Red Post Collection: MSI 2016 hits the Rift, League Client Update Alpha Sign- Ups, RGM Queue Discussion, & more !

Posted on at 2:35 AM by Moobeat
Tonight's red post collection includes a heads up that sign ups for the League Client Update Alpha are now available, 2016 MSI heading to the Rift with new icons, bundles, returning legacy skins, and promotions, L4T3NCY discussion  rotating game more queue, a look at the new Lucian statue from PAX East, and more!
Continue reading for more information!



Table of Contents


MSI 2016 hits the Rift 

With the 2016 Mid Season Invitational starting up on May 5th,  MSI 2016 is hitting the RIFT with with a set of regional MSI icons, bundles, returning legacy content, and promotions through May 15th!
"Who will own Summoner’s Rift during the 2016 Mid-Season Invitational? The reverberations of titanic clashes between regional champions on the quest to MSI ripple through Summoner’s Rift, leaving sigils of battle across the battlefield.
No matter how you wear your esports pride during the MSI journey, new and returning esports skins, icons, and triggered events are here to help you show your support. 
MSI Icons 
MSI 2016 Icons [April 27 - May 15]: 
Starting April 27, players from the six regions competing at MSI (North America, Europe, Korea, China, LMS, and the winning region from the IWCI) will be able to purchase their region’s icon in store for 1 IP. If you want to represent a different region, you can purchase other regional icons in the store for 250 RP, but you can only participate in the icon challenge below for your home region.
By equipping your region’s icon, you’ll join forces with fellow Summoners in a challenge to determine ‘Who Will Own The Rift?’. Games played with the icon equipped will count towards your region’s points/standing in a contest of regional fandom that will culminate on May 15
The performance of teams at MSI will also contribute to the final point total, with the winning fan region receiving an Party IP weekend. Regions who do not qualify for MSI will be able to purchase the MSI Icon for 1 IP in stores. To offset the implications of regions with larger player bases, points will be normalized and weighted based on the size of each region. The breakdown of points earned by teams competing at MSI for their regions is as follows: 
  • 1st: 2000
  • 2nd: 1800
  • 3rd/4th: 1600
  • 5th: 1200
  • 6th: 1000
We will begin tracking each region’s progress in the icon challenge starting April 27 through updates available on Lolesports.com as well as the MSI Client Hub throughout the the event. Point updates will be posted on the following dates: 
  • Pre-Groups: May 3
  • Post-Groups: May 9
  • Pre-Knockout: May 12
  • Start of Final: May 15
In addition to the reward for the icon competition, we will also be offering an exclusive MSI 2016 gilded regional icon to the region whose team wins the 2016 Mid-Season Invitational. The winning icon will be available globally from May 16 - May 30 for 1 IP in the winning region and 250 RP in all other regions. 
MSI Big Plays 
If there is a Pentakill or Baron steal during MSI, the chances of landing a legendary or esports-inspired skin will double when you send a Mystery Gift or purchase one for yourself. If there are two or more trigger events during the same stage (see below) we’ll up the chances even further (up to 4x). At the end of each week, the bonus will reset and start over. 
  • Week 1: Group Stage May 3-7
  • Week 2: Knockout Stage May 12-14 PT
The store will update when a bonus is active, so you’ll know when to grab your Mystery Gifts. 
Legacy Content 
Triumph with previous esports skins and wards from April 27 until May 15. Challenger Nidalee and Ahri along with every Championship team skin (2011 FNC, 2012 TPA, 2013 SKT T1, 2014 SSW) will make a limited-time comeback. 
Keep an eye out for the 2015 World Championship SKT skins, which will launch later this year. 
Esports Bundles 
Support former World champions, upcoming Challengers, or pick up the whole lot at a mega discount with our Mega Bundle. All bundles are available from April 27 - May 15.
  • 2016 MSI Esports Mega Bundle - 50% off at 8700 RP (17400 RP if you need the champions)
    • 2014 SSW Team Skins, 2013 SKT T1 Team Skins, 2012 TPA Team Skins, 2011 FNC Team Skins, Challenger Ahri, Challenger Nidalee
  • 2011 Fnatic Team Bundle - 30% off at 1875 RP (5309 RP if you need the champions)
    • FNC Corki, FNC Gragas, FNC Janna, FNC Jarvan IV, FNC Karthus
  • 2012 TPA Team Bundle - 30% off at 1875 RP (5001 RP if you need the champions)
    • TPA Mundo, TPA Ezreal, TPA Nunu, TPA Orianna, TPA Shen
  • 2013 SKT T1 Team Bundle - 30% off at 2195 RP (6079 RP if you need the champions)
    • SKT T1 Jax, SKT T1 Lee Sin, SKT T1 Vayne, SKT T1 Zed, SKT T1 Zyra, SKT T1 Ward
  • 2014 SSW Team Bundle - 30% off at 2100 RP (5883 RP if you need the champions)
    • SSW Rengar, SSW Singed, SSW Twitch, SSW Thresh, SSW Talon"

