On the PBE, Dragon & Baron timers will now update as soon as the information is available to the non-killing team by any means. Riot have an investment in Curse, presumably to integrate Curse Voice (in-game voice chat) in the game. On the forum side, Meddler gave context for the upcoming changes to WotA, the current viability of Doran’s Shield and why Quinn’s experimental changes were reverted on the PBE. Lastly, a fan feature with artist Nips.
If you’ve got any vision of an enemy champ when dragon or baron is killed you already know the time of kill, given both give a buff. In baron’s case you’re also able to get the respawn time even if you don’t have vision on someone at the time of kill by timing from the buff expiration point.
Clearly communicating when a kill’s happened removes a ‘skilltest’ we feel’s a cost rather than a benefit (watching stats/clicking on people for buff counts/pushing tab regularly to check dragon status). Fighting the UI basically.
Tracking dragon/baron timers you accurately know in chat’s similarly is something we don’t see as an interesting skilltest (see: jungle timers).
This is also a chance to reduce snowballing. We’d like to see a few more close or comeback games than we currently do and we believe the amount of power having a vision stranglehold offers is a significant part why that’s not happening (map control’s extremely powerful of course). We also feel that contested dragons in particular lead to more interesting, healthy games. Farming/pushing, taking dragon easily because the enemy doesn’t have the timer and then going back to farming/pushing does feel rewarding for the winning team, it generates less interesting play than a contested team fight or possible steal however.
There is some gameplay that’ll get lost with this change too of course (e.g. Ambushing people who’ve come to check if you’ve finished yet when you’re already done and killing dragon as 5 then all recalling to shop so the exact kill time’s hard to guess). We feel the benefits above solidly outweigh that cost however.
I’m pleased to announce that Riot Games has decided to invest in Curse.
Riot really believes in what we’re doing and where we’re going. This investment boosts our efforts to continue creating what I believe to be the best communication tool in gaming.
In the last year, we’ve seen the size of Curse Voice grow from nothing to over 1 million active players. We’ve added support for most of the top 200 games in the world and are deeply integrated with some of the most popular games our players play.
This is, of course, exciting and positive news for us. We’ve known Riot for a long time, and know that Riot, like us, cares very deeply about the core gamer. I’m excited and confident that this will be good for Curse and for the millions of players we serve via Curse Voice.
We’ve been thinking recently about doing a light overhaul on some defensive items (think a smaller version of the AP item changes coming in 5.13). Doran’s Shield is one of the items we’d be looking at if so. A possible direction for that we’ve been considering is buffing the Unique Passive so it gains extra effectiveness against ranged auto attacks. That’s very much at the idea stage though, rather than something we’ve committed to. One of the things we particularly want to avoid there, and so really need to test for, is the possibility of Doran’s Shield becoming the dominant support buy again. When we’ve seen that in the past it’s resulted in really narrow support picks (huge amount of Leona/Thresh, not much else) and that’s something we don’t want to reintroduce.
The changes that briefly ended up on the PBE were exploring a version of Quinn where she’d been shifted to be more of a roaming ADC. Idea there was that we might be able to get her into a really interesting space by making her ult into a powerful out of combat mobility effect, rather than a variant combat form. That’s something we’re still really interested in exploring, when time permits. It’s very much a ‘let’s see what this looks like’ rather than a ‘this is what Quinn should be changed to’ at this point though.
I feel it adds a unique feel to her laning phase in particular, and generates some cool gameplay moments. It’s one of her defining features in my eyes (though to be clear I say that as someone that doesn’t play much Quinn).
I’d agree Quinn’s capability to utilize it well, and therefore its contribution, can drop off a bit in team fights. I don’t personally feel that’s inappropriate for that style of minigame though. A lot of their value’s in how they shake up the earlier parts of the game, so some fall off later seems ok.
As far as power goes I don’t have a good enough handle on Quinn’s current state to offer any in depth thoughts.
Hey Summoners! This week we’re speaking with Nips, an esports and comic artist extraordinaire with strong ties to the community. She’s also created a unique library of skin designs, and genderbends that will leave you inspired!
If you know someone that you’d like to recommend for a future Fan Artist Feature, please let us know here.
How did you get started creating League of Legends fan art?
I started playing League in 2013 when Thresh came out after A LOT of convincing and hassling with friends. I couldn’t wrap my head around how people could fall in love with a game that only had one map (but who needs a map, anyway). It didn’t take me too long to get to “just one more game”.
Friends started telling me about the competitive scene and they always mentioned a team that reminded them of me….Ninjas in Pyjamas….because their initials were NiP….like Nips! haha. I looked up the players and discovered streaming. I drew little characters for Bjergsen /Malunoo and, not too short after, I discovered Cloud 9. They became my favorite team (still are!! #C9WIN!!!) and fell in love with the competitive world! I soon started following LCS games and did team skins for every team that won! Cloud 9 has been a huge catalyst and supporter in my growth as an artist and in the community. They’ve been so kind and have become a virtual family for me.
What’s been your favorite piece to create, and why?
This is a tough one! I’ve definitely enjoyed all of them a great deal for different reasons. However, even though it’s not a specific piece (rather a “series”), I’ve had the most fun making the champion genderbends. A concept that allows me to work with character personality (my favorite!) to bring a champion to life as the opposite gender while still maintaining the essence of the original. It’s a challenge I love to take and hope to one day bend all of them! I even had Bjergsen and Snoopeh request some of their own. xD
Do you have a dream project you’d like to work on?
As far as dreams go (other than swimming in a pool of Nutella), I’ve been very fortunate to be able to work on my personal comic OFFcell. I love creating characters and telling their stories. I’m so grateful to be able to do that on the daily! The project is still growing and there’s many things I’ve yet to learn but I’m excited to work on it all!!! I do have League-related dream projects too though! How amazing would it be to take part in the creation of a champion; bring them to life! Tell their story! If I ever had that opportunity, I could probably die happy haha.
Who’s your inspiration? Do you have any favorite League fan artists?
I follow so many artists. Everyone has such a different way of putting their ideas on paper and that alone is such an inspiration! My favorite League artist is Alvin Lee . His work is filled with top notch energy and dynamism! He pushes artistic boundaries with every piece and it’s nothing short of impressive every time. As for fan artists, hands down, Rachel J. Like me, she does comics and loves telling stories. Her pieces are always so expressive and smooth!Ippus , Kalce , Melissa, Duet and Uguubear are also some very talented friends and keep me motivated to always get better!
Is there anything else you’d like to share with the community?
I studied biology in hopes of going to medical school and had no dreams of doing any form of art full time. What made me fall in love with the game, and eventually made me commit to art, were the splash arts. I constantly think about how different my life would’ve been without League of Legends; 12-hour days as a heart surgeon with no breathing room to draw! I can’t even picture a day going by without painting! I’m so grateful to have discovered the game and become a part of the community. Constantly growing every day and it’s almost frightening. I’ve had nothing but pleasant experiences with the people I’ve met through sharing my art and I’m in awe with the kind support I’ve received! Words can’t express how inspiring everyone’s been!! It’s truly, truly, truly outrageous!
[ Note ] Xypherous recently posted a changelist for every core AP item (the post also includes a lot more questions and answers on the topic).
Rushing a DCap is actually less efficient in this world – AP per AP. While the 5% increase is nice – the overall net AP you’re getting from the item, compared to price is lower. While each slot offers less overall AP (Zhonya’s and Ludens, for example) – they’re also slightly cheaper – So if you used to primarily start Zhonya’s – you would use the leftover gold to get a head start on the next item.
Eventually, Death Cap will be the highest AP for the buck – but along the path up to Deathcap – you should have similar AP / Point of Gold comparison – and you’ll be somewhat higher along the way if you ever incorporated Liandry’s / Void Staff / Nashor’s Tooth / AAA / RoA in any of your builds.
There’s definitely more we can do on this front from a component / gold and items standpoint but this is a fairly light pass as I didn’t really want to disrupt the ecosystem too much. There’s a particularly set build that I want to break on the high AP triplet.
Then again, this also buffs every non Manareg, Boots, High AP triplet, Void Staff build – so at the very least, alternative playstyles aren’t so far behind the curve as the primary one.
However, before I go farther in this direction – I do want to validate some of my hypothesis in that it’s the right direction before planning more sweeping changes.
It’s likely, though not guaranteed, that we’ll do some more work on Darius sometime this year. Odds are that’ll involve making him less of a lane bully, but giving him a better late game presence. Something else we’d also like to get to, and might bundle with that work, are some adjustments to fighter itemization, both in terms of a new item or two and some revisions to existing items.
Disclaimer: This is far from set in stone. At a guess though, I’d expect him to still be a fairly dangerous laner, but not to the current ‘dominate you completely in lane otherwise he’s failed’ extent. Scope wise probably smaller than Ashe. Something along the lines of changes to the effects on some skills, but not complete replacement of anything.
