Riot Games, the developer of League of Legends, has announced its plans for 2023, including a brand-new game mode and even plans for the lore.
2023 has been a mixed year for Riot Games so far. While League of Legends seems bigger than ever, Season 13 was off to a rocky start after significant fan backlash over the decision made by Riot Games. From LCS logistics to the season start cinematic to preseason balancing, fans had many vocal complaints. The multi-billion developer has now taken the time to address fans’ concerns and lay out a clear road map for 2023. Riot Games’ plans for 2023 include a new game mode with a new mechanic, ARAM changes, and more. Here’s everything you need to know about what’s coming down the pipe in 2023.
Riot unveils plans for 2023
One month after Riot Games employees Riot Brightmoon and Riot Meddler took the time to address community concerns, the two senior Riot Games members are back. This time they’ve taken the time to update fans on the 2023 roadmap, the fallout from the company being hacked, and more. In a video titled “Champions, Lore, Modes, and More,” the two break down exactly what Riot Games has planned for the new year.
The video was recorded on Tuesday, February 7, and was released nine days later on the 16. They made clear that balance and the state of the Summoner’s Rift metagame wouldn’t be their focus, as that could be better done elsewhere. The first thing they addressed was the security breach from several weeks back that resulted in the source code for Riot Games being stolen and held hostage by the hackers. Brightmoon and Meddler said that Riot Games was mostly up and running but that the ongoing effects of the data breach were still causing troubles.
Riot Games announces Teemo, Lee Sin ASUs
In their first section addressing champion updates, the developers talk about the variety of ways that Riot Games has remade and rejigged aging champions in the past. They say Riot Games focuses on every champion being able to be unique and enjoyable, even if they’re niche. Recently, Riot Games has started doing Aesthetic Sustainability Updates, or ASUs. ASUs are visual-only reworks that are meant to breathe new life into a champion’s model and VFX without wildly changing their abilities or playstyle.
The next two champions to receive ASUs will be Teemo and Lee Sin. Both of these updates are underway right now and are being worked on at the same time. In addition, several members of the teams dedicated to new champions have been ported over to the team that designs new game modes. They say this will bring both new game modes about faster. They also say it will make fan-favorite modes return more quickly in the future.
New 2v2v2v2 game mode brings TFT Augments to LoL
Teamfight Tactics has surged to success on the back of the recent addition of a new mechanic called Augments. Augments are playstyle-changing upgrades that a player selects one out of three at various stages in the game. According to the video released by the League of Legends developer, that mechanic will be making its way into the game in a new 2v2v2v2 mode.
Riot has outlined several of its goals for the new game mode:
- Quickly get players into champion vs. champion combat.
- Push champion customization beyond where League has traditionally gone.
- Minimize time spent dead or trapped in a frustrating game.
In the new mode, teams of two players will select their champions. Then they will be pitted against the other three teams in rounds of combat. In between these rounds, players will get the chance to customize their champions with levels, items, and brand-new Augments. Augments are off-the-wall upgrades that can completely revolutionize a champion’s play style. Riot Games cited some of the examples that had appeared in its playtesting:
- Sylas, who casts Lissandra W every 5 seconds
- Ekko with 500 attack range
- A Kai’Sa who dives the enemy team dies immediately and then creates a huge explosion post-mortem that wipes out a huge chunk of her two enemies’ remaining health
These seem like wild, wacky, and powerful ways to get new gameplay experiences out of a more than decade-old game. For now, Augments are still in the early stages of testing for the new mode. They will need more time in the test chambers before being fully ready to be seen by the world.
LoL addresses struggling lore
League of Legends has never been excellent and keeping its lore consistent and high-quality, as many MOBAs do. Riot says it began building out Runeterra as a universe when it only had one game to focus on. Now, with games like Legends of Runeterra, Wild Rift, Riot Forge games, and upcoming projects, that’s a lot harder.
There are fewer resources to dedicate to keeping League of Legends’ lore engaged because resources are more focused on Runeterra as a wider setting. Riot acknowledges its storytelling can feel inconsistent between titles, and that’s something it will look to fix. No specifics have been given, but the developer does seem genuinely focused on trying to fix the state of Runeterra’s storytelling.
Riot Games builds on Wild Rift skin success
Fans have been asking for some of the interpretations of League of Legends skins present in Wild Rift to the PC game. That’s easier said than done, however, as the two games are completely different systems. However, Riot Games does seem to have found a way to move some of the skin updates from Wild Rift into League of Legends. This is true for both splash art as well as in-game models.
Rugged Garen will receive a splash art update in a few patches. Star Guardian Seraphine and Redeemed Xayah and Rakan will be the first cosmetics to be updated to match their mobile-only versions.