Riot details Legends of Runeterra live design card update philosophy

Expect to see a balance patch every other month starting in January.

Image via Riot Games

Legends of Runeterra’s upcoming Patch 2.18 is a long-awaited update for players hoping to see multiple card changes.

While there aren’t as many changes as the last batch of updates in Patch 2.11, there’s still a lot to look forward to in Patch 2.18. Aside from multiple buffs and nerfs, Riot has made a slight update to its view on card changes. Riot’s philosophy toward live balance is fairly similar to its notes back in Patch 2.11, but the frequency of changes will be increased.

Under normal circumstances, players should expect to see major card updates in between expansion releases since newer cards will inherently impact any meta and the devs need more time to research what action is necessary. While this was initially the goal, players won’t need to wait much longer under normal circumstances. Riot understood after the Rise of the Underworld release that too much time between releases and card updates can lead to stagnation and “stale metas.”

Ultimately, this means that a card update should be expected every other month. That patch cadence will give both competitive and casual players a chance to feel changes settling in. While the promise of a more frequent update schedule sounds great, the next set of changes that players will see will be in January 2022. This is due to the more unusual card release cadence that will occur since there will be an extra November PvE expansion players can expect.

Aside from letting players know when to expect buffs and nerfs, Riot has also detailed its targets for balance. In addition to the usual goal of simply weakening the top performers and sharpening the weaker lists in the meta, the devs are aiming for more region diversity and to improve the quality of life of underrepresented archetypes and champions.

These quality-of-life changes can be reflected in the upcoming update. Late-game Targon options are receiving a plethora of new ways to close games out much more reliably with access to Overwhelm. The “overly-impactful cards” that are being toned down in the meta can also be found in this patch. Draven could be considered the most popular and versatile champion in the game and has been in that state for years.

Players who want to experience the newest meta and set of updates can do so when LoR Patch 2.18 releases tomorrow, Oct. 20.