For a while now, the Competitive and Player Behavior teams have been working together to create features that foster both a fun and competitive environment in ranked play, and we recently tested a new feature on PBE. Known as Ranked Restrictions, the experiment restricted the in-game chat of negative players and prevented them from joining ranked queues until they’d completed the required number of games. With the feature proving successful on PBE, we’re rolling it out to live servers in NA and EUW in the coming days. Depending on the results of this, we’ll continue to add regions globally.
When Ranked Restrictions go live on NA and EU, restricted players will be unable to queue up for ranked until they complete a certain number of games in Normal Draft. One thing we specifically wanted to address is that Ranked Restricted players will be Chat Restricted in other queues, and they can and should still be reported if they continue to display negative behaviors while playing through their restrictions. As with Chat Restrictions, after they finish the predetermined number of games, we’ll perform a final evaluation to make sure they've actually improved their in-game behavior. Players who haven’t shown improvement will continue to be restricted from playing ranked. Related to Ranked Restrictions, we’ve determined that Ranked Rewards should reward positive sportsmanship just as much as they reward great play, so the most negative players who are Ranked or Chat Restricted at the end of the season will be ineligible to earn ranked end of season rewards such as the loading screen borders or Victorious Morgana champion skin. While the majority of players will not be affected by this ruling, we wanted to message it well in advance so that players concerned about their behavior have more than enough time to adjust and reform before the end of the season.
*Update 9/24 - Hey all, thanks for all the feedback on this. Wanted to further clarify a few points that I saw come up
**Q: Will all chat and ranked restricted players be ineligible for rewards at the end of the season?**
A: No, of the chat and ranked restricted players the ones with the worst behavioral records will not earn rewards.
**Q: Do you expect to see the quality of normal draft decline from this?**
A. We see that a players behavior shifts pretty dramatically based on the queue they are playing in. Since normals are less stressful and players who receive ranked restrictions will also receive chat restrictions, we don't expect to see an impact to the quality of the queue. That said, we'll be closely monitoring the health of the queue to ensure there isn't a negative impact.
**Q: Won't these players just feed, troll, and AFK their way through the games?**
A: Players have to win a certain number of games to lift the restrictions, so this would work against them. Also we'll reassess players as they near completion of their ranked restriction games. If we still see a pattern of negative behavior, the restrictions will be reinforced.
**Q: Can players decay while they are ranked restricted.**