tl;dr: I love this game. I still do. Kinda. But this whole thing is absurd and I refuse to stand by someone who decided to crucify me for their own sins, and all for the sake of $$$. Therefore I don't really need this in my life anymore. I may come back one day, but for now, you're dead to me.
And now, our feature presentation.
I've been spending the better part of two hours talking to myself, trying to find the right words to put to post. I'm an English major, that's what I do.
...so, here we go, I guess.
I've been playing League of Legends since it was officially released. It was suggested by a couple friends of mine on Facebook while I was in college and I hopped right on board. After all, I was dirt poor and wasn't able to play all the games my friends had even though I desperately wanted to. League provided me a way to interact with my friends in a way I hadn't before, even if it was mostly just for water cooler discussion. I picked up Ahri in season 2, made her my main, and never looked back. A couple of months ago, I managed to buy all the champions. Only two (Braum and Lucian) were bought with RP.
What a difference eight years makes.
Now, I am _still_ a dirt poor college student, though the situation for me is a bit more dire for me than when I started. Early last year, I was diagnosed with acute myleoid leukemia (AML). For those of you who don't speak doctor, it's a very rare, very aggressive cancer of the blood. I had to go through the works: chemotherapy, full-body radiation, a bone marrow transplant from my little brother. I've been in remission since, and I'll hopefully stay that way for the next five years. I do that, they'll declare me "cured" and I'll be home free (fingers crossed). I decided to go back to school this fall (even though I graduated the year before last) because I was in desperate need of a new challenge.
So what does this have to do with League?
Well...quite a bit, actually.
League of Legends for me was a form of therapy. I can already imagine some of you saying it's quite a crappy form of therapy given the player base and the state of the game, and you'd be right. But it also gave me something to focus that wasn't my own impending mortality. I remember watching streams of the LCK and the LCS (both NA and EU) from my hospital bed and getting giddy every time Cloud9 won (gotta love the boys in blue) and TSM lost (just for the salt and the memes). One of the things on my newly-scribed bucket list was to finally get out of Bronze, because in ranked I tend to be hot garbage. I even started an alt to see if anything would be different, either in the speed of getting champions (because that's apparently a thing or something? I wouldn't know) or I'd place higher than Bronze. After all, I put in the effort to learn the stuff I hadn't before. Like CSing and orb-walking. I didn't even know the latter was a thing until Season 6, if you could believe that. But the toxicity, especially at lower elos and even in the pre-30 levels, just takes a toll on you after a while. Doubly so for me, because stress for me right now is something I'm trying desperately to avoid.
Then everything involving PAX and the work culture exploded onto the scene, and I was struck with a sudden thought, especially with all the threads around that idiot Daniel Klein: this is basically the end of Animal Farm. With that cursed line "all animals are created equal but some are more equal than others."
I had mostly written off the whole PAX thing and the work culture thing as a sign of the times. In a time where everything is political and everyone is trying to right wrongs of the past to its logical extreme (and beyond it in more than a few cases), no one is safe. I had written off people saying League was dying/bleeding out as people who were just sick of the constant patches and wanted some stability. I attributed the loss of MagikarpUsedFly, Bricky, and Trinimmortal (three of my favorite YTers who all started with League) as plain old burnout.
But the more I looked at it, the more I began to see the truth: Riot has ceased to care. They stopped caring about their player base because they wanted to cater to their precious pro scene while the rest of us on the bottom fought over the scraps. PAX was just the straw that broke Willump's back.
Think about it: Riot has been desperately trying to "go legit." They want to make League of Legends the new NFL. And why not? There's _shattering_ amounts of money to be made here, and they were one of the first pioneers to lead the way. Now they've got sponsorship deals with Jersey Mike's and State Farm (and Acer Predator beforehand). This whole PAX thing is basically the absolute worst thing to happen to them. On the week before the Summer Finals, before a Worlds that might be more cursed than ever, they get slapped in the face by #MeToo. And to protect their cash flow, they choose to bend the knee while simultaneously throwing its player base, the people who _built_ this game into the juggernaut it is (or was), under the bus.
And that's when it hit me: I was in an abusive relationship. With League of Legends.
These people clearly didn't care about me and now want to stick me with the bill for getting caught for being assholes? Give me a break. If I'm at fault here, how would I know? It's not like we'd be able to know if we were being toxic to girls because they don't list genders even here in the forums and we don't have voice chat (and I mean real voice chat a la DOTA or Overwatch, not the party crap we have now). And honestly, I think we'd all be better for it if we did have voice chat anyway, but that's a different thread. My point is, for all your talk of being "woke" now, doing it at my expense is a great way to destroy whatever good memory I had of this game since then.
Riot has decided I'm not worthy of them. Me. A guy who put eight years of his life into this game and used it to save his soul from the worst kind of chaos, terror, and misery. A guy who celebrated finally having bought Star Guardian Ahri six months after release because leukemia got in the way. A guy who, for the longest time, stuck by their stupid, wacky, and wild decisions.
Well, Riot: screw you too. I'm done defending you. I gave you my heart and you ripped it to shreds.
I'm not going to uninstall this game, though. I'm just not going to play anymore. I'll just stick to Overwatch and whatever else is around in the meantime.
You want me back? You'll know how to find me.