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Over the last couple years, we’ve released quite a few posts about our approach to balance. So today, we wanted to do a quick recap, complete with summaries and links out. You can think of it like a greatest hits album, except with no music and more text.
In our first ever animated balance explainer, we break down our balance approach ELI5-style. It features adorable doodles of Ornn, Amumu, Ezreal, and design lead Mark “Riot Scruffy'' Yetter.
Ever since 2019, we’ve used a data framework known as the Champion Balance Framework to guide us in determining which champions should be buffed and nerfed each patch. It involves looking at the win rates of every champion across all roles and various skill brackets, then using that information to determine how to address balance outliers. This post breaks down the data thresholds and why we decided to use this framework in the first place.
It takes time for players to master new champions, which is why we used to release new champs and VGUs slightly strong as a form of training wheels. This approach had some serious drawbacks, so ever since Fiddlesticks' update in 2020, we’ve started releasing new champs and VGUs at what we believe to be their long-term balance state. More deets on the pros and cons of this approach found in this post.
Professional play makes up one of the skill brackets we look at when determining which champions to buff and nerf, but we also have some other balance goals that are unique to the professional scene. This post breaks down what we think a healthy pro meta looks like at a high level, both for the regular season and for major international tournaments (like Worlds).
When we updated League’s item system in late 2020, one of our goals was to encourage build diversity. To that end, we created an item balance framework to help us identify when items are too strong or weak, based on their build rates across champions and classes. You can read more about our approach to item balance and check out the framework here.