Riot Games now fully owned by Chinese gaming giant Tencent

In a very low-key announcement, Riot revealed its remaining shares have been bought by the Chinese gaming company Tencent.

In a quiet announcement on their company website, Riot Games revealed today that their majority investor, the Chinese-owned Tencent, has purchased the remaining equity in Riot.

According to the announcement, the key motivation behind the sale was to provide better compensation for the hardworking Riot team.

As the post explains:

"Riot’s approach to compensation has always been about aligning the incentives of the company with Rioters, and also about ensuring that we compensate our talented team of professionals well."

Until now, Rioters benefited from the company's success through a Riot equity program; going forward, Rioters will participate in a cash-based incentives program. 

The Chinese conglomerate also holds shares in Activision Blizzard and Epic Games, and is responsible for bringing Candy Crush Saga to China.

While Tencent's buyout of the company sounds great for Rioters, what does it mean for the players of League of Legends going forward? For now, it's anyone's guess.

What are your thoughts on Tencent purchasing Riot Games? Do you think it will be as positive for players as it is for Riot employees? Sound off in the comments.


Jessa wears a lot of hats - anthropology graduate, mother, obsessive book nerd, writer of both fiction and non-fiction - but her favorite hat is that of the gamer - a hat she's worn since owning an Atari was a "big deal."

Published Dec. 16th 2015
  • Rothalack
    Master O' Bugs
    I can't deny that Tencent is very good at what they do, so it's a positive for Riot and any company that gets involved with them. I for one welcome our new Chinese overlords. These guys own half of gaming at this point.
  • Ashley Shankle
    Associate Editor
    Yeah, but Tencent is extremely predatory. Most Westerners don't pay any attention, but they are one of the biggest offenders of putting out low-effort rip offs of well-known titles.

    One such example of this was a rip off of Dota 2 they had in beta before it was released in China, then they tried to claim Dota 2 was a copy of their game and not the other way around. Another lies in their 10v10 MOBA, which has several character models and animations stolen from LoL and Dota both -- and the art all looks like Warcraft stuff, mostly because the game's artists are ex-Blizzard.

    And let's not get into the dozens of browser-based knock offs they own. And the search engine with unsafe ads that forces itself onto all your browsers' homepages when you install certain Tencent games. Getting it removed is a pain.

    Tencent is, frankly, a shitty company and their total ownership of Riot isn't really something to celebrate.
  • Rothalack
    Master O' Bugs
    I didn't know about their rip-off history, but it does not surprise me in the slightest, we are talking about China here :P

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