Riot Games says it's "making behavioural systems matter more" in League of Legends and is "shifting [its] approach" to poor player behaviour "to directly impact your experience and strengthen our community".
"I know many of you have been disappointed in the lack of progress made in Behavioural Systems over the last few years," writes Hana "TimTamMonster" Dinh, product lead for behavioural systems, in a post on the official website. "You've told us again and again that this space is important. And I'm with you. That's why I'm here to share some updates kicking off Riot's new approach to this space in 2022."
Data suggests that just 5 per cent of players are "consistently disruptive", intimating that the other 95 per cent of reported players are "regular players who get tilted every once in a while". However, Riot says it knows that its behind the scenes updates to detection and punishment systems "isn't making enough of an impact".
Champ Select reporting has been problematic, resulting in "lost confidence", the post continues. Although Riot says it has been monitoring these reports, "we didn't add punishments for them accordingly as promised". Well, that's about to change, and punishments will be tied to troublesome Champ Select reports in a patch "coming very soon".
"Another area we're focusing on that we know affects the majority of players is Verbal Abuse," Dinh added. "There are a number of exciting projects we're planning, including an upgrade to more advanced models to increase Verbal Abuse detections. We expect to see improvements in this area by up to 10x. While Verbal Abuse isn't directly reflected in game stats like KDA, it as a widespread issue that often leads to other disruptive behaviours."
Consequently, the team is looking to reward great players as much as punishing bad ones, but Riot acknowledges that up until now, it has "failed to update" Honor 2.0 and "fallen short of [player] expectations".
This means that looking ahead, there will be an exclusive skin for players that reach "Honor 5" as part of the End of Seasons rewards.
"I ask you to remember this: When you get frustrated, only you can stop yourself from being disruptive," the post conc​​ludes. "All 95 per cent of us can support these systems by being the type of player we want to play with - even in Ranked. It's not always easy, I know, but even the most perfect systems can't prevent all instances of bad behaviour from occurring.
"Because it's not just about building systems to influence human behaviour. It's also about the humans who play the game. It's about you. And you're here reading this, so I know you care about our community too."
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