League of Legends has been updated in a big way for players fond of the more casual Player vs. AI mode, a cooperative mode that pits 5 real players against 5 AI-controlled bots.
Reasoning for working on this feature in particular instead of something we would normally expect like a new character or perhaps even a new map was that the majority of players played at least one AI game per week and “it’s actually the primary game mode for a surprisingly large percentage of players.” There will now be AI for 40 of the game’s champions plus AI for the very alternative Dominion game mode.
One of the examples given as for improvements to the AI was the use of predictive targeting, which even relatively inexperienced players would probably notice during a bot match:
“we had Ashe as an original bot, but Ashe would use her arrow, which was a skillshot. It wouldn’t be at all predicted — ‘there’s a point to point target there, I’m going to use the Ashe arrow.’ Now they’ll actually use predictive targeting.”
Its likely that the AI still won’t be much of a challenge to skilled players, which I think is alright. This update seems much more geared to the casual player who doesn’t want much to do with actual competitive play, yet enjoys the DotA formula. I’m personally pretty awful at LoL when you get down to it and I still find the bots to be pretty easy (read: boring), so this update sounds like something I would at least enjoy.
Among things not included in the update is the ability for bots to jungle, which I believe is some low-hanging fruit for future updates. Jungling in competitive matches completely changes up the dynamic of the game. In the future there will be a “skilled” or “advanced” type of bot that looks like they would incorporate this type of strategy.
So it looks like AI is indeed a major part of League of Legends that Riot is taking very seriously. DotA/MOBA games are actually quite fun, but some of us just aren’t as competitive as others and these little features for the more casual DotA players are much appreciated.
Also, here is your laundry list of bots updated, you can see from the difference in updated versus new that this is indeed a pretty huge update for bot match fans:
- Miss Fortune
- Xin Zhao