If you’re playing Teamfight Tactics – Riot’s League of Legends-infused take on the auto chess genre – then you’ll have an opinion on RNG.
While your chances of winning, or at least doing well, are in your hands to a great extent, it’s hard to argue with those who say success is at least in part down to luck.
You don’t have a choice which units pop up at the bottom of the screen each turn, ready to be considered for purchase. The carousel of units paraded during the draft rounds is random, too.
But perhaps the biggest issue when it comes to RNG revolves around items. The versus AI rounds spit out random items, depending on how you do. Sometimes the items you get are bad. Sometimes they’re good. Every now and then they’re great. Sometimes you don’t get an item at all.
Items are very powerful in Teamfight Tactics, and can be the difference between winning and losing, particularly late game. So when the game decides it’s not your time to get decent items, it can feel frustrating.
This RNG debate is currently raging within Teamfight Tactics’ burgeoning community. And now, in a blog post outlining what’s next for the game, developer Riot has made a clear statement: it likes RNG and it’s here to stay.
“To be up front about this, we think RNG is good for Teamfight Tactics in the long term,” gameplay producer Richard Henkel said.
“It prevents every game from feeling the same, and makes high moments and stories when you happen to get everything you want. We’ve already seen player stories of that one game where they managed to get three Force of Natures! This is a good thing.”
However, Henkel admitted the range of variance in the game right now “is a touch too severe”, and announced plans to give Teamfight Tactics more guaranteed drops.
“Getting absolutely nothing goes against the spirit of the game, especially when the item system is really fun to interact with,” he said.
“Getting nothing robs you of the ability to engage with a really fun system and make cool strategic choices (and finding some nutty broken combos).”
He added Riot is experimenting with dropping other things besides items, such as gold (used to buy units), XP (used to increase the number of units you can deploy on the board), and even units themselves. Expect these changes in update 9.14.
Speaking of which, 9.14 adds the ranked queue. If you place in the top four, you’ll gain LP and move up in rank. 9.14 also adds the first new unit to Teamfight Champions: Twisted Fate, a pirate sorcerer.
Looking further ahead, Teamfight Tactics’ first new origin “should be coming up quickly”. The current beta season should end in three months. Then, Riot will release the second set, which includes new units and origins.
If you’re wondering what this story is on about (I admit, the auto chess genre is a little hard to wrap your head around), then check out our Teamfight Tactics guide.