“It would be really easy to say, 'Look, we designed for the pro players, and the rest of the community is just going to have to keep up ...' That isn't our approach.”
- Riot Games lead designer Greg Street in an interview with Engadget.
The patch that launches alongside League of Legends’ 2017 competitive season next week throws some hefty game changes into the mix.
But because of the MOBA’s massive popularity with both casual players and the professional eSports scene, Riot Games has had to pay extra attention to how alterations like this could impact both sides of the League community.
In an interview with Engadget, Riot Games lead designer Greg Street detailed how the changes introduced in the upcoming patch intend to keep League of Legends enjoyable for pros, casual players, and spectators alike.
"It is a gigantic challenge. We’re kind of stupid, because we want to create a balanced environment for all of our players,” said Street. “We want to create a good environment for all players. And to make it even harder on ourselves, we want to use the same ruleset for all players."
Riot recently came under fire from its eSports community after the company pushed a major patch shortly before a competitive League of Legends event. Street mentioned that he still believes that releasing that patch before the tournament was necessary to make the early bits of League matches less dull for viewers, but said that he hopes to be more proactive with fixing issues like that in the 2017 season.
December's patch 6.24 introduces major changes to both the jungle and assassin type characters, and also introduces a long-awaited practice mode. The update also introduces new ways for players to share game highlights and view post-game replays. Street's full comments on how 6.24 balanced the needs and demands of League of Legends' diverse community can be found in his full interview with Engadget.