Riot reaches preliminary agreement with members of discrimination class-action lawsuit

Riot reaches preliminary agreement with members of discrimination class-action lawsuit

League of Legends maker Riot Games has come to a preliminary agreement with lawyers representing a class-action lawsuit against the studio over gender discrimination.

According to a blog post on the developer's website, an agreement has been reached - but it's not over just yet as the proposed settlement needs to be approved by a court.

This class-action lawsuit was brought against Riot following a Kotaku expose that showed the League of Legends' maker to have a toxic and sexist working culture. The firm has tried to clear its name, saying it was making changes to its working culture. That's in addition to hiring a chief diversity officer in Angela Roseboro and bringing on board Frances Frei in an advisory role to help clean up its act. Previously Frei had been acting in a similar role at tech-transit firm Uber.

Riot isn't out of the woods just yet. Not only does it have to get approval for this settlement, but it is also still under investigation by California's Department of Fair Employment and Housing. The state body said that Riot hadn't exactly been co-operative, later telling that the League of Legends developer had "withheld critical information."

"This is a very strong settlement agreement that provides meaningful and fair value to class members for their experiences at Riot Games," said attorney Ryan Saba of Rosen Saba, LLP, who is representing the class. 

"This is a clear indication that Riot is dedicated to making progress in evolving its culture and employment practices. A number of significant changes to the corporate culture have been made, including increased transparency and industry-leading diversity and inclusion programs. The many Riot employees who spoke up, including the plaintiffs, significantly helped to change the culture at Riot."

Riot Games CEO Nicolo Laurent added: We are grateful for every Rioter who has come forward with their concerns and believe this resolution is fair for everyone involved. With this agreement, we are honouring our commitment to find the best and most expeditious way for all Rioters, and Riot, to move forward and heal. Over the past year, we've made substantial progress toward evolving our culture and will continue to pursue this work as we strive to be the most inclusive company in gaming."

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.