Red Post Collection: Party IP Weekend through April 19th, NA Server Roadmap update, and more!

Posted on at 5:31 AM by Moobeat
This morning's red post collection includes the start of the Party IP Weekend where you can earn up to 300%  guaranteed bonus IP for queuing with friends, the latest update on the NA Server roadmap, and the announcement of Riot opening an office in Santiago, Chile!
Continue reading for more information!

Table of Contents

Team Up for a Party IP Weekend!

As announced when U.R.F rotated out, this weekend if a Party IP Weekend and the bonuses are now live! Playing with friends in matchmade queues will net you up to 300% guarenteed bonus IP!
"Earn ultra rapid IP rewards in one more community celebration! Team up during the first ever Party IP Weekend and earn guaranteed IP bonuses based on the size of your pre-made party. You earn rewards win or lose, but only if you’re in a party with at least one other player. Sorry, Amumu. 
This charts helps you maximize your gains:
Rack up IP this weekend from 12:01 AM PDT on April 17 through 11:59 PM PDT April 19."

NA Server Roadmap: South Bridge update

 Riot Ahab is back with another update on the NA Server roadmap, this time with an overview on the progress of building the "South Bridge" and more reminders on Phase 3 of the plan - moving the servers to a more centralized location in NA.
"Hey everyone! Riot Ahab here with another update on the NA Server Roadmap.

Last time, we chatted about what goes into creating a "quality connection"; and how factors beyond ping, such as routing paths and packet loss, can seriously impact the connection between your machine and the League game servers. We also recapped the multi-phase approach we're implementing here on the NA Server Roadmap team to address those factors.

This time, we want to give you an update on the progress we're making building out the South Bridge - a series of point of presence (PoP) hardware locations snaking across the southern US that will serve as "on-ramps" to our dedicated network.
Here's what we showed you last time, with the "North Bridge" serving the northern US & Canada largely complete. After some hardware shipping delays, we've now installed hardware in the first South Bridge PoPs. Earlier this week we pushed the Ashburn and Atlanta PoPs online, bringing a majority of the eastern seaboard onto the network.

So, what does this mean for me, Rito?

As a general note, players in these regions likely won't feel much of a difference in their ping since it's an ongoing process to work with local ISP offices to route their League data to the closest PoP. Even then, we're seeing at best a 10% reduction in ping in the most positive cases.

What players near these PoPs WILL experience is less packet loss and a more stable connection, since their data isn't hopping across every internet exchange between them and the game servers, instead now following a direct path along our dedicated network.

Ok, that sounds neat, what's the catch?

Bringing a PoP online doesn't work perfectly for everyone at the get-go. It's the start of an ongoing process as we work with partnered ISPs to make sure they're efficiently handing off your data to our network. Lots of this is handled by algorithms, which can sometimes go a little wonky when we introduce new PoPs.

If you discover your connection actually gets markedly worse, don't panic! Inform both your ISP customer support as well as Between the two of us, we should be able to figure out what's happening to your data and get things running smoothly.

As a helpful reminder, it's always a good idea to double check your own connection at home before investigating issues with your ISP. For some players, seemingly innocent things like router location or playing on wifi can have big ping implications. More connection troubleshooting info can be found on the Riot support site.

How about the rest of the network?

We're already at work setting up hardware in the remaining PoPs (Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles) along the South Bridge of the network. Dallas and Denver should be online within the next month and LA within about two, but we'll keep you posted if we hit any hiccups.

The other big news to report is an update to the list of partnered ISPs. What this means is these ISP partners are actively working with our team to funnel your League traffic to the closest PoP onramp to our direct network. Don’t fret if you don’t yet see your ISP on this list, as odds are we’re already in active talks with them! At this point, we’ve now implemented, are working to implement, or are negotiating peering agreements with the 20 largest ISPs in NA.

We've got the team (myself, Riot WizardOTL, ADillonMostDirty and RiotZwill) hanging around in this thread for the next couple hours, so let us know if you have any questions and we'll be happy to answer!

Partnered ISPs (new additions in bold):

Atlas Networks Corporation
Bell Canada
Charter Communications
Clear Wireless
Cogent Communications
Comcast Cable Communications
CTS Communications Corp
Frontier Communications
Google Fiber
Hurricane Electric
Interconnected Associates
LS Networks
NTT America
Pavlov Media
Pocketinet Communications
Rogers Cable Communications
Saskatchewan Telecommunications (SaskTel)
Shaw Communications
Syringa Networks
TDS Telecom
TekSavvy Solutions
TELUS Communications
TeraGo Networks
Threshold Communications
Time Warner Cable
Videotron Ltee
Vision Net
Riot Ahab and dArtagnan also hung around the boards thread and reddit thread to answer questions:

When asked to clarify what the PoP locations are exactly, Riot Ahab noted:
"Yep, the entire direct network is our highway around NA connecting back to the game servers. The hardware PoPs serve as 'on ramps', allowing local traffic to hop on the highway and get to the game server and back as fast as possible. 
Then we work with ISPs to make sure local traffic gets from your house to the closest PoPs in the most efficient route possible."
dArtagnan continued, commenting on why there is a hub going up on the West Coast with the servers located so close:
"We are preparing the eventual Phase 3, where the servers will be moved to a more centralized location. Once that happens, we will want to make sure that the LA area has a PoP as well that will connect them as efficiently as possible to the new server home! And of course, we want to have as stable connections as possible until then!"
Riot Ahab also commented on a shipping problem that delayed this phase of the update slightly:
"Yep, there was some shipping problems that delayed the rollout of this update (bringing the start of the South Bridge online). It's tough because we're aiming to keep to regular updates, but sometimes scheduling, contractual hiccups or typhoons keep us from having useful and informative news to share. Thanks for being patient and sticking with us!"