And, just to keep expectations appropriate, this wouldn’t be just a bunch of buffs. We do want to get Darius to a spot where he can better contribute in team fights, whether through kit changes or better itemization. We also want to fix some of the laning problems he creates though, where some opponents are left without options apart from ‘lose a lot of farm or get heaps of jungler help’.
Hey OP, I appreciate the thought you’re putting into this. We aren’t looking at how this plays out as a black or white “failure” or “success”. We see this as dipping our toe in the water to explore if community reward events is something we want to do on a bigger scale in the future, and to understand what aspects are most important to players so we can make sure to get them right if/when we decide to go big. Some of the feedback so far has been helpful, some has been flat out incorrect, but we’ll take it all in and decide where to go next with community rewards. Here’s what I posted yesterday with some more detail…
Just wanted to hop in here and say that we’re still learning about these kinds of promotions and definitely want to know where we can improve. Our goal here was to create an event that would give the community a reason to play with friends and give everyone an opportunity to earn some cool rewards together. While we’ve obviously included ways to fund these rewards (gifting), we wanted to make sure we included ways for players who don’t want to spend any money to participate.
Earlier this year we ran Ocean Week in the Oceania region and players there BLEW through the goal way faster than expected. When we designed Team Up and Pool Party, we wanted to give the community a genuine challenge rather than a softball. The last couple levels are definitely stretch goals, intentionally designed to be tough to reach, but if it feels like this, then we didn’t get it right.
Nice work! For future events we’re going to try and to a better job at recognizing players who go above and beyond.
Overall, this has been a huge learning experience for us. The parts we really like and want to do more of are giving the community a reason to come together and earn cool rewards. There is also a long list of things we want to do better next time around.
Fair question. All of our research shows that on average players have more fun when they queue with friends so we’re trying to provide more reasons to make the effort to coordinate a game together. But we do realize that not everyone enjoys it as much, so that’s why you only have to win once to participate in the rewards. Maybe next time we can come up with more ways to contribute that appeal to players like you. Thanks for the feedback.
We originally added the slow (and a -damage mod) to the Nexus/Inihb towers as an anti split pushing effect, at a time where we were concerned that split push was leading to low interaction games. That’s currently not the case however, very much the opposite in fact, with heavy team fight comps crowding out split push almost entirely. We’re not looking to make split pushing a staple of every game, but do think we’ve limited it too much, hence the removal of those effects.
In terms of the broader purpose of towers it is intended that the risk they pose to enemy champions decreases over the course of the game. Early on they’re zones of sanctuary, where it’s extremely risky to try and go in for a kill much of the time. Over time they transition to a helper role instead. Towers will turn the tide of a close fight, but they’re not going to be more dangerous than an enemy champion anymore. Late game in particular, once everyone’s past the individual laning period, it’s the presence of teammates instead that provides substantial zones of safety/support. Powerful late game towers, particularly if they can be held by a couple of champions against a full enemy team, result in slower, drawn out, low risk/interaction games.
It’s been about 8 months; however, a lot of the new foundation and skeleton is in place. The new Reform System has a machine-learning based engine backing it, and already hands out bans and Reform Cards in e-mails automatically within 5-15 minutes of the behavior occurring. We’re going to be adding in Intentional Feeder Detection and Elo Boosting soon too and rolling it out to the rest of the servers… so technically there’s already stuff that’s “live” that the old Tribunal did.
Our current focus is Team Builder Draft, but we have a couple milestones for the new Reform System that we’d like to get out this year including real-time Intentional Feeder Detection, Elo Boosting Detection, and Tribunal Voting. There’s a couple other things we’d love to squeeze into this year’s package of features, but more details later.
Xypherous has released a massive list of tentative changes to core AP items that’ll ship with Patch 5.13 (we’re currently in the 5.12 PBE cycle). Speaking of the PBE, the new HUD has been turned off and won’t ship with the next patch. Also, a new ban wave will hit botters and cheaters this week.
In preparation for the 5.12 patch we disabled the new HUD as we’re not going to be releasing it with this patch. The reason for this is that the closer we get to the patch date we want to get confidence on the builds that we plan on shipping to all regions.
We will be re-enabling the new HUD on PBE at once with 5.13!
Note: These changes aren’t on the PBE yet! But will on the PBE once we switch over to testing the new patch stuff.
TL;DR – We’re changing AP Items! NLR is cheaper! More things give 80 AP! More things build out of NLR! Most things top out at 100 AP – but you’ll still probably have the same amount of AP in your full build!
EDIT: Okay, you guys usually don’t outnumber me by this much when I make a post like this. Going to pass out – probably won’t be able to respond to comments until the changes hit PBE and players start playing on them.
Ability Power is a relatively easy thing to optimize in the current ecosystem and the current AP builds are a little more generic than I’d like.
AP mages bring a mix of damage and utility but the AP items have accidentally converged around damaging AP builds far outpacing more utility or counter-centric ones.
Needlessly Large Rod and the ‘120 AP’ Build
The crux of this issue is the fact that if you want a relatively high amount of AP – you were constrained to a fixed set of items that greatly synergize with each other due to the high amounts of base AP on them (Zhonya’s, Ludens, Deathcap). These items also tend to be more gold efficient because they’re behind the huge barrier of Needlessly Large Rod, in order to reward players for taking a power dip.
As time has passed – this NLR has created some odd side effects – the strongest AP items also have terrific utility or potential, which places every other AP item in a semi-awkward spot. It’s hard to justify a utility item over a build full of NLR items – especially since an NLR item gave something on the order of +52 / 78 more AP innately per slot after Deathcap or other potential multipliers.
What we’ve seen is that because this particular combination is so favored – it heavily narrows the types of mage patterns to those that can best use this particular offensive combination, effectively pushing out more control oriented mage playstyles or sustained mage playstyles in favor of whatever kits work well with a large amount of raw AP and care about burst damage.
This means that mages who have a core item or side item that don’t contain the default 4 items are heavily unfavored relative to their counterparts. While a certain degree of optimization around the items will exist – the power gap between different AP styles really doesn’t have to be on the order of 50-75 AP per slot in order to be meaningful.
What we’re doing
Tactically, we’re hitting the high end items in terms of AP while retouching and doing an update on the AP of most of the other items such that they compare more favorably to each other. Some items have been raised or lowered to 100 AP – while others have been lifted up to 80 Ability Power. We want to keep the overall amount of AP you get about the same at the end – but we want there to be more variations on the type items there – in case you need to deviate from a standard core.
Here goes – It’s a pretty big changelist but it’s mostly a cleanup and tier adjustment pass.
Cost decreased from 860 Gold to 850
Needlessly Large Rod
Cost decreased from 1600 Gold to 1250
Ability Power decreased from 80 to 60
NLR being at such a high price / AP point means that almost any item that builds from NLR would have to have greater than 100 Ability Power on it when combined with any other Ability Power component. This proved to be a pretty huge constraint in using NLR as a stepping stone for certain items – going to retarget NLR as a smaller item. While this does have some implications on lane timing (You no longer need a double kill to get NLR first back, for example) – It was either this or inflate AP as a whole across the board.
This has some… interesting ramifications in terms of the stability of mid lane purchases.
Recipe Change: Needlessly Large Rod + Blasting Wand + Amplifying Tome
Total Cost increased from 3300 Gold to 3500
Ability Power UNCHANGED: 120 AP
UNIQUE Passive now grants 35% Ability Power Amp, increased from 30%
Deathcap’s change mostly revolves around keeping total final AP of the damage build the same – while being able to nerf the individual AP items to have more comparable numbers to each other. As Deathcap is the keystone I want a lot of AP item – we pushed the power here.
Total Cost decreased from 3300 Gold to 3000
Now grants 100 Ability Power, decreased from 120
Luden’s Echo (Summoner’s Rift)
Total Cost decreased from 3100 Gold to 3000
Now grants 100 Ability Power, decreased from 120
Now grants 10% bonus Movement Speed, increased from 7%
Luden’s is a terrifying item in terms of the general poke power it adds – Luden’s probably needs a more solid identity that ‘raw power’ – so we’ve been pushing the item to be more and more about being mobility focused rather than spam spell focused.
I suspect we’ll eventually need to do more to the item but it’d most likely be more of a slow burn.
Archangel’s Staff (Summoner’s Rift)
Recipe Change: Needlessly Large Rod + Tear of the Goddess + 1030 Gold
Total Cost increased from 2700 Gold to 3000
Now grants 80 Base Ability Power, increased from 60
Making more items build out of NLR in the hopes of expanding the high-tier AP space. AAA is definitely deserving of being one of the high tier AP slots, given its general growth pattern and the fact that it’s attached to a quest in order to achieve maximum AP potential.
