Arcane Review: The best League of Legends story ever is now on Netflix

Popular multiplayer game League of Legends There have never really been too many stories. The developer Riot Games has tried (several times) to connect the world of Runeterra and its characters into a larger narrative, but it always fails. There are some very attractive characters and cities in the game, but there is hardly anything that connects them together.But in that narrative vacuum, Riot and Netflix’s new League of Legends Animation series, Arcane, Found that there is enough room to increase the world that players already know and welcome new fans at the same time.

Arcane Its story focuses on two allianceThe most important locations: Piltworth and Zuan. These two cities occupy the same area of ​​the world, a bit like sister cities, one above the other. Pilotover is an idealistic and scientifically minded metropolis that calls itself the “City of Progress”, on top of which is the crime-ridden, unregulated technological dystopian Zuan (although it was only called the “Undercity” in the early days) the following.

The stories of the two cities are familiar to most people alliance fan. But although the game versions are mostly good (Piltwolf) and evil (Zuan), Arcane Painted a more complex picture. Facts have proved that Piltworth has controlled the Undercity for many years, forcing its leaders to reach unfavorable and unwelcome protection agreements, wielding huge police power like a club to keep its poorer people in order. Decades of abuse prompted the dissatisfied Undercity citizens to the mysterious Silko, who promised to transform the Undercity into the city of Zu’an, and would gain power over Piltwolf at all costs.

Picture: Riot Games/Netflix

If all this sounds a bit like a youth novel, it’s because it does. Arcane It’s definitely not a children’s show, with cursing, blood, very dark tone, disturbing scenes and a lot of violence. But none of it is higher than the level of PG-13, and the show retains most of the perfect themes and roles, which is very simple and easy to understand. This is a rare sweet spot, darker than Marvel movies, but never crosses the line into darkness or adult fantasy.

This balance allows ArcaneThe role of making the show-this is the way based on things League of Legends. Beyond the gameplay, what makes the player return alliance In the 12 years since its first release, its role has been. alliance Players may have played at least dozens or hundreds of hours of their favorite characters. Whether you like them because of their abilities in the game or the flash of personality, most players have formed their favorite heroes. Strong attachment.

But as loved as the characters, their version of the game is mainly composed of some extraordinary art and some ingenious dialogues that express who they are and their personalities. In addition to some brief introductions hidden on the game’s official website, League of Legends‘The character does not have any specific backstory, which is exactly Arcane solve.

Instead of trying to use dozens of characters in the game, Arcane Cleverly focus on a few key heroes and a few new characters. Their arc is broken down into three separate three-episodes performances, which are separated by a few years. These are almost like short films, with their own narrative arc, allowing the show time to learn more about each character’s life and journey.

Through the first four episodes provided by Riot to critics, the show focused on two independent duo of Piltoff and Zuan: sisters Vi and Jinx, and science partners Jess and Victor.All four League of Legends Champions (popularities vary), each of their stories subtly reflects the city in which they live.

Vi and Jinx from the League of Legends Netflix series Arcane

Picture: Riot Games/Netflix

Silco in the League of Legends Netflix series Arcane

Picture: Riot Games/Netflix

Jinx and Vi fight in the League of Legends Netflix series Arcane

Picture: Riot Games/Netflix

The sisters grew up as orphans in the Undercity, but after childhood they took a different path, leading to this ending alliance Players will be very familiar, but it may catch some newcomers off guard.This ability to create two independent but satisfying experiences for the show is one of them ArcaneAn even more impressive feat proves how good each character feels.

So far, Jinx and Wei have provided the emotional center of the show, and it has not avoided the tragedy that has become surprising. This is especially true for Jinx, her story has the most narrative foundation, and is particularly effective in the first few episodes, because she strives to find her place in the shadow of her sister.

But Jace and Victor are more representative of certain ArcaneThe larger theme. Both of these characters are scientific geniuses, and they used their inventions to bring the city of Piltworth into the future. But even though they were partners in the early days, it is clear that they still disagree about their willingness to risk public safety in the name of science. When their opinions differ, Arcane Using these two voices to explain the ideology behind Piltwolf and Zuan, this is expected to allow the show to explore the philosophies that drive the two people in more depth allianceThe most interesting city.

Between these pairings are some short stories, including recognizable faces from Runeterra, such as Caitlin, Ike, and Hemerdinger, as well as van der, Mel, Mylow, and the aforementioned villain Silco Such new faces. Although these new characters look interesting, Arcane cost The time spent with them in the first chapter is disappointing (although as the series continues, their screening time seems likely to increase). Of course, the series also hinted at the appearance of some characters that have yet to appear-at least in the first four episodes.

These little jokes—may or may never come true—are another ArcaneIngenious tricks.Because League of Legends The universe only exists in loose sketches and thick strokes in the game, Arcane Does not rely on any prior knowledge of Runeterra.Dozens of little Easter eggs and foreshadowing moments provide a special nod for long-term fans, but the story itself is as easy to understand and effective for new audiences as new audiences. League of Legends Veteran.

Zu'an Undercity in the Netflix series Arcane of League of Legends

Picture: Riot Games/Netflix

However, for a show like Runeterra with a fantasy world as the background, its characters and background are really only as good as the art that portrays them, and it’s here. Arcane Is the most impressive. The series is animated by Riot and Fortich Production, which is absolutely wonderful-especially in Netflix shows, which usually use simpler, less expressive character designs. It has a paint-like style, which is particularly eye-catching in the expansive landscape, and established shots for the huge towers and huge buildings of Zuan and Piltwolf.

Arcane‘S character also looks great and feels like League of Legends‘Art, but it also makes the narrative animation feel more natural. The faces of the characters are expressive, and the emotions can be transformed well, even if not in all areas of physical comedy. The show’s battle sequence is also excellent, mixing slow motion, unique angles, and a wonderful use of multiple perspectives during the explosion to help keep the actions on the screen clear and readable as well as dynamic and exciting.

There is a version League of Legends Riot will debut an animated series on its website, specifically for game fans, and spend much less money. That version was originally safe, and fans might like it.On the contrary, Riot and Fortich pursued something that could attract a wider audience and managed to create a beautiful and interesting show, both of which have added so much time to the world League of Legends Fans can’t put it down, and newcomers will never leave.

First two episodes ArcaneThe first season of nine episodes of Netflix is ​​now live.