Riot Games IBC 2019 Innovation Awards

Customer Spotlight: Riot Games Named Finalist in IBC 2019 Innovation Awards for Content Creation

At Haivision, we’re heavily invested in our customers’ success and we love nothing more than the opportunity to shine a spotlight on their innovative use of our video technology. It’s for this reason that we’re thrilled to share that our customer, Riot Games, has just been named a finalist in the IBC 2019 Innovation Awards. These awards recognize the inventive application of cutting-edge technology in media and entertainment. One of just ten finalists, Riot Games was shortlisted in the Content Creation category for its innovative remote production workflow for the 2018 League of Legends World Championship in Seoul, South Korea. 

Rising to the Challenge

Riot Games leads the esports industry and the broadcast of the 2018 League of Legends World Championship was carried globally by more than 30 television channels and digital platforms to more than 99.6 million viewers. The championship broadcast is a mammoth undertaking, spanning 4 cities over 6 weeks involving hundreds of cameras and massive LED screens. The sheer scale and complexity of the event present a whole host of logistical and technical challenges to overcome. With international viewing numbers growing rapidly to rival those of traditional sporting events over the past few years, last year Riot Games took a major step to ensure the most impactful viewing experience to fans, while maximizing the use of their resources. Riot Games chose to stay “at home.”

Breaking New Boundaries for At-Home Production

By choosing the at-home or REMI model of remote production for its esports broadcasts, Riot Games was able to create greater efficiencies and streamline both the production and distribution of the World Championship broadcast while maintaining the high quality that its fans have come to expect. Leveraging new remote production technologies, the 2018 League of Legends World Championship was broadcast from Korea while being centrally managed and produced in real-time, just as if they were on-site, from the Riot Games’ headquarters in Los Angeles in 18 studios dedicated to 18 different regions and languages, delivering a premium experience to its player base. 

Strategic Partnership with Haivision

After settling on an at-home, REMI approach, Riot Games had to then address some of the unique challenges of the REMI model, namely latency and bandwidth. Not every esports venue Riot Games broadcasts from has 10GB or 40GB connectivity, so they needed a way to utilize a high compression, low latency transport model to keep the onsite footprint low and the communication and reaction times high. Haivision went beyond its role as a technology vendor and became a strategic partner of the Riot Games engineering team and through this close relationship, Haivision delivered a solution that met all of Riot Games’ requirements including scalability for future growth and cost-efficient video streaming over IP. Using Haivision’s Makito X video encoders and decoders, Riot Games was able to build a REMI workflow supporting ingest of high-quality 1080p60 HD video for backhauling over their cost-efficient IP network, with an end-to-end latency under 150 milliseconds. 

“Riot Games has a long track record of innovating the esports consumption experience for players, fans, and partners. The 2018 World Championship provided an opportunity to leverage new technology to improve the viewing experience for the largest audience in esports.”

Mitch Rosenthal, Head of Production and Operations at Riot Games

Testing the Limits

Riot Games continues to push the envelope with its current at-home solution engineered to overcome the challenges of both latency and bandwidth. Its 2019 Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) which took place in Vietnam and Taiwan was the longest and most challenging remote production the company has ever done. You can read the full story of all the logistical and technical obstacles it was up against and how their bleeding-edge workflow developed in partnership with Haivision made the entire production possible here.

The winners will be announced in September at the International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam. To read more about Haivision latest solutions for remote production workflows over the internet, download our white paper:  Synchronizing Video Sources Over the Internet for Live Remote Production.


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