Feb 5, 2013

League of Legends - Why you should be careful when buying RP and spending IP

I started playing this game mid 2010. Liking to experiment, I had the plan to buy all third level runes, so I could make some weird builds. I don't play enough for this plan, so I considered buying the IP boosts, so I could buy more runes. Here's why I didn't do it.

There are two currencies inside LoL. One you can get by playing, the other you can get by paying. IP and RP, respectively.
There is a direct translation between RP and currency (dollar, euro, etc). There are a few things you can only buy with Riot Points (RP) and some things you can only buy with IP.
There are some things you can purchase with both RP and IP, hence a worth translation between them.

First of all, IP is gained per game. Quickly looking at my match history, in 10 games the average is 93IP per game. Being generous and round, it averages 100IP per game.
You can buy, at the best price, 9300IP for 50€. That means you get at best 186IP per euro.
Looking at the champion list, which you can buy either with RP or IP, you get an average of 4.6 RP per IP.
IP Boosts, double the amount of IP you get per game, so instead of an average 100IP, you would get 200IP per game.

Now that we have these values, let's look at the IP boosts. We'll only look at the best value ones.

The 50wins boost, costs 2560RP. This means that you would get an 50*100IP with this boost. So you are trading 5000IP for 2560RP, at the ratio of 2RP per IP. Which is less than half of what RP is worth, when buying champions. A bad deal. If  you use IP gained this way to buy champions you are losing more than half its worth. You should really just use the RP to buy the champion and be done with it.

The 30days boost, costs 3490RP. The IP you can get with this is limited. Assuming a League of Legends game, averages 30minutes. 3490RP, at the ratio you can buy champions with, translates into  3490*4.6IP = 16054IP. So you have to win this much IP playing games, just to break even. At 100IP per game, this means 160games, and only then you would start to profit from this boost. During the 30day period, this means you have to play 6 games a day, just to get some benefit from this boost.

Remember, I was generous with these values, and went for the best ratios. Any other choice would worsen the conditions.

So what to do?
  1. Buy champions with RP not IP,  and try to only buy them when they are on promotion;
  2. IP is for buying things that only IP can buy, period. Do it another way and it's really not to your advantage;
  3. If you want to take a boost do so. If you play more than 2 games a day, take the 30days boost. But spend all that IP on runes (see 1.)

League of Legends - True Tier List and Logical Banning

When playing solo queue ranked games in League, if you are the first player of your team, you get to ban characters from the game, based on yours and your teammates perception of those characters value.

I, on the other hand, am not in favor of banning characters by perception. The logical action would be to ban characters with the highest win ratio, such as Rumble or Singed.

On the other hand, those characters aren't often picked, and a ban on them might prove useless. So what you really want is to ban characters that have the highest probability of being picked AND winning.

First you figure out how likely that character is to be picked, based on the games that it isn't banned.

    P(beingPicked) = %games / (100 - %bans)  

And then:

    P(being picked and winning) = P(beingPicked) * P(winning)

And you get this ban-worthy Tier list:

data retrieved from LolKing on  2013-02-05
  • Popularity: % of games played;
  • Win Rate: % of games played won;
  • Ban Rate: % of games banned;
  • AdjGames: % of games played when not banned;
  • PickedAndWin: probability of being picked and winning
  • PerceivedTier: tier based on banned games;
  • Tier: tier based on PickedAndWin probability;
  • TierDiff: difference between Perceived Tier and tier.

As you can see there is quite a difference between what actually wins games and what people ban. On the other hand, judging by values in TierDiff, you can see that not many champions are overestimated, and when so, not by much. But, when talking about underestimating champions, you can look at Taric, the number one Tier character right now, Graves, Leona, Sona and Lux and clearly see that these champions' worth is underestimated. So, if you want to be a trickster you should play these.

If you just want to ban the strong ones, you should go for the top tier ones, that are not banned often: Taric, Ezreal, Miss Fortune, Caitlyn, Nunu, etc. All of these are strong game-winning choices that should be banned more.

This is just something to base decisions on. It doesn't account for synergies, or counters. It is also a bit flawed because it is supposedly sampling all ranked games, not just the good ones, like the ones in Silver+ leagues. On a math level I believe this view is pretty strong, tho.