There will be no physical ranked rewards going forward for League of Legends players who hit the Challenger bracket at the end of each season, Riot Games announced. An update explained that while previous rewards are still being shipped, no more are planned going forward. In the past, top-tier players received jackets, medallions, and backpacks to show off their achievement on the ranked ladder.
— moobeat (@moobeat) June 5, 2017
At the end of the 2016 season, Challenger players collected both a bomber jacket and gold medallion for ending the season among the top-ranked players. While the top 200 players received the jacket, only the top 10 players in Challenger tiers received the medallion. Riot is currently shipping out the 2018 season reward, a Challenger-inspired backpack, to players from this most recent season.
My 2017 Challenger backpack finally arrived, thanks Riot 😊 pic.twitter.com/3pBHcCyK3S
— Erik Wessén (@Treatz) December 28, 2018
Earlier in the year, Riot cited logistical issues in shipping physical rewards as a reason for ending the incentive. Many players are still waiting for their rewards from the 2018 League of Legends season. In the initial announcement of physical rewards in 2016, Riot stated that 250 players from each server would get physical rewards. Creating limited-edition rewards and shipping globally may not be worth the investment for a company that primarily works with a digital product. In addition, physical rewards themselves have not significantly impacted the competition in the highest tiers of play.
What to expect
This does not mean Riot Games is abandoning rewards altogether for League of Legends, but it does indicate that the company is moving toward the preference of digital rewards over physical ones. Players can still look forward to borders, icons, and skins that change with their rank over time, and more than just Challengers will receive rewards for their hard work climbing the ladder. This ensures that all players feel rewarded for their effort, even if it means being recognized for climbing out of Bronze. More about the end-of-season rewards can be found in one of the game’s developer posts.
League of Legends‘ physical Challenger rewards aren’t the only items on delay, however. Players still don’t have the special recall animation in Challenger games, as Riot teased back in 2016. The feature was promised again before the 2019 season started, but is still absent from the game.
If you haven’t played League of Legends in a while, ranked might look a little different. We discussed these changes and what it might mean for you and your potential rewards here. What types of rewards would you most enjoy receiving at the end of each season? Let us know in the comments!