Check these links for previews of the legacy skins that are available for purchase for a limited time:

2016 MSI starts up on May 5th with group stages and and runs through the finals on May 15th!
The six participating teams are  SKT T1, CLG, Flash Wolves, RNG, SuperMassive, and G2 Esports!

2016 Mid-Season Invitational: Who Will Own The Rift?

Get ready for even more 2016 MSI action with this promo video - "Who Will Own The Rift?"

"Starting May 4th, the battle between six regional champions will commence at the 2016 League Of Legends Mid-Season Invitational. Who will rise above and prove their worth? Who will establish their dominance? From ruled to ruler...WHO WILL OWN THE RIFT?"
More information on this promo video and wallpapers can be found here.

Here's a set of 1920 x 1080 wallpapers for all of the region art seen in the video:

League client update alpha sign-ups now open 

A dedicated page for the League Client Update has been launched, including a section for client related news and dev blogs, sign ups for the upcoming Alpha, and FAQ, and more!


Here's the client update team with an announcement that League Client Update Alpha sign ups are now open!
"When we announced the 2016 Season changes, we talked about plans to launch an alpha test for the League client update. Today we're opening alpha sign-ups for players interested in helping out. We're in the process of building this bad boy right now, so expect the alpha to be a bit of a bumpy ride. If you think you can handle it, head here to learn more and sign up
WHAT IS THIS ALPHA BUSINESS AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
Players deserve a better client, so we're building one. The alpha is a chance for players to help us make the client as good as it should be. It'll be released in stages, piece by piece, until it reaches beta and replaces the legacy client. Since we want to ensure stability on our live game servers, each major update will launch first on the PBE before we push it to the global alpha (which is connected to the live servers that everyone plays on). We're thinking of the PBE as our first line of defense for the client alpha—although we won't be collecting feedback here, it lets us catch catastrophic bugs early so we can focus on getting the feedback that really matters from our alpha testers. 
This alpha is an experiment for us; we haven't opened up our development process to players like this since the very earliest days of the League beta. 
DEETS ON THE RELEASE SCHEDULE 
We'll be pushing out releases roughly every four weeks or so, with the very first release hitting about a month from now. That will include ARAM and the blind pick Summoner's Rift queue only. Later, we'll add other redesigned client features like the profile section. Ranked, draft queues, and custom matches will appear near the end of the alpha (release order may vary).
We'll keep an updated timeline on the website that will let you know where we're focusing and what's coming up next. 
QUICK NOTES ON FEEDBACK 
If you join the alpha, you're becoming part of our construction crew, so we'll need you to actively participate in the process. As releases hit the PBE, we'll share plenty of messaging about the latest stuff we're pushing out. When the updates hit the alpha, we'll ask you to focus your feedback on the area where we're focusing our development (aka the current focus area). Your engagement with us is vital to the success of the alpha—as we charge forward with subsequent releases, we'll regularly release devblogs and changelogs to highlight the things we're learning and changing based on your feedback. This is a call-and-response show, not a solo performance. 
SOME EXTRA STUFF TO KEEP IN MIND 
The alpha isn’t secret, so feel free to share screenshots or videos of the client with anyone. Take the alpha to a nice restaurant where people will see you together. Bring the alpha to your family reunion so you can introduce it to your parents. 
Not everyone who applies to the alpha will make it in. We'll start out slow, limiting acceptance to level 30 players with no history of negative in-game behavior. We're accepting PC and Mac players from all regions, but the initial alpha release will likely exclude players with super low-spec machines (it won't be optimized at first, and we don't want people to have a bad time). Once this replaces the legacy client, it'll work on any computer that can currently run League. 
Thanks, and we look forward to having you join us! We'll be hanging out in the comments for a bit to answer any questions you have."

