What is the new mechanic and what does it mean?
League of Legends Drops: the rundown
Watching lolesports.com will soon come with added benefits. Here is what to look forward to:
New rewards for online viewers
With the new League of Legends competitive season in the European and North American leagues - the LEC and the LCS, respectively - starting next week, the company behind the game is eager to give viewers some extra motivation to follow the games on their site.
Enter League of Legends Drops. This new rewards system will be activated on Week 3, starting June 26. During clutch moments of the game such as Baron steals, Pentakills or even a best of five series going to its final game, there may be a “drop” where viewers can get various rewards – chromas, skin shards, prestige point of clash tickets – to the account that they have signed up to the site with. As part of this change, the keen-eyed have already seen a new Rewards tab at lolesports.com.
How to get them
The Rewards tab already has a mission where players can get a Hextech chest and key if they watch one game on the site. In order to claim any drops, you must have logged in to watch.lolesports.com with your respective League of Legends account. If a Drop occurs, there will be an on-screen notification you can click, and if you miss the notification, you can go to the Rewards tab later.
It is important to note that Drops will be available only at watch.lolesports.com and not for anyone watching the games on YouTube or Twitch. Whether that is a temporary measure or an intentional move to focus viewership on the lolesports.com site remains to be seen. Likewise, at the start only live matches will feature drops, though Riot stated that they “hope to expand support for other new features" in the near future.
A glimpse of things to come?
It is an interesting move, likely pointing towards Riot looking for ways to optimize their esports model and drive engagement upwards in the current situation. The summer split format will likely not feature all the bells and whistles that Riot’s production included before the COVID-19 quarantines and this might be behind the move to offer further rewards for online viewership.
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Tying them to the lolesports.com site is not unprecedented – players already had to watch games from that site to get rewards for in-game missions – but most of these rewards were less valuable than what the drops promise to be. Is it just a matter of technical limitations or does Riot have plans to transcend the streaming platforms it has operated with so far? Time will tell.
In the meantime, make sure you follow our League of Legends coverage for more news about patch rundowns, esports developments, and other content.