Red Post Collection: 2016 Season, Party Rewards, LCP Epi 6: Jhin, Champion Mastery 6 & 7, Lunar Revel teaser, & more!

Posted on at 9:18 AM by Moobeat
[UPDATE: Lunar Revel 2016 teaser is up! Lunar Revel starts on January 26th and lasts through Feb 8th]

Today's red post collection covers the start of the 2016 ranked season, party rewards to kick off the new season, a new teaser for the upcoming 2016 Lunar Revel, Socrates mentioning plans for the hextech crafting system and champion mastery 6 & 7,  a new League community podcast with Gypsylord talking Jhin, and more!
Continue reading for more information!

Table of Contents

Lunar Revel 2016 Teaser - A traveler arrives

A new teaser page for the 2016 Lunar Revel is up!
A traveler arrives
Legend tells of a land smothered in darkness


In addition to the image above and a set of wallpapers, the teaser page notes that the 2016 Lunar Revel will last from January 26th through February 8th! 

From the PBE, we know the 2016 Lunar Revel will include:
  • Rising Dawn Ward Skin
  • New Summoner icons

Check out our PBE coverage for previews of all these and tune back in on January 26th for the start of the Lunar Revel!

The 2016 Ranked Season is now live

The 2016 ranked season has officially started! Get out there and start on your placement matches!
"The 2016 ranked season is now live! Gather your allies and gear up for all new challenges as you climb the ladder in 2016. We’ve introduced a swath of changes over the course of preseason, as well as newdynamic groups -- now you can queue for ranked play with any number of friends. With new champ select, you’ll queue up for your two best positions -- you’re guaranteed to always end up with one of the two positions you select -- and join a team of players who’ve done the same. 
To learn more about the 2016 Season, visit the season homepage here or check out the patch notesover yonder. It’s a new season of GGs, and we’ll see you on the battlefield!"
NA / EUW / EUNE / LAN / LAS / BR / TR / RU / OCE

Ready, set, play: Earn Party Rewards all week long 

[NOTE]: For those concerned on how this plays into the recent dynamic queue/new champion select issues, Lyte has commented that:
"We will be making sure all servers get the full Party Rewards time that was previously scheduled when new Champ Select and Dynamic Queues is back. We're all hands and heads down working on the system right now, so apologies on the fewer updates."
Kick off the 2016 season with party rewards and extra IP through the rest of the week!
"Celebrate the launch of new champ select and the 2016 ranked season with Party Rewards. How’s it work? Simple. The larger your premade group, the larger the IP bounty you rake in. The bonus is even bigger for new champ select-enabled queues like Normal and Ranked draft. The All-Star bonus from Team Fire’s win at All-Stars is active in Taiwan, NA, and Korea! 
Check out the details below!
Party Rewards are live starting today (10:00AM PST on January 20) until 11:59PM PST on January 24. We’ll see you on the Rift!"
Due to the All-Star bonus, there are two different tables!

NOTE: Due to issues with new champion select on certain servers, those servers will have an extended duration for these party rewards. Stay tuned for another update! EUW post here.

Discussion on Dynamic Queue / New Champion Select issues

[I'll be updating this section with the latest on the Dynamic Queue & new champion select issues as more information becomes available. Keep an eye on Lyte's Twitter and Service Status pages.]

Last Update @ 10 AM PST 1/21 - Work continues. Here's a series of tweets from Lyte on the situation:
"We're heads down and focused on the new Champ Select. Thank you for your patience. #LeagueOfLegends"

"Servers will be comped more Party Rewards for any missed time when the new Champ Select and Dynamic Queues are back up. #LeagueOfLegends"

"For players asking, "What happened?" tldr: this project was massive and introduced a new backend, matchmaking system and Champ Select."

"It makes it much easier to make features in the future if we pull this off, but it's been a rocky start and there's no excuse for that."

"All we can do is work our butts off and ask for your patience. We'll be back when we have some news."

