The League of Legends preseason is becoming a time honoured tradition for fans. It’s the time of year when the game’s developer, Riot, implements changes to the game, mixing up the way games on summoner’s rift play, and hopefully improving on some of the biggest issues that the developers identified with their game in the previous year.
In the past, Riot introduced revamps to the Jungle, Dragon, warding, and support items in the League of Legends preseason. This year, they have their sights set on runes and the leveling system.
Runes have been the subject of debate in the League of Legends community for years. They serve an integral part of the game and playstyle customization, but they’ve traditionally been difficult to obtain with their high IP prices. With the preseason plans, Riot is planning to combine Runes and Masteries into one system, and they want to give players even more options to customize their playstyle.
The new rune system will offer 60 free runes, as well as new keystones that offer extreme levels of customization. Currently, there are five types of keystones. Titled precision, domination, sorcery, resolve, and inspiration, the keystone trees offer players the choice of varied attack abilities, higher damage, ability power features, options for tanks, and creative tools that perhaps best fall under the category: ‘other’.
The customization that Riot has revealed shouldn’t be understated. With runes such as ‘Ghost Poro’, an ability that spawns a poro that grants vision as your champion walks through (and out of) brush, you will be able to fully tailor your playstyle exactly to your liking even before you start buying items within a game.
Also revealed are details on the new leveling system and a shift away from the IP game currency. No longer will players be capped at level 30. In fact, there will no longer be any level cap at all. When players level up their account under the new system, they’ll receive a loot box. According to the League of Legends Preseason FAQ page, these loot boxes will most likely contain champion shards. When a player reaches a milestone level though, players will be given a reward exclusive to that level milestone. Riot is also retooling the grind to level 30, including loot boxes that grant players more accessible and easy to learn champions and some basic customization.
For veteran players, your IP will be converted into blue essence (the new basic game currency), and you’ll be awarded compensation for runes and/or rune pages that you have on your account. Riot recommends that players roll or disenchant any champion shards that you may have on your account now, as the amount of blue essence you’ll gain from disenchanting champion shards will decrease after the patch.
Riot plans to bring the League of Legends Preseason patch to the rift on November 8th, with the season 8 starting in January 2018.
There’s a lot to explore in this preseason announcement. With so many new tools for playstyle customization and the revamp to the leveling system, this could be the biggest change we’ll see in League of Legends for years to come.
This post was originally authored by Padraic Murphy.