‘League of Legends’ fan game shut down by Riot Games

Chronoshift had been in development for five years

Riot Games has reportedly shut down a League of Legends fan game, after its creators said the company tried to “extort” them.

Chronoshift, the fan game which had been in development for five years, was a “legacy server” that would allow players to play the 10-year-old version of League of Legends.

In 2020, Riot replied to the announcement for Chronoshift and said: “Hijacking to say please don’t do this. We have very simple and easy to read policies around developing products around Riot Games. Please read the Legal Jibber Jabber (yes that’s what it’s called) and the policies on developer.riotgames.com.”

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The development of Chronoshift went ahead despite the warning from Riot. However, the ChronoshiftDev Reddit account posted a message last weekend (April 24) saying the developers had been contacted by Riot’s security department who “tried to extort us into handing over our code and website to them.”

Speaking with PC Gamer, Riot Games confirmed that it has sent a cease-and-desist request to the Chronoshift developers, following a published exchange with a Riot employee on Reddit where there were claims of extortion.

The Reddit post shows a Discord conversation between a supposed Riot employee named Zed and a Chronoshift developer, during which Zed wrote that the company’s legal team “isn’t super thrilled about your project unfortunately and is looking for a way to come to a mutually acceptable end to it.”

Riot employee/Chronoshift developer Discord conversation
Credit: Riot Games

The conversation proceeds where Zed implies that Riot Games is watching the Chronoshift team’s actions and then demands the team hand over the chronoshift.dev website, source code, and all identifiable information that had been shared with other developers.

“Give me what I’m looking for and we won’t sue. Refuse and we will,” they said. “I’m not interested in dragging this out. If you feel you’d like to speak to legal representation you are certainly capable of doing so. I’m on the security team. I find people and things.

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“I don’t practice law and have little/nothing to do with any legal proceedings Riot is involved in. We can come to an agreement to end this today or we can both hand this off to counsel. To be honest I don’t care either way.”

Following the posting of this conversation, Riot confirmed that the studio’s legal team sent a letter to the Chronoshift developers formally requesting the ceasing of development.

“Our stance on projects such as Chronoshift is also explicitly called out in section 3 of our legal guidelines,” the rep said. “We understand the Chronoshift team is disappointed, but they shouldn’t be surprised by our request.”

Riot also confirmed that the Discord conversation with Zed did take place and is “disappointed with the tenor of the conversation”.

The cease-and-desist letter sent to the Chronoshift developers says its intellectual properties are “extremely valuable, and thus Riot takes this matter very seriously.” It also demands a halt of all development, the closure of the server, removal of related materials from social media, and the handover of all software related to the project.

The Chronoshift team has since complied with the demands but has stated that it is not happy about it on its website.

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