[Essay] Snowballing - Why DotA had it right and LoL is still learning

First Riot Post
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SonicTheHedgedawg

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Senior Member

02-15-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zileas View Post
Our philosophy on this issue is that individual snowballing is good, and team snowballing is bad. Right now, team snowballing occurs too much -- one super carry twitch is a lot easier to handle than 5 guys who are 3 levels higher than each of you.

We are going to make some experience table tweaks to reduce team snowballing without hurting individual snowballing much. We are also going to make a new 3 lane map that is larger, has less cross-map connectivity (so that there is higher cost to 5 man roam, and less shutdown of the farming/laning phase via the first tower being down), etc.

We probably will nerf flash.

We wont be nerfing snowball items. Emotional highs from the game you super carried make this genre sticky. We removed it too much in the beta, and it cost us. Sorry, but being super carry annie or super carry corki once in a while gets a player through the 8 defeat in a row streak they hit the next day.

I'm on the fence about early gold for kills. It's been something we have been talking about, for the reason you cite. OF course, an early kill is also harder than a late kill.
ETAs on any of these things Zileas?

LOVING all those changes BTW


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Grovel

Senior Member

02-15-2010

+1 for OP. Never played DotA, and while I love LoL, the snowballing is really the most frustrating aspect of the game. I hate that my entire team is basically shot in the foot if one person is feeding. I hate knowing that it's game over within the first 7 minutes of a match.

I disagree, a snowballing Twitch is just about as impossible to deal with as a snowballing team. His surprise ultimate flat out destroys teams.


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WaterD103

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Senior Member

02-15-2010

A suggestion as a comeback mechanic, the gold and expeience gained shouldn´t always be the same. It should be proportional to the level of the killer.

A level 14 killing a level 18, should give more exp and gold than a level 17 killing a level 18.

Hope you got the idea.


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Hearteater

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02-15-2010

Wouldn't increasing gold for getting kills on powerful enemies (both higher level and kill streaks) help reverse the snowball effect? If they've got a 10 kill streak carry (who obviously is higher level) and we manage a kill, 1000 gold probably isn't going to swing things enough, but 2.5k might. Optionally, make getting killed from a kill streak not reset the streak in terms of gold awarded, so a back-to-back kill of a 10-streak target might award 1000 gold for the first kill, and maybe 750 for the second (instead of 300).


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SonicTheHedgedawg

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02-15-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grovel View Post
+1 for OP. Never played DotA, and while I love LoL, the snowballing is really the most frustrating aspect of the game. I hate that my entire team is basically shot in the foot if one person is feeding. I hate knowing that it's game over within the first 7 minutes of a match.

I disagree, a snowballing Twitch is just about as impossible to deal with as a snowballing team. His surprise ultimate flat out destroys teams.
problem with twitch being like that is that he snowballs his team by the fact that he can supress the other team


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SlyGoat

Member

02-15-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zileas View Post
Our philosophy on this issue is that individual snowballing is good, and team snowballing is bad. Right now, team snowballing occurs too much -- one super carry twitch is a lot easier to handle than 5 guys who are 3 levels higher than each of you.

We are going to make some experience table tweaks to reduce team snowballing without hurting individual snowballing much. We are also going to make a new 3 lane map that is larger, has less cross-map connectivity (so that there is higher cost to 5 man roam, and less shutdown of the farming/laning phase via the first tower being down), etc.

We probably will nerf flash.

We wont be nerfing snowball items. Emotional highs from the game you super carried make this genre sticky. We removed it too much in the beta, and it cost us. Sorry, but being super carry annie or super carry corki once in a while gets a player through the 8 defeat in a row streak they hit the next day.

I'm on the fence about early gold for kills. It's been something we have been talking about, for the reason you cite. OF course, an early kill is also harder than a late kill.
Do you think you can nerf team snowballing and keep carrying intact without royally ****ing support heroes and tanks?

This new 3lane map sounds good. You should consider making it 6v6; I honestly think solo lanes are kinda lame and boring in LoL. With a large 6v6 3-lane map it would encourage a whole new metagame of having superior lane synergy over all.

PROBABLY will nerf flash? I'd prefer "we will definitely remove flash", but this is still good news, thank you very much.

Snowball items overall need a buff, except mejals Although I agree with Charmi that in their current incarnation, they are bad. Not necessarily bad items, but just a bad idea in how they function. If you just lost a static 1 stack per death and 2 per death over 10 stacks it'd be fine.

I completely disagree that early kills are harder than late kills. Alistar with flash, Shaco with ignite - there's your first blood, absolutely guaranteed, nearly impossible to survive at level 1. Not to mention the ever so enjoyable 5-man gank on the solo lane. Make sure you do something about THAT **** when you nerf flash, because that's the one situation where you should have an easy escape option, since otherwise escape is literally impossible. Late kills are much harder because most people will have a few survivability items and it's almost always 5v5, you can't just flash in, stun someone and drop them in a couple hits like you can early.

The ease of early game kills is another thing that makes the game snowball so frequently too imho.


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SomniumProxy

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02-15-2010

to OP: while your post is good, and i agree on most matters, i think there are things in which you exagerate. Playing as Pirate, I've had 8 first blood - double kills. I've only won 6 of those games. Sure, 6 to 8 is a great number, but still I've lost two games that started so good for me. Also, in one game, I was a 8-2 pirate and was unable to beat a 1-0 nasus, who was 14 lvl and I was 12 at around 25 min. I find this example very indicative that kreep gold does pay off. Also, i can say that in LoL, compared to DotA, you can buy a good item for 4K while in DotA you can barely begin your Butterfly with the Eaglehorn. Item costs are very different and in LoL everything is cheaper. Combined with the fact that consequtive kills give less gold (reason why a 8-2 pirate can have little more than a 1-0 Nasus left to free farm).

