The mobile RPG Raid: Shadow Legends is set to become an animated series entitled Raid: Call of the Arbiter.
The series will debut on YouTube with ten five-minute episodes in May, 2023. Publisher Pixel United and developer Plarium have partnered with Eric Rollman, CEO of Rollman Entertainment as producer on the series, and will partner with others such as animation studio TeamTO and composer Jesper Kyd.
Michael Lang, CEO of Pixel United commented on the new series. “RAID: Shadow Legends is an incredibly valuable part of the Pixel United portfolio and our team at Plarium spearheaded this vision that has brought the game’s IP to life in a way that also opens an entirely new franchise pathway for the brand. We’re excited that this project spotlights our incredibly talented Pixel United global team in collaboration with some of the best creative minds in Hollywood, and we are looking forward to the future opportunities that lie ahead.”
The decision to create an animated series based around Raid: Shadow Legends is an interesting demonstration of the importance of cross media promotion. In this case the production of an animated series that, “elevates RAID’s core characters with deeper, more immersive storylines while delivering cinematic-quality animation.” The team at Plarium are likely thinking of major adaptations such as League of Legends’ Arcane or the Last of Us, which not only saw critical success but massively boosted game sales.
Aside from the most iconic brands such as Rovio and their Angry Birds movies, the most visible avenue for series adaptations of mobile games has been in anime. With titles such as Fate: Grand Order, Azur Lane and more either originating in or utilising anime series to boost the profile of their games and thus, ideally, revenue. However, Raid: Call of the Arbiter may be the first to go for a more mature audience in the West, rather than the youth-focused animations and movies from titles such as Angry Birds. If that translates to higher revenue and greater user acquisition, we could soon see a shift in strategy that mirrors what has been taking place for youth audiences and in the East for decades now.