Seraph’s Embrace (Summoner’s Rift)
Now grants 80 Base AP, increased from 60
…For completion’s sake.
Rod of Ages (Summoner’s Rift)
Total Cost decreased from 2800 Gold to 2700
Now grants 300 Base Health, decreased from 450
Grants 400 Base Mana, decreased from 450
The passive growth now gives 40 Mana per minute, increased from 20, up to a maximum of 400, increased from 200
Passive now grants 4 AP per minute, increased from 2 AP, up to a maximum of 40 AP, increased from 20
Rod is currently leaning a bit too much towards favoring AP Heavies with the statline – while not really solving Mana / AP concerns for mages who want to pick it up. Going to adjust the item to more favor the Mana and Offensive statistics of this item, especially over time.
Total cost increased from 2920 Gold to 3000
Now grants 40% Attack Speed, decreased from 50%
Now grants 80 AP, increased from 60
We’re also pushing more items up to compete in the 80 Ability Power range – While Nashor’s is a fine purchase for people who already have strong on-hit procs – the ratio of Attack Speed to Spells favored these characters probably a bit too hard.
Nashor’s should be acceptable as a niche for certain mages that can use their autoattacks well – but also have decent ratios.
(I’m not being biased here at all. I don’t know who you’re talking about.)
Rylai’s Crystal Scepter
Recipe Change: Needlessly Large Rod + Amplifying Tome + Giant’s Belt
Total Cost increased from 2900 Gold to 3000
On single targets, the slow strengh has been increased from 35% for 1.5 seconds to 40% for 1.5 seconds
The AoE slow strength has been increased from 15% for 1.5 seconds to 40% for 1 second
For Passive DotS and “zone spells”, the slow strength has been increased from 15% for 1.5 seconds to 20% for 1 second
Note: If a spell is both an AoE and a DoT – they use the DoT value.
Rylai’s is currently good in a few scenarios, namely – do you have a spammable single target spell and a train pattern – a large part of this is the fact that the AoE / DoT portions of the slow are so weak in comparison to the single target slow. Changing the tactic here to make those slows have less overall duration rather than penalizing the direct effect.
This is a very powerful push in terms of Rylai’s overall power – but we’ll be looking at modifying and cleaning up of the slow rules as well either now or in the near future.
(Also added a self-only freeze particle effect so you can watch everyone become ice cubes when you’re slowing them. FOR CLARITY.)
Total Cost has been increased from 1480 Gold to 1500
Wait for it…
Recipe Change: Haunting Guise + Blasting Wand
Total Cost has been increased from 2900 Gold to 3000
Now grants 80 Base AP, increased from 50
Liandry’s Torment is designed to be able to fit as a High Health / Low Resistance shredder (hence the combination of health damage + flat penetration). However, the lower AP on the item frequently meant your kit didn’t actually work. Aggressively pushing the power of this build to be able to compete with the more immediate damage type builds – like proc builds.
Will of the Ancients
No longer grants 20% Spell Vamp
New Passive: Your spells and abilities heal you for 15% of the damage dealt, calculated BEFORE your opponent’s resistances. 33% effect for AoE Spells.
You need so many things to get a Spell Vamp build to work. You have to be resistant enough to not get bursted. You have to deal a sufficient amount of raw damage in order to heal. You probably need to be ahead to outscale the opponent’s resistances. You need a ton of base damage. Therefore – this change is trying to reduce the number of dependencies needed in order to ‘turn on.’ You won’t need Pen to heal from this item on champions. Spell Vamp builds are fairly problematic to control once they get rolling – so they tend to be pretty binary.
The hope here is that there’s a lower spell vamp value and less healing generally in exchange for not needing so much to get started.
Recipe Change: Fiendish Codex + Forbidden Idol + Amplifying Tome
Total Cost unchanged
Wanted to increase the number of potential purchase options at the ~1200 G level.
I’m attempting to make Codex + Book or Wisp + Book potentially attractive choices compared to NLR, especially on your first back. You’ll get more interim power than the NLR – at the slight cost of strongly telegrahing what you’re going to build and locking yourself into a build. It’s mostly an experiment to see if players like having this kind of choice between 800 + 400 component vs. ~1200 mid-tier.
It makes the recipe a bit bloated but… yeah.
Athene’s Unholy Grail
Recipe Change: Fiendish Codex + Chalice of Harmony + Amplifying Tome
Total Cost unchanged
See Omnomnomicon Above.
Total Cost has been increased from 2295 Gold to 2500
Now grants 80 Ability Power, increased from 70
Void Staff’s raw efficiency is pretty high compared to some of the other items on the list.
While % Penetration will always be a great multiplier for damage for any damage oriented mage – you don’t really need it to also be such a great source of Ability Power. This pushes Void Staff’s efficiency more in line with some of the other items with comparable multipliers. Also adding a bit of AP to ensure that players end up at roughly the same amount of AP they did pre-patch.
I have some thoughts in this space – but I wanted to do an isolated Core AP pass.
I do have some ideas for Gunblade though. I’d remove the lifesteal and spellvamp and essentially convert to a global damage steal from all sources of damage – which I think fits better the concept of Gunblade entirely.
Unique Passive: You heal 12% of the damage from ALL sources of damage you deal, including items.
Which creates some interesting synergizes with characters with strong on-hit magic damage and procs.
I really dislike hybrid items personally. The more hybrid items that exist that are good – the weaker hybrid characters have to be innately in terms of their champion kits.
Put it this way, if a hybrid item exists that is merely efficient – then it’s not particularly attractive to hybrid characters compared to other AP items. So it has to be super efficient on the hybrid character compared to other options. However – once this happens, that means that the power spike from a single item that Hybrid characters you get can get crazily high – so then we nerf their ratios to compensate.
The end result of this is that less items are viable on hybrid characters because they are now balanced around having two crazy efficient items in their inventory.
That said – this is just the history of hybrid items. It could be that we’re making both hybrid items and hybrid characters completely incorrectly.
I actually agree that we might need to go harder on this direction – but the reason I’m doing a light pass instead of something fairly heavy is that I really want to see if I like the overall direction on the game. There’s some rough bits (the triple components) that I can’t smooth with the time that I have (and there’s a serious gap in AP/CDR without Mana) but I’d like to take this step by step.
I know – it bugs me too. It gets kind of constraining towards the end game to feel like your options are becoming less efficient.
However, you get a 50 AP bump when finishing Morello – and that’s kind of rough.
If I had time to do another component item, it’d probably be some kind of upgrade from Fiendish Codex (Codex + Book) = 50 AP, 10% CDR item + Lane Passive) thing to smooth it out. However – I’d like to prove out this concept first before deep diving it some more.
While totally sweet – that means that Mid gets snowbally as hell.
The losing champion wouldn’t really have a good path into Deathcap and would be forced into a utility build – which would probably shrink the pool of mage champions down to hyperscaling utility champions.
Quick questino, how are you getting 405 from the DCap/Zhonya’s/Luden’s Combo?
(100 + 100 + 120) * 1.35 = 432.
This combination is also 200 gold cheaper total – which is roughly 10 AP~ or 13.5 after deathcap.
Which puts it at 450 vs. 468. It’s still an overall nerf (mainly because – yes, this is a Luden’s nerf.) – but the more AP you have from other sources, like runes and masteries – the smaller the gap becomes overall.
The gap shrinks or reverses if your build included any of the following items: Nashor’s Tooth, Liandry’s Torment, Rod of Ages or AAAA.
Wait.. how are you getting 60 AP lost on Runeglaive + New Deathcap?
Deathcap is still at 120 AP – hence:
(120 + 40) * 1.35 = 216.
(120 + 80) * 1.3 = 260.
It should be 216 vs. 260 – in terms of net AP and Runeglaive has a quasi Lich Bane built right into it which should make up the difference pretty easily – unless your Fiddlesticks and have absolutely zero interest in autoattacking whatsoever.
Even AP Amumu cares about autoattacking because 25 MR shred is INSANE.
Last week, we banned accounts found to be cheating. This week, we’re banning botted accounts. We want each and every game to feel competitive, and having bots on your team cripples your ability to work together as a team toward victory. As a result of these bans, we expect players will encounter fewer bots in their games, but there’s still more we can do in our efforts against bots.
We wish we could provide more context, but we won’t be answering questions about how we detect bots to avoid being reverse engineered. Just know that we’re committed to keeping these bots down. We’ll continue to improve detection as bots try to get around it, and we’re working toward other solutions that will decrease motivations for botting.
Getting community support to identify bots can be helpful for investigations, and I’m excited to hear you want to help. We’ve thought about this feature, but aren’t sure if we want to add it yet. One reason is that we can’t simply ban bots off of reports alone…we need to be able to identify and ignore false reports.
