Dear Fellow Summoners,
I've been thinking for a while about why I uninstalled League and why I keep thinking about it. I'm making this post to get some words out in print and hopefully get some closure. I'm not going to rant or rave about things that superficially bother me, I want to try to figure out why I am really bothered by the time I've spent on league. Not about what champions are broken or how I got one-shot by a character, but why I feel unhappy even when I win. If you can relate, I hope this helps!
If I was offered a job at Riot games tomorrow as Head of The Balance Team, being in charge of what champions to buff, nerf, and rework, I would turn it down. Even how tempting it would be to nerf everything I've complained about over voice calls and in-game chat and to buff everything that I think makes League great, it would not ultimately make me happy. I don't think Riot would really let me either. Their first interests as a corporation are profit margins first, and balance is a secondary concern. This is not about Riot games hating game balance, this is about money. Because League of Legends is a free-to-play game, Riot games needs revenue to still function. They cannot provide the game for free to everyone without any sources of money. Instead of charging money for the game, they charge money for champions and skins for these champions. If a player perceives a champion as useless, they will probably not want to buy the champion or any skins for the champion (one-tricks excluded). Riot wants to keep popular champions relevant so that players don't feel like they're trolling whenever they pick them. Riot keeps these champions strong to keep sales strong. Every large corporation tries to perpetuate itself first and how it affects others second. People are made to serve companies today instead of companies serving people.
Theoretically even if there was a "perfectly balanced" version of league that could be published (which is impossible in itself because individual players prefer certain metas that play really differently from each other), it might not be a good idea for Riot to publish it. It is always alluring to have your main buffed in patch notes or to hear about some crazy new strategy that just got enabled. This ever-present change is what keeps the game changing and therefore people coming back to it. The "perfectly balanced" league would not ever need changes, and therefore would eventually feel stagnant to people once everything is researched and figured out. There would still be small changes of new strategies learned and players evolving to the new state of the game, but the core game mechanics would not change.
Actually a lot like chess today! Even though people think of new strategies, what each piece does, does not change at all. Chess is certainly a fun game, but it does not have these addicting rapid changes. Something that is rapidly changing is engrossing, it's fun to me at least to learn the tricks of something and to try to keep ahead of the curve. Figuring out new theories to a game that can never be solved is fun, but at the end of the day, if it changes just to keep people occupied then it's a worthless sense of accomplishment. If all the time you have to invest into league is spent learning something before Riot changes it, you have to really ask yourself whether you could spent that time elsewhere. Look at your playtime in league and imagine what you could've done with all those hours. You could have learned a language, learned an instrument, spent more time with friends and family or read so many more books that'd improve your life. Think about what you could do with all the future time you're going to be putting into League.
I don't hate League of Legends.
I am just not happy with the time I spent on it. I enjoyed the time I spent playing with my IRL friends and the fun moments we had together, but I am not happy that I spent so much time playing by myself; grinding ranked to get into a relatively very bad elo at my peak. (Gold) Looking back, there were many matches where I played just to play instead of actively enjoying the game, and the frustration at myself and others outweighed positive feelings of winning lane and winning game. I am ultimately the single person behind queueing up for another game, not Riot. Therefore, my unhappiness with league comes back to me signing up for another and another game. If I have power over queueing up though, I have the power to stop. That's why I'm taking the conscious effort to take a break for League for a long time, because I'm not happy with the person I become when I play league.
No matter whoever is reading this, please try to keep a balance in your life between league and the rest of your life. For those of you who can manage that balance, I hope you have a nice next game on the Rift. Ultimately, success that's made in the real world has a much longer-lasting effect than success in a league game.
My life kind of sucks right now so I'm gonna try to make it better by grinding life instead of grinding League