Here's Riot tmx on the boards with an issue report for the problems that left EUW without the new champion select and dynamic queue at the start of the season:
"TL;DR Dynamic queue was disabled because of a load issue, Solo/Duo Ranked is temporarily re-enabled, and all matches played in this mode still count towards your future Dynamic ranking. 
Earlier today, we saw an issue on EUW that required us to disable the dynamic queue system. This was due to an issue with player load on the servers. This has also affected the KR server in a similar way. 
As a result of this, all ranked modes based on the dynamic queuing system were disabled and remained down while we continued to investigate. When deciding on a course of action we had two options: 
a) Leave ranked disabled until the issue was resolved
b) Re-enable the previous Ranked Solo/Duo queue 
We chose option b) because we wanted to ensure that those of you who enjoy ranked could still play your placement matches. As we did not have a clear ETA on a fix, we proceeded to re-enable Ranked Solo/Duo until the issue is resolved. 
What does this mean for your placements and rating?
Any games played on the currently available solo/duo queue system will count towards your placements and ranking when the new system is back up. For example, if you already played 2 games before the issues began in Dynamic Draft and 6 more in Solo Queue, you’d have 8 games played - and these all count towards your placements. 
Why are other regions not affected?
Before we introduced this feature, we used a simulated environment to load test the entire system. Live implementation was first conducted on TR and NA with no major glitches. However, some subsystems of the dynamic queues didn’t scale up correctly when running on a larger live environment. 
What are the next steps?
Our engineers are actively working to fix and re-enable dynamic queues in EUW. As of now we have no ETA but our tech teams will provide an update when we have more information to share. Thank you for your patience. 
UPDATE: To answer a question some of you may have regarding Party Rewards, a several day event that offers bonus IP for playing with friends. We're holding this event back for EUW until issues are resolved. Once Dynamic Queues are back we'll look to enable Party Rewards and make sure that players on EUW have the same amount of time to earn IP with friends."
These issues weren't exclusive to EUW for long, Riot Draggles reported:
"Update: Dynamic normal queue is now disabled in all regions worldwide while we work on a fix (as an fyi, NA began to see similar issues despite the earlier launch on that server). Still no ETA to give but will be sure to have someone update this thread when that changes."

League Community Podcast Episode 6: Jhin

 We also have a new episode of the League Community Podcast! Episode 6 features special guest Gypsylord discussing JHIN!

"Welcome to the latest installment of the League Community Podcast, a series in which we take you behind-the-scenes with the people who help make League possible. Expect new guests and new stories every couple of weeks or so, and make sure to hit us with those sweet comments and ratings so we can keep striving toward a Challenger tier podcast. 
This week, we sit down with Champion Designer August "Gypsylord" Browning – join us as we chat with him about his board game habit, champ design at Riot, and developing Jhin.

You can also find the podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or check out past episodes here!"

Meddler Grab Bag

As we've grown accustomed to, here's Meddler commenting on a few things around the boards!

When asked about the launch date of 6.2, Meddler noted:
"Tentative patch date's a week from now basically. That's subject to change if we discover any critical bugs in the patch during the next week of testing though.""
This lines up with our normal 2 week PBE cycle schedule, playing 6.2 at around January 27th! Check out our PBE cycle coverage for more on what is coming in the next patch - Jhin, Shen, and more!

Meddler also commented on their previously mentioned plans to change the Dragon rewards around, explaining:
"We've been experimenting with some possibilities over the last couple of weeks, including changing the 4th buff to something a bit more felt than minion/monster damage. Currently waiting to get some insight into how dragon's being valued in the start of the ranked season/first couple of weeks of professional play though to inform how big our changes should or shouldn't be."

When asked for a way to differentiate blue trinket wards from normal wards, Meddler noted:
"With ya - we've got a change coming in the next patch that'll give blue trinket wards a somewhat different icon from other wards. They'll still look fairly similar (want to ensure they still read as wards at a glance) but hopefully there'll be enough distinction there to help with cases like this."
[This change is currently on the PBE and can be seen in this video.]

When asked if there are any concrete plans for Singed changes, Meddler noted:
"We don't have any plans to make significant changes to Singed (almost certainly balance adjustments at some point, but none currently planned). He's got a distinct playstyle, a deep mastery curve, creates great high moments and certainly isn't a jack of all trades. He is a bit weird thematically, but not in a 'this guy's failing to deliver on his core fantasy' kind of way. 
I'm not personally convinced the root from the Fling/Mega Adhesive combo's sufficiently relevant to justify its existence on the kit, could imagine a world in which we took that out and replaced it with something a bit less niche. I don't play Singed much myself though, so I might be just unaware of a bunch of value that interaction provides."

When asked about this thoughts on Irelia's E, he shared:
"I don't think it's a great ability, in particular because it can be really unclear what result will happen before she uses it, leading to press the button and hope plays that can feel unfair (in a way you can't influence) to one player or the other. It's also an ability that, due to the way it can punish fighting back and its nature as a targeted spell, can leave opponents without apparent options. 
Having said that though there are a lot of other champions/abilities I think we'd be much better off looking at first that need the work more. An Irelia rework someday's a definite possibility, think it's unlikely we'll do one this year though."