Here are the sign up links for the League Client Alpha on various different regions:

Got questions? Here's the FAQ for the League Client Update Alpha:

FAQ 

HOW DO I JOIN THE ALPHA TEST?
Brave players that meet the requirements can learn more and sign up over here.

HOW WILL I KNOW IF I’M ACCEPTED?
If you’re accepted into the alpha, we’ll send you a notification in the existing client and an email through your verified email address.

I SIGNED UP BUT HAVEN'T HEARD BACK YET. WHAT'S UP?
Acceptance notifications will be sent out in waves as it’s important to maintain test stability—we’ll get more players in as soon as we can.

WHAT TYPE OF PLAYERS ARE YOU LOOKING FOR?
We want players from all over the world. Alpha access is limited to level 30 players (at least to start) with no history of negative in-game behavior. All gaming rigs are welcome, although since the client won't be perfectly optimized at the alpha’s start, players with lower-spec machines won't be prioritized early on. We'll work to get more machines in as we optimize the client.

IS THE ALPHA CLIENT CONNECTED TO LIVE SERVERS?
Yes. When you’re in the alpha client, you’re connected to the same live server you normally play with friends on. That means you'll still be able to play and chat with friends who aren't in the alpha.


WHY ARE ONLY SOME FEATURES AVAILABLE IN THE ALPHA CLIENT?
We’re still building the updated client, and some features aren’t yet ready for primetime. We’re involving you early in the process so the team can iterate with your feedback in mind. We’re also going with a “current focus area” approach so you have dedicated time to share your thoughts on specific features and functions before we introduce the next area to test. All features from the existing client will be available by the time the updated client is ready for open beta.

SO WHAT’S UP WITH THESE “CURRENT FOCUS AREAS?”
When a focus area hits the alpha, we’ll blog about the release and talk about why we made certain decisions. We'll ask you to center your testing and feedback on the current focus area, then we’ll share changelogs and blogs that let you know how you helped.

HOW DO I GIVE FEEDBACK?
There are a couple different ways you can do this from the alpha homepage in the client:
Fill out surveys that occasionally appear in the alpha client
Add and discuss feedback on the alpha boards

HOW DO I REPORT BUGS?
We’ve got a couple of ways to send us your reports:
The “report bugs” button on the lower section of the alpha homepage in the client
The bug icon that’s always at the bottom of the friends list
The alpha bug board for when you need to submit a screenshot with your bug report

WILL FEEDBACK LEFT ON A PREVIOUS FOCUS AREA STILL BE CONSIDERED?
We’ll never stop looking at feedback, but the team will be most focused on the current focus area.

I’M NOT PART OF THE ALPHA TEST. CAN I STILL FOLLOW UPDATES AND GIVE MY FEEDBACK?
Please do! Check out the latest updates and discuss your thoughts on the alpha boards.

WHEN WILL THE ALPHA TEST END?
An exact date is hard to pin down. We’ll go to beta when we’ve implemented all its features and can ensure that it’s a totally stable build.

WHEN THE UPDATED CLIENT OFFICIALLY LAUNCHES, WILL IT REPLACE THE EXISTING CLIENT?
Yep. Once version 1.0 is ready to enter open beta, the legacy client (with all its baggage) will be replaced.

WILL THERE BE ANY NEW FEATURES IN THE UPDATED CLIENT?
Not immediately. The team’s committed to resolving pain points and bugs players have with the legacy client. For now, we’re focused on quality-of-life improvements.

WILL THE UPDATED CLIENT USE ADOBE AIR?
Nope! The updated client is being built from the ground up in a flexible tech framework based on HTML5. This allows for a more effective process for Riot’s teams when it comes to developing, shipping, and supporting features.

WILL I NEED TO UPGRADE MY COMPUTER ONCE THE UPDATED CLIENT GOES LIVE?
The alpha version of the client might be a little rough, but by the start of the open beta it should be more memory efficient than the legacy client. You won't need to upgrade your PC or Mac when the update launches to live.

