LoL: This Change Might Spice Up International Tournaments! | RiftFeed
Might be worth a thought

LoL: This Change Might Spice Up International Tournaments!

Esports 14-07-2023 18:22
MSI 2023 JDG vs BLG
So far, the 2023 season has seen a few champions stick around in pro play. | © Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games

Right now, the pro play meta feels a little stale. More often than not, we see the same champions picked and similar team compositions drafted, with very few teams trying to change the recipe for success. Would locking certain, previously played champions in draft phases change anything about that?

Shockingly, League of Legends has a meta. This meta usually dictates which champions are the strongest and can be shaken up by systemic or balancing changes. However, despite various nerfs towards pro play favorites (hello, Zeri), it feels like the most common favorites are sticking around, no matter what the balancing team is throwing their way. 

In a thread created recently, Reddit user Nebulator123 has talked about the idea to lock out champions that have been picked before from the ongoing tournament. While locking them out for the entire tournament may make the competition run out of champions really quickly, their general thought process might actually be viable.

Will Locking Out Previously Picked Champions Shake Up The Meta As Intended?

MSI 2023 Finals Crowd
The fans would most certainly not disapprove of seeing more champions. | © Joe Brady/Riot Games

One consideration for this may be the most important stage for every single top-tier League of Legends tournament: the playoffs. Here, the teams that have proven to belong to the top of the playing field fight each other in order to crown themselves the champions. 

Usually, the playoffs – or knockout stage at the World Championship – is played in a best of 5-format. Locking out previous picks that happened in the same series would give us 50 individual picks if the match goes to the full distance of five games. With 163 champions currently available – or 164, if Naafiri is enabled during the World Championship – the risk to run out of champions would not be a threat.

Obviously, there are risks to this. Limiting the access to the top-tier champions would make picking a worse rated champion inevitable. While niche champions are exciting to watch, they may end up being a handicap for the team that was brave enough to pick them. 

Best of 5-series could be decided by who has sustained their champion pool better than the opponent, and lower-tier teams might be run out of options quicker than championship contenders.

So far, Riot Games have not considered a measure like this and instead trusted their balancing team to shake up the meta sufficiently. A system like this would require a lot more planning to refine properly before it is introduced into pro play. 

However, even without restrictions like this, it is still exciting to watch our pro players battle it out on the rift!

Manuel Hirsch

I'm currently studying journalism, and when I'm not busy working on uni projects, I get into all kinds of content creation. This is what eventually led me to EarlyGame and Riftfeed!

I'm a long-standing fan of all kinds of Nintendo...