In its latest ad, LoL developer Riot Games presents an animated vignette, comparing NBA player Gordon Hayward’s injury to a fight between Tryndamere and Aatrox in the game. The commercial, whose style pays homage to anime series, shows the player’s injury in 2017 and his recovery process. Hayward, who is an NBA All-Star, is a known gamer and played League and other games during the recovery process after his surgery.
Video courtesy of Riot Games
The fight in the ad references a part of Tryndamere’s current lore, where a figure strongly hinted to be Aatrox is behind an attack on his tribe and grievously wounds the barbarian king himself. Tryndamere survives, consumed by rage, as the figure smiles at him and withdraws.
This new ad is part of a campaign to present the appeal of narratives in the game and the experiences of its players. While Gordon Hayward is far better known for his NBA career, he is a League player as well, and no doubt he gave his blessing for the ad.