WILL THIS UPDATE AFFECT GAMEPLAY?
Negatory. This alpha is focused on updating the client. As such, there won’t be any changes to gameplay.

CAN I TALK ABOUT THIS WITH MY FRIENDS?
You sure can. There’s no embargo on any part of the alpha, so you’re welcome to talk about it, share screenshots of it, or stream while using it.

WILL I BE ABLE TO PLAY WITH MY FRIENDS IF THEY’RE NOT IN THE ALPHA TEST?
Most definitely. When you’re in the alpha client, you’re connected to the same live server you normally play and chat with friends on. Not all game modes are currently available, but for those that are, you can queue up with friends who are using the existing client.

WHERE CAN I GET MORE INFORMATION OR TECHNICAL HELP?
We’ve set up a support page that you can check out here."

Here's a set of additional red post following the announcement:

CapnBranFlakes commented the first wave of alpha invites will go out in the next month:
"Quote:
Has anyone been accepted yet?
Not yet! We're just taking sign-ups for now and we’re planning on getting the first wave of invites sent out in the next month or so."

When asked what goes in the new collection tab seen in the images, CapnBranFlakes noted:

"We'll share more screens and details around this once we get the 'Collection'* "current focus area" out for testing later in the alpha. Spoilers: it's getting a redesign. 
*The new 'Collection' section contains the things you own on your account (champs, icons, runes, etc.)."

As for what the new client runs on, CapnBranFlakes  noted:
"Quote:
What will the new client run on?
It's not Adobe AIR :P We're using HTML/JS/CSS for the UI, C++ for the core functionality. Stay tuned for an in-depth Engineering blog about the tech that will be published later during the alpha."

When asked about the focus of the new client project, CapnBranFlakes  commented:
"Quote:
What is the main focus behind the new client?
Above all, we want to make sure it's more reliable, more responsible, and less buggy -- this is why we're abandoning the legacy client's tech framework and building the updated client from the ground up. We also are improving and providing consistent visuals and interfaces, and putting an emphasis on making playing League with your friends even better. The updated tech we're using also allows teams at Riot to have an easier time developing and delivering new features.
SapMagic  added that new features and queues will roll out to the alpha over time:
"Quote:
Hey, a quick question. You saw that there a a few Qs still missing. If i sign up for alpha, will i be able to play ranked on my main/what happens if i get a leaverbuster in ranked cause the new cleint crashed? client looks awesome, would love to help, but im a bit worried :)
Hey Boranox!
The updated client won't have all the queues at first. We'll be adding ranked, draft, Twisted Treeline, etc. over time. But yeah, eventually you'll be able to play ranked.
It's worth keeping in mind that the updated client is a bit of a construction zone, so you should expect stuff to be a little rough around the edges (or potentially break). For that reason, you'll probably want to use your best judgment when queueing up for ranked. 
Having said that, a lot of us are using the client at work when we play games, so if there's a particularly egregious bug, we would try to fix that before it gets into your hands."

As for how the install of Alpha will go, Riot Sargonas  commented:
"Quote:
I have a question that i didn't find in a faq (Or maybe i missed it)
If i'm accepted to alpha, will my current client be replaced with the alpha one, or will i have to download the new, separate client?
You'll get a second client, the updated one, to install in parallel to the existing one. You'll be able to hop back and fourth between the two at your leisure."

When asked about players who partipated in the LCU pre-alpha tech test on PBE, CapnBranFlakes noted:
"Quote:
so having a PBE account and getting the chance to have already played on the pre alpha client test. Does that mean I'm automatically invited and can access it through my already downloaded client? or do I have to sign up?
That was the temporary, PBE tech test -- this is the alpha, so you'll still need to sign up if you want to be part of the alpha (connected to live servers, where we're watching for feedback, etc.). 
PBE alpha is not online ATM, but we'll be back in the not-too-distant future and we'll post more info once it is. "
SapMagic  added:
"Quote:
So is this basically another round of pbe acceptance?
Nope! While we will release to PBE like we typically do with new stuff, the alpha itself will take place on live servers, so you will be able to play with your friends."

