Riot Games developers discuss the community demand to increase the number of champ bans to twenty. There are more cons than positives to such a move and it seems unlikely to happen any time soon.
League of Legends developer, Mark “Scruffy” Yetter, discussed the number of champ bans available to players in the latest edition of ‘Ask Riot’ blog. Responding to popular community requests of increasing the number of bans, Yetter lists out the pros and cons of increasing the number of bans.
What are the Pros and Cons of Increasing the Number of Champ Bans?
There are over 150 champs in League of Legends. Image Credit: Riot Games.
- More agency and control over frustrating or particularly bad matchups
- Small strategy increases: Building a sharp team comp and considering the counters in ban choices adds some depth to the pregame.
Banning specific bad matchups can feel good for players. With less frustration over a direct counter to your champion, LoL players can finetune their strategies with specific champion selections.
Cons for Increased Number of Champ Bans
- Increased complexity and duration of champion select: We already have a fairly long and complex pregame, and we would rather get players into the game quicker with less possibility for restarts.
- Reduced ability to play who you want: One of the direct tradeoffs between banning difficult or frustrating matchups is that the champ you wanted to play may get banned. This can be especially devastating for newer players who only feel comfortable on a small number of champions or players who main champions or classes who tend to be banned out more (ex: assassins).
- Disastrous edge cases: Many of our positions and champion classes could be completely banned out with more bans.
Longer Duration of Champ Select
Increasing the number of bans to twenty would invariably increase the time players spend in the Champion select. With two bans per player, the game will take longer to start, which invariable means there are more chances of players quitting and a complete restart.
Smaller Champ Pools for Players
Even though LoL has a sizeable number of champions, twenty bans could have a big impact on the player experience. Existing players will get fewer opportunities to play their favorite champions. More importantly, increasing the number of champ-bans will directly affect new players and players who main specific heroes. New players have a much smaller champion pool as they are not comfortable on the entire range of champions.
Extreme Cases of Entire Champ Classes Being Banned
Finally, the developer lists out an extreme scenario where players can target one class of champs. Such a move would prevent others from picking that class altogether.
Increasing the number of bans in League today feels more heavily weighted towards the negatives. But like everything, we will continue to reevaluate and our opinion may change in the future.
The increase to ten bans was a sweet balance and Riot says there was a clear positive to that move. Riot Games says the increase to ten bans was a clear positive. The developers feel there is no clear positive value to increasing the number of bans to twenty.