League of Legends: Is Season 10 Really the Worst Season Ever?

League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /

With many complaints about this season of League of Legends solo queue, let’s take a look at how Season 10 stacks up with seasons past.

“This season is the worst season in all my time playing League of Legends,” is a phrase that most veteran players of this game have heard from friends, Redditors, or on Twitter about once per year. Season 10 has gotten a lot of notoriety for being one of the worst seasons of League of Legends ever with players raging on Twitter or just sitting on their stairs lamenting how we got here.

Even though players like to say Season 10 is the worst ever, there have always been issues and complaints with each season of the game. Today, let’s take a look at some of the biggest issues from each season of League of Legends, going all the way back to Season 3 (because earlier than that is a bit harder to find common complaints) and see if Season 10 is really that bad.

Season 10

The Complaint: AFKs and soft-inting are ruining the ladder

More from Blog of Legends

We don’t really need to touch on this complaint too much, since most players have either seen this in their own games or heard high-elo players endlessly whine about how a single person in their game can cause the other four members to lose and have a terrible experience for whatever reason. Riot has already started rolling out solutions to address these complaints, but it’s difficult to police which behavior is game-ruining versus simply poor play.

So there is that plus, that Riot is taking this complaint seriously, but it’s still a difficult problem to solve and one that has been true of the game for years. Yes, players say it’s gotten worse in Season 10 because there is no punishment and so “inters” feel emboldened, but that could also be because bigger problems in seasons past overshadowed these occasional griefing players.

Season 9

The Complaint: Positional ranks ruined the ladder

Oh did you forget about this one? How at the start of the season Riot introduced positional ranks and matchmaking, which were designed to make games fairer by making sure that even when autofilled players were in relatively even matchups skillwise.

Of course this caused a whole host of issues, mainly that players didn’t care about their off-role ranks and would ruin the games where they were autofilled by trolling (hmm, sounds familiar). As a result, even after positional matchmaking was removed players felt that many other players were at higher ranks than they deserved due to abusing this system.

Season 8

The Complaint: Alternating patch cycle made the game unbalanced

In Season 8 there weren’t really many complaints about the ranked ladder itself outside of the general toxicity issues we still see today. Instead, the biggest complaint about Season 8 was directed at Riot’s new patching philosophy and how it left the game massively unbalanced.

Recall that, back in Season 8, Riot elected to change their patching cadence to have one large patch every month or two, followed by smaller patches and hotfixes in between to address problem champions. While it sounded good in theory, this caused certain items to dominate the meta, including the introduction of Stopwatch, Banner of Command (which was eventually removed).

Season 8 was also particularly rough AD Carries, who felt that their role was incredibly weak as they were forced to play bruisers and mages. Finally, this was also the season where the Funnel Strategy became mainstream with the disgusting Taric/Master Yi duo taking over solo queue and even some pro games.

Season 7

The Complaint: Ardent Censer meta

Just say those three words and see ADC and support mains’s eyes light up while players in the other three roles immediately start having flashbacks. The Ardent Censer meta dominated the end of Season 7 and was not changed ahead of Worlds despite many cries to do so.

Thanks to this one item, League of Legends really became a true “[position] diff” as the game revolved completely around bot lane. Players in other roles felt that it was literally irrelevant how they did, so long as they had the better ADC they were likely to win. In addition, supports who didn’t play the popular enchanters like Rakan, Lulu, Janna, and Soraka were essentially throwing away free LP as mage and tank supports were left in the dumpster.

Season 6

The Complaint: Dynamic Queue

This is the season of League of Legends that is probably most players’ only real contender with Season 10 for the worst season ever. The introduction of dynamic queue was controversial from the start with players saying that the game took away agency from solo players and therefore harmed the competitive integrity of the ladder. Players feared being bossed around by pre-made groups (even after Riot removed the possibility of a solo player being grouped with a four-stack) and argued that mismatched pre-mades in lobbies made the games unbalanced (even though Riot adjusted the matchmaking and showed that most games were even with respect to pre-made groups).

The irony that, just four seasons later, people’s main complaint is that solo players can ruin the game for their teammates and they have no way to avoid those players who exhibit game-ruining behaviors is quite ironic. And, although the competitive integrity of the ladder was questioned, those game-ruining behaviors we deal with now were not nearly as problematic back then (it’s almost like being able to queue with people you know won’t int your games reduces the possibility of experiencing game-ruining behavior, hm).

Season 5

The Complaint: Juggernaut Update and Missing Features

Honestly, of all the seasons I’ve gone back to review, Season 5 probably has the fewest obvious flaws. Most of the complaints from the community were about missing features such as the controversy surrounding Sandbox Mode (now the Practice Tool) and needing an update to the Death Recap (which we finally got years later).

The other big complaint was around the juggernaut update at the end of the season and how it caused severe imbalance during the World Championship. Champions like Gangplank, Darius, and old reworked Mordekaiser were especially annoying to play against.

Season 4

The Complaint: Terrible Balance

You might have complaints about the balance team now, but at least you never had to live through the era of 95% ban rate Kassadin. You didn’t have to deal with top and mid Lulu making the game impossible for their lane opponents. Protect-the-Kog comps, the introduction of trinket wards so now supports were more than just ward-bots, and a major overhaul to the jungle (not just a tweaking of the gold and experience like Riot does ever year, but like adding and changing camps) made Season 4 and unbalanced mess.

Next. How to Play Nunu Mid Like Faker. dark

Season 3

The Complaint: Assassins

While balance was better back in Season 3, there were still issues with League of Legends during its “Golden Age.” For one, assassins like Kha’Zix, Fizz, Leblanc, Ahri, and Kassadin were super OP. This was back when Deathfire Grasp was still an item and Leblanc had a silence on her Ethereal Chains.