The new league system, giving a new meaning to each game.

So the new league system is here, the new ranked system, and it's drawing the ire of the crowd. Unfortunately everything will draw the ire from the crowd and you really have to overlook it. The new league system I think is meant to make ranked more interactive, and less of a way to benchmark your ELO against arbitrary ELO numbers for what your rating will be. The system does have some fundamental flaws in it, overall though it does seem to be an improvement over what we used to have which was just a giant mosh pit. Progression has finally been added to the game.


It kinda feels like an MMORPG.

I mean this has nothing to do with the article as a whole but it's sort of a funny thing. It's the feeling I get lately. We're all doing different things, in different tiers, and some things matter to some people and they don't to others. For you this game might be your last try to win your series, for others it's tuesday. It feels a lot like an MMO where to one player these mobs are the requirement for his quest, and for another player they are simply something in his way. It's like joining an instance with 5 people all of whom want gear that drops off of different bosses. They're all here, and they're all on the same team, it's just some of them don't care as much as others.

The positive side of this is that everyone is off on their quest. I'm trying to get enough points to start my series. You're trying to win your series. And the other guy is just trying to not get demoted. 

The tiers are actually useless though for skill measurement.

Your matchmaking score determines what games you play. For the player who is only interested in playing good people and knowing who is good the leagues are useless. The placements meaningless. While ELO was never a terribly good indicator the leagues are even worse. Leagues while giving a general picture don't do anything specific. The only thing that really matters is that Diamond is generally better than Plat, and Plat is generally better than Gold, and such on. A diamond player will very likely obliterate a plat player in a real game.

So basically they're more bragging material than good material. You still get carried and carry or fail to carry just as hard as before. The same flaws always exist. If there are 4 good players and 6 bad players in a game, split evenly between the games, 2 good players lose ELO and 3 bad players gain ELO. Jungling still has no tutorial and becomes more of a crap shoot as to if your jungler knows what to do. The flaws are there, and they havn't been fixed. They are just as large as ever.

But that's really not the point, is it?

The league system isn't about measuring skill or anything like that. It's about progression.


The new league system is about giving Johnny B. Good a way to log on each day and feel like he's working towards something. An ELO number is just a number, and most people stayed within the same metal bracket their entire lives. Hell, over half the population never even GOT to be bronze. The new system is there so each game has a new feeling, each game matters. I don't have to just play this game and hopefully win it, I need to win THIS GAME. THIS GAME is the one that matters! If I can just win THIS GAME I can get up to the next division! That's what Riot is trying to achieve here. Those 4 games you log in and play each day for 3 hours now matter. They matter a lot. 

It still takes a good 20 games to get from silver to gold, but each one of those 20 games has a feeling and a meaning to it. You're no longer going from 1599 to 1600, you're going from division 2 to division 1. And you must win that game to achieve it! 

It's not about skill, it's never really been about skill.

Lets be honest, even at the top most portion of the game unskilled players ran rampant. I can play support xin at Diamond level to this day and still win games because so many people have no idea what they're doing. However, that's me and not you. I got CAL in CS, I was in leading edge raids in WoW, I got the best arena before anyone else. I got plat in S1, diamond in S2. At no point has this been difficult. All of the high rankers are going to remain high ranked because they're just better than everyone else. They might fluctuate a couple hundred ELO but that's it. There's no struggle to maintain diamond, no days of agony spent trying to simply get to bronze. 

The problem with the past system was that it overwhelming was rigged to make about 1% of players have fun. The rest of you saw little to no progression, little you could do to work towards something, and as a result your games often didn't matter and didn't mean anything. Even if you went from 900 to 1000 ELO that didn't get you anything. No bronze. Nothing. 

This is about you guys, the 99%. To reiterate from before, over half of you never even got bronze. This is making sure you guys can log on and do something. Something you feel matters. To diamond players going from bronze 5 to bronze 4 means nothing. To YOU that means a lot. The system is no longer about the 1% but about the 99%. It's making sure your grandmother could log in to play ranked and accomplish something. 

