Riot Games is expanding their new, in-house music label by digging into the archives to bring back a fan favorite: virtual metal band Pentakill. Who is Pentakill? In 2014, Riot comprised a new, virtual group of fictional characters from their massively popular game “League of Legends.” Similar to Riot's all-girl pop group K/DA, each fictional group member has an in-game character fans can play as.
Now, Pentakill is back in full force with the release of a brand new album, titled Lost Chapter. To celebrate the highly-anticipated release, Riot held an immersive, virtual concert and album experience for fans late last week. Immersive yourself:
As detailed in our recent coverage of the Riot Games Music announcement (Riot's new music label), music has always been key to the “League of Legends” experience. In true form, fans can equip Pentakill as in-game characters, or now take them on the go in their headphones—a truly transmedia experience.
Additionally, Riot is building a compelling narrative around the Pentakill cast. Fans can explore their stories via music videos, album lyrics, and now a virtual concert. Riot teamed up with Wave, the same company who produced The Weeknd’s virtual TikTok concert, to create this unforgettable album release experience for Pentakill fans.
“The highly anticipated return of Pentakill is finally here in an epic virtual experience for the ages,” writes Wave on their official website. “Interact with fans from around the world, choose what happens next and watch Pentakill perform tracks from their new album ahead of release.”
Here's a behind-the-scenes look at how Riot, Wave, The Mill, and, evidently, Digital Domain worked together with human musicians in motion-capture suits to create the virtual concert. Telle Smith of metalcore band 'World Alive' provided the voice of the villain Viego while musicians Jorn Lande and Noora Louhimo returned to their original Pentakill characters from albums past.
Pentakill broke onto the Billboard top 40 in 2017, reaching number one on the iTunes metal chart with its last album, “Grasp of the Undying.” The official music video of the lead single, "Mortal Reminder" from the previous album has over 54 million views on YouTube alone. Pentakill's newest album 'Lost Chapter' could rise to even greater success considering their streaming numbers soared after the virtual concert.
The difference between 2017 and now is how significantly the virtual musician and concert industry has changed. The pandemic popularized the concept of virtual concerts and encouraged a wave of innovation. That, combined with K/DA’s exemplary breakthrough success, means Riot was prime to revive Pentakill. Fans are certainly anxious to see their favorite metal band thrashing again, albeit virtually.
We’re excited to meet the next group of virtual musicians from Riot Games Music and to experience what is sure to be an explosive, virtual show.