Let me first start out by saying I've been playing League since season 2, and I've seen a lot come and go in terms of the meta. And right now I love that we got champion diversity back to a certain degree this season. Pretty wide support pool, mage bots are a thing AT WORLDS. Jungle and ADC have gotten pinched a bit here in the back end of the season, but Top and Mid have quite a few options. Assassins and mages are both viable mid. Tanks top seem to be viable at the highest level of play alongside the standard bruiser & damage dealers we've seen so far this season. All around good stuff.
But here's the issue that I think Riot should take a serious look at in the off season, and I would like as many as people as possible to weigh in on this because I think this is an issue that we've been kind of inching towards over the past 4 years or so and no one really noticed because it's crept up so slowly. It feels like right now, despite champ diversity, there is literally only 1 way to play the game. Every game the win condition feels the same. You try to snowball through early-mid game, take skirmishes to develop a strong lead, fall back on team fighting if you must. That's it. Over and over. And no, I'm not an idiot...I realize that this strat plays out differently from game to game. You wait for different champs to come online, sometimes you're more early game focused, sometimes more scaling. Sometimes slightly tankier lineups, etc etc. But that's the thing, it's still the same strat. It's just a different facade. The win condition is always the same.
Let's take a look back at a short list of changes riot has made just to provide evidence:
A fairly recent one is split pushing which has been nerfed out by a few different changes, but one of the biggest being the nerfs to teleport. Now split pushing really only exists as a way to apply pressure for the above mentioned skirmishing, and for solo laners to soak up farm after the lane phase has broken down. Split pushing as a win condition, as in like, "Guys our goal is to get Jax/Fiora online, then we just have to not lose while they split push into oblivion". That's really not a thing anymore. Split pushing can exist as a part of a strat, but not as THE strat. I think TSM won like 2 games this season with a dedicated full on 1-3-1 and that was only because they got shit on early game and had no other choice against sub-par teams. Those are outliers.
Poke comps. Dedicate poke/siege comps have just been unbelievably gutted. Apparently Ezreal is the only attack damage champ who is allowed to be a dedicated poke champ...ever. Any time another contender rises up it's nerfed into the ground. Corki? Swapped to AP damage, and then damage moved from poke to burst. Jayce? Poke build nerfed into oblivion, only viable as a lane bully bruiser. Varus? Scaling punished so hard that if you go poke instead of on-hit build with him you better cause a 15-20 min surrender. Even in mid lane only 1 poke champ is ever really a top tier pick if any are at all. This season we had Zoe. Not both Zoe and Lux are serviceable at best. While some may say that Riot has been targeting champs individually and nerfing ones that are unhealthy...I've come to believe they are trying to keep a tight limit on the number of poke champs in the game to intentionally squeeze that out of the game as a full strat. It's fairly common knowledge that poke becomes exponentially stronger the more people you have on the team doing it. The fact that burst damage and engage have been getting more and more emphasis also is an indirect nerf to poke/siege for obvious reasons.
Support style jungling. Playing a style that focuses on stealing camps, controlling vision, and protecting lanes to scale up for team fighting over ganking. No longer a thing. Nunu was allowed to do it for like 1 split, Ivern was allowed to do it for like 1 split, Lee Sin was allowed to do it for like a full season. Bet then no mas. Completely gutted by vision changes, introduction of river crab, turret plates...etc.
Double enchanter comps? Heck no. Karma top/mid has been a thing on and off, but acting more as a lane bully than as a secondary support. Janna coupled with a solo lane Lulu/Karma and a hypercarry, just not allowed to be a thing anymore. Remember that sick EU comp with Kayle and Nidalee coupled with a hypercarry ADC like Kog or Jinx and a single tank? All the heals/shields with attack speed buff 4 protect 1 comp. Also gutted.
I'm sure you guys can think of more, and please feel free to include them in responses. But the point here is it's clear RIot has been moving towards a "There is only one way to play the game" system and we need to fight to show them that's not what we want. It's boring. We want options to be able to opt into a variety of win conditions. We want team strat coutnerpicking, not just specific champion matchup counterpicking. We'd like to have both low and high kill games. When someone comes up with a new creative way to win the game, we need to support it, not poo poo it. Yes there are times when a single strat becomes so strong it just becomes the best hands down if you are good at it and can get the right champs (such as the funneling strat). But those situations are very few and far between. Let's fight for diversity yall! Please upvote or reply if you agree!