Red Post Collection: March 21st Patch Update, Team Builder Design - "Why Champion, Position, and Role?", and more!

Posted on at 9:04 PM by Moobeat
Tonight's red post collection features a heads up on the March 21st  patch update on  that fixed up a few Heimerdinger issues, Lyte discussing Team Builder and the question of "Why Champion, Position, and Role?", info on how summoners of every region can snag a free Dreadknight Garen skin for following League of Legends on twitter, and more!
Continue reading for more information!

Recent News:


3/21/2014 Patch Update

The official 4.4 patch notes have been updated to include information from a recent hotfix:

3/21/2014

Bug Fixes

  • Fixed a bug where if Heimerdinger had ranks in Q- H-28G Evolution Turret, he would perpetually regenerate up to 3 turret kits a time after dying.

with this hotfix, Heimerdinger's VU is now back and ready for action!

Meddler also commented on the issue and why it took a while to fix, saying:
"Fixing the initial issue (double or triple turret ammo recharge rate) revealed another issue when that fix was tested. We've fixed that too and are rolling out a hotfix across the different servers at the moment."

Going in-depth on Team Builder's Design - Why Champion, Position, and Role?

Lyte has published a lengthy post regarding Team Builder, which recently wrapped up a two day live beta,  and the decision to allow champion selection rather than just position and role selection:
"TLDR: Champion selection in addition to Position and Role selection prevented conflicts and negative experiences, increased champion played diversity and enhanced the ability for players to try out Champions in new roles and positions. 
---
Hey everyone, 
A lot of players have been wondering why a player has to choose their Champion, Position and Role before joining teams as Solos in Team Builder. Specifically, some players have asked why the system asks you to select a champion and not just a position. 
When we first started brainstorming about what a new Champion Select would look like, our initial research investigated what player expectations were going into Champion Select. For example, in one qualitative study, we asked players what they felt were the most important factors going into Champion Select and to rank-sort the options provided.

Surprisingly, a majority of players rated “having sportsmanlike teammates” as their most important factor going into a match—this beat out factors like “having a good composition of champions on my team” or “playing the champion I want to play.” This really showed the design crew that there was some wiggle room between these factors.

We also put a lot of thought into our driving principles, and went beyond making Team Builder games feel like each team had sportsmanlike teammates—we wanted you to trust your teammates. We wanted you to feel like these players you didn’t know were truly a part of your team. We wanted to create opportunities to bond as a team, before you went in and kicked the other team’s butt. 
In a subsequent study, we started looking at perception around the concept of a “standard meta.” As designers, we care about creating a game that is constantly evolving—it’s exciting to see new strategies develop and become the new standard. But, do players care if a system like Team Builder enforced a meta or standard way to play the game, or do they want to see innovation and the evolution of new strategies? It turns out that for non-Ranked modes, players had pretty disparate opinions. A lot of players hated the idea of a system enforcing a standard way to play the game, while a lot of players also didn’t care—but, given the disparity, we knew we had to tread carefully. Based on this research, we didn’t want to enforce the meta for Team Builder. For Team Builder, we wanted to make it easier for players to try new strategies or new ways to play their favorite Champions if they wanted to
--- 
So, to re-cap, based on research, we had a huge list of design goals that included the following: 
1) Improve communication, and prevent conflicts
2) Create opportunities for teams to bond before going into battle
3) Avoid enforcing a standard way of playing League
4) Make it easier to try new strategies or new ways to play Champs, but make it opt-in 
--- 
In the early Team Builder prototypes, we tried numerous designs. 
1) Just selecting Position and RoleAs you can imagine, in this prototype there were a lot of discussions about eventual champion picks in the Team Builder lobby and how it increased the amount of time it took for a player to find a team and get into a game. It also created conflicts when players on a given team wanted to play the same champion in different positions or roles—which happens more likely than you might think!

We were concerned about the time it took players to hit “Play” and get into a game in a system like Team Builder, so we often had to make judgment calls on when we could trade-off speed for match quality or quality of experience. This design would also increase the number of times a player would be accepted into a team, and then kicked because of the champion they selected—I think we can all agree this is ultimately a very poor experience.

