Red Post Collection: February Bundles, March Sales Schedule, and More

Posted on at 3:38 PM by Aznbeat
Today's red post collection includes February bundles, the March sales schedule, a boards post from Riot Maple on the amount of active users vs. the vocal minority on social media, and more!
Continue reading for more information!

It’s time for February bundles! 

Here's Riot Evaelin with an announcement for February Bundles:
"Grab these limited-time skins bundles now through 23/2/18 at 07:59 GMT. 
Zz’rot Portal and Chill Bundle - 50% off at 2323 RP (3827 RP if you need the champions)
Skins included:
  • Hazmat Heimerdinger
  • Surfer Singed
  • Super Teemo
  • Warmonger Sion
  • Blood Moon Shen
Champions included:

Singles Awareness Bundle - 50% off at 2472 RP (4113 RP if you need the champions)
Skins included:
  • Sad Robot Amumu
  • Dark Valkyrie Diana
  • Tango Evelynn
  • Temple Jax
  • Shadowfire Kindred
Champions included:

Do You Need A Shirt Bundle - 50% off at 2999 RP (5100 RP if you need the champions)
Skins included:
  • Soulhunter Kayn
  • Muay Thai Lee Sin
  • Chemtech Tryndamere
  • El Tigre Braum
  • Battlecast Urgot
Champions included:

One Shot, One Bundle - 50% off at 2623 RP (4722 RP if you need the champions)
Skins included:
  • Superb Villain Veigar
  • Overlord Malzahar
  • Mad Scientist Ziggs
  • Void Fizz
  • Blood Moon Yasuo
Champions included:

March sales schedule 

The March sales schedule is now available! Here's Riot Evaelin with more:
"Check out all the champs and skins on sale this March! Like previous sales schedules, we’re not posting the exact dates for each champ and skin, but they’ll all be on sale sometime next month. 
Just a heads up – since we’re publishing these in advance, we won’t offer partial refunds on champs and skins purchased before they go on sale."

What do we mean when we say the boards/reddit are a minority? 

Here's Riot Maple Nectar with an insight into the spread of players in different regions:
"Hey guys!

In the past few weeks I’ve seen more players calling out our usage of “oh but the boards are a minority” as bullshit when we’re talking about why we might not immediately jump on a problem that the boards/reddit is talking about. The sentiment from you folks is justified, because other than saying “oh but you guys are a minority”, we’ve never really presented you with much/any evidence to back up our claim. That’s not really fair to you guys, and I want to take this post as an opportunity to outline what we mean when we say that the boards/reddit are a minority of our players base. At the same time I want to stress that while we don’t always respond immediately to a problem that’s being talked about on the boards/reddit, it usually serves as a flag that we should potentially investigate something, even if the end result is that no action needs to be taken.

A very recent example I want to use is the top lane conversations we’re seeing a lot on Reddit and the boards in NA, and want to dig into that briefly through the lens of looking at the game from a global perspective. At the end of the day League of Legends is a game that serves as a competitive outlet for millions of players around the world on a daily basis, and being hypersensitive to the issues raised by players in one region can cause us to completely ignore the reality in another. Disclaimer: This post is NOT intended to prove/disprove anything regarding top lane, my only intended purpose is to highlight regional differences and how that can impact the way we iterate and change the game.

In English speaking dominant regions, we’re seeing a lot of discussion around the state of top lane in regards to lane specific champion power, items, agency over outcome of the game, lack of specific keystones, which all boils down to a belief that top is a far less desirable position to play than in the past. When these conversations come up, we definitely talk about them, and we try and figure out if they actually are problems. Whether that be comparing the problem across regions, whether it’s an issue only in high level play, only for specific classes etc etc, before we jump into definitive action. Unfortunately this means that some problems may take longer to find resolution than others, or their priority isn’t as high as some would like compared to other things we’re trying to solve. To highlight the regional comparison, I took data from a few (not all) of our regions to illustrate how position preferences can vary depending on what region you’re in - you can see it in the charts below.

(Top is the red line; "utility" is support)

Comparing North America, Vietnam, and Korea there’s a few immediate trends that you can see.
1. At all MMR in every specific region as well as all regions, top lane is in the top 3 for preferred queued role, even sitting at #1 by a decent margin in Vietnam
2. At high MMR (1800+) top lane preference goes from 3rd to last in NA, 1st to 4th in Vietnam, 2nd to hovering between 3rd/4th/5th in KR, and 2nd to 4th in all Regions.
3. At high MMR the delta between least popular and most popular position generally shrinks pretty substantially
4. Jungle, Support, and Top tend to cross either frequently in regards to position preference at high MMR.
5. Despite efforts over the past season, support is still by far the least preferred role in Vietnam by a very wide margin.

Quick tangent on the support line (purple)! Our graphs unfortunately only go back ~6 months, but utility used to be FAR lower across the board, at all MMR, in all Regions.This is what prompted us to pour a significant amount of development time into making the role more desirable and have a greater impact on the outcome of a game beyond just controlling vision for their team. It's undoubtedly had some knock on effects on other positions as more of a teams power was concentrated into bot lane, but we’re in a far more sustainable world now than we were a year and a half ago.

I digress though - the point I want to illustrate is that we see differences in player preferences and behaviors across world which have impacts on things like position preferences, game length/pacing, meta, popular champions etc. When we make changes to League we're trying to keep all of these in mind (which is hard given that our dev team is primarily English speaking working out of LA). This is why it might not seem like we're jumping on a problem that's identified by players in specific communities, because we're generally trying to account for what's going on in other regions as well lest we accidentally exacerbate a problem somewhere else in the world where a different meta is dominant.This doesn’t mean that we don’t have work to do on top lane, the high MMR graphs does suggest that it becomes a less desirable role for likely a wide variety of reasons (which is in progress), but again, I hope it illustrates why it’s not as easy to just jump on one problem the minute it’s raised in one region.