That's the end result, ranked play has now been given meaning.

Instead of numbers and games that seem to drone on endlessly each game has a new meaning. This is my game to get to 100 points. This is my first game in the series. My second. My third. This game I need to win or I'll lose my series. Instead of a simple "this is game 1493" each game gets an emotional feeling placed on it. The struggle has become palpable. 

That's the intent here and I think it's what everyone needs to pay attention to. It has NEVER been about assigning a skill rating to each player. Riot could never write a system to accurately assign a skill rating to each player. And when the ELO number was out there people took it to mean that's what this number meant. "My skill is 1633!" That's gone. Because that was stupid. What we have now is a way for each player to feel special and feel like they're doing something each game. That's good. I like it. I think we can all like that.

So what do you think?

Should we have retained the ELO rating and said "well I guess it's the closest we can get to a skill rating we'll ever get!" or should we have moved on to the league system and said "well skill ratings don't work so lets just ditch em and give the game some progression feeling."




  • #58 sturk1

    New system is awful. Win 5 games, lose back where you started. Yes Riot, this makes games feel sooooo much more rewarding. Give me back my elo.

  • #59 sgtcolon

    Quote from sturk1 »

    New system is awful. Win 5 games, lose back where you started. Yes Riot, this makes games feel sooooo much more rewarding. Give me back my elo.

    That implies that the system thinks you might be higher than you should be. Still working as planned in theory...

  • #54 Toinouchou

    Why do you have to pour so much of your obnoxious personality into your articles?

    I mean if at least you balanced it with a quality of writting style or some insightful ideas backed by measurable data or constructed way of thought, I might have some pleasure in reading it.

    At the moment your articles contain a couple of points, ranging from arguable to valid, lost in a swamp of biased misconceptions, preconcive ideas and generalizations. And what do you have to offer to validate those statements? On the good days it is an argument of authority, on the bad days it's a conspiracy theory. Neither of those have ever made any analysis meaningful.

    You don't have an identified nor strucutred nor sensible plan. Let's take a very simple example.

    But that's really not the point, is it?

    How does this title inform me about the content of the paragraph? Titles are used to skim through a writing and get a general idea of the main arguments and how they are articulated. How do I know what is your point if I didn't read everything above? Is there one single and precise point in everything you wrote above that you are now telling is not important? When I see this I am basicaly reading, "skip the 1st half of the article, I am only making a point not interesting for the matter at hand."
    I won't detail the rest of your titles, they barely make more sense but since they are written in lower size I can only conclude they are less important. (Yes dear internet this is intended irony)

    Your writting style heavily relies on caps and exclamation marks to give the false impression that you know what you are talking about. Reading you feels like listening to someone who thinks he can't make any valid point other than by yelling harder than anyone is speaking.

    This is all made too obvious by how emotional your articles are. Were you angry, happy, indifferent, almost anyone can tell how you felt when you were writing your article. It is good to have passion when you write but you need to channel it in order to take a step back and reassess what you wrote with a sensible mind. When you don't do that you are just another person giving his opinion. And the thing about opinion is that everybody has one. Now as a writter it is your job to prove that yours is more valuable than the average because you spent some time rethinking it, ordering it, trimming it and validating it.

    There are many other things that you could and should improve in your articles both on the form and content. But there is one that you are remarkably failing in this precise article and which in my opinion is the reason why so much enimity is going to emerge from this article. Thus I think it is important to mention it.
    You need to connect to your reader. It is usualy quite easy to do when you are talking to afficionados about the things they enjoy. But here you achieve the impressive feat of totaly disconnecting with them. If I grossly sum up the part where you are being lengthly pretentious.
    Your article states something like :
    - 99% of players suck and are affected by the change
    - I belong to the 1% of good players not affected by the change
    - here is my analysis of why it is good for bad players that you are and the same for great players I represent

    You antagonize your reader and then deliver your thoughts on something concerning them. The natural feeling coming out of this process is that you are talking about something you are not concerned with, so your opinion of it should be meaningless. And ironicaly it shouldn't, because to be fair this point is in my point of view the best of the article. A small precision, it is a good point concerning lower league players, but it is a bad point concerning the best player since as someone else mentionned you forgot that the challenger bracket will now allow the best of the best to gain notority.

