If you haven’t played the new LoL Arena mode, I’d very much encourage you to. Thrusting all of your favorite League of Legends champions into a 2v2v2v2 battle for the ages, it’s a far cry from the familiarity of the MOBA‘s classic Summoner’s Rift – and that’s what we’ve needed. If you, like me, however, are a support player and are terrified of getting shredded in the Arena, lead mode designer for League of Legends Daniel ‘Maxw3ll’ Emmons has some good news for you.
While I consider myself an aggressive support player (I enjoy getting all up in people’s faces on Karma), one of the things that put me off of Arena initially was the idea that it’s a 2v2v2v2 brawl. How on earth am I meant to pull off my one-shot Karma empowered Qs if there’s a Darius running straight at my face?
In a July 27 behind the scenes video, however, Riot explains that Arena is a mode that “requires a different perspective” and is one where “it’s okay to fail.” Sounds like every Summoner’s Rift game ever right now – especially if they’re running Ashe or Kai’Sa in the botlane.
“The reason the teams are two-person sized is [that] we wanted as many champions to be playable as we could,” Emmons says. “A lot of champion kits don’t work in a 1v1 situation – like Enchanters, they need an ally to buff up and their power comes from supporting somebody else. 2v2 creates a situation where you can play a support and an ADC, you could try two supports and make it work with the augments.”
Do I sense some Senna Seraphine shenanigans in the works? Given that they’re my two best champions, that is an absolute yes. You’ve been warned.
While game designer Stash Celluck does note that, when balancing, “many champions will jump out at the top as much better than many other champions,” the Augment system should, to borrow Emmons’s words, let you “beat somebody else who might technically be a more competent League of Legends player.”
So, if you’ve been holding out on Arena for fears that your playstyle won’t fit right, this is all good news. While I’ve stuck to damage-focused characters during my adventures, I’ll need to take an enchanter for a spin next time around. Kog’Maw Lulu? Lucien Nami? It’s looking good for us support mains.
According to the LoL tier list, though, it’s engage supports that are back in the meta – better practice my Rakan so I can show off all of my snazzy League of Legends skins. What can I say? He’s a handsome man, okay?