Hey everyone! Joe here again on behalf of the League Dev Team. The 2018 season is in full swing; Dragonmaster Swain and Pizza Delivery Sivir have joined the meme graveyard and the release of Clash is on the horizon. In today’s video, I want to cover a few important topics around the state of the game, talk about some of the things we’re doing to make the game better for new players, give an update on Clash, and discuss some early plans we have for Ranked play. Let’s jump straight in to the state of the game. As you know, this year we’ve been trying a new cadence with live balance, releasing a bigger patch every four weeks, with smaller patches in between. Our goal is to create longer windows of stability between big updates, and to ship higher-impact changes in our big patches. Like the AP item overhaul in 8.4 or the Conqueror keystone in 8.6. So far, early feedback seems positive, so we’ll continue to follow this cadence for the time being. New runes have kept us busy as well. Since preseason, our top priority has been to address major launch issues like the dominance of stopwatch, overly-restrictive path bonuses, and groups of champions that were underserved by the new system. With Conqueror live we feel the major issues have been addressed, and strong choices exist across all of the styles with support for the vast majority of champions. Of course we’ll continue to iterate as necessary throughout the year. Recently, you’ve let us know that too often games feel decided by the worst player on a team instead of the best player. League is a team game, but over time, rewarding teamplay has come at the expense of the player doing the heavy lifting. So, over the next few months, we’ll be tuning things like shutdown gold to increase individual agency and carry potential. As we roll these changes out, let us know what you think and good luck crushing your lane. It’s no secret there are many pain points for new players when they onboard onto League. Over time, this has only gotten worse, as we’ve added more content and new systems to the game. Now, we’re finally going to address some
of these issues. We’ll be streamlining the new player experience, reworking basic elements like the initial flow into the client and of course the tutorial. (Rest in peace, Thornmail on Ashe). We’ll also be updating new player rewards to make it easier for noobs to find a main they love. In game, you’ll be able to automatically buy items while you’re learning. And of course, all of this will be optional so it’s a benefit to newbies, not a hindrance to veterans. Now that runes are free, there’s no longer a power deficit for new players, and jungling is possible from the get go. With these changes, we hope some of the biggest barriers to finding the fun in League will be fixed. The worldwide launch of League’s new tournament
mode, Clash, is near. Our beta tests so far have been instrumental in helping us improve the player experience for Clash. With Clash on the way, we’re also taking a look at Ranked, with the intent of making a number of improvements for the start of next season. These will be aimed at making Ranked better at providing meaningful goals, giving clearer feedback about your progress, and more accurate recognition and rewards for your achievements. The first thing we’re looking at is placements. Today, placements are a black box. You don’t get feedback on how you’re doing, and where you end up after 10 games can feel pretty bad. Next season, you’ll get a provisional rank based on your first ranked game of the season. This is the floor for your starting rank – you can’t place below it. For the remainder of placements, you’ll earn accelerated LP for each win, and losses won’t count against you. Secondly – next year, you’ll earn unique ranks for each position you play, and matchmaking will adjust based on position select. Position-based matchmaking will apply to Normal Draft as well making it a safer place to practice a new position before putting rank on the line. If you want to still main mid you’ll be free to do so, but if you want to branch out, the new ranked system won’t punish you for it. Third, we’re making a few adjustments to the tier system. The reality is, certain tiers like Bronze and Diamond have too broad of a skill range, whereas other tiers like Gold make for a much faster climb. To smooth out the player experience, we’re adding two additional tiers and moving to four divisions per tier, so that you get more frequent feedback as you climb and hit bigger milestones at a better cadence. Finally, we’ll be changing our approach to the season structure. Next year, we’ll be breaking the season into three splits, and your border will reflect the live state of your rank. Participating in each split will evolve your border and rank emblems, and we’ll still do end of season rewards at the end of the third split. And no, your rank won’t reset between splits. As with Runes Reforged, we’re talking about these changes really early in the year, so you have time to give us feedback and help us make the system really great. As always, we’re also working on quality-of-life improvements behind the scenes. Over the next few months, we’ll be rolling out major reductions to the install size of League. We’re also working on a new patcher that should use less bandwidth and patch significantly faster which we hope to get to you guys later this year. In addition, we’re aiming to improve League’s ability to deal with a wider range of network conditions, especially relevant to playing over wifi. This is not something that’ll ship with one specific patch, we’ll be rolling out improvements over time. We still recommend that you do what you can to have a solid network connection to our servers, but if there are factors beyond your control, we want that to have a smaller effect on the quality of your experience. Thanks for watching guys. We’re super excited to hear what you think about our Ranked plans, individual carry potential, or anything else we discussed today. Good luck in Clash and we’ll see you on the rift!