Rotating Game Mode update / brain dump 

Next up we have L4T3NCY with an update and a bit of discussion on the rotating game mode queue now that it has been out for a few weeks:
"Heya guys ^_^/ thought I'd do a brain dump to answer a heap of questions I often see floating around boards and other places (I manage to read a fair bit of what you guys post everywhere, but don't always have time to jump in every thread <3)! 
RE RGM mode balance 
I'll reiterate here what we posted last Friday in the weekly announcement. 
Our goal for rotating game modes isn’t to replicate the hyper-competitive environment of Summoner’s Rift, so we generally don’t perform heavy balance passes. However, we draw the line in extreme cases: when a champ can permanently stun an enemy (literally, in the old, non-figurative sense), or when a mode’s fundamental nature makes a champ unplayable. EG: Tahm Kench on U.R.F. and Brand in One For All could permastun without changes, and Bard on U.R.F. needed a faster chime spawn rate just to play the same mode as everyone else. 
Not all champions are expected to be equally viable in all rotating modes. Champions are designed and balanced around SR. In RGMs, there’ll usually be a few over- or under-performers, and we’re comfortable with that given the rotating nature of the queue. 
RE specific URF balance suggestions 
For URF in particular I saw balance suggestions raised more than usual (probably due to the snowballiness of the mode, low skill-floor and high skill-ceiling). For champion specific stuff, we would still follow the 2 rules outlined above, so let's talk about some of the other suggestions that were bandied around. 
-- Towers should shoot faster/do more dmg.
-- Death timers should be lower.
-- Homeguards should switch on quicker. 
In general, all 3 of these suggestions would increase game length (potentially by A LOT) and that's not something we want to do. Wave clear is pretty easy in URF, and we're hesitant to increase champ uptime that would make stalling out games any easier. RE death timers in particular, compared to URF last year, we have a ~3sec increase @20 mins. While this is mathematically almost insignificant, URF's gameplay probably exacerbates any feelings of"This is taking forever!" (this is no different from last year though). Next time around on URF, we might explore some soft tweaks to alleviate these feels, but only if they won't dramatically increase game length. 
Why RGM only on weekends / why only 3 days? 
We realise that some players work on weekends, and we want to get to a spot that extends the queue into the week ASAP. Right now though, the vast majority are able to jump in on the weekends, and it's the best environment right now for us to tweak the queue in. We're still keeping an eye on RGM before widening windows, but our goal remains unchanged to increase your guy's facetime with more modes, more of the time, each week. 
Mode X where? 
We're still forging the path atm with this stable of modes, and haven't even begun the first loop (Ascension returning soon though for the first time!) The modes you've seen so far represent the widest spread of gameplay with strong engagement. We'll consider other modes once the loop is up and running. 
NURF mode where? 
No... ..no.... ..............................no :(
Hexakill: TT is up next this weekend! I'm also chilling in this thread to field any other questions. ^_^b 
--- L4T3NCY"
When asked about the return of Doom Bots,  L4T3NCY commented:
"Quote:
Any signs of Doom Bots on the radar?
We really enjoyed making Doom Bots (even though it was probably the most script intensive mode we've ever made. o.O) Once RGM has been running for a while it's one we might consider."

When asked about new game modes and if they will enter the queue like returning game modes or continue have their own longer duration, L4T3NCY commented:
"Quote:
Im just wondering. If (?) a new game mode (not just an updated of past game mode, but something brand new) is made, will it only be in this rotation, or will it actually have a set time (usually a week or two, or more like in the past) Just to me, while i do enjoy this for past game mode, it wouldnt seem fair especially for people who cant play on the weekend to have it that limited.
We agree, and I think if ever add any new new modes to the queue, we'd want to figure out a solution to that. <3"

