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League of Legends

Bias in Gaming – Complexity and Toxic Communities – A Small Case Study from League of Legends and Overwatch

Is it just me or is it getting harder and harder to devote time into games that are seemingly more and more complex?

Complexity in many games might not be apparent at first, but some have a surprising depth to them that can make it intimidating to get your hands on, especially after watching people who’ve mastered the game, understand all of the intricacies and nuances of the complexities at play.

League of Legends is the prime example of a game with an astounding amount of depth making it entertaining to watch experts strategize around the depth within the game, but extremely intimidating to pick up and exhausting to keep playing as those strategies evolve, change completely or go extinct like the failed traits of an evolutionary tree because some new apex predator was created leaving a wake or genetic devastation.

Keeping up with the strategies is one troublesome aspect of League of Legends, but what’s worse is being berated by the community for not keeping up with those strategies when you’re trying to be a casual player or a semi-skilled player but one who doesn’t devote more than an hour or so per day to gaming, or by making one bad play causing everyone to criticize you more harshly for the rest of the game. Doesn’t sound like a good time, does it?

Then a game like Overwatch comes along, lightening the load of complexity, less resources to manage, less strategy to manage and making it feel all the more accessible, inviting spectators and players alike much like the early days of League of Legends. A game that’s still new (as of writing this) with a metagame that’s not completely defined yet and a community which doesn’t judge everyone so harshly for one or two bad plays.

Why is it that Overwatch and League of Legends has such differing community behavior, one toxic to all new-comers, casual players and nonprofessionals while the other is currently inviting to the same crowd? Well, that’s probably a bias worth looking into.

Continue reading “Bias in Gaming – Complexity and Toxic Communities – A Small Case Study from League of Legends and Overwatch”

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Gaming on Data – League of Legends LCS 2015 Winter Split – The Best Around by any (K-)Means Necessary

LCS Winter 2015 Split has just finished for League of Legends and it’s time to start crunching some numbers to see how these top ranked players compare to one-another. Several Disclaimers: This post is a big graph heavy, but I’ll try and explain each of them as much as possible; there might actually be some code that some of you might want to skim over; all data was gathered from the Fantasy LCS view that is given for Stat tracking, so data might not be as granular as I’d like and not many features to compare against.

Stats given from Fantasy LCS

  • Average Points per Game (AP)
  • Total Points for the Split (TP)
  • Kills (KI)
  • Deaths (DE)
  • Assist (AS)
  • Creep Score (SC)
  • +10 K/A (KA)
  • Multi-Kills (not used)

Omitted Stats: 

  • Players who didn’t play the majority of the Split were omitted from analysis, 12/18 Games Minimum

Continue reading “Gaming on Data – League of Legends LCS 2015 Winter Split – The Best Around by any (K-)Means Necessary”

Thoughts on Gaming: Shared Experiences and Common Connections

There was a time in my youth that I remember only a handful of games that every kid had to have. Super Mario, Mario Kart, GoldenEye, Super Smash Bros, Unreal Tournament, Starcraft, Counter-Strike… Of course there were many other great games in the 90s and early 2000s, but there weren’t many that were ubiquitous among the community. You didn’t even have to be that good at all of these games, but you knew that somewhere during your weekend gaming hang-outs, one of these games would come up and you would spend the next few hours of raging and mocking over these games.

Old-Venn

But it also seems like there aren’t that many of these kinds of ubiquitous games around today. We have our Call of Duty annual wintertime jam, Super Smash Bros groups, League of Legend crews, World of Warcraft guildies, but these games being largely ubiquitous isn’t a given anymore.

New-Venn

Continue reading “Thoughts on Gaming: Shared Experiences and Common Connections”

This is your Gaming on Data: League of Legends and Selecting a Champion

It’s not about your potential power, but the power that you display.

                Selecting which character you want to spend your gaming life with is a difficult choice, no matter how temporary the experience. You choose your character depending on what you think looks cool, what role you want to play as, what you think will get the job done when push comes to shove, how well you can synergize with your teammates. You’ll be spending the next game life becoming accustomed to your character and your team’s characters so you want to choose someone that you won’t regret spending that life as.

League-of-legends-logo

League of Legends is no exception to this, and with over 100 characters to choose from, 5 roles and a number of different play styles for each character and role, a player has a lot of choices to make in deciding how their next gaming-lifespan will be experienced. Not all play-styles work so some people take up the task of writing up guides on how they play, what works for them, what items to pick up and contingencies based on who you are playing with or who you are playing against. Sites like Champion Select, Solomid and Mobafire where guide writers impart their wisdom with certain characters and prospective new comers learn and rank what guides work best.

I’m not here to talk about which guides are better than others, but to research and impart knowledge of which characters the League Community likes best.

Continue reading “This is your Gaming on Data: League of Legends and Selecting a Champion”

This is your Gaming on Data: League of Legends vs Dota Trends

Search Trends of Google

Insight on what’s popular                                                   

But only relative

 

The popularity of the Action Real Time Strategy (ARTS) or MOBA games have shifted around between two main contenders ever since the genre took off with DotA (Defense of the Ancients) in 2004–2005 as the popular Warcraft 3 mod and picked up as standalone games due to their popularity. Now there are only two contenders for the most popular ARTS/MOBA games, League of Legends and DotA 2.

What I originally set out was to see how popular these two franchises are because in the US and much of the gaming communities that I frequent, there is a very strong influence of League of Legends and Riot Games over DotA 2 and I wanted to see if this was persistent across other areas of the world.

Continue reading “This is your Gaming on Data: League of Legends vs Dota Trends”

Steady Status Auto-Balancing of Games

Steady State Auto-Balancing

Idea

Looking at the scale of some of the online multiplayer games, it’s always fascinating to see how people always complain that only a small subset of things are usable in competitive play. In Halo or Counter-Strike, only a handful of weapons are considered good and the rest are never touched unless you’re in very constricted situations and the less-preferred weapon is the only option. League of Legends has over 100 champions to select from, but you only see about 30-40 played the majority of the time. Player-vs-player (PVP) in World of Warcraft tends to have the same team layout in their 2v2 and 3v3 arenas making the meta-game predictable after playing for so many iterations.

Developers do try and balance these problems, but re-balancing takes a long time to complete. When you make something (gun, character, class) weaker or stronger, it changes many other aspects of other classes. Which character’s are good to support them, who does the original character do well against, who does well against this character. Many aspects change because of small changes that the developers make to try and re-balance the game, making things that were perceptively weaker -> better and making things that seemed overpowering -> weaker.

Continue reading “Steady Status Auto-Balancing of Games”

I might’ve had more pictures than this, but the gathering area was entirely too small for the amount of people. Mixing that with the heat wave that participated with the entrants to the con, we were all fighting for cooler locations to photograph. Tried to make better accommodations for other gatherings, but it was a shame that this one had to take the hit as far as quality of quantity

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