Otherwise I'm giving you a +1 for the good post. ALso I think that snowballing would be less if we focus on come-back mechanics


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Asfastasican

Senior Member

02-15-2010

http://www.leagueoflegends.com/board...580#post619580

Some of these snowballing problems tie into why 5 man roaming is bad and why it exists...

Zileas' response is VERY surprising to me, considering that he just said that they want to encourage individual snowballing and discourage team snowballing, but everything they have done in the pre-development and in beta suggests that they did the exact opposite...

Pardon my ellipses, but don't most of you remember when beta first opened up and went into its 24/7 phase? Most of the devs, including players such as Larias yada yada yada would say "You can't push a base on your own, you will always need to move into the enemy base as a team and put in a group effort to finish the round" to the newcomers? Uh, oops? Seems like the design focus has shifted now in order to repair the meta-game, yet Summoner's Rift and other game mechanics haven't been tweaked to allow the devs to shift their focus.

Let's face it. Everybody has recall in this game and great designed items like scroll of town portal were s****ped (<-- s-c-r-a-p-p-e-d) early on for some odd reason. Also, it doesn't help that League is basically a short version of EM mode where the default map is a map that's just too small. You have a game where you have to deal with a number of design issues. It's hard to focus on real balancing dillemmas when you're still focusing on your foundation, such as your UI or game mechanics. Sure, a Ryze remake is great and all, but seriously flawed champions like Warwick are in much more desperate need of a remake. Meanwhile, new champions are being introduced to help fund the game via a microtransaction system and the playstyle of professional teams still strongly discourage players to play champions like Warwick. Having some variety in your team and trying out new strategies gets you majorly pwnt!

I can see why draft mode is taking forever to come out and the 6v6 hasn't been released yet. This MOBA game is an excellent game for casuals and its very fun. But still, its core game is just flawed when it comes to developing a challenging and interesting meta game. Especially with design philosophies such as "We don't want to make champions skills that could be used to troll or greive other teammates" still remain as one of the game's tenants. It's hard to expand on the meta-game when you're afraid of taking risks during development stages.

How can you introduce draft mode when most of your hardcore players are still concerned over a single champion and drafted 5v5's will most likely be the same 5-6 champions, let alone the same top 10?

I love this game, but I don't see it being more than a game that I play with my mediocre friends. It's fun playing with them, but I don't want to spend the time or effort to train myself and train them to "go pro." Especially when the current hardcore game is focused on an invisible score that doesn't go up and down according to your individual performance. We have Dota for that and also other genres as well.

I like this game a lot, especially since its a game where most of my online friends and their friends can all agree on playing it in a casual, time-killing sense. Still, League is far from being at the stage were you can finally start working on perfecting it.


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ZGBaddy

Senior Member

02-15-2010

Very well written article, but one question:

Why should we allow comebacks?

It's part of the game to be cautious during the first minutes. Chances are, if you got first blood and the rest of your team got some kills, your team is simply better and deserve to win.


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Charmicarmicarmicat

Senior Member

02-15-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by Asfastasican View Post
http://www.leagueoflegends.com/board...580#post619580

Some of these snowballing problems tie into why 5 man roaming is bad and why it exists...

Zileas' response is VERY surprising to me, considering that he just said that they want to encourage individual snowballing and discourage team snowballing, but everything they have done in the pre-development and in beta suggests that they did the exact opposite...

Pardon my ellipses, but don't most of you remember when beta first opened up and went into its 24/7 phase? Most of the devs, including players such as Larias yada yada yada would say "You can't push a base on your own, you will always need to move into the enemy base as a team and put in a group effort to finish the round" to the newcomers? Uh, oops? Seems like the design focus has shifted now in order to repair the meta-game, yet Summoner's Rift and other game mechanics haven't been tweaked to allow the devs to shift their focus.

Let's face it. Everybody has recall in this game and great designed items like scroll of town portal were s****ped (<-- s-c-r-a-p-p-e-d) early on for some odd reason. Also, it doesn't help that League is basically a short version of EM mode where the default map is a map that's just too small. You have a game where you have to deal with a number of design issues. It's hard to focus on real balancing dillemmas when you're still focusing on your foundation, such as your UI or game mechanics. Sure, a Ryze remake is great and all, but seriously flawed champions like Warwick are in much more desperate need of a remake. Meanwhile, new champions are being introduced to help fund the game via a microtransaction system and the playstyle of professional teams still strongly discourage players to play champions like Warwick. Having some variety in your team and trying out new strategies gets you majorly pwnt!

I can see why draft mode is taking forever to come out and the 6v6 hasn't been released yet. This MOBA game is an excellent game for casuals and its very fun. But still, its core game is just flawed when it comes to developing a challenging and interesting meta game. Especially with design philosophies such as "We don't want to make champions skills that could be used to troll or greive other teammates" still remain as one of the game's tenants. It's hard to expand on the meta-game when you're afraid of taking risks during development stages.

How can you introduce draft mode when most of your hardcore players are still concerned over a single champion and drafted 5v5's will most likely be the same 5-6 champions, let alone the same top 10?

I love this game, but I don't see it being more than a game that I play with my mediocre friends. It's fun playing with them, but I don't want to spend the time or effort to train myself and train them to "go pro." Especially when the current hardcore game is focused on an invisible score that doesn't go up and down according to your individual performance. We have Dota for that and also other genres as well.

I like this game a lot, especially since its a game where most of my online friends and their friends can all agree on playing it in a casual, time-killing sense. Still, League is far from being at the stage were you can finally start working on perfecting it.
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