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18:22

Want to give a shoutout to Steve Rubin, one of the lead designers on this game

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People should know one of this games' designers is Steve Rubin, a retired professional Magic the Gathering player. He won a Pro Tour event with a $250,000 prize pool, which is huge for card games. I think it's amazing that Riot hired a professional player to design their game, as they know the genre better than anyone.  

Rubin's philosophy on balance:

“Live balance in Legends of Runeterra is all about making sure that every champion’s gameplay dream can be realized,” Rubin said while speaking at the 10th Anniversary European Celebrations. “So that means every champion can be put in a deck, played, and you can beat your opponent with it.”

This is how all games but card games are balanced. Games like Hearthstone are happy with a rock-paper-scissors meta, where if you want to beat the best deck, you have to play this exact deck to do it.

“There definitely is some inspiration [from MTG] with the back and forth,” Rubin said. “Some of the other offerings in the genre we felt like, without that back and forth interactive gameplay, that really didn’t offer a deep enough experience to really feel like there is some mastery in the game, like you can really outplay your opponents. So we really used that as a pillar to build the system out that we have today.”

There are many, many decision points in this game; the game often asks you to consider between multiple possible options. You're also asked to do it often, and under pressure. This kind of design rewards skill, and makes playing the game feel worthwhile.

So I just want to applaud Riot Games and Steve Rubin for making my favorite CCG experience in a long time

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