For now, I’d suggest using an existing category that most closely matches the bot’s activity (usually players use ‘Intentional Feeding’ or “Refused to Communicate with Team’). In the report comments, tell us that you’re reporting a suspected bot and describe the activity that tipped you off.
The best answer I can give you right now is “It’s complicated.”
We hear that players want secondary accounts. As for the reasons why, we’re sympathetic to some (e.g. “I want to play with my friends who just signed up”), but not others (e.g. “I want to stomp noobs”). We’re not sure that selling level 30 accounts is the best solution. There may be other ways we can support the ‘good’ use cases for smurfing in a way that doesn’t require creating a secondary account.
As far as I’m aware, I believe that there is a system in place that actually frees up names on inactive accounts after awhile. This includes permanently suspended accounts too. You can read more about the Summoner Name Clean Up here.
I sympathize with your concern – we did add a whole ton of stuff in the previous two seasons – designed to solve specific problems – but each of these can be refined to a certain extent.
While I can’t speak to a lot of the other work going on – I will say that a lot of my work will revolve mostly in refining the systems that I’ve created to something more streamlined and multi-functional.
For example, there are roughly ~8 trinkets doing the work that 4 trinkets could do – one of them being completely unbalanceable for early game – and they’re all super narrow in terms of purpose.
For example, one of the ideas that I’m testing is that you can merge your Tier 2 Gold item with your Sightstone if you don’t really want the added burden of managing the Tier 3 support actives and then feeling sad over that wasted ‘slot.’
If there’s anything in particular bugging you though (you seem upset at Jungle, for example) – let me know.
Stack points for Team Up Week and enjoy double chances of unlocking Legendary skins with all Mystery Gifts and Chests. The legendary upgrade is live now and lasts all the way through June 21 at11:59 PM PDT.
Hey Summoners! For this Fan Artist Feature we’re speaking with Inkinesss, a longtime community artist and Thresh fan with a fun and adorable style. Follow her on Tumblr and Facebook to see even more of her art!
If you know someone that you’d like to recommend for a future Fan Artist Feature, please let us know here.
How did you get started creating League of Legends fan art?
My first fan art was made after the champion reveal of Lulu, I was like “Hnnnng how can she so cute I need to draw her <3” At that time I had a huge room for improvement on drawing, so combining “practice drawing” and “share things I love” sounds like a great idea, and the support and response from everyone keeps me drawing, too
What’s been your favorite piece to create, and why?
Aaagh this is hard to answer, I like most of them! If I have to choose then Corgi Nasus it is. I enjoy drawing him as a tiny fluffy puppy with short legs so much! His dramatic ult and the relationship with Renekton also gave me lots of ideas (´・ω・`)
Have to mention another piece of Thresh shaking his butt, I tried to make the animation myself but it was a disaster, thanks to Racoonwolf and his awesome skills, the outcome is super cuteeee <3
Do you have a dream project you’d like to work on?
Ahahaha *hollow laugh* I keep making doodles which look like a huge series, then stop after few pieces cause I wanted to try something new like a different brush, technique, character proportion and so on. There was a series of mini champs wallpapers sorted by area or faction, but I can’t decide where Poppy should belong to, Bandle city (Yordles) or Demacia xD”… so it ends with only three pieces.
Also I wanted to make some figures (technical difficulty! ) and T-shirts (Riot already has an adorable Thresh Tee, all I can do is instant buy)
Who’s your inspiration? Do you have any favorite League fan artists?
Actually every artwork or artist can be my inspiration, there’s always something like color, technique, composition that I can learn. (´・ω・`)
Markou because of the epic Battle Bunny Talon, my favorite piece! Riot please! Artsed has a great style and fascinating skin ideas! Kaisinel too beautiful (*´∀`*)
Is there anything else you’d like to share with the community?
Meddler has confirmed that Death Recap will be made useful come next patch or the one after. Also, a new banwave will hit a huge swath of cheaters (but not bots). Lastly, Elise will likely receive some changes in the next PBE update.
Fair question. We’ve been pretty quiet on Death Recap for a while, it’s definitely been on our minds though. We’ve been doing a fair bit of work on it, and at a guess, should be in a position to release that in either patch 5.12 (the next one) or 5.13. That work’s been focused on ensuring that Death Recap properly collects data more consistently and, once it’s got it, attributes it to the correct unit and spell.
Having said that, we don’t want to over promise here. We think these changes will turn Death Recap back into a tool that feels informative and worth using, they’re certainly not going to fix every issue however. Feedback on how you find Death Recap after the changes will be extremely helpful as a result and we’ll include mention of the changes going out in the notes for whichever patch they’re in.
Just wanted to give you all some visibility on a wave of bans we have incoming for cheaters in League of Legends. Up front: it’s always a challenge communicating about our anti-cheat efforts, due to the fact that we don’t want to tip off potential cheaters as to our tactics (they are many!) and when we’ll be taking action.
That said, this is an issue we’re passionate about tackling and, while we can’t be super transparent in this space, we wanted to at least show we care a great deal about preserving the competitive integrity of League. We’re going to continue ramping up our anti-cheating efforts for the future and, even if you don’t hear from us, we hope you don’t take our silence for inaction.
As someone who has seen plenty of bots in games, I feel your pain. This ban wave will not include bots, but we’ll be doing ban waves for them soon. I can’t say exactly when, but this is more “as soon as possible” rather than “soon(tm)”. As much as we strive to stop cheaters, we’re just as passionate about giving bots the boot.
How’d you get into League? Got a favorite role/champion?
An online friend from World of Warcraft (WoW) introduced our group of friends to League of Legends in Season One after he had played the beta. When he stopped playing WoW, we started migrating to League. Fun fact: He was the Fiddlesticks in the famous videos of Hotshot complaining about his Nunu and mimicking Fiddlesticks sounds.
In terms of both design and playstyle, I like mid-range utility mages. My first main champion was Morgana because I play the warlock class in WoW and I thought they were thematically similar. My favorite champion as a video game character is Lulu now.
How did you get involved with UBC eSports, and why’d you decide to work in a leadership role?
UBC had a really successful StarCraft club (UBCSC) and a team roster consisting of Stalife and FireZerg. I wanted to achieve the same success for League of Legends at our school. I started searching if there was a League of Legends club at UBC yet. Instead I found an intercollegiate league called Ivy League of Legends (IvyLoL) which is similar to the Collegiate StarLeague (CSL) that UBCSC participated in for StarCraft. On their website forums, people posted looking for other summoners from their school to form a team and participate in IvyLoL. I found other UBC students, including our current support player, and we started a team together. From there, I worked with UBCSC and reconstituted the club as UBC eSports Association to include League of Legends and other titles.
I’ve always been a contributor to extracurricular clubs and a participant on sports teams. My high school life included either club activities or team practice before school, during lunch, and after school. In my first year of university, I joined over 10 different clubs and volunteered in 4 of them. I became a director of an 800 member club for two years and after resigning I wanted to challenge myself with starting an organization from ground up that could last for generations.
How did you balance running this organization and your own school work? Got any advice for students trying to balance their work/play lives?
I worked on UBCEA like it was a full-time job and studying became an important side hobby for me. We are all limited to 24 hours a day – even Ekko, no matter how many occasions he rewinds time – and we have to make good use of the time we can allocate. I was prepared to reallocate a little time from a little of everything to commit to UBCEA.
To students who want to find a better balance in terms of personal time management, I would recommend setting a schedule that forces you to focus on school for a fixed period of time so that you can dedicate the remaining time to other activities.
For example, I usually scheduled my classes from 9 am to 5 pm without any breaks in between. I would suggest avoiding long periods of breaks in between classes if you can help it. I personally find that breaks encourage distractions and procrastination. I only took breaks after school as my “pause time” to help me transition from school-work-mode to club-work-mode. During this pause, sometimes I would slowly do some homework and then all of a sudden I think of a great idea for UBCEA. That motivates me to finish homework quicker and eagerly start working on UBCEA next.
Furthermore, students should definitely take advantage of any advising and support the faculty, school administration, and student government can provide. While our community members, team players, and club executives will come and go due to the nature of college life, UBC will always be the backbone to UBCEA. Work with your school staff as if they are a part of your school life.
How has the experience of running such a huge program affected your life after university? Do you think the skills you developed translate to your future career goals?
UBCEA continues to shape my life to this day and it has helped me develop various working mindsets. After university, I have been looking to expand the club beyond the campus. As a working professional now, I felt it was much easier for me to contact businesses and personalities in the industry on behalf of the club and so I lifted some of this responsibility from the current executive team, who as students have an easier time operating on campus and interacting with the community.
I actually think it is a choice whether skills can translate to future career goals. UBCEA opened a career path that I had never considered before and I will definitely take the skills I have developed to the next steps that I will take. It also brought me closer to a lot of people in the community and industry who I would have never met if I did not run UBCEA, but it also pushed me further from a few friends and acquaintances outside of my gaming circle.