    You pretty much butchered your best point by pretentiously placing you above the common mortal. If you really thought it through you would see that eventhough it acts at different levels, the new system is a great incentive for EVERY players to make every games count. Showed in such a light even people who disagree will at least try to get an unbiased understanding of what you are trying to say.

    Before the fanboys arrive with torches and spikes I want to make something clear. This is not meant to be a hate comment. I know your style is part of a rebel archetype, and I like a rebel as much as the next guy because he dares to say things we don't but would like to. In the past even if the quality of your post was quite low I could always see a glimmer of hope stand up through some unusual yet sound ideas. But today I read your post and it felt like nothing else but a waste of my time and an insult to my level of criticism.

    When I compare articles like Stoenwall's, Gentlemen Gustaf 's and other poster on this web site to yours the difference in dedication and amount of works is abysmal. To be honnest after this I really feel like you are pulling the general level of ROG down and don't understand how such posts are still tolerated.

    Maybe I will read your next article, see if you actualy tried to improve on any point. If you won't bother I guess neither will I.
    To end on a positive note I truly believe you have some interesting things to say. If you put some effort in your style, the way you communicate and your thoughts process, your articles would be a unique and enjoyable part or ROG.



  • #60 Jacimovski

    You are not really understanding the point or the beauty of this article. You are trying to find a structure, when the chaos IS the structure. You are trying to find arguments, when the autor is trying to give you his opinion and make you think about it. You are trying to read a Harry Potter book and you are looking for a deep and good argumented meaning behind the story. 

    Let me tell you (Spoiler alarm!): There is none. This is article is really well written, simply because it's written the way it is. The titles and subtitles are not there to inform you, they are there to make you interested in reading more. Or express the authors opinion. Or mark a significant change. 

    If you don't like the way he is writing, don't read it. Go read Shades of Grey, you will LOVE how much you can complain about that.

  • #61 Toinouchou

    I am trying to find quality where there is none. I understand my mistake now. And as you suggested will now stop reading this chronic. But wait I already said I would do that in my post. Did you read it to the end?

    Well learn I read many of Hashinshin articles thorougthly before and I am just giving my honnest opinion about it. I am not here to be a mean person.
    Now you get all personal because you are an angry fanboy who don't like what I am telling about his imaginary pal. Unfortunately you are not really showing off a nice image of the kind of people who likes Hashishin.

    For one I think he could do much better because like I said he has good things to say and all I am really trying to achieve here is pointing out areas where he could improve to convey this message better. Perhaps I am doing it harshly although if you think about I am really just paying tribute to his own agressive style just as you are doing, nonetheless I am actualy really trying to be constuctive.
    Would you think I'd write such a long post just to spit on his post? I could just say : "UsuXx ashish1n".

    It is just a little sad I have to explain it to you.


    Last edited by Toinouchou: 2/14/2013 4:02:10 PM
  • #53 Luapman

    Far worse system now. Silver S1 and S2. Getting stuck with trolls, throwers and just plain baddies. Down to bronze 3 now. The system HAS to take individual play into account but it doesn't. Not saying I am gold or plat or anything like that but consistent silver for 2 seasons and now this shit???

  • #51 Cerbereth

    Well the thoughts behind the article were pretty sound, but how many times did you have to tell us all how much we suck?

    I mean was it necessary to point out that less than half of the community made bronze twice?

  • #50 Alithandros

    I like it way better this way.

    The Elo is still there and you'll presumably continue fighting the same players as before and fluxuating around the same skill level.

    Now, however, I'm in a League with some of my RL Friends.  We take pics of our progression, especially when we pass someone we know, and text them to each other.

