Starting in patch 7.11, the ban phase for all draft Summoner’s Rift modes will feature five bans per team instead of three. We’ll be rolling the feature out to all regions throughout the patch. As a heads up, we’ll be upping the number of owned champions required to play ranked from 16 to 20.
As we announced earlier, the 10 bans regular play format is different from the pro scene. We’ve made some changes to how the system works detailed below.
The pick intent phase hasn’t changed. Every player can indicate the champion they want to play.
This is followed by the new ban phase. The biggest change is now every player bans a champ. All 10 players ban simultaneously, with the ability to “hover” bans for coordination, and without seeing the other team’s possible choices. Your team’s intended bans will be displayed next to their portrait, and when locked, they’ll transition to the top of the screen. We also added indicators a few patches ago so you can easily identify what your team plans to pick and ban.
After both teams lock their choices, each team’s bans are revealed to the other (bans can be duplicated across teams), and the pick phase continues as normal.
One of our main goals with 10 concurrent bans is to increase player control in champ select. We want to make sure no matter where you sit in the champ select order, you have a fair chance to choose a ban and even your chances in lane. In the current system, for example, players given second pick on blue side have no ban and are fourth pick overall, meaning the chances of getting a power pick or a counter pick are pretty slim. Giving more agency to all players in the draft should even this out. For the first time, everyone can remove a direct counter to their lane. For example, if you main an immobile mage support, you can remove Blitzcrank from the running, or secure Tryndamere without relying on a teammate to ban Teemo.
Simultaneous bans can cut the time in champ select from anywhere between 30 seconds and two minutes, getting you into game way faster. So, why aren’t we implementing the esports format in solo or flex? It pretty much comes down to the needs of a team of organized players being very different from individual players placed on a matchmade team. In organized play, having some knowledge of your opponents’ strategy means you can pivot your pick and ban phases to specifically target weaker players or home in on a small champion pool.
In today’s queues, splitting the draft results in rough scenarios where players picking last can face heavy target bans in the second phase. Situations where you’re fourth pick, with at least three or four bans aimed at your position, would be common. We’re also taking into account the cost of lengthening champ select by up to two minutes – making intentional (and unintentional) dodges feel way more painful for the other nine folks in the lobby.
We do realize there is now a disconnect between regular play and professional play, so we are working on bringing the esports snake draft format to an organized team mode, but we’re not quite there yet.
How long do I have to ban?
We’re still testing overall timing, but the ban phase is currently 35 seconds.
What happens if I don’t want to ban something?
We’re adding an option to select “No Ban” if you want to live dangerously. We also wanted to add a failsafe in case two or more teammates rush to ban the same thing in the last few seconds – you’ll default to “no ban” instead of incurring dodge penalties.
Do I still have to lock in my bans?
No, but you still have to hover something! We’re still experimenting with this, but to reduce as much friction as possible, we’re trying out these rules:
If you hover a ban and lock in, you will lock that ban, and it will be unselectable by teammates
If you hover a ban and don’t lock in, that champion will be locked at the end of the ban phase
If more than one person hovers the same champion when the timer runs out, that champion will be banned. However, duplicated hovers won’t dodge the lobby because this could be painful in combination with last-second lock-ins. Basically, if you make a selection at any time during the ban phase, you will avoid dodging.
If you don’t hover a ban and don’t lock in, you will dodge the lobby
If this ends up sucking, we’ll make changes as needed.
What happens if two or more players try to ban the same champ on my team?
As soon as one player locks a ban, the champ is no longer selectable for that team. If this happens in the last few seconds of the ban phase and two teammates try to lock at the same time, the second player’s lock will default to “no ban” as a last resort to avoid dodge penalties.
What happens if two players ban the same thing on opposing teams?
There is a chance of duplicated bans across teams. Giving visibility into the enemy bans before time runs out causes the strongest strategy to be waiting until the closing moments to bait-and-switch bans with your opponent, which sounds unfun. This also reduces the chance of certain meta champions being banned across every game. Y’all know who we mean.
What happens if my team tries to ban my pick intent?
Much like before, this is still allowed by the system. Now, though, because there are way more moving parts in champ select (and intended picks could unintentionally go overlooked) we’ve added clear indicators on the champ select grid to show the hovers for your team.
Doesn’t this mean some champions will be banned every game?
Hopefully no; this was part of the design decision into allowing duplicate bans overall. In a snake format, the later players banning have more of an implied responsibility to take out the meta bans for the patch. There are outliers to the meta ban situation - particularly in high level games - where less-played champions like Shaco have multiple dedicated one-tricks that are still at risk of being banned out, but trying to balance this system for these outliers is near-impossible. We will be keeping an eye on the champs most likely to be permabanned across all tiers, and will make changes if necessary. Maybe we’ll just make everyone else OP to compensate.
What’s happening to custom games and Twisted Treeline?
Custom games live on a legacy matchmaking service and so we’re going to be launching with no changes to custom Draft pick or Twisted Treeline. We’ll be fixing the inconsistencies a bit later.
This queue remains unchanged until we have moved this queue to the current matchmaking service; six bans alternating
Will now be using the esports format (split draft), but the pick-ban flow may be a little weird-looking and unclear for a while. We wanted to give an opportunity for everyone to play around with the format, and will be cleaning up the UI for this in a later patch
Twisted Treeline Ranked Flex
Bans remain unchanged; six bans alternating
What if I want to practice using the 10 bans esports format?
Tournament Draft custom games will now use the esports draft format, but things will be a little odd-looking for launch. We’ll be cleaning up the UI for this in a later patch to be more representative of the split draft flow.