Legends of Runeterra designer Steve Rubin takes over competitive game design

Good news for competitive players.

Image via Riot Games

Former Magic: The Gathering Pro player and Legends of Runeterra game designer Steve Rubin has added organized gameplay design to his resume while planning to contribute toward balance and card design.

Steve Rubin has become the dev face of Runeterra over 2022. From streams to fashion statements on Twitter, the fandom respects him due to open communication.

Having played MTG competitively throughout a good chunk of his professional life, Rubin’s choice to take on a new position within LoR makes sense and should have the community breathing a heavy sigh of relief regarding the future of their favorite Riot digital card game. 

Rubin’s new title is technically game design ownership of Worlds, Seasonal tournaments, Ranked, Gauntlets, and Spectate mode. Organized play within LoR started off strong but went stagnant over the last six to 12 months as the design and gameplay focus was shifted toward the PvE Path of Champions mode.

An announcement from Riot in June shifted that focus back to competitive LoR gameplay and design. 

The shift from one game mode to another came down to other Riot projects taking place and the long-term costs of continually updating Path of Champions, according to executive producer Dave Guskin.

Updates will still take place to PoC, but at a slower pace. 

A refocus on organized LoR gameplay has become relevant during the back half of 2022 via an increase in balance patches, along with a larger number of balance and system changes taking place during each update. No immediate changes are expected to take place, according to Rubin, as he plans to learn and study the existing system before implementing any major changes. 

In addition to taking on the competitive design, Rubin plans to still assist in Runeterra balance patches and the design of new cards. It hasn’t yet been determined how much time he’ll invest toward both design aspects, according to Rubin.