    Sure, you could do the same with 1520 > 1517 or whatever, but it's just fun to watch yourself climb the ladder.

    The best part of the League system has to be the Qualifiers.  Winning a ranked game is fun, but losing a few Lp is not nearly as devastating as losing your best of 3/5.  Of course, winning those qualifiers is one of the best feelings you can have in ranked.

    I don't care if you just got promoted from Bronze V to Bronze IV, when you win your 'best of 3', you are ecstatic.  The games have so much weight and I hate queing up for that third match, knowing everything is on the line.  Win this, brag to your friends.  Lose this, you're knocked back down for another 8 wins or so.

  • #47 Nakhan

    I'm confused about two contradicting statements.

    1) It's not about skill, it's never really been about skill.

    2) All of the high rankers are going to remain high ranked because they're just better than everyone else.

    If skill doesn't determine your ELO, what keeps people in the highest bracket from randomly falling down to bronze?

  • #48 WarlordxAlpha

    Comment #1 seems to be intended to illustrate the difference between the new system and the old system. Basically, he's saying that the new system isn't so much about allowing people to compare skill levels as it is about allowing people to feel like they're progressing. I agree that he could have phrased it better, but I believe that's what he meant. 

    As in, both systems are still measuring your skill behind the scenes, and that's why Diamond players aren't playing with Bronze players, but the new system's whole front-end is about showing progression rather than skill. 

  • #45 Baywire

    Neither ELO *which can only be used to determine skill levels of ONE vs ONE games such as chess which is what it was created for* or League Points or Divisions can accurately portray what YOUR personal skill level. Riot would have to develop a rating system based off of what scores you get during each game. Example: You would need a system in which all aspects of each game were valuable such as:

    Game 1: Kills:+x pts Deaths:-y pts Assists:+z pts CS:+a pts Win:+b pts Loss:-c pts

    Sum the above variables for your score you go up for doing well, down for doing bad, winning and losing is only a potential bonus.

    Well now you might say that leads to people who try to KS to gain points even in the event of a loss! OH NO! Who would want to play support!!!!!??!?!?!?!1!!!!one!!!!?

    Wrong: Then RIOT would have to scale each variables value depending on the champion you used. Playing an ADC? CS is worth more than normal Playing a mid or top? Kills are worth more, playing a Carry role? (ADC, Top, Mid) Deaths are worth more, Support? Assists are worth more and deaths are worth less, Jungle? Assists worth more, CS worth less

    Example: Say everything has a value of one like Kills worth 1 Deaths worth 1 Assists 1 CS 1 for every 100 

    Top-Mid: Kills 1.2 Deaths 1.2 Assists .8 CS 1p100

    ADC: Kills 1 Deaths 1.2 Assists 1 CS 1.5p100

    Jungle: Kills .8 Deaths 1 Assists 1.2 CS 1p100

    Support: Kills .6 Deaths .7 Assists 1.8 CS 1p100

    Win: 5

    Loss: -something I dunno haha they would have to figure out what is fair for a loss

    Now these numbers might not work but I would like to show how the idea works in theory, Riot would have to label champions as those roles so that the scaling for each variable is correct. They would obviously have to do a lot of balancing to make it as beneficial to be a good support as it is to be a good mid etc. 

    Obviously this is just my idea, I feel that this kind of Stats based scaling system MORE accurately *notice when I say more I mean that it is obviously not perfect as many things are not* I'm just saying that this idea of a scaling variable system is better for measuring a single players skill.

    What this fixes, solo queue carry issues. "I won my lane destroyed their team and I got 4 losers who can't  play LoL to save their lives" issue where, you win lane, you go 5-6-8 with 200CS and lose the game you might only lose 1 or 2 pts or even gain 1 or 2 because its obvious from these stats, you are playing well, you farm well, are around during team fights and are a valuable member of the team. So what I mean is, you can still lose and not lose much or even gain a point or 2 because you did well.

