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Riot Game's Play team held a Q&A regarding the new Nemesis gamemode and offered up some insight into its development and design choices.

Q&A Offers Dev Insight into League of Legends’ Nemesis

A few League of Legends’ developers of Riot Game’s Play team opened up a Q&A in the game’s official forums yesterday, where fans were encouraged to ask questions about the game’s new featured gamemode Nemesis Draft (although they were free to ask questions about previous gamemodes League of Legends has had in the past as well). A few answered questions provided insight into the development of Nemesis.

The idea behind Nemesis Draft came around when League of Legends was first introduced with Featured Game Modes back in 2013, according to lead designer L4T3NCY (Latency), but it was never implemented into the game until now. “There was just never a good window of time between modes until now to polish and release it,” L4TENCY explained, adding that it was “nigh time that [League of Legends] had some fun” with Nemesis’ particular mechanics – the ability for players to choose their opponent’s character and vise versa. Nemesis is also Riot Game’s first “pick-type based” gamemode, where teamwork becomes more improtant if players are given champions they don’t know how to play. “It’s a chance for the community to be in control of how the mode and meta plays out with who they pick & ban,” L4T3NCY continued.

Senior user experience designer Riot Miztli added that reason why Nemesis was developed as a draft game mode was to create tension among players, and to encourage communication between team members about possible bans and to discuss ways of swapping a given champion with some else on the team if players can’t play that particular character.

Riot Games opted to make Nemesis’ champion pool comprise of what players already had when they enter the gamemode. This meant that both teams would only be able to pick the champions they owned – if all of the members of a team didn’t have a certain champion, that champion wouldn’t be available in the selection pool. However, Featured Game Mode designer BuffMePlz thinks that a more randomized draft pool would have made Nemesis more interesting. “Definitely something to consider if we bring this one back, or as a separate pick type in and of itself,” they said.

Nemesis also allows players to use battle boosts, which made a return to the game because they “make the most sense when [gamers] don’t really know who [they] might be playing.” League of Legend’s Summoner’s Rift map is also the chosen stage for Nemesis Draft, and this was because that particular map offers “way more strategic options” than other maps like Howling Abyss. An All Chat functionality was  considered for the gamemode as well, but it was later decided against due to its possibility of spoiling Nemesis’ element of planning according to certain team compositions.

“Giving away 5 ADC, or coordinating a composition consisting of purely magic damage champions is much less effective (and quite a bit harder) when the enemy team sees [players] typing that in chat,” quality analyst Riot DefaultChar explained. “Although we could have done an all vs team chat, our strong suspicion is that at least some people would get distracted by the All Chat option, which would hinder that to varying degrees.” Even with that,  DefaultChar  added that an All Chat functionality hasn’t been ruled out entirely.

Nemesis Draft went live last week, and will continue to be a part of League of Legend’s Featured Game Modes until Monday, February 23rd. Players who participate in a Nemesis match from start to finish will also be rewarded a Nemesis-themed summoner icon, but it could take up until a couple of weeks after the gamemode concludes to be delivered to accounts. The Nemesis Draft Q&A with Riot Game’s Play team can be read in full over on the official League of Legend’s forums.

About Kieran Mackintosh

Preferring to be referred to as "KingSongbird", Kieran is a serious, yet laid-back person with a particular soft spot for RTS games and anything Sci-Fi.

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