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Supervive will be “more willing to experiment” than League of Legends

Ahead of Supervive's name reveal we asked the Theorycraft team about the lessons they learned working on League of Legends, its main rival.

A cartoon woman with blue hair tired back in a ponytail looks down, raising a hand to speak

While League of Legends will always be the game I default back to, I can’t deny I don’t enjoy its lack of flexibility. New modes like Arenas and the upcoming Swarm definitely combat that feeling of repetition, but ultimately I find my Summoner’s Rift games blur into a mash of blue, green, brown, and expletives. What entices me towards Supervive, the new MOBA from Theorycraft Games, is that sense of variety – no two matches feel the same. Given a lot of the team are former Rioters – you’ll probably recognize CEO Joe ‘New001’ Tung as a League’s ex-vice executive president – I asked executive producer Jessica Nam (former LoL executive producer and vice president) what lessons the team has learned from League, and how they’re implemented in Supervive.

Supervive is, after all, a bizarre MOBA mashup of Apex Legends, League of Legends, and Super Smash Bros. I’m certainly sold after taking it for a spin early last month, but what drew me to the project in the first place was the sheer caliber of talent behind it. Tung, as well as working on League, was the executive producer on Halo Reach and the original Destiny, and he and Nam together led Riot during what many believe were LoL’s best years.

But Supervive isn’t just a League of Legends clone – it’s another beast entirely. When I ask what lessons the team took from their time on League, and how they’re implemented in Supervive, she tells me that while the live-service experience has been essential, the plan is to be a little more “willing to experiment” than the competition.

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“I’d start by saying that maintaining a live, evolving game for over a decade is such an incredible achievement,” she tells me. “I learned so much just being a part of that experience and getting to iterate on the game every day with players. And I think it’ll be that connection, dialogue, and relationship with players that will be the center of any game we develop here at Theorycraft.

“On the other side, something I’m excited for Supervive to do differently is be more willing to experiment and to have systems that let us push the boundaries of what’s possible. Sometimes when you work on a live service game for so long, it’s easy to internalize all sorts of rules as to how the game should be played, which can make designers a lot more conservative over time.

“As a chaotic battle royale, Supervive naturally embraces adaptation as a point of mastery, but we’re going even further with things like storm shifts, which let us experiment with spicy game modifiers without destabilizing the core game. And finally, because of our playtesting
approach, we’re a lot more willing to put stuff out there to see what works. All in all, I hope to always be taking big swings at making Supervive the best version of itself, year in, year out.”

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I’ve been playing League for [redacted] years, and while I do love it, I’ve been missing the spark that made modes like Butcher’s Bridge, Twisted Treeline, and Odyssey so great. While League of Legends Swarm is certainly the biggest change we’ve seen to the summer event format for some time, Summoner’s Rift is still Summoner’s Rift – those huge Season 14 changes are now just background noise. Supervive feels ever-changing, and it’s this fearless experimentation that’s luring me in.

If you’re intrigued by Theorycraft’s debut adventure, an all-new public Supervive beta test will run from Thursday, June 27 until Thursday, July 4. You can check out all of the details right here – but be aware that slots are limited.

In the meantime, we have a list of all the best free PC games to keep you busy. Or, if you’re looking to sharpen your teamwork skills, we have a rundown of all the best multiplayer games, too.

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