Riot Games has confirmed that the next event for League of Legends will be another Star Guardians. Though all the details and features of the event aren’t yet confirmed, it is already a foregone conclusion that it will have both a battle pass and a plethora of skins for players to buy.
The problem with League‘s recent events is not that they have battle passes and skins, but the fact that in most cases they are the only thing the event offers. When events don’t provide any meaningful gameplay differences like unique modes, they lose a lot of their luster and begin to seem like shameless cash-grabs by Riot. Events in the past have succeeded at adding interesting game modes and new maps, making the recent events seem soulless in comparison.
Prestige Event Skins Aren’t Remotely Prestigious
Owning something prestigious is meant to impress other players. One of the great joys a player gets from completing a hard achievement or challenge is showing off and garnering the respect of other players who understand what they went through in order to accomplish that. The so-called prestige skins in League of Legends do not hold any real prestige in the eyes of players, because it isn’t all that hard to get them.
The only real requirement to getting a prestige skin in Riot’s recent event structure is money. The tokens necessary to unlock any given event’s prestige skin can be bought in bundles or earned through the paid battle pass. Though a handful of tokens can be earned through free missions, they are not nearly enough to get the skin. This unfortunate scenario ends up meaning that when a player sees that someone else has a prestige skin, instead of being impressed by their achievements they are left with the knowledge that all it took was real-life money.
If prestige skins were earned through actual difficult tasks as is common in MMOs, they could live up to their name and present a prestigious badge of honor for players. With Riot’s current battle pass business model for events, it is hard to think of prestige skins as anything more than one of League‘s many cash cows.
Events Need New Game Modes to Feel Significant
Another massive problem with League of Legends‘ recent events has been the complete lack of new and interesting game modes. The only new things created for recent events have all been purchasable in the shop, which makes for less memorable and exciting events. Announcement pages for events are swarmed with things to spend real money on, including skins, chromas, TFT eggs, emotes, and icons, but only infrequently any new gameplay updates.
In the past, events like Odyssey and Star Guardians came with their own unique PvE modes. Not only have players not received any similar events since, Riot has never brought these beloved events back for players to replay. New game modes provide an air of significance to events while encouraging old players to come back to the fold. New skins only encourage players to spend more money. Hopefully, the Star Guardian 2022 event will be a return to form for Riot, which has been making great strides in balancing the game.
It is important to note that though Riot has released some interesting lore events recently, they are vastly outnumbered by money-centric events, and many players have no interest in the lore of the game. They only care about gameplay changes. Ideally, League of Legends events in the future will be able to provide a bit of fun for every type of player, not just skin collectors.