    What this also means is that people who are bad *whether they are new, or just unskilled at this game* will float down to where they belong. As will everyone else *if they are good they will float up*. It creates an incentive to not feed. Because going 1-6-2 and loss could be -12 pts where raging trolls who 1-12-2 and a loss would lose -20 pts 

    This is just my idea of the situation, REMINDER: all given numbers are arbitrary and are there only for examples effect not directly what I think is fair or whatever. Sorry for walls of text.

    Last edited by Baywire: 2/4/2013 11:06:07 AM
  • #46 Nakhan

    This would not work.  There are way, way too many variables.  Worse, people might change their actions based on what would increase their skill rating, instead of what would help their team win the game.

  • #49 Baywire

    Correct, however 5 people who are all good, will in fact win more games since you know, they have obviously proven that they are good rather than 5 people who are bad... So like I said before and like RIOT says, you will eventually float to your correct position no matter how good you are. And too many variables? LOL and like i said, if you lose games you should lose a lot, obviously its not perfect i came up with it as i wrote it, however, with scaling variables it will make players want to play any role seeing as a good support can gain as many points as a carry. So basically, being good at the game means you are good at the game and being bad means you are bad. Where as right now with ELO or League, going up in elo still means you are bad cause you got carried. With variables, you can't go 1-8-5 as a top laner and win and have positive points because you obviously aren't that good. etc etc

  • #52 Nakhan

    Once again, this would never work.  You cannot determine skill with numbers such as kills and deaths.  This would punish the player who sacrificed himself for the betterment of the team.  One example is Karthus.  To most effectively benefit the team, Karthus will typically have more deaths than other champions.  This will reduce his 'skill number', leading to two bad scenarios.  1) People wont play Karthus to the best of his ability, and 2) People won't pick Karthus, simply because he has a high chance of reducing your 'skill number'.  This is just one example of hundreds why this system couldn't work.

  • #56 Baywire

    Karthus also has one of the highest kills during games, because of his amazing passive that allows him to press R and get doubles or triples kills EVERY TEAM FIGHT... So you would lose 1.2 pts and gain on average 2.4 pts per team fight if you actually do damage *because good Karthus' farm well and die and get kills bad ones die and don't get kills* It seems as if you are completely ignoring the CS ptsP100 and assists which BOTH give you positive points!

    A Karthus that goes 0-6-12 actually GAINS points under my variable point system and actually nets +2.4 points for going 0-6-12 AND he probably got more or less 200 cs that game so he gets another +2 points. Oh and because he sacrificed himself for the better of  the team, *hence the going 0-6-12* he will gain an additional 5 points for the win. So he is up +9.4 points WOW imagine if he actually got kills? Hmm lets see if he was 6-6-6 with 200 cs and a win? +4.8 for his KDA +2 for cs and +5 for a win = +11.8 points! Now what if he actually got a lot of kills and limited deaths? Lets say 12-3-5 with 200cs and a win. +14.8 for KDA +2 for CS and +5 for win going a massive +21.8 points, I mean he did carry the team after all. Basically what I'm saying is your argument on Karthus can be simply put as illogical. Because of the scaling variables NO champion has a high chance of reducing your skill level unless you are bad. FACT

    Lets see what a support looks like, lets take an average supports score lets say 1-3-12 with say 100 cs *because its a flat number for the example* and the support really helped the team and they won the game so win bonus. +21.5 for KDA +1 for CS +5 for win = 27.5 for an average scoring support... Well now if that isn't an incentive to be good at support I don't know what is!!! *obviously 1.8 points per assist is FAR too much, it should be lower like 1.3 or 1.4*

    Yes I understand that +21.8 points for a carry class can be an incentive to "hoard kills" or "ks" which is why at the bottom of the OP I specifically said all numbers would be for examples sake. So perhaps my numbers aren't perfect, or perhaps instead of the scale being based on the elo scale *such as 1200 being silver* something like 2500 could be silver and the numbers would just be higher.

