Ask Riot: Star Shards and Choncc
It’s all about TFT today, including the most difficult champs to bring to Fates and some fun stats.
This week, we’re talking about skins for popular champions, galaxies in TFT, and your MMR.
BUT FIRST... a message from the editor. If you have a question for us, please be sure to ask it! The more questions we get, the better we understand what you care about, so please send away. We’re still trying to figure out whether Ask Riot will cover all games in the future, but in the meantime, feel free to ask us about anything. Now to today’s answers...
We often prioritize skins for our most popular champions, like Lux and Kai’Sa, because they reach a huge number of players. Not only does this mean we can delight a lot of people at once, but it also directly funds our ability to make skins for champs with small-but-dedicated playerbases. The often unspoken real talk is that… yes, we are a business, and we want to continue supporting League with new features and content through the years to come. Creating skins for popular champions allows us to do so, in addition to helping to fund things beyond the game, like the upcoming animated series Arcane.
Reasons aside, we agree that it sucks to have to wait years for a skin for your favorite champion, so at the start of this year we promised that we’d be stepping up the number of skins we ship in 2020.
With those extra skins, we’re going to hit a lot of the champions who haven’t seen skins for a while. So far, we’ve announced skins this year for: Skarner, Xerath, Mordekaiser, Kindred, Rek’Sai, Vel’Koz, Karthus, Sion, Twitch, Taric, Pantheon, Nautilus, Trundle, Bard, Ornn, and Taliyah. That list isn’t exhaustive, though, so don’t take the absence of your main's name to mean you definitely won't get a skin. Olaf, Zyra, and Renekton weren’t on the list, and we hope to surprise you with more as time passes.
On a whole, our hope is to increase the number of skins we make over time, so that champion mains can count the time since they last got a skin in months instead of years.
And as to Ornn and Bard specifically… we’ve recently previewed skins for both of them that will be released later this year! Here are the concepts, in case you missed ‘em. (And if you’d like to see a preview of Pool Party Taliyah, head over to our most recent Riot Pls.)
The short answer: Keep winning.
The goal of the ranking system isn’t to just move people upwards consistently—it’s to try and get you to a rank that accurately represents your skill. That means that the climb gets harder as you get to higher ranks, both because those ranks are tougher and because your rank is getting closer and closer to your actual skill level. When the amount you gain on a win is about the same as the amount you gain on a loss, that means you’re pretty much at the rank the system expects for you.
That doesn’t mean you’ve hit your peak and can’t climb any more, but it does mean that to keep climbing, you have to perform better than we’d expect. The more you win, the more our estimation of your skill will rise, and the more your rank will increase.
There are several reasons.
Many galaxies are cool because of novelty more than depth. Lilac Nebula stands out the first time you play it, but it might not hold up the 20th time as you’ve more or less figured out how to approach that first carousel and build a comp around it. When there were few galaxies in the pool, we had to keep the odds of rolling a normal game higher in order to limit repetition.
Additionally, we want to keep touch with the base game—many galaxies distort the game in quite dramatic ways, but if you play them repeatedly, they can become the default expectation for what a game of TFT feels like. This results in the galaxies feeling less special and could risk making the normal game feel less interesting.
That said, we’ve been ramping up the odds of rolling a galaxy over time as we add more of them. It’s now at 65% for patch 10.9 (up from 47.5%), and will continue to increase over the next couple patches. We intend normal games to remain the single most common variant and something you continue to experience reasonably often, but with the expanded pool of galaxies, we don’t need them to make up most of your games anymore.
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