League of Legends is subject to big changes in 2016 as Riot detail their season update

Riot skipping Gamescom

A rolling MOBA gathers no moss, and don’t Riot Games just know it. The LoL developers have outlined their plans for 2016, and they include some far reaching changes that affect masteries, ranked improvements, crafting, and, er, a new mobile app, among other additions. 

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Many changes are coming to LoL before the 2016 season even arrives, actually. There’s an overhaul to Summoner masteries on the way that Riot say will “offer focused, high-impact choices rather than a slew of nuanced micro-math optimizations.” Masteries are tiered by importance, culminating in a tier 6 ‘Keystone’ mastery which will have a bigger impact on the way you use your champion – that’s the plan, anyway.

Riot have been talking about changes to Marksman champions for a while, and have cemented their plans to offer “a specific meta-agnostic identity” rather than balancing them against the current meta. Much, much more detail on the preseason plans can be found on LoL’s official site.

There are significant ranked changes coming in 2016 – rather than queueing solo or as a duo, you’ll soon be able to be part of a “dynamic group queue” with any number of team-mates. Players ranking together will no longer be penalised, either.

There’s a new champ select process planned, too, which will head to PBE first before going live in normal draft with an upcoming patch. “We’ll also be testing improvements to the ranked experience during this time, but those features may show up on PBE after the new champ select,” say Riot.

A “chest and key” loot system will see the light of day in 2016, with two goals in mind: firstly, to “create a new way to pick up randomized loot at large discounts” and secondly to “allow players to earn their way toward champions or skins for their in-game accomplishments.” Loot drops will come in the form of everything from seven-day rentals to permanent skins and champions.

Last but by no means least, 2016 heralds a new client for LoL after six years on its current one. Riot are building this one from the ground up, they say, and it’ll feature a “streamlined” visual design. They’ll be taking on alpha participants for that new client early in 2016.