Riot are planning changes to League of Legends' jungle role, that could shake up the very foundation of the game.
While jungle is a role that many don't wish to play, due the difficulty of influencing the game and keeping up on the mechanics necessary, these changes appear to make the role incredibly easy:
- making jungle camps easier to clear, with more rewards;
- making more champions viable in the role by significantly boosting Smite;
- reintroducing comeback XP for junglers who fall behind the average level of the game;
- making it easier for players to see where jungle monster leashing limits lie.
The move is somewhat unexpected, given the prominence of junglers over the last season or so, and the community quickly made their feelings known.
Former pro Christian "IWillDominate" Rivera criticised the move, saying that Riot might as well remove skill from the game, while streamer Chiblet pointed out that players don't wish to play jungle because of its difficulty, but because of the toxicity often directed at junglers and the constant tinkering of the role from Riot.
The points Chiblet raises are all very valid observations. The jungle role is generally crucial in influencing the outcomes of games, and when teammates aren't on the same page or are toxic, it can become a desperate and lonely position that ultimately doesn't bring any enjoyment of the game. It could be argued that it also has the most pressure, given the role is far more than just pushing lanes.
It remains to be seen whether these changes will make it to the live servers, but we should expect them to hit the PBE for testing soon.