L4T3NCY continued, replying to a question on why URF champion selection was not all random:
"Quote:
I am going to just bring the most asked thing from last weekend here. Is there a chance that you could change URF to all random? Every champ IS definitely strong, but seeing the same 15 champions every game got stale despite me never playing the same champion twice. Idk, I (and many others) believe it would make the game mode a bit more chaotic knowing we Wong see a Zed, Azir, Evelynn, Fizz, etc. Every single game.
Another option would be to just make it Draft Mode because I actually like playing not top tier champs and that mode and playing.....Idk Jhin into 5 tanks is a huge no no despite perma root.
We've discussed this internally at length and have mixed feelings. 
TL;DR: It's pretty fun being able to pick your champion in RGM modes (One For All a slight deviation). 
We're not sure if it would be quite the same to come home on Friday night, "Ok, I just wanna chill with some Udyr in Hexakill: TT.", but the game keeps throwing squishy mages at you. :/ Part of the fun each mode offers should be a new way to engage with your favourite champ. Losing champ pick agency would remove this. 
On the flipside, we appreciate that seeing the same cadre of champs on a high frequency can be a bit bleh (a problem SR also battles against). I don't think simply increasing the number of bans is a good solution, as it just shifts the problem down to the next group of champs. Another suggestion is to nerf the popular OP champs, but we already know that even when they're quite weak, certain champs still see continuously high pick rates because they're just fun to play (win-rate and pick-rate rarely correlate in the alternate game modes.cough Katarina cough :P). 
This also isn't a problem unique to just URF, all modes (SR included) contend with this issue. We're definitely thinking about it."

As a reminder, Hexakill: Twisted Treeline returns in the RGM Queue this weekend, followed by One for All and a repeat of Ascension after that!

Meddler on Evelynn

Over on the boards, Meddler also chimed in on Evelynn including repeating that she is a strong contender for a visual and gameplay update in 2017:
"Quote:
  1. What archetype/class and subclass is she supposed to fall under?
  2. Does she fulfill her thematic role well?
  3. What is she supposed to do in gameplay and does she do it effectively?
  4. What stat is she supposed to scale with, is it effective enough?
  5. She seems to be underperforming, even amongst her mains. Is the balance team happy with her?
Evelynn's intended to be an assassin, with a heavy focus on flanking and range management within an engagement. Like other assassins taking out a valuable target should be her primary goal. AP is intended to be her primary form of scaling. 
For a long time a more diver like playstyle, with pretty tanky builds, has been her most effectively way of being played though, which creates some thematic disconnect. Performance wise we see her as very middle of the pack when played by experienced Evelynn players and compared to other champions played by people familiar with them. Her average performance is a little on the weak side, brought down in part by newer players going for higher damage, squishier builds that tend to be less successful. Balance wise that means we feel she's in a reasonable, stable spot at present. 
Long term Evelynn seems like a good choice for a full update someday, given that disconnect between champion thematics and play, plus the age of her model, visual effects etc. We won't get to her this year, we've got other champs already in the pipeline. Next year she seems like a strong, but not guaranteed, contender for a spot though. If we do assassins as the end of year class update it's likely she'd also get some adjustments then."

Pocket Picks: Reignover's Rengar

Here's the debut of the new Pocket Picks series which takes a look at IMT's Reignover's Rengar!

"Welcome to our new Pocket Picks series, where pro players share tips and tricks to help you master the champions closest to their hearts. For our first episode, King of the Jungle YueJin “Reignover” Kim shares his expertise on every ADC's worst nightmare, Rengar! 
To hunt like Reignover, head to Lolesports to find his Rengar runes, masteries, and ability sequence. You can also download the wallpaper illustration by Nips. http://www.lolesports.com/en_US/artic..."

Epic Statue: Lucian, the Purifier 

Last up is a look at the Lucian statue that made an appearance at the recent PAX EAST event!
"This past weekend at PAX East we unveiled our latest epic statue: Lucian, the Purifier. As with our other epic statues we collaborated with the amazing Steve Wang and Alliance Studio to bring Lucian to life. Steve and his world-class crew worked closely with Riot utilizing concept and splash art, in-game models, animation, lore and even fan art to get the light-slinging widower’s brooding, determined look just right. 
    
And here he is in his final form cutting through Shadow Isles undead, his dual pistols spitting righteous fury.
Some quick and dirty facts about the Purifier:

  • Lucian’s total height is 9′ 6″ (taller than Annie & Tibbers)
  • Lucian’s crated weight is 600 lbs.
  • Lucian was made with clay, resin, steel, wood, leather, velvet, lace, glass, hair and more
  • Lucian’s hair alone took over 30 hours

Were you at PAX? Did you get a picture with Lucian? Let us know in the comments below!"

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