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League of Legends preseason 2022: New challenges system, item, runes, dragon changes and more

Riot Games has shared its plans for the 2022 League of Legends preseason, including the introduction of a new challenges system, and changes to existing systems such as runes, items, dragons and more.
As we head into the final stretch of each year, excitement fills the hearts of League of Legends players, and this year is no different. This is due to the 2022 League of Legends preseason coming up. On 11th August, Riot Games shared an overview of the upcoming 2022 League of Legends preseason, which promises to be a bit different from previous years.

With the 2022 League of Legends preseason, Riot isn't focusing on re-envisioning one area of the much-loved MOBA. Instead, the developer's goal is to expand and strengthen current systems. The high-level goals are to:

  • Improve and build upon existing game systems.
  • Reward progression in a more meaningful way.

That doesn't mean we won't see some new systems possibly coming with the 2022 League of Legends preseason updates. In fact, thanks to a press release, we know about one such system, so let's start there!

LoL preseason 2022: New Challenges system

Riot is hoping to implement the new Challenges system during the 2022 League of Legends preseason. It is, however, important to note that Riot Games has mentioned things could change "based on your feedback" and if the new challenges system does not ship with the 2022 League of Legends preseason, the devs will look to introduce it in early 2022.

The goals Riot wants to achieve with the LoL challenges system are:

  • Players can track their general mastery and investment in League of Legends.
  • Players can visualize and compare a variety of League accomplishments.
  • Players have many different types of Challenges and accomplishments to progress and strive towards.

With the Challenges system, players will be rewarded for the "unique, and fun goals they achieve" throughout their League of Legends matches. 

League of Legends 2022 preseason updates LoL dragons items changes runes challenges system objective bounties
Players will be rewarded for completing challenges. (Picture: Riot Games)

Riot Games explains: "We’ve designed the system to assess a broad spectrum of League feats so no matter what your playstyle is, there’s something uniquely "you" to shoot for and celebrate.

"Not much of a Ranked player, but love collecting skins and champions? Are you amazing at CSing, but leave the kills to teammates? Or maybe you're known for being the ultimate skillshot dodger? Challenges let you personalize and show off the exact type of player you are."

This brings us to updates to the Progression Identity system, which goes hand-in-hand with the new Challenges system.

LoL preseason Progression Identity updates

Earlier in 2021, Riot Games introduced Progression Identity changes, which were aimed at given players more customization options. This was foundational work for the new Challenges system.

Riot Games explains: "Part of the concepts and explorations we showed you included a series of identity changes that’ll allow you to customize who you are to others at a glance.

"This includes showing off your accomplishments in specific Challenges through tangible elements in and around the game with things like titles, tokens, and rank. It also includes an overall score of all the different Challenges you’ve climbed through in the form of a tiered progression crystal."

League of Legends 2022 preseason updates LoL dragons items changes runes challenges system objective bounties
Progression crystals. (Picture: Riot Games)

So how does this all fit in? Well, in the press release we received, Riot Games explains how the Progression Identity updates and new Challenge system comes together: "The aim of the Challenges system is to provide broad goals and visual representations across everything within League for you to complete... and compete against each other over. This includes integrating systems like Champion Mastery, Eternals, Ranked, Levels, Events, and Collection into one umbrella so everyone has something to shoot for."

Now, let's get onto the changes planned for the 2022 League of Legends preseason in relation to existing systems, from dragons to runes, items and more.

Dragons update in 2022 LoL preseason

With Rise of the Elements, map terrain transformation was added, including Dragon Souls and a game-ending Elder Dragon buff.

However, the devs think there is room for expansion on the Dragons system, with more unique environments in the Summoner's Rift.

League of Legends 2022 preseason updates LoL dragons items changes runes challenges system objective bounties
Rise of the Elements. (Picture: Riot Games)

In terms of updates to the Dragons system for the 2022 League of Legends preseason, Riot has some goals in mind:

  • Creating new terrain features that contribute to unique matches and alter how the game plays out after the map transforms.
  • Expanding the thematic possibilities of what empowers a dragon and how that empowers champions on the Rift.

While this sounds interesting, players will have to wait until "later this year" for more details as the developer works on the Dragons system. 

Runes and items update in 2022 LoL preseason

In terms of runes, the developers have continued to monitor the power levels and "use rates" across the entire system. There will be some "good, targeted changes".

Riot wants to broaden the keystone use cases for the Inspiration tree, so players can expect the following in the 2022 League of Legends preseason:

  • Reworked Inspiration keystones
  • Secondary rune balance adjustments

Next up, items! The goal has been for players to make meaningful and strategic choices with their champions in terms of item choice in every game. 

League of Legends 2022 preseason updates LoL dragons items changes runes challenges system objective bounties
The Mythic Item Forge. (Picture: Riot Games)

Riot has heard player feedback and knows that the need to make strategic decisions about every item isn't always great. 

The developer explains: "We still want you to make a meaningful choice at the Mythic level for every champion, but we don’t want Legendary items to be held to the same standard. Some Legendary items should be perfect for a few champs, instead of being okay for a lot of them."

Further, the developer has noticed "a few gaps" with this specific goal in mind, which is why they are exploring the following spaces:

  • More Mythic options for support champs.
  • Improved Legendary item options for mages, assassins, and tanks.

While this is already a lot of information to take in thanks to Riot Games' overview for the 2022 League of Legends preseason, there's one more topic...bounties!

Objective Bounties in 2022 LoL preseason

Champion bounties have been around for quite some time. Riot doesn't plan to make any changes to Champion bounties but does plan on adding "Objective Bounties" to the game as another way for teams to get back into competitive form once they get behind in a match.

For the 2022 League of Legends preseason, this will give losing teams more strategic options by taking back specific objectives.

Riot Games explains: "We know there could be some concerns about Objective Bounties, the main one being game length. Generally speaking, we think average game length is in a good spot right now and don’t want to impact it. We also don't want to invalidate the big advantages caused by skill gap. If you're just that good and dominating your lane opponent and snowballing the game, that advantage shouldn't just disappear altogether."

To keep Objective Bounties balanced, Riot will be sure to listen to community feedback during the 2022 League of Legends preseason period. 

Fans can expect more info about the upcoming LoL preseason in September via the "Quick Gameplay Thoughts" and in October via the "LoL Pls: Preseason 2022 and early PBE" showcase.

Don't forget to check out our dedicated League of Legends section, filled with guides, news, patch notes and much more.

Header image via Riot Games.