Riot Games is shuttering its Sydney, Australia, office as it sunsets its Oceanic Pro League

    
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Riot Games is shuttering its Sydney, Australia, office as it sunsets its Oceanic Pro League

Activision-Blizzard isn’t the only company shuttering overseas holdings this week, it seems: Riot Games is closing one down too, this time the company’s Sydney, Australia, office. Riot’s Malte Wagener and Tom Martell explain that League of Legends’ esports Oceanic Pro League “has not met [the company’s] goals for the league” and that they “do not believe that the market” can support the league “in its current form.” Consequently, the OPL is effectively merging into another league, while the Sydney office bolstering it is closing entirely.

“So today we are announcing the dissolution of the OPL and the closure of Riot’s Sydney office, as it primarily focused on operating the league,” Riot writes. “However, this is not the end of League esports in OCE. We remain committed to supporting our pro players in the region with a path to continue their careers moving forward. Beginning with the 2021 season, we are adding OCE to the competitive territory for the LCS, so OCE players will no longer take an import slot on LCS rosters. This will open up new opportunities in North America for top OPL players. We will also hold qualifying tournaments in OCE for both MSI and Worlds in 2021, ensuring teams from the region will continue to be represented at our two major global events next season.”

We don’t yet know how many staffers are being laid off from the Sydney location, which according to GIbiz was opened in 2013.

Source: Lolesports via GIbiz

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Jack Pipsam

I’m not entirely sure what role the office actually played for Riot, unless it was entirely an ESport focused thing, League has had local servers hosted here before 2013 and they confirmed on Twitter that there is no change to local server or hosting for any of their games, so the office mustn’t have been involved with that or perhaps even publishing unless all they did was like write Facebook ads, naturally there’s no localisation work that needs to be done.

I was told on Twitter that they old had 5 people left in the office at the time of closure (although like losludvig said the article now says 10 were left). Valorant is quite popular here from what I’ve been told, so perhaps they weren’t even involved with that and just the League pro thing.

Seems like a waste of a local presence just to focus on this league. If Riot goes ahead with its plans of opening up a bunch of new games (including LoL mobile which was pointed out to me), they might end up regretting shutting their office now, unless they’re doing it right now just before everything else hits. Perhaps they figure they can just outsource shit.

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losludvig

Apparently 10 people lost their job. (from an update on the gibiz story)