The folks over at League of Legends have officially launched a new game mode, this time letting players pick their own opponents in a “Nemesis Draft.” That’s right: You get to decide what Champions your opponents will be bringing to the arena, and they’ll be making the exact same decision for your team.
I don’t know how all of this will play out in practice but, in theory, it’s kind of brilliant. Not only does it add an interesting twist to the proceedings, but it will also force players to become more familiar with Champions they might usually avoid in a standard League of Legends match.
As an added bit of cleverness, the Champions you pick for your opponents will also determine your own Champion pool. In other words, you can try to pick the worst crop of Champions imaginable for your opponents, but that will only limit your own team in the long run, too.
For those unfamiliar with League of Legends, it’s a Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) where players select a “Champion” to join a team and wage war on a battlefield for control points. Each Champion offers its own strengths and weaknesses and a huge part of the strategy comes from creating a strong team of champions with your fellow players.
To be fair, League of Champions is a pretty balanced tussle, so it’s up for debate which characters are “better” than the rest. As such, even in a mode where your opponents pick your Champions, you probably won’t find yourself stuck with anyone who is utterly useless. The team chemistry is likely where the most shenanigans will come into play, as a good strategy would be to pick characters that simply don’t work too well together.
Full details on the Nemesis game mode can be found on the League of Legends website, including a handy Q&A for those of you who crave more details. For starters, the Nemesis Draft isn’t quite as cut and dry as simply picking each other’s Champions. Full details on the back and forth nature of the process are outlined by the Riot team.
Finally, this mode also offers battle boosts, so you might want to take that into consideration as you begin crafting an (im)perfect lineup for your opponents.
Sadly, all good things must come to an end, and the Nemesis Draft is only running through Feb. 23, so be sure to take it for a spin while it’s still available.
Whether or not this particular variation is your cup of tea, I like to see developers coming up with creative new ways to play their games. It’s something I’d like to see in game like DOTA 2 or even non-MOBAs like Hearthstone. Little twists on familiar formulas can go a long way.