The 2023 League of Legends (LoL) World Championship is hitting the stage in South Korea this year, and to mark the occasion, developer Riot Games has chosen one of the nation's hottest groups to perform the annual anthem.
Rising K-pop sensation NewJeans, best known for popular songs like “Super Shy” and “Ditto,” are confirmed to be the performing artist for the Worlds 2023 anthem, “GODS.”
The song was penned by Sebastian Najand and Alex Seaver of Mako, who was also behind previous LoL Worlds anthem hits like “Legends Never Die”, “RISE”, and “Awaken”, as well as several songs from the Arcane Original Soundtrack.
The song and the music video will be released on 3 October at 1pm Singapore Time.
"We’re honoured to be partnering with NewJeans for Worlds 2023 - both a historic breakthrough year for the group and momentous for esports fans as we celebrate the 10th anniversary of Worlds anthems,” said Maria Egan, Global Head of Music & Events at Riot Games Entertainment.
NewJeans will be joining the ranks of superstars like Imagine Dragons, Lil Nas X, and Zedd, who have performed iconic Worlds anthems in the past.
A new experience for NewJeans
The K-pop sensation said that this was a “new experience” for all of them.
“It was fun to try a new genre and sound. Through this collaboration, we are happy to present a song that incorporates both NewJeans’ and League of Legends’ unique colours,” the group added.
NewJeans also said that they hoped that the song would bring fans and players “a new sense of empowerment.”
“The Worlds Anthem is the rallying cry for our community every year, and we’re so excited to partner with NewJeans to deliver this incredible moment,” said Carrie Dunn, Global Head of Creative, Esports at Riot Games.
According to Dunn, the partnership “felt fated as a true cultural celebration”, with Worlds happening in South Korea and the “meteoric rise” of NewJeans.
“‘GODS’ juxtaposes epic and intense production elements with NewJeans’ beautiful and powerful vocals – conveying both the grind and the glory that awaits our players at Worlds,” she added.
‘GODS’ music video to feature Deft’s story
The 2023 Worlds Music Video will trace the footsteps of South Korean pro player Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu, from his discovery of League in high school to his remarkable journey that culminated at Worlds 2022.
It encapsulates not only Deft's personal story and his “unbreakable spirit” but also the story of a team that defied all odds to claim the title of World Champions.
“We don’t want to spoil too much of the music video but expect to see familiar faces and unforgettable moments reimagined as we follow Deft’s story from its beginning in 2013 to his victorious World Championship last year,” Dunn said.
“Allies becoming adversaries is a story all athletes can relate to, and we think ‘GODS’ will set the stage for what’s bound to be an incredible Worlds,” Dunn added.
Fans can watch “GODS” on YouTube and listen to the song on any music streaming platform on 3 October at 1pm Singapore Time.
Worlds 2023 will be hosted in South Korea from 10 October to 19 November in four different venues across the country
Anna is a freelance writer and photographer. She is a gamer who loves RPGs and platformers, and is a League of Legends geek. She's also a food enthusiast who loves a good cup of black coffee.