Having played League of Legends for 6 months now, having tried to get into other MOBAs like Heroes of Newerth, the original DOTA in Warcraft 3 and Valve’s DOTA 2, I’d thought I’d give you my thoughts of the game from the perspective of someone who has never been too fond of the MOBA genre.
1 – You need better tutorials
As someone who had only skimmed the very surface of other games in the genre, my very first games in League were fraught with confusion, as people hurled phrases like ‘AD Carry’ and ‘Jungler’ about and shouted at me for not knowing precisely what they meant. This seems to be a general problem with the MOBA as a whole, they have such gargantuan barriers to entry due to the sheer amount of jargon new players have to deal with. It would be great if there were in-game dictionaries to tell you what these phrases meant but there aren’t any.
Take inspiration from games like Killer Instinct, who not only give you extensive tutorials on how to play their game but general help and instructions on complex elements of the genre all in one place, without new players having to go on an epic quest into game wikis and forums to learn common phrases which the community uses routinely. Have a comprehensive dictionary telling players what an AD Carry is, how Junglers work, what peeling is while also providing role specific tutorials to get noobs to practice how to play as in mid lane and so on, without irritating other players. It would reduce the frustration new players have of trying to figure out how to play, whilst veterans are safe in the knowledge that noobs have at least some basic training in each role and know what you mean when you start shouting at them for feeding.
2- Blind Pick is awful
This point may seem obvious but the Blind Pick system is awful for new players. The fact that players can lock in champions before everyone has got into the lobby is just a recipe for disaster, resulting in many noobs instalocking champions before everyone is in game. Just put a simple delay on champion select, requiring everyone to be in the lobby and allow ten or so seconds for players to chat and say which role they want to pick. This was somewhat alleviated by the addition of the Team Builder system but the fact that this is off-limits to players under level 25, which doesn’t help when players want to try and learn a specific role early in their career without someone else instantly locking it. You may then say ‘Go play Draft Pick then’ but many new players do not have enough champions to actually play, forcing them to stick to Blind Pick and be stuck with the looming threat of that guy who always instalocks and demands to go AFK if they don’t get the lane they want.
The dreaded argument over picking positions. This is fairly polite compared to some lobbies. My god, the insults.
3- The Honour/Report system is broken
The Honour/Report system doesn’t work. In most games I have played, most people never give honour as they simply move onto the next game while the report system is used simply as a threat, mostly by toxic players when someone is not doing that well or they are doing badly and threatens to report the team for causing them to suck. The main problem is that Honour has no value, it does not reward with extra IP or give you some kind of boost, it just gives you the knowledge that you aren’t a jerk and occasionally gives you a special icon which does nothing. League should take a leaf of Dawngate’s book, yet another MOBA, which requires players to submit honour reports at the end of each game, with the results actually determining how much money you get and what reward to receive at the end of a game. Make getting honour a tangible reward and rework the report system that it isn’t just a way that players can use to threaten people in game.
4- Allowing earlier surrendering if a player is AFK
If you are playing a game and 2 minutes in, someone leaves the game and doesn’t come back, give the team an opportunity to surrender earlier as most of the time, they are not going to win. Allow them to surrender at 15 if one person has left, 12 if two people have left, 10 if three and so on. I imagine most players don’t want to be stuck in a game if they are know they are going to lose horribly so give them the ability to concede and move onto the next one. Also, have some equivalent to the mercy rule in game. If you are losing 85-30, you’ve lost all your towers but two guys on your teams are still thinking you can win, just add in a mercy rule. If you get to a certain amount of surrender commands (around 8 or 9 would seem enough), just end the game. Put everyone out of their misery.
There you have it, the thoughts of a League noob about how the game could be changed. No doubt my thoughts will change as I continue playing and more experienced players may say my ideas are stupid but as someone who is slowly being turned to the MOBA genre, I thought I’d offer my thoughts on how League could become better for new and old players. Feel free to call me a scrub in the comments below.