Originally Posted by Yegg
There are a lot of small reasons, but the main one is that we have big plans for summoner icons in the future and we wanted to give ourselves the flexibility to integrate meaningful borders into the actual icons in the future. Double borders don't look very good, whether it's between an outer and inner icon border or between the profile banner border and the icon border.
I still don't see why the summoner icon borders were taken away and replaced with a trophy icon. Yes, it's nice to have the big flashy borders in the loading screen, but the icon border allowed us to show our "trophy" to friends and opponents while also having a choice of summoner icon. It was my main motivation for trying to climb the ladder past bronze to silver in season 1, and it just seems wrong to reward your players for skill and dedication and then take it away. Anyone that bought RP for the Shadow Isles icons is now unable use it while also displaying their achievement in season 1 in any way since the season 2 banner border overrides season 1's also.
I know Riot is getting pretty big now, but don't forget about the players who have stayed with you and supported you to bring you to that point. I've been around since beta, and it's nice to be able to show off pride of having played since the beginnings. If I play Corki, I use the UFO skin just like if I had Bowser Rammus I would use that. If it's an issue of double border aesthetics, then why not make it toggleable and allow the player to decide whether or not it looks good?
Seasons after next, the only persistent display will be the increasingly crowded badges which can only be seen on the forums instead of in game in game lobbies and friend lists, and which are easier to get due to lower requirements for tiers and ranks. Enemy teams couldn't see icon borders, so they were just as safe as the loading borders. Right now I can use my season 1 icon and I still have my season 2 banner, but when season 3 ends I assume the banner and loading border will replace season 2s, and then no one will know anyone's rank for all 3 seasons unless they got at least gold in season 1 and platinum in season 2. Borders and badges feel special, but now I have 5 trophies with no trophy shelf, so I have to choose which one people can see.
The elo that got me silver in season 1 solo would have been gold if based on season 2 ranks. I wasn't planning to get a gold icon border after reaching gold in season 2 solo, but I wouldn't have guessed that it would disappear completely.