2) Selecting Champion, Position and RoleIn this prototype, a lot of benefits emerged. For example, players that wanted to play Champions in unorthodox ways actually managed to get to play them—their queue times were longer on average, but when they were accepted into a group, the entire team was bought in. In the other prototype, players might change their Champion after being accepted a few times and then asked to change or be booted. In Team Builder today, for example, we’re seeing a decent number of Marksmen, Mages, Tanks, Fighters and Assassins get played in Top Lane. This might not have been the case if we had only allowed Position and Role selection. We’re also seeing Taric in the Jungle, which is fabulous
So at the end of the day, forcing Champion selection in addition to Position and Role selection prevented conflicts and negative experiences, increased champion diversity and enhanced the ability for players to try out Champions in new roles and positions. In saying this, we know that some players are having difficulty building teams for specific styles of play in Team Builder such as an AOE comp or Yasuo knock-up comp—we’re discussing whether there are creative ways to support this, while still maintaining a lot of the benefits of selecting a Champion prior to building or joining teams. We also know that Team Builder currently doesn’t support drafting or counterpicking, which is integral to the competitive experience; however, Team Builder was initially designed specifically for the Normal ruleset and optimizing for fun.

--- 
There’s also one common misconception I want to clear up: 
1) But, if you only select Position and Role, queue times would be faster! 
This is a common misunderstanding unless you thoroughly think through Team Builder’s design.

As a Captain in Team Builder, you can only assign Positions and Roles for your team; what this means is that even though you (as a solo player) might select Champion, Position and Role, the system is only looking assigning matches based on 2 of those parameters—Positions and Roles. The Captain can also select “Any Role” as an option, which is more flexible and makes it faster to build teams because now the system will match solos to teams based on only 1 parameter—Positions. But, the system asks the solo player to select all 3 because it allows Captains (and potential teammates) to see exactly what a solo player’s intentions are. Now, even if the Captain selects “Any Role,” they can see that you’re intending to play a Caitlyn-Bottom as a Marksman. Because the system only matches on 2 (or 1 if Captains select “Any Role) of the 3 parameters, making players select Champions first has 0 impact on queue times."

When asked about queuing as a certain champion for multiple roles, Lyte replied:
"We're open to multi-role selection, but it's not a feature we've prioritized early in Team Builder. We have to collect more data on role demands for the various champion-position-role combinations, and how something like multi-role selection would impact average queue times."

As for how Team Builder can be applied to draft game modes, he commented:
"Team Builder was designed from the ground up to be a new take on Champion Select and specifically the Blind Pick ruleset. The current design wouldn't be easily adapted for a competitive Ranked Mode, and it definitely isn't as easy as just letting players choose Position and Role and sending them into a draft champion select experience; after all, we still have to determine whether competitive players care about a system enforcing the meta in a competitive mode.

If we were building a Team Builder for competitive League, we'd probably take all the lessons we learned, go back to the drawing board and probably end up with a system that looked pretty different from the Team Builder you see today."

In response to critical feedback regarding Team Builder "only" being an alternative to blind pick, he commented:
"Let's be fair here. I'm a Ranked player myself, and have clocked over 3000 Ranked games.

But if no one cared about Blind Pick games, we wouldn't have built Team Builder for the Blind Pick ruleset first. We understand that a system like this can help competitive League, but you have to design systems a step at a time and iterate along the way to get it right."

When asked about an option to allow captains to more specifically choose which champions get on their team, he replied:
"Allowing Captains to choose the specific players, champions and "meta" they want to play would probably fragment the playerbase too much for matchmaking to create fair matches at a reasonable pace.

Even now, we're seeing about 5% of players get average queue times that are too long for our comfort, and we're only using Position and Roles when matchmaking Solos to Teams."

We Want More Sound Effects Videos

Riot Eno popped into a thread requesting more awesome videos demonstrating how the  audio team cooks up our beloved sound effects, replying:
"This is something that we're really wanting to do, and it's great to know that there's an interest! Give us some time, and we promise you'll start seeing some of this stuff in the not too distant future. =)"

Free Dreadknight Garen for following LoL On Twitter

The previously mentioned free Dreadknight Garen for following the League of Legends twitter has now been expanded to NA, EU, RU, TR, BR, and Oceania.

Follow < THIS LINK > and select your appropriate region for more details!

Alternatively, you can follow the instructions given on @LeagueOfLegends. 

Note: The LAN/LAS link redirects summoners to following LoL on FB for a free Commando Garen skin.

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