Have you noticed students benefiting from being involved in the program once they leave university? Have you learned anything from League or being involved in the club that is relevant to school (or the other way around)?
Players on our collegiate team like BobqinXD have been at the top of the solo-queue ladder and competed in the challenger scene before, but winning the North American Collegiate Championship (NACC) is the highlight of their gaming career at this moment. They grew a lot individually and as a team together; I am sure that they will value their experience from being a part of UBCEA. Even after winning the NACC, we are benefiting from media exposure and business opportunities that would have seemed unreal when we first joined the team. If they really wanted to, some of the players could have competed on a LCS team or at the very least on a top tier challenger team, but they wanted to focus on attaining their degree first and being involved in UBCEA can encourage students to balance gaming and studying.
I know of many students who have used their experience at UBCEA to take their next steps in life, whether it was outside the gaming world or inside. I have been asked to be a reference for job applications and postgraduate schools, so I find that really awesome. I am a big fan of interdisciplinarity, so a lot of times I intuitively take advantage of combining my academic studies and extracurricular activities to make work more fun and personal. I studied Japanese Language & Culture (yes that is a major) and Economics, so being familiar with topics like gaming culture or incentives of UBCEA membership sign ups can be relevant to school!
Got any shoutouts you’d like to make? (Other people in the LoL community, UBCers, etc.)
On behalf of the UBCEA community, thank you to Steve Jaworski and his team for making collegiate League of Legends an official community program at Riot Games. Shout outs to the other Club Founders and Former Presidents: James Choi, Michael Medley, and Adrian Fakstorp. Good luck to Hantao Yuan our next Club President. I started off working with Aaron Rusak and Diana Chan, my personal two-man executive team, and look how much we grew from 50 members to over 2000! Lastly, thank you to our club sponsors and supporters for investing time and resources to grow our community: Memory Express, Made in Print, Roam Mobility, DotaCoach, and DXRacer.
The rundown for Patch 5.11 has been released, along with a few contextual threads regarding the changes to Ryze and Hecarim. On the forums, Meddler has answered why Lux’s E has an abnormally high mana cost; also, a discussion on Pool Party skins has touched upon Ahri as a potential candidate.
We never had much prompting at all, but this is actually just ‘getting together and freestyling about design stuff’. Felt great on set. — Patrick Scarborough (@RiotScarizard) June 10, 2015
For reference, here are the Patch 5.11 changes to Hecarim:
Warpath [ Passive ]
Bonus damage now updates every 0.25 seconds, increased from every 1 second
Devastating Charge [ E ]
Bonus damage from Warpath now stacks additively, rather than multiplicatively, with other movement speed bonuses
Passive – At present Hecarim’s passive only recalculates how much bonus AD he gets once a second. That means he’s potentially getting a bunch of bonus AD speed boosts after they’ve already ended (e.g. Homeguard after he’s entered combat). Under this change the AD bonus is recalculated much more often, so the amount of extra AD he gets will much closer match his current speed, rather than lagging noticeably behind at times.
For the E, yeah, it basically won’t be much more effective when combined with other speed boosts than without. Using E on Hecarim without any other hastes should be unchanged, using it with major speed boosts (like Homeguard) won’t offer as much total speed as previously however.
We feel a high mana cost on Lux’s E is necessary, given its range and size of explosion. That mana limit’s actually going to be a bit more important too after the pre-detonate change, given that will increase Lux’s ability to land the E under some circumstances.
When it comes to Pool Party you can see that no champion is off the table! However with a lot of the LoL female champs there is not much visual interest in their silhouette/body type (personally I see this as a big mistake made in the past) so putting them in a swimsuit almost creates the ‘anime effect’ where they can only be distinguished by their hair colour. That’s a bit of an exaggeration but what I’m getting at is that a straight up ‘this champion minus the outfit’ is underwhelming and often very odd looking due to removing bulky armour etc. If we do a champion like Ahri there needs to be a theme to the outfit and not just
It’s definitely not the only thing we look at. Pick and ban rates can show us popularity or perceived power. Win rates sliced by MMR, mastery, etc. are other ways. There’s guys way better than me at it who actually look really closely at this kind of stuff.
I’m mostly just posting anecdotes since I like replying to things. And in general, from my experience Zac is strong enough.
Since your post we’ve connected with you through the support system about your organization’s prizing issues, but I wanted to drop in here to address a couple of the concerns expressed by you and others in the thread.
Ultimately, the Community Events changes are intended to facilitate better communication between tournament organizers, tournament players, and Riot. I certainly don’t need to tell you that the old process was much more complicated during the application process alone. We still have some things to finalize with the new process, but it’s important to note that the site is currently in beta, so things like the updated FAQ and other additional functionality are yet to come in future updates.
Requiring tournament players to register on the Community Events website already offers a couple advantages though, especially when it comes to accurate and consistent prizing. Under the old system, organizers had to record everyone’s summoner names and submit them along with results. Typos were constantly a problem and a frequent source of Player Support tickets about players not receiving awards for no apparent reason. Once the site is fully online and participants get used to the system, we’re confident that prizing out an event will be quicker, more accurate, and hopefully less stressful.
We’re also working with individual organizers to acclimate their communities to the player registration requirement, and while players adjust we’re offering manual prizing as a fallback when players fail to register as temporary solution. Manual prizing certainly doesn’t take 5 minutes in these cases, as each tournament has to go through a manual vetting process. Currently, it can take up to 2 weeks due to the number of requests being submitted. By comparison, prizing will take at most 3 business days when organizers make sure all their players have properly registered..
As always, any organizer is more than welcome to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re excited to continue improving Community Events support and appreciate you guys providing feedback and participating in the program!
Ekko’s ultimate will no longer be free-to-cast after Patch 5.12. Also, Meddler has confirmed that Lux will be able to pre-detonate her E and he also chimed in on yesterday’s confirmed Aatrox buffs. Lastly, some context on the Ryze nerfs that’re headed to live.
So first of all, giving his ult a mana cost is not likely to solve any of the frustration problems it might have. In the vast majority of fights it’s going to be used the same way, under the same contexts. If the spell needs a downside (not saying it does) giving it a mana cost isn’t going to solve that.
That said, from a design standpoint I do agree that there is something to the idea of “he’s been spamming spells and is out of mana, now is my chance to strike.” His ult not having a cost directly avoids the minor gameplay idea of “characters are weak when they’re OOM.” My bad on that one. We’ll be fixing it for 5.12 by upping the cost to 100 (from 0). There were localization things that prevented it getting in for 5.11.
As a side note, adding higher mana costs across Ekko’s kit (we’re also upping W cost to 50 from 30 in 5.11) helps mitigate burst in an indirect manner. Higher costs means he has a harder time farming and may want to invest in more mana/regen itemization. More gold spent on mana + less gold overall = lower AP totals at X point in the game.
Pre-detonate on Lux E is something we’ve got on our backlog and will add at somepoint. It will add a bit of power, but should give a clear feel improvement and help out players with higher pings. Should be a pretty straight forward change, I’ll see where it’s up to, that’s one we should have got in previously.
Shield application at end of cast’s currently intended functionality, rather than a bug. Having said that I do agree that there’s a noticeable feel cost there, given almost every other shield in the game is immediate. I’ll pass that suggestion on to the balance team, see if they’ve got any concerns about bundling it with the pre-detonate change.
Ryze isn’t much of a winrate problem at the moment. He’s just a crappy experience to play against, mainly due to an abusive skill order option. This was a slip up on my end in the 5.10 buffs, but I believe it can be addressed in a way that leaves the core high moments (rapid chain casting, NOT 100% uptime rooting) of the character intact while limiting some of the more abusive stuff. It’s perfectly justifiable for players to be vocal about something that looks and feels unfair, regardless of whether or not they have numerical data to support their claims. You shouldn’t need to know Ryze’s win rate in order to tell me he feels dumb to play against.
Long term we’d still like to do some significant work to Aatrox, take advantage of his theme more and make him a champion with more distinct gameplay. That’s not currently a scheduled project though, there are other champs we feel need the work more.
We don’t want to just leave him as is for an indeterminate period of time however. In the short term as a result we’re going to be buffing his passive so its cooldown reduces by level. At present it has a flat 225s CD, we’re going to reduce that to 225/200/175/150 at levels 1/6/11/16 in the next patch (5.11), in particular so that Aatrox generally has access to his passive in late game team fights.
