Great ideas have a way of coming from unexpected places. That's why we’ve developed a little ritual called Thunderdome. Every so often, anyone in the company with an interesting idea for League of Legends can assemble a crack team and join the hackathon. The challenge: build a prototype in two days.
At Thunderdome, Rioters work on projects ranging from new server architecture to 2D fighting games featuring League champions to community-driven platforming games. We watched Rioters take massive, ambitious projects from a twinkle-in-the-eye to a fully functional prototype in less than 48 hours.
Of course, not everything makes it through the door. Sometimes our projects are just a little too out there, and most actually wind up getting shelved. But the real point is to throw out convention, remove all constraints, and entertain any idea no matter how crazy it might seem. Every so often, a few of them turn out to be great and some form of it goes to players across the world.
Some examples forged in the fires of Thunderdome were the Linux version of our server software, Proving Grounds (which became Howling Abyss), and some Legendary Support cases to name a few. Not a bad showing for a handful of Rioters, a bunch of crazy ideas, and a whole lot of Red Bull.