/modes: Arena FAQ

Answering some frequently asked questions about our newest game mode, Arena.

DevAuthorsRiot Maxw3ll, Riot Cadmus, Riot Stashu
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Hey everyone, we’re Daniel “Riot Maxw3ll” Emmons, Modes design lead, and Eduardo “Riot Cadmus” Cortejoso, Modes product lead. And we’re here to answer some commonly asked questions about Arena!

Q: What is Arena?

A: In the new Arena game mode, four teams of two players each fight one another in rotating combat rounds. After each round of combat, they will power up with unique Augments until only one team is left standing. Combat takes place on four different battlefields which vary in size, terrain density, and theme. Champions from the Soul Fighter universe will make occasional cameo appearances in matches. Sometimes they’ll help, sometimes not so much.

For more details make sure to check out our full rundown in /dev: Arena.

Q: Will Arena be getting balance adjustments?

A: Our goal is for Arena to be a fun and competitive experience, so we want to make sure all champions and strategies are somewhat viable. This includes bolstering up and supporting champions/items/augments that aren’t able to compete as well in Arena, and reducing the power of ones that are overperforming as needed.

We’re also going to be taking adjustments a bit further than how we’ve done them in ARAM. In addition to percent modifiers, we’ll be making direct changes to champion/item/Augment numbers! Here’s an example of the types of balance adjustments we’ll be making for Arena:

  • Champions - Teemo R Damage: 200/325/450 (+55% AP) >>> 150/250/350 (+45% AP)
  • Items - Liandry’s Anguish: 80 AP >>> 70 AP
  • Augments - Shrink Ray: 20% Damage Reduction >>> 15% Damage Reduction

Whenever we do have any balance adjustments for Arena we’ll make sure to include them in the League of Legends patch notes.

Q: How do stacking champs like Nasus work in Arena?

A: Champions like Nasus and Veigar will gain stacks over time, so while you won’t gain stacks by killing minions anymore, you’ll instead scale by just… well, existing.

Q: Are any of the new/returning items in Arena going to be included in other game modes?

A: There are no plans to add these items to other game modes at the moment. The new items were developed specifically for Arena's unique design constraints and gameplay, and the returning items were revived because they filled gaps in Arena itemization. The reasons they didn’t work on Summoner’s Rift haven’t necessarily been solved. That's not to say the new items could NEVER work on SR, there's always a chance we find something really cool that makes it into other modes, but at the moment this doesn't seem likely.

Q: Can we create custom Arena games?

A: The short answer to this is no, or at least not now. We accelerated the development timeline for Arena, which meant we had to pick and choose what to invest our time into. We focused on getting Arena ready to launch for the Soul Fighter event, which meant we focused more on building out the game and couldn’t get to things like custom lobbies. However, we want you all to know that this is something we’ll be looking at should Arena return in the future.

Q: Will Challenges/Eternals/Mastery be getting support on Arena?

A: Much like the above question, these features are on our list of things we’d like to add to Arena in the future, but were not ready in time for its initial release. Mastery progression is realistically the feature we’ll be adding first, with Challenges and Eternals likely requiring more development time down the road.

Q: Will augments be coming to other game modes like ARAM?

A: In short, no–there are no plans to add Augments to other game modes. Players and us designers alike are really excited about Augments, and the idea of adding them to other modes has certainly been tossed around, so I wouldn't be surprised to see them make an appearance in future modes.

Q: When will Arena come back?

A: We're very excited about Arena’s potential. But what really matters to us is what players think of it.

We consider Arena’s launch a chance for us to learn what players think Arena can and should look like going forward. If things go well, we’ll be looking at bringing it back sooner rather than later, but with some more polish. If Arena doesn’t do well, expect us to come back with a renewed focus on addressing major player pain points and concerns which may take some more time. Either way, we’re already thinking about ways to improve Arena for its return.

So how are we defining “things going well?” The total amount of players that actually play Arena is going to be very important in deciding how much we can support the mode, but there are a few other important factors we’ll be keeping in mind:

  • Are players satisfied with this mode?
  • Are players who don't just want to play Ranked matches happy with this mode?
  • Do players continue to play Arena, even after the novelty begins to wear off?

There are a ton more things we'll be looking to learn with Arena’s launch, but the short of it is, we’ll be closely monitoring Arena on launch and we’re sure we’ll learn a ton about what the future of this mode looks like for a future release, as well as future mode development.

Q: Will Arena be a permanent game mode?

A: At this point, it’s hard for us to tell. At the time of writing this, Arena still hasn’t hit live servers, but we’ll be considering the same criteria mentioned above when looking at whether or not Arena should be a permanent game mode. Our goal is to have an update on this for you all in our next dev video.

Q: How can I give feedback on Arena?

A: Once the game mode finishes its first run in August we’ll be posting a feedback thread in the LeaguePBE subreddit. For those unable to post on this subreddit, please leave us your feedback on socials. So make sure to stop by and give us your thoughts on Arena then! While we might not be able to respond to everything, we’ll definitely be reading as many comments as we can!

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