Yeah pretty much this. The PBE is not so great for getting actual game balance. As a designer I’m on there more to look for feel feedback. PBE changes I’ve made in the past in response to player feedback were things like decreasing the charge time on Vi’s Q (because it felt sluggish and like she didn’t get any distance out of it) and reducing Ekko’s AS and W passive damage to reduce snowballing (because when ahead it felt like it was too easy for him to run a train through the entire game). Technically, both of those things affected the champions’ balance, but they were more targeted at degrees of strength and weakness a champion should have or baseline spell functionality, not “the PBE has convinced me Vi will come out 2% too high so let’s nerf this number.”
That said, I also took in all the comments on Ekko’s balance and am going to use them along with other data to help inform what to hit on him going into the future should he be too strong.
I don’t use the PBE often – but when I do, I get a reddit thread describing how my item will completely destroy a fundamental skill in league of legends.
Stay thirsty, my friends?
AKA – It’s up to the designer in question how radical the changes are when they hit public and what their workflow / timeline is like. I work in fairly long cycles – and so, even when I have a potentially high risk / low confidence type of radical change – it’s not going to be in every PBE patch.
Type of work between designers are different – some work on specific patterns, some work on specific items – it turns out – not a lot of designers attempt to annihilate the game with changes.
Yeah, Mandrake Ward is definitely shelved. It’s my project and I pulled it because I don’t think the benefit is quite there – although – I’m not sure people would agree with you on Wards that auto-ping being not wild – given some of the map awareness threads I had to delve in. XD
I agree with you in that what is radical for you may not seem radical to us and vice versa. Floating Text changes sat on PBE for a while – and I was here going – ‘I have fundamentally changed the display for all damage’ – but in the end, not a whole lot of players really thought it was that radical.
I think the key difference we have is that ‘radical’ for me implies risk – there is some potentially unverified harm to the player. Radical for you implies differences – it is very different from the current live game. However – you won’t see a lot of changes on the PBE for the mere sake of being different – as it has to fit into an overall plan for making the game better.
The PBE helps us with bug fixing much more than with balance. I can’t speak to our strategy because it’s not my department, but I feel that was never the point of the PBE? We can certainly identify pattern-level stuff that’s not okay (THINGS a champion does, rather than NUMBERS a champion has), but for the number tuning, internal playtesting is much better. Still, there’s no way we’ll ever get a fraction of the data we get from the champion being on live for just a week.
This game design thing is hard, you guys!
We did fix a LOT of Azir bugs while he was on PBE, by the way, it’s just that there were a LOT more. As for Ryze’s quadruple root, you’d have to speak to RiotRepertoire for details, but my understanding is we’re sort of okay with him having access to it eventually, just not as soon in the game as he currently does. That’s number-tuning (CDs, CD chunking etc) rather than pattern-level stuff.
We’re working on some Ryze changes at the moment, aimed particularly at reducing his ability to chain root. Odds are that’ll involve adjustments to CDs and damage numbers on his passive and basic spells, though we’re still talking through the exact details.
I have changes going through testing that generally reduce the uptime and chain cast nature of Rune Prison, particularly in the early and mid game. The changes in testing (which should be announced soon) address the issue via a combination of tweaks to Rune Prison’s duration when maxed, as well as the cadence at which it can be cast during the passive in the earlier parts of the game specifically. I’m pretty okay with him getting off two Rune Prison casts in the early part of the game during his passive, but the current 4-5 is just overkill at this point in the game. Additionally, by isolating any chain cast cases to later phases in the game, opponents should have more reasonable options against Ryze, whether that be grouping (getting help from allies), investing in tenacity, or just continuing to play around the windows his passive provides.
The NA roadmap has reached South Bridge and ISPs are being contacted and partnered with to improve connection. Also, some clarification from Mirross with regards to how the Mastery System evaluates niche roles, a college class enrolling students to analyze League and a roundup of Ekko creations.
Edit: Thanks everyone for taking the time to read and sharing your questions! The NA Roadmap Team is signing off for the evening, but stay tuned in the future for more updates!
TL;DR: As of this week, we’ve installed all PoPs hardware to complete the South Bridge (with the exception ATL – more on that below), and we have an update on partnered ISPs you can find at the bottom of this post. Today, we pull back the curtain to tell you more about our process for working through peering agreements—if you fancy a little walk through the exciting world of internet exchanges and peering protocols, read on!
Last time, we updated the progress made along the South Bridge, which included bringing the Ashburn and Atlanta PoPs online. Ashburn is humming along, but we ran into some workflow system issues which has delayed the ATL PoP from coming online. We’re actively working through the issue and should see it come online soon.
Now, progress on the South Bridge drives back west along the southern US to close the loop, bringing Dallas, Denver, and Los Angeles online as of this week.
So now Phase 2 is done?
This update completes almost all of the hardware installation of Phase 2 of the NA Server Roadmap—so in terms of hardware, yes, this phase is mostly complete! But building this direct network is like building a new computer: first you collect and assemble the hardware, but installing all the necessary programs takes additional time once it’s up and running.
Bringing hardware online at key internet exchanges across NA is the relatively easy part. Next comes reaching out to local ISPs at those PoP sites and setting up contractual agreements to get your League traffic off the ISP’s network and on to ours.
Yeah, yeah, Ahab “it’s an ongoing process” – you always say that.
Fair enough. How about instead of talking in generalities about the “partnering process,” we instead walk through what goes into working with ISPs? Note: I’ll be simplifying quite a bit of information to avoid getting lost in the weeds here, but feel free to follow up with questions should you want to dive into the nitty-gritty in the comments below!
Step One: IXs, ISPs and plotting the map.
We start by keeping an eye on where League traffic travels and curating a list of which ISPs are carrying the most League data. This list can shift and change as new ISPs start up, old ones merge, territories of ISPs expand or contract, or as players switch their choice of ISP. Using this list, we plot out where the data travels and where the ISPs are located—and most, if not all, that data has to make stops through Internet Exchange Points (or IXs).
IXs are key interconnection crossroads where ISPs can exchange data between their networks to make sure your information gets to wherever it needs to go. Using our ISP data, we identified the key IXs where we wanted a presence for the NA-dedicated network, then set up hardware in those areas (i.e., all the PoPs on our network map).
You may notice there aren’t any Canadian PoPs on the map. This doesn’t mean Canadian players won’t get in on the benefits of the network or we’ve somehow forgotten you! Since Canadian traffic needs to cross the border to access the game servers, we focused on setting up PoP links on the most direct paths we can find to the IXs that service Canadian traffic. For western Canadian ISPs, that access point is in the Seattle IX. For central and eastern Canada, TOR-IX (Toronto) and QIX (Quebec) both connect back to Chicago through the same capacity used by high-frequency trading financial institutions.
Step Two: Setting up the PoP hardware and reaching out to ISPs.
The hardware we set up at those key IXs are the PoPs (points of presence) we’ve referred to throughout these North and South Bridge updates. They allow us to interface with the local internet exchanges, and route League traffic directly toward the game servers. But having the hardware near an IX isn’t enough—we need to convince ISPs to agree to transfer League data over to our network via the PoPs!
Once our hardware is properly installed and connected to a local IX, we begin reaching out to ISPs who are on that particular exchange (that we identified back in step one).
Step Three: Setting up peering agreements.
The vast majority of ISPs we reach out to (around 75%), route through “public exchanges” with open peering policies. Open peering means that all we need to do is contact the participating ISPs with a request to peer their League traffic through us instead. It’s then a matter of configuring some software to automate that peering process and putting it into action. Overall, this process can take anywhere from 24 hours to 6 months, depending on how responsive a particular ISP is.
Some ISPs operate private connections outside of public exchanges, which means they handle their data exchanges themselves. This gets a little more complicated, but only because we have to go where these ISPs are and install hardware to connect to their systems. Most ISPs are pretty open to this, and it’s just a matter of housing the hardware and getting software in place to route that League traffic to our direct network. This approach represents anywhere from 5-10% of ISPs we peer with.
The remaining ISPs we peer with operate paid peering policies. Usually these ISPs take some time to set up agreements with because there’s contractual back and forth once we’ve made the initial introductions and both parties agree to the scope of the peering project. This type of peering agreement can take anywhere from 30 days to 8 months to put into action.
Step Four: Putting data into motion.
With hardware and agreements in place, League data then flows from your local home network through your ISP’s system to the nearest PoP, where it then enters our direct network and travels on the fastest possible route to the game servers.
That’s the plan, anyway. As with any complex system, however, there can be hiccups and crossed wires. Users of WOW! Internet experienced just that a few months back when our peering agreement went online—an issue surfaced because the routing software was sending players’ League data through a nasty bottleneck. Players quickly notified both Riot and WOW! customer service, which helped us team up with WOW! to solve the problem quickly and get Leauge data flowing correctly again.
A huge portion of ongoing work comes from bringing ISP agreements online then making sure data is routed properly. We may see a national ISP servicing multiple PoPs, so extra care is required to make sure they’re correctly routing local data. For example, we may only strike up a single blanket agreement with Comcast, but we’ll need to make sure the geography makes sense and traffic from Dallas isn’t being routed through the New York City PoP.
