LoL: Snowballing and its eventual nerf

Morgana's about to get ganked.We’ve all been on the receiving end of a good old-fashioned beat down at one time or another. The other team bangs out a couple early kills and suddenly you and your teammates are stuck 3 levels down and your towers are getting steamrolled.

This situation happens frequently enough that Riot is looking at ways to change it. According to a post from Zileas, they’re trying to discourage the 5-man roam that has become so popular. Here’s his post:

Our philosophy on this issue is that individual snowballing is good, and team snowballing is bad. Right now, team snowballing occurs too much — one super carry twitch is a lot easier to handle than 5 guys who are 3 levels higher than each of you.

We are going to make some experience table tweaks to reduce team snowballing without hurting individual snowballing much. We are also going to make a new 3 lane map that is larger, has less cross-map connectivity (so that there is higher cost to 5 man roam, and less shutdown of the farming/laning phase via the first tower being down), etc.

We probably will nerf flash.

We wont be nerfing snowball items. Emotional highs from the game you super carried make this genre sticky. We removed it too much in the beta, and it cost us. Sorry, but being super carry annie or super carry corki once in a while gets a player through the 8 defeat in a row streak they hit the next day.

I’m on the fence about early gold for kills. It’s been something we have been talking about, for the reason you cite. OF course, an early kill is also harder than a late kill.

I can appreciate the thought behind this, though I worry about the pace of the game. The roaming gank squad has already taken its toll on pace. I’ve had a number of games recently where safe play from both sides led to more than 20 minutes without a death. Discouraging ganking seems like it will just make the laning phase that much longer and more painful. There are plenty of games in which I feel like losing my outer turret is the best thing that could happen because it breaks me out of the laning mentality. I realize that this is the point – to keep people from leaving lane – but that’s where the fun of the game is.

If anything, I think the best solution is the 3-lane map with less interconnectivity. That at least gives you the option to farm a lane once the tower is down with some potential for intra-lane ganking so long as there are enough hiding spots.

What do you think? Are there too many games in which snowballing is a serious problem or are you okay with the 5-man roam?


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