The partnership isn’t exclusive though, so the LCS will still be broadcast on Riot Games’ official Twitch accounts as well.
LCS fans and amateur shoutcasters will be able to stream and live host the official LCS broadcast on their own channels. This collaboration will last through the remainder of the LCS Summer Split, the playoffs, finals, and the LCS Regional Qualifiers.