Step Five: Continued tweaking, support, and optimization
As the ISP and internet exchange landscape continues to shift and change, we’ll continue to monitor and adjust the dedicated League network to make the most of your connection to League. While the last of the network hardware might be placed, it’ll be an ongoing effort to optimize the flow of data with the partners we work with from across the telecom industry.
So… if Phase 2 is done, what happens next?
In future updates, we’ll continue to keep you informed of ISPs we add to our peering partner list. Aside from that, the next NA Server Roadmap update will focus on Phase 3 of the plan: a centralized server move. In that post we plan to cover details of this centralized move with dates, locations, and expected impact. Stay tuned!
Questions? Comments? The NA Server Roadmap team will be hanging out in the thread for a few hours, so feel free to hit us up!
We’ll wrap up this post with an update to the list of partnered ISPs with finalized agreements! New additions since last update will appear in bold. Keep in mind that we’re still in talks with lots of other ISPs, so if you don’t see yours on this list, it doesn’t mean we’re not planning to peer with them—only that we haven’t finalized an agreement yet!
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned in the weeks to come for more NA Server Roadmap updates!
3Z Canada Abovenet Communications Alaska Communications Altopia
Atlas Networks Corporation
Bell Canada (correction – we featured this ISP in our last update, but we’ve hit a snag and are currently working through logistics. More updates to follow!)
Clear Wireless CoastCom Cogeco Cable
Comcast Cable Communications
CTS Communications Corp Electronic Box
Eltopia Fibrenoire Internet
Interconnected Associates Level 3 Communications Lightspeed Communications
LS Networks Molalla Communications Systems Inc.
NetRiver Network for Education and Research in Oregon (NERO)
NTT America Oricom Internet
Rogers Cable Communications
Saskatchewan Telecommunications (SaskTel)
Shaw Communications Sonoma Interconnect Start Communications
Time Warner Cable Vanoppen.biz
Verizon (correction – we featured this ISP in our last update, but we’ve hit a snag and are currently working through logistics. More updates to follow!)
WiscNet WindWave Communications
Nope, all phases in the NA Server Roadmap have been concurrent – as we’ve been building the network and hammering out agreements, we were scouting new game server locations, negotiating contracts, and working through prep-work to take Phase 3 online. Phase 2 will likely continue for the foreseeable future as continued tinkering, optimization is required.
The completion of Phase 2 will not specifically address the issue with IPv6 and League Client. The real issue is the platform that we use to build the PVP.net client (Adobe Air) doesn’t like to work that well with IPv6. We are currently working to find the best solution to address this problem so that we can be somewhat future proof.
With the Denver PoP online, depending on your ISP you use, you may experience some improved ping as a result of the more efficient connection route. That could take time as we work with our peered ISP partners to route local traffic.
Evelynn is in need of a serious update before we go crazy on her next skin, unfortunately. Her rig and animation set are quite old, which limits what we can do. When we did Safecracker Evelynn, we saw a lot of opportunity for a skin that accepted the limit of her rig, model and animation set. We felt this skin was something players could appreciate since it’d been a long time since an Evelynn skin.
The system does compare you against other Ekko Supports, we’re not comparing you to mid-lane Ekkos. Everyone is new to the champion so the standards for Ekko supports may be a little high at the minute!
Some of the other comments in the thread are saying that it only uses default role, but that’s incorrect. We use default role for the Titles (Grunt, etc). Grades look at the position you played in that game.
Ever wish you could get college credit for all your hours spent on Summoner’s Rift? I spoke to a team of UC Berkeley students who run a class on learning League — and applying the results IRL. (Photos of the Berkeley Legends club by Cassie Reynoso.)
Check out the interview below, and if you have any good stories about mixing your studies and your games, share ‘em in the comments!
First off, introduce yourselves! Who are you, and why’d you want to get involved with this class?
Cameron Bates: Hello! My name is Cameron Bates aka AP Sona. I’ve been playing League of Legends since Season 1, shuffling between mid and bot lane. I currently main support Leona and Maokai and I was the head organizer of the course.
Austin Le: Hi there! My name is Austin Le aka Arkaotics. I started playing League of Legends in the middle of Season 2 and my favorite role is mid lane. I’m a fan of team fight oriented mages, such as Cassiopeia, Azir, Viktor, Orianna, and Ziggs. I also enjoy playing mage assassins like LeBlanc. I love teaching and I love playing video games, so when I heard that my friend Cameron wanted to put together a League of Legends DeCal, I knew it wasn’t an opportunity I could pass up.
Gina Youn: Hey! My name is Gina Youn aka EiectricDaisy. I started playing League of Legends in the middle of season three and my favorite role is ADC or support Ashe. I first got involved in this course because I heard from Cameron (the head organizer) that he was thinking of reintroducing this class to the student population at Cal.
Oliver Wang: My name is Oliver Wang aka Oli. I got into LoL my second semester in college after my roommates convinced me to give it a try. I wanted to be involved with the class because I wanted to connect with the LoL community at UC Berkeley and help it grow. My favorite role is FILL and my favorite champion is Nasus.
Why teach a class on League of Legends?
CB: I wanted to introduce the League of Legends DeCal because League has a false reputation as a grade destroyer and as a hobby that is devoid of academic thought. If you want to improve at League of Legends, you have to really think about the game and come up with individual ideas. This class was designed to facilitate that process so that students could walk out having thought about the game at a deeper level, all while forming friendships through a hobby that thousands of Berkeley students share.
AL: League of Legends is more than just a video game and there are many interesting aspects to think about and discuss. Much like Cameron, I feel that video games have a somewhat poor reputation; but, thankfully, that’s quickly changing into today’s world due to the growth of games like League of Legends. Through a class on League of Legends, we can more formally treat and look at the game as more than just a game and study it from a variety of perspectives.
OW: There’s so much more to League of Legends than just the gameplay itself so I wanted to get people thinking about the game through a different lens. Psychology, statistics, law, and business are some of the angles we employ to explore LoL as more than just a game.
What’s the syllabus? What do you expect students to come out of the class with?
CB: We wanted students to leave the class having critically analyzed all the aspects of the game. It’s one thing to learn game mechanics and the current meta; it’s another entirely to study, for example, player contracts and the development of League of Legends as an eSport. We believed a variety of topics merited further analysis, and wanted the class to be a broad survey of all of them.
AL: We start by discussing basic statistics used in analyzing League of Legends gameplay followed by a series of classes on team compositions, macro, and micro-level gameplay. We then transition into related topics such as psychology, champion design, game modes, legal issues, and the competitive scene. A lot of students came into the class expecting to learn ways to improve their gameplay, but we hope that they came out of the class having also had the chance to critically think about the game through other lenses like those mentioned above. In total, the course seeks to bring forth another dimension of League of Legends for students to study and discuss.
OW: We definitely want students to come out of the class with a better understanding of the game in any sense, but more importantly I hope students are able to find a place in the LoL community at Berkeley. I see the class as a means for students to meet other players and hopefully form lasting friendships through college.
How do you see League (and the content of your course) being relevant or useful for students outside of the game itself?
CB: Critical, analytical thinking is important regardless of the field to which it is applied. Our final projects required students to develop hypotheses and to mine through data to determine whether those hypotheses were correct. Being able to apply statistical thinking to a research question is a critical skill that many students don’t see exposure to otherwise. However the real crux of the course, and the reason it should be relevant outside of League of Legends, was our classroom discussion. Not only did people have to answer questions, but they had to articulate their opinions to their fellow classmates and they had to explain the significance of their opinions. Being able to not only answer a question, but also elaborate on its importance is a crucial skill for these students to carry forward into their future studies and careers.
OW: League is another way for people to connect with each other much like playing a game of basketball or hanging out on a weekend. We just happen to connect over the rift, and I think the value in that goes beyond the game.
Now that you’re done with the first semester, how’d it go? What’d you learn that you’re changing for next semester?
CB: In general, we were happy with our class structure. By separating League of Legends into disjointed weekly topics, we were able to focus our lectures more clearly and make sure that there was a little bit of something for everyone. Having students perform group projects at the conclusion of the course helped facilitate team building as well as classroom communication.
Next semester, we will try to have more checks in class to make sure that there is equal participation by all students – although we filtered the class to ensure that only students who really loved League of Legends were eligible to take the class, some students naturally dominated conversation over others. By having more intimate group discussion we can make sure that next iteration everyone has a chance to speak.
AL: All things considered, I was quite pleased with how the first semester turned out. We had an insane amount of interest (more than we could enroll), and, overall, the students who we did enroll were happy with their experience.