As for individual results of players using providers from the list above, dArtagnan noted:
"Depending on your connection and your route, you may not see that much change to your ping at all. However, with these 'highways', your connection should be much more stable and have less packet loss!"
Riot Ahab continued:
"And to build on this point, simply because you see your ISP on the list and don't see an impact on your connection doesn't mean we're done. There's a lot of additional work to do once we sign the agreements that involves working with ISPs to help route local traffic to local PoPs. Otherwise your traffic could hop around inefficiently before hitting the stable network."
When asked about ISPs currently missing from the list, Ahab noted:
"We haven't forgotten! Still working on getting all 20 of the biggest ISPs figured out, some just take a little longer."

As for when more details on Phase 3 and the servers being moved to a centralized spot in NA will be made available, Riot Ahab noted:
"No date yet on when we'll reveal details around Phase 3 of the NA Server Roadmap (a centralized server move). A lot of it depends on finalizing agreements and making sure hardware is moving where it's supposed to. 
Rest assured, when we're cleared and ready to share details we'll make sure everyone is well informed!"

Ahab continued on Phase 3 over on reddit, saying:
[1] "Quote
When will phase 1 be released?
Phase 1 (server architecture upgrade) happened back in November of last year. 
I think you're referring to Phase 3 (centralized server move) - which we haven't yet released details on yet. Once agreements and legal stuff is finalized and out of the way, we'll release all the juicy details, but trust us we're actively working away on it."
[2] "Quote
Wait so the servers will no longer be located in riot hq and they will be moved somewhere in central USA?
Exactly - that's the plan for Phase 3. Moving the game servers to somewhere more centralized for the US and Canada."

As for what sort of impact Phase 3 will have on players located on the West Coast, Ahab noted:
[1] "Quote
I live in Ohio so this doesn't really affect me but with pro gaming based in cali, will the move affect west coast ping or will phases 1 and 2 even it out?
You're already piecing it together - that's exactly right. If we move the servers anywhere, it'll impact everyone (west coast included). BUT, with Phase 1 & 2 in place and rolled out, the typical chaos that would come from a dramatic move like that will largely be evened out. 
Odds are here on the West Coast we'll see a slight uptick in ping numbers (in part because they're already so low in places like Pacific Northwest), but only after the rest of the South Bridge is finalized, which means the West Coast will have those direct connections to the centralized server location, resulting in a net positive for everyone's connection."
[2] "Quote
And out of curiosity what happens to the HQ servers? Are those being physically moved or just sold?
The "HQ Servers" are actually in the pacific northwest, while the actual Riot HQ is in southern California (minor clarification). 
We'll likely hold onto the current servers as a backup (in case the centralized location goes down or runs into trouble), they won't be physically moved to the new central location. "
He continued, reiterating no timeline just yet:
Soontm ?
But seriously, we've done a ton of work but can't yet talk about it due to nailing down logistics and legal agreements. I'm itching to tell you guys and soon as we get the go ahead, trust me we'll go full bore."

As for NA players who transferred to the LAN servers in an attempt to lower their ping (as those servers are located out of Florida), Riot Ahab commented on the possibility of a free server transfer back to NA when the entire process is said and done.
"That's something we're actively exploring, but probably won't come to light either way until the centralized server move happens."

Riot Games Santiago

Riot Games  has announced they are launching an office in Santiago, Chile!
"Riot’s launching an office in Santiago, and we’re on the hunt for new Rioters to help us bring League of Legends to LATAM players. With teams in Esports, Community, Publishing, Player Support, and Events to start, we’ll continue to grow Riot Santiago as we boost player experiences in LATAM South. How’re we gonna make this happen? We’re glad you asked. 
  • Step one: Set up a new office in Santiago with all the support needed for Rioters to work at their best.
  • Step two: Continue to monitor and improve live issues to ensure LATAM players are hitting Summoner’s Rift without a hitch.
  • Step three: Set up local support teams, while making sure League of Legends is running healthier than a Thoroughbred with a really great healthcare plan.
  • Step four: Open a broadcast studio to help build out the pro and amateur esports scenes.
  • Step five: Take a breather and soak up Santiago’s collection of landmarks, regional wines, ski resorts, festivals, and tasty local eats.
To check out our job openings at Riot Santiago, click this handy link."
Interested in opportunities at the over 15 other Riot offices around the world? Check out the hiring page. 

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