Riot Explains Why Certain Items Have Been Removed From LoL
Within an evenly poised game of League of Legends, a players item build can make all the difference. Adding a higher possibility of getting a critical hit or summating a bit of magical defence may be the difference needed to tip a match deciding team fight in your favour and come out on top in Summoners Rift.
However, many players were left needing to reconfigure their optimal item build recently, as Riot Games axed some of the more popular items. The Rod of Ages and Statikk Shiv, among others, were removed from the game prior to the commencement of the 2021 Season, leaving some having to look for alternatives.
Now, in an "Ask Riot" blog post, Riot Games Game Designer Matt “Phroxzon” Leung-Harrison revealed the answers we've all been quizzing about.
“While we try to avoid removing items that players love," he started, before adding "sometimes they violate certain principles which require them to be either removed or reworked”. Many of these principles lie from "overlapping" or being near-on "mandatory" for certain champions to be able to function effectively.
Leung-Harrison continued to say "Despite being very, very gold efficient, Rod of Ages was only used by a handful of champions due to its stat profile. Notably, it left out manaless champions like Mordekaiser, Rumble, Akali, and others who’d be interested in a hybrid damage/durability/healing option. It was also too powerful for the champs who wanted it to consider other options".
"We actually tested several versions of Rod of Ages as a Mythic item, such as featuring a transformation mechanic and cool unique passive like Seraph's/Muramana. However, when balanced, users felt like they were irrelevant for too long while waiting for their Mythic item to scale, and it was a mandatory purchase for champions that wanted to scale".
He concluded the segment by revealing that throughout the changes needed to make Rod of Ages viable again, they were forced to warp it into a replica of Riftmaker, and therefore pulled it from the game to avoid overlap. The same process also goes for Statikk Shiv, which also begun to be symmetrical to alike items.
Within the blog post, further developers discussed the plans to make the ELO and MMR systems more transparent, and the use of different roles within certain points of matches.
Image via Riot Games