Of course, there is a lot of room for improvement as well. One of the current plans is to bump up the course to 2 units from 1 unit of course credit and use the extra class time to have students actually play games on Summoner’s Rift together. We hope that this change will help students apply things they learn from class discussion as well as provide opportunities for students to get to know each other and form friendships outside of class both on and off the Rift.
In terms of course content, we have ideas to build off the existing material and improve each week’s class for next semester. One example of something we’d like to improve in terms of material is how we incorporate the use of statistical analysis (if applicable) in each week’s class since the class is, after all, offered through the Industrial Engineering and Operations Research department.
GY: This is the first semester my co-facilitators and I got together to offer this course, and I like to think that the class itself was fairly successful. From the initial turnout on the first day of class (110 students!) to the final projects that students presented, the efforts that my co-facilitators put in really paid off. There were a few kinks here and there and some modifications to syllabus to be considered. Due to the popularity of the class, we also hope to expand our class size so we can accept more people in upcoming semesters.
OW: I learned that I still have a ways to go in improving as a teacher as well as a player.
Did you see any remarkable or unexpected results from the first semester?
OW: For me, the most remarkable thing was seeing the amazing amount of interest on the first day of class. The room was packed out the door and practically standing room only. I was worried we’d have only a handful of people show up, but now I’m grateful that I can be a part of such a great LoL community here.
AL: I was pleasantly surprised to see that students were interested in other aspects of League of Legends outside of gameplay and contributed to class discussion. Hopefully, we can continue to foster this kind of interest and discussion in future iterations.
Any advice for other students looking to try and start a similar project at their own schools?
CB: Put your foot out there! Even if your school won’t allow you to introduce a new course for credit, talking about League of Legends on an analytical level can be really fun! Since many universities now have League of Legends clubs, you can work hand in hand with them to set up seminars and other lectures. If your school doesn’t have a club, make one! There are thousands and thousands of collegiate League of Legends players, and there is often not enough infrastructure for them to meet and play together. You can make it happen!
AL: League of Legends might be bigger on your campus than you might expect. If there isn’t already some sort of club or group, don’t hesitate to start one! Chances are that other students are looking for the same thing, but no one has gone out of their way to get things started yet. Be enthusiastic and share your passions!
OW: You can start small with something like an in-game chat room or Facebook group for your school. If there are summoners out there, they will come. Also, have fun!
You can check out the official HUD update announcement HERE, as well as my PBE coverage of it HERE.
This Q&A was conducted by associate producer Chager, UX designer Rayven, platform engineer Razgrief, video editor Matchu and Gharris, who is plainly Gharris.
With the info and PBE release of the HUD update for League of Legends, we wanted to gather the team that’s been working on it to answer questions anyone may have.
We’ll start around 2pm PDT and will go until 4pm PDT. Folks from the team Include User Experience, Engineering, Visual Design, and QA experts, so ask away and we’ll do our best to answer as many as we can.
Ok all, we’re going to call it there for now. Some awesome questions and hopefully equally good answers from us all. We still want to keep the conversation going so we’ll be visiting this and other threads while the HUD is on PBE. In the mean time keep the feedback coming and we look forward to some good conversations and making the HUD Update awesome for y’all.
Riot Gharris: Hey, just wanted to chime in here and say that we’re strongly considering the feature. This isn’t information that has been made available before, so we’re going to talk it out before dumping that in.
With moving players around in the scoreboard, would there be any QoL feature to have keybinds remain consistent? Like if I move a player to position #1 on my side, I’d like to have F1 ALWAYS select the player I put in position #1. Instead of the keys being assigned by the current immovable pick order
This. Changing players’ order in the scoreboard also updates which key targets them, so you can make it so that Top lane is always F2, etc. The only thing is F1 will always be you, no matter where you are in the order, then F2-5 will be the team in scoreboard order. The team frames over the minimap will also reorder based on your new layout.
Right now we don’t have any plans to leave the old layout as an option. There’s a lot behind the scenes with coding and a design philosophy behind how we’re presenting info in the new HUD that is hard to retrofit back into the old HUD.
What about the new HUD makes you want to keep the old one around? If there are areas of concern that would make it harder to adapt to let us know!
We’re expecting some disruption as players get used to the new layout and functionality (similar to what players went through with SRU). That being said we’ve been testing this within Riot for a while now and several teams that are regularly using it are really enjoying the new features.
We’ve gotten similar feedback around the cooldown animations and are looking at ways to change it to make it easier to read than it is now. Stay tuned as we continue to change and iterate while we’re on PBE.
Once more folks use it we’ll be watching for feedback about the minimap being cluttered and react if needed. We will not be providing an option to toggle back to the old HUD, but in playtests it’s generally only taken a few games for players to get used to the new layout.
We know it’ll be a change for streamers who will have to redo their overlay, but the new HUD takes up less screen real estate than the old one. That and with more independent scaling of parts we think it’ll give streamers MORE layout possibilities than before.
Heya! We really appreciate the feedback. Our design is definitely still a work in progress. We are going with a more modern look as you’ve alluded to. As we move forward we will be adding additional polish and bringing back in some of that life you’re missing with additional texture fidelity, animation refinement – both functional (ability states like cooldowns and toggles) and decorative (health bars, leveling up) in addition to bringing more of a magical flavor to the HUD and it’s personality. This is all dependent of course on how it affects or distracts from gameplay and the feedback we get in the process.
Following yesterday’s HUD Update on the PBE, we have Rioters responding to community feedback on the forums. Also, GC weighed in on Riot’s champion release schedule and the burden of new picks on players. Lastly, Meddler shared some context regarding Ashe’s recent PBE nerf.
Yi Wreck Shen: We all agree that new champions are fun and exiting, but there are a lot of things riot needs to work on to better balance league and make it anext even better game.
Rework the champs that needs reworks. Getting Ashe was basically like getting a new champion. It brought a lot of people to pbe and was and is a very popular pick now. Saw some lcs Play too. There are a ton of champs that need minor tweaks or complete reworks. Balancing what you have already presented us should be priotithere. There are a ton of champ options and diversity now.
Learning champs is incredibly hard for new players. This game gets bigger every day. I started playing a year and half ago. Learning every champ and what they did toOK a very long time. I have only played probably about 25% of the roster. There are so many champs already and you have to master a few if you want to get anywhere in ranked. How can you expect all these champs you took time into making to get played by noobits when there is a new champ released every month and said players are trying to learn and findo already released players they may like.
Why do I have to go on Lolking.net to figure out ratios and what not for champions? Why is the in game description of skills less descriptive then online? Why are certain things even left out in game description? Like the fact hecarim can move through creeps and a bunch of others.
This game is great but I feel like it’s time to start doing some fine tuning and it would make the game experience a lot more enjoyable. FixING champs and reworking them is like a new champ in itsself. We basically got two new champs back to back with Ashe and Ekko. Work on fixing poppy/Taric/Yorrik etc. Then those champs will get a bunch of play again.
We have separate teams making new champions and updating old champions. While we could probably increase the update cadence if we collapsed the first team, we do get some benefits of working in parallel.
Figuring out the right cadence of new champions releases is something we talk about A LOT. There was a belief a few years ago that we were going to freak out players (new and existing) if we kept shipping 20 champions a year. On the other hand, getting a new champion is one of the most exciting things that can happen to the game for existing players. I think the game might actually start feeling stale if we stopped releasing new champs. We’d like to figure out a way to release them a little more frequently than we have done the last year or so, if we can do that without affecting quality.
We understand it’s a challenge for new players to learn League and that adding more champions over time doesn’t help with that. But, honestly, we feel like it’s the right thing to do to support you guys, you know actual League players, than starve you for content in the hopes of getting new players. There is a lot we can, should, and eventually will do to make League easier to learn, but I worry about any strategy that improves the learning curve at the expense of current players.
That’s the thinking here. Where possible we’d like to create or preserve distinctive strengths on different champions, particular those within the same class (ADCs in this case). Jinx and Trist are both really good at destroying buildings, it’s a defining characteristic for them. Ashe by contrast’s distinguished from other ADCs most by the sheer amount of CC she brings. Since we feel Ashe is too strong at present we need to nerf her, we’re trying to do so in ways that ensure that Ashe continues to offer a different impact on the game, and a really distinct experience for people playing her however.
Removing a character’s strengths, or giving them strengths that overlap too much with other characters, risks creating a really homogenized game, where, even if you see a wide range of characters played, the difference between them’s not very significant, so it still feels samey. Removing unnecessary strengths, if a champion is overpowered, is the approach we prefer as a result.
Right now, some players in Diamond 5 receive unusually low LP gains and losses. We’re releasing a change that should smooth out gains for most of the affected players. That said, a small number of D5 players close to being demoted will continue to see low gains until they climb back to a high enough MMR to move through Diamond.
There won’t be any down time as we release this to each region.