    This scaling variable rating system is as I said before MORE accurate at showing an individuals skill level. It is not perfect, nothing is. However it is above and beyond more accurate at determining a players skill than ELO or League Points *which is ELO with a new name* because the only way to determine skill is by being good at the game, people who are not good at the game get carried and win games all the time, it does not mean they are good, the system must undergo DRASTIC change to more correctly determine skill.

  • #57 Nakhan

    Imagine a game where there are 5 players who are all skilled on one team, and 5 players who are all unskilled on the other team.  The team with 5 skilled players is handily stomping the other team.  The only thing left in this game is how many times will the enemy team die before the game ends with a victory for the skilled players.

    Now, factor in your rating system, where kills determine how much 'skill rating' you gain.  In this game, whoever gathers the most kills will be given the most 'skill rating'.  People are now fighting to make sure they last hit the most champions in order to get the most out of the win.  And just for icing on the cake, they lose the game because the Rammus got all the kills instead of Vayne.  Now they're looking at the post-game scores, and everyone lost points, except the one or two people who managed to kill-steal all the kills.

    Finally, you missed the entire point to the Karthus example.  Karthus takes actions that increase his death score (which lowers his 'skill rating') to improve the odds of his team winning (regardless of if he does or does not get kills from his actions).  There are other examples, such as Kayle, deciding who should get to live in a fight.  Maybe it is better to save the ADC than herself, but that would lower her 'skill rating' after the game, so she ults herself instead.  Zilean decides to ult himself over another, in an effort to increase his post-game 'skill rating'.  It would be bad form to value kills, deaths, and assists, instead of valuing the amount of effort given towards ensuring the team wins the game.  I can't think of any score that values the effort given towards winning the game, other than the number of times you win versus the number of times you lose (aka the current ELO system).

  • #44 Androssi

    While I agree with some of the points you made in the article, I feel some people like silent scream definitely have a good point, even if the way they said it was a bit rude. To be honest you come off as really haughty and unprofessional in this article. Generally I have come to expect RoG articles to have some level of a professionalism involved and you basically talking down to the entire community isn't very professional at all.

    Not only does the entire "It's not about skill, it's never been about skill" section come off as a insult to the average player, but I almost feel like it's a insult to professional players as well. I hear stories of some of these players and hear how hard they worked to become pros. Then you come on to RoG and say "oh yeah being good at league is and has always been easy."

    I could go on to further elaborate on this topic, but I feel like if I did my tone would go from constructive to insulting, so I'll leave the negative at that.


    Onto more positive things, I do think the point you're trying to make overall is good and yes I agree with you. The new system definitely allows players to aim for smaller goals and allows them to feel excitement even when moving around a small amount. Overall I definitely think the system was a step in the right direction. In SC2 they've been using a system pretty similar for as long as I have played that game and I've always said that LoL should adopt a similar system. Sure enough, here it is. :D

  • #55 xXSilentScreamXx

    I know my comment was a bit rude. But in my defense i have to say that that article really somewhat annoyed me. I mean if I want to hear people complain about everyone in LoL being so much worse than themselves I just go to the forums and read the articles of some immature players. I personally go to RoG to find well writen articles, not just one that was written in like 15 minutes and insults 99% of the LoL playerbase. I mean thats like the most annoying thing about this community anyway so i dont want to hear it here too. Even if he is a good player it is still just arrogant bullshit in my opinion.

  • #40 SteppenKat

    I agree with Hashinshin 100%.

  • #41 SteppenKat

    I mean, with the point of the article. The ELO system was designed to make pros very noticeable but it was quite unnatractive for the common League player. Most of the people I know don't play ranked cause they don't want to feel embarassed due to the fact that their skill level is less than 1200 ELO (people tend to think that the average player is 1200 at least, which is not true. The average is less than 1150 aka Bronze) and they don't want to risk. Now you can feel how you're progressive even in the lower brackets, quite a nifty change imo!

    In the longterm, I think that this system will remove the predjudice about


    Last edited by SteppenKat: 2/4/2013 8:10:23 AM
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