Riot has filed a new lawsuit in US District Court for the Central District of California against the Shanghai-based developer Moonton Technology. The Tencent-owned game company alleges that Moonton has persisted in a “deliberate and sustained campaign to free ride on Riot’s highly valuable rights in the mobile video game League of Legends: Wild Rift“.
League of Legends: Wild Rift is Riot’s recent mobile project which provides players with a more accessible version of League of Legends on their mobile devices. Meanwhile Mobile Legends: Bang Bang is a modified version of Mobile Legends. Riot claims that Mobile Legends is already infringing on League of Legends and Moonton’s new game continues to make use of infringing material.
Riot has included examples of infringing material in their lawsuit which mostly relate to promotional media. Riot maintains that there are direct gameplay and story elements copied into Mobile Legends: Bang Bang but does not go into detail in their initial filing.
Moonton’s mimicry is not limited to copying Riot’s games, but also includes copying of promotional materials, trailers and even esports content. For example, on April 25, 2022, Moonton released an “All Star 2022” esports video on its official YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1LLqNO5M56g) which copies original music from Riot’s “Welcome to Planet Urf” video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYIiy03eGE0) almost exactly. Similarly, Moonton has released cinematic trailers and hero trailers that look nearly identical to those released by Riot. And Moonton has even copied Riot’s marketing materials, using similar typeface, backgrounds, and colors, and sending highly similar promotional products to MLBB users.Riot Games
This is not the first time that Riot has sued Moonton Technology for copyright infringement. Back in 2017 a similar case was filed and summarily dismissed. US officials said that a case between Riot and Moonton would be “better heard” in China as opposed to US courts. However despite the previous dismissal, Riot’s new lawsuit is once again held in a US court.