Update: The open beta is now live.
Original story: At 19:00 GMT on Jan. 24, Riot Games’ second entry into the video games industry will go live. Legends of Runeterra, the strategic card battler that a lucky few got to try last year, will open its public beta.
The game has been available since 19:00 GMT yesterday for those who have already secured access to the alpha, but in just a few moments’ time, everyone will be able to play.
What is Legends of Runeterra?
Runeterra is a spin-off from Riot’s incredibly successful foray into the industry, the premier MOBA League of Legends. Besides sharing a fictional universe and a few characters (as well as a Nexus being the focal point for victory or defeat), the games are entirely different. Runeterra is Riot’s answer to Blizzard’s Hearthstone, Wizards of the Coast’s Magic The Gathering: Arena, and Nintendo’s Pokémon Trading Card Game Online.
The game involves constructing decks with individual heroes, each with their own unique flavor and abilities. Finding synergy between a couple is key, but the supportive cards that slot into all kinds of decks are the unsung heroes of the game.
There are multiple unique mechanics at play in order to separate Runeterra from the rest of the pack, including a variation on spell speeds and resolving the stack. Changing a successful formula hasn’t always been rewarding, however, and updates to traditional card games like Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh! have drawn considerable ire for their determination to be different.
Runeterra also launches with expeditions, similar to an MTG:A draft or the Hearthstone Arena.
Where do I sign up?
To enter Runeterra promptly at 19:00, be sure to head over to Riot’s official website. Like League of Legends, the game is free to play.