Socrates on Champion Mastery Level 6 & 7 

Socrates has jumped on the PBE boards to discuss champion mastery levels 6 and 7! The current plan is to be able to increased your mastery level cap on a specific champion by using champion shards from the upcoming hextech crafting and loot system.

Here's the latest from his thread on the PBE boards:
"Hey all, 
When we first announced that Hextech Crafting and loot was heading to PBE, we saw a few questions about how champion shards would work for players who already had all champions unlocked. We weren’t ready to answer those questions then, we are now at the point where we want to reach out to the community for feedback. 
Here’s our current, leading design:
  • All players (whether you have all champions unlocked or not) can use champion shards that are duplicates of champions you already own to increase the Champion Mastery level cap of specific champions up to level 7.
    • This will increase the level cap, but won’t increase your actual Champion Mastery experience or unlock any associated rewards (unless you already have enough mastery points on a champ to be level 6 or 7, in which case you’ll immediately unlock those rewards)
    • Example: You own Jax. Using a Jax shard, you can raise the Champion Mastery level cap to 6 for Jax.
  • Alternatively, you can combine 3 champion mastery shards to unlock another level on any champion you choose.
    • Example: You spend three random champion shards to increase Champion Mastery level and a pop up appears allowing you to select any champion. You select Renekton, raising his Champion Mastery level cap to 6.
We also plan to offer chests in the store that can be purchased with IP that would contain specific types of champion shards. For example, we might offer a Demacian Chest for a limited period of time which would contain champion shards for champions associated with Demacia. We might also offer chests like these via other means, like rewards for accomplishments in ranked. 
Our goal with this is to ensure champion shards drops always feel like a step towards something players care about and to make to the highest tiers of champion mastery feel exclusive and valuable. Ultimately we think this will make it more meaningful when you drop your mastery badge emote after a clutch (or not so clutch) play. It's possible that there could be some other reward types associated with higher champion mastery levels, but this is still TBD. We’re excited to get Hextech Crafting and loot out to you all and curious to hear your feedback. 
Thanks everyone for all the testing you’ve done so far!"

Socrates and Wingfield also popped on the associated reddit thread to answer a few questions:

Socrates clarified that raising the level cap does not give mastery points required for the level, you must still earn those.
"It's the level 6 and 7 cap that unlock not the experience required for the levels themselves. So you'll still have to earn your way up. Since the chests require strong performances (S grades) on champs, it puts more weight on unlocking these levels. 
Somebody else pointed out since these rewards are more exclusive they should probably be cooler. That's a good point also."

Wingfield also reiterated that they plan to have champion shard only chests available for IP purchase in addition to the chests you can earn each month:
"We'd have champion shard chests available for IP purchase in addition to the free hextech chests (which include skins) - so if you're looking to unlock level 6 / 7, you can go beyond the 4 chest limit for free by using IP to get those chests. 
Does this option address the concerns?"
Wingfield continued:
"Hey Jacob, 
We would offer champion shard chests for IP purchase. We'd also have a recipe so 3 champion shards unlocks level 6/7 for your CHOICE of champion. Does that adequately address the money grab concerns you've raised? These tweaks should several reduce the difficulty of unlocking the mastery level a player desires."
When asked about any sort of limited on these champion shard chests, Wingfield noted:
"I don't anticipate any limits on purchases. I'd anticipate we'd have a generic "all champions" chest available 24/7, with smaller subsets of champion groups on for limited time periods (e.g. the Demacia chest example given in the post). 
The "3 champion shards = specific choice of champion level 6/7 unlock" recipe will also be available 24/7."
In response to concern over RNG part of being able to increase your mastery level cap for a specific champion, Wingfield noted:
"We've tried to address the RNG feedback by offering a recipe that offers you the choice of champion to unlock level 6/7 for. We've also created IP only champion shard boxes to address any money issues. 
Do you think this solutions address your concerns? Are there alternatives we could try? Definitely open to additional ideas!"

While the above options are not on the PBE for testing yet, check out our 6.2 PBE cycle coverage for a run down of how the new hextech crafting and loot system works!

Community Collab | Season 6 The Musical

Next up we have a new community collaboration - Season 6 the musical! 

"Feeling lost with the new season changes? Let Crazy Boris guide you into the magical, musical land of skills trees, viable Skarner and the great state of Illinois. 
Animated by CrazyBoris: 
Lyrics by CrazyBoris: 
Choreography by CrazyBoris: 
Costuming and props by CrazyBoris: 
Hideo Kojima by Crazy Boris: 
**Created in Collaboration with Riot Games**"

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