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“Google is sensitive to us going direct-to-players,” Riot Games wrote internally.

“Google is sensitive to us going direct-to-players, and we can use that to ask for increased promotional support while staying on their platform,” reads one line.

Here’s another, though. (Riot used underline instead of bold, but I don’t have that option at this moment):

The best way to ensure broad distribution is to be on as many platforms as possible, regardless of their fees

recommendation: use google play

Among the other platforms Riot considered, according to the document: Singtel and Epic Games.

On a page titled “Maximizing margins” that considered the pros and cons of going with Epic and Singtel lives this phrase:

“Cons: frustrating Google.”

The document shows that Riot was aware it could technically be on more stores in addition to Google Play, but I saw yet another bullet point that suggested it could be detrimental to the Google relationship, too.

Apparently this came up in a meeting where all of Google Play’s leadership was present:

Google leaned in very hard (entire Play leadership attended) as side loading / bypassing their store is still a reality and they cannot afford to lose us as a partner.

Riot’s CFO now says he doesn’t think sideloading was explicitly mentioned in that meeting, though.

Google also wrote internally that it didn’t want Riot to do an app store.