For another interesting look, this is what the distribution looks like across all regions, when filtering down to only include games from roughly ~Gold 3 down to 0 MMR.
When you zoom out and look at the big picture, a problem for a specific subset of players doesn’t necessarily translate to the entire player base which can make solving those problems more complex. We are a game that serves millions of players around the world, all with different motivations, and we’re always trying to balance and adjust the game with everyone in mind. While, we tend to focus more of our changes around high level play due to the nature of players getting better at League and the never ending path to mastery, we still need to think about players at all levels because every player is important to help cement League as a game that will last for generations. We're not perfect at this, but we're always attempting to walk the fine line of balancing the game for pro play, for our heavily engaged ranked players, and for normal players. It’s also worth noting that these regional differences also influence the type of work we do in regards to champion VGUs, Gameplay updates, skins, and all manner of decisions that we make every single day.

This is glossing over a pretty large topic, but I hope that it helps to illustrate what we mean when we say that various communities are oftentimes a minority and don’t necessarily represent the player base as a whole. It’s never intended as a dismissive remark, but rather an acknowledgement of the costs that comes with operating a game played around the world. If you guys would be interested in me going deeper into this or another topic let me know in the comments below!

I won't be able to answer every question you guys have, but will try to respond to questions in the comments as I have the time over the coming days.

Maple Nectar"

Quick Hits

  • EdwinMols commented on the release schedule and how they choose when to release champions or updates:
"Hi! I work on Champions Team as a Producer. 
Although there are reasons why it's important we release champions & champion updates regularly, we don't tend to think of it as a quota to fill. Instead, we take the skills of our team members and seek to maximize the value we can ship over a period of time. That means tough prioritization of what champion/update should come first, as well as balancing the archetypes/roles/factions/personalities that we release so that we have a consistent, healthy variety. It also means scoping our work diligently, particularly when it comes to skins on champion updates. For the most part, our team prioritizes and delivers stuff autonomously, but we have to be sure to work within the strategy of the larger organization (things like Worlds affect everyone). 
We're only one team on League, and we have to ride the "release train" like everyone else. We do have predetermined dates for patches, and we do target our content for a specific patch based on our calibration of how quickly we can work (months in advance). Development is tricky though, and the best-laid plans are still subject to a million influences that can make delivery unpredictable. 
Thanks for asking! We don't normally get many questions about this kinda stuff. :)"
  • Riot Sparkle noted they are working on the secondary rune selection in champion select: 
"Yeah, we're working on making it more clear with what's happening in secondary selection right now as we speak. 
As some other players have mentioned secondary selection is a first in - first out paradigm BUT the visuals are also totally trolling right now. The little animation that tells you what rune is going to switch is just straight up lying, saying the completely incorrect slot will switch out when picking from the 3rd row and frustrating everyone when it does a completely different thing.
Plan is to fix that bamboozle up, see how that feels and then we'll evaluate more work as needed. :)"
They continued
"Okay so I'm going to write a really long answer that probably nobody actually cares about (and maybe even you disagree with!), but you asked so here's why on FIFO: 
  • We made the decision early on to not allow you to de-select a rune, the logic being that having the wrong rune when champ select ends and you didn't finish your page was a significant improvement over having no rune at all. Especially with the increased power of runes now, etc. As a side note, you can see this design philosophy with other decisions in Runes too, like the protection for champions who can't use a rune (Cass with Magical Boots) for example.
  • "Click the rune to change" actually straight up doesn't work in grid mode when picking from the 3rd row (you'd have to de-select it, which is not great per the above logic OR somehow...double select the rune to change, which proved to be a very difficult state to communicate). So, we would have to have secondary selection work completely differently for both modes if we ran with "click to change" (and be re-learned when swapping between them).
  • We found in testing that oftentimes the "click to change" was frustrating for players that had a certain rune in mind when they went to change, but couldn't necessarily remember the other runes in the slot. This happens relatively often. Example: I want to change to Manaflow, I have Scorch and Null Orb and I click Scorch to open the selection. I then cannot change to Manaflow without re-opening the drawer and clicking Null Orb. A lot of the player feedback at the time we were testing with "click to change" was "Why can't it just change out the other one? It's annoying I have to do it again" (and we could make the system smart enough to do that without opening it again but then it was actually going against the "click to change" rules and that made it super confusing). One of the things about this particular UI is that there are a lot of rules - only 2 out of 3 rows, those rows are exclusive, etc. 
For every design decision there are always multiple ways to go & trade offs between them - as the person directly responsible for this stuff, my call was that FIFO made the most sense. It worked for both modes and, when supported by proper non-buggy animations/cues, could be followed along with easily and allowed for within drawer swapping from either slot starting point. 
That's not to say that we wouldn't consider a change to secondary selection based on player feedback, ofc, but that was the logic that lead us here. :) 
TL;DR A lot of reasons, though we considered both methods of doing secondary selection (and more). Also often in UX there's often no clear right answer, just a lot of possible solutions with good things & bad things about them."


To round out this red post collection, here are a few reminders on current promotions or limited time events!
  • Hunt of the Blood Moon is now available to play during the Lunar Revel through February 19th!
  • The Lunar Revel is here! Through February 19th, check out new skins, chroma, missions, Hextech crafting, emotes, ward skins, new merch, and much more!

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