At the beginning of the year, Jessica Nam announced that patch cadence and structure for the year. The idea was to focus on larger patches every 4 weeks, followed by a smaller patch 2 weeks later that would focus on smaller changes and address anything weird that pops up.
We've seen that structure over the past 5 months now, and given my initial observations after around March of this year, I'm not convinced that the patch cadence offers much of anything when improving the quality of the game or making a better player experience for anyone.
- Champion reworks and updates scheduled for that appear on PBE for one cycle often get pushed back two until they get released on live. This kind of feels awkward especially because it almsot feels as if that Riot is purposefully trying to make the reworks fit patch cadence, as opposed to fixing problems as quickly as possible.
- Addressing anything weird that pops up in the smaller patches rarely happens. Certain champions that have clear and oppressive strengths in solo Q that almost regularly ruin game quality aren't translated to direct changes on the PBE in the following cycle, or any of the next ones after. Riot needs to focus on FINDING problems quickly and coming up with holistic solutions to those problems that are quick and effective. Fixing problems that lie beneath the surface which form the core of the systems that League has built over the years would be more effective in both the short and long term. Games lose popularity from the inside-out, not the outside-in.
- The smaller changes pushed forward in these patches are often discussed long before, which often makes the bandaid fixes from the previous patch much more lacklustre, and often lead us to question why these changes weren't tested during the PBE cycle either.