Riot’s plans: Free runes, uncapped leveling, and no more IP

League of Legends is going to be very different in 2018! Let’s see what Riot has planned for the game.

by Daniil Volkov

Brace yourselves, changes are coming! Riot released a huge update with details on the future of League of Legends—and there are quite a few things to be excited about. First, runes are going to be absolutely free!

Now, this isn’t new information by any means, and we’ve already covered some of the rune changes in the past. However, Riot finally announced how they’re going to compensate everyone who’s already purchased the runes.

Tier 3 Marks, Seals, and Glyphs will get refunded at the rate of 100 blue essence per rune (we’ll get to the blue essence part later) and tier 3 Quintessences will get you 300 blue essence each. But that’s just for the runes you’ve owned for a long time. Any runes you’ve bought since the beginning of the 2017 season will be refunded in full! Meanwhile, the current runes had massive price reductions down to 10 IP each. Just keep in mind that you won’t be getting compensated for these.

Another huge part of the rune system is the rune pages. The price tag on these will remain intact, but buying these will no longer be a necessity because you will get the choice to change your rune setups in the pre-game lobby. Additionally, any rune page you’ve bought with IP will get you 1500 blue essence as a compensation and every 4 rune pages bought with RP will get you a random epic skin. Of course, you get to keep your rune pages too.

The rune changes are just the tip of the iceberg. Riot is introducing an unlimited level cap to League of Legends. Upon leveling up, players will receive unlocked chests (capsules) containing champion shards, blue essence, and—in rare occasions—even special rewards like gemstones or emotes. This is meant to give players a sense of progression that’s not tied to leagues or ranks. Similar systems already work in multiple games (including Overwatch and Heroes of the Strom), so this isn’t exactly untested ground.

Now, you’re probably wondering what’s up with all the blue essence. Well, the truth is Riot is removing Influence Points (IP). Instead, they will be turned into blue essence at a 1:1 rate. As for the blue essence that’s currently in your inventory, it will suffer the same fate but at a much more favorable rate (1:6.5). This way, players will have a single currency they can use for crafting and purchasing champions. The prices in stores will remain the same.

One thing to note about this system is that Riot plans to take away the IP (or—rather—blue essence) gains from the game wins and losses. The company promises that you’ll still be able to acquire new champions at the same rate—even faster since you don’t have to spend anything on runes. Also, IP boosts will completely disappear from the game and will be replaced by XP boosts. Makes sense. After all, you’re now getting your currency from leveling up.

What do you think about the upcoming League of Legends changes? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


Daniil Volkov