10 bans have been in the competitive scene for an entire split at this point. With patch 7.11, this feature is finally coming to us, the people. The system for the live queue works a little differently than it does in competitive matches and can be previewed in this video.
With there being 136 playable champions, four extra bans per-game were absolutely needed. However, that is not really what makes this new ban system interesting. Each of the 10 players in any given game will be able to ban one champion from play. Stop for a moment and think about how incredible that is. Starting in 7.11, you will be able to ban a champion every game, regardless of pick order.
To put this in perspective, picture a champion that you hate. Just for examples sake, lets pick the worst champion in the history of League of Legends, Shaco. If you hate Shaco (and of course you do), you never have to play in a game with him again if you don’t want to.
To be clear, that is not a hyperbolic statement. You could make it your mission that from now until the end of time you will ban Shaco every single game, guaranteeing that you will never be perma-feared by those nonsense jack-in-the-boxes ever again. The power to ban a champion from the play pool has been removed from RNG entirely and given to every player.
But as we all know, with great power comes great responsibility.
We all hate Shaco, but he certainly isn’t the most popular champion in the world. Maybe your team is begging you to ban a flavor-of-the-month champion like Zac or the always ban-worthy Yasuo. What do you do? Do you remove the popular champ that will probably get picked if they go un-banned? Or will you guarantee a Shaco-less game, saving yourself from a horrible, literal clown fiesta?
These are the questions that players will have to ask themselves now. League of Legends has always been a game about teamwork and solo queue has always stretched that idea thin. There are successful players that push for teamwork and successful players that are by very definition, selfish. Both can win, so which one do you want to be?
Are you the Tryndamere that never groups? Creating a horrible game for your teammates but solo-carrying through the split-push? Or are you the Lee Sin that gives away all of your kills to your teammates and has faith that they will be able to carry their own weight? That decision is no longer made when you load in, its done in champion select.
The 10 ban system empowers everyone. We can all remove an individual barrier that we personally hate to deal with or we can collaborate bans with our teammates. Where this gets tricky, and could even cause fights in the lobby, is that neither of these answers are incorrect.
On one hand, you know what you struggle with the most. If you know that you struggle against Yasuo, it makes sense to remove that barrier from yourself. Then again, Heimerdinger is pretty strong at the moment and could potentially take over the game, harming everyone. It all comes down to what kind of player you want to be and who you are dealing with.
When it comes to banning, there is no right or wrong answer (although “always ban Yasuo” is pretty close). Riot has given you a ban to use every single game and you should use it however you want. Don’t let anyone in your lobby bully you into banning one thing or another.
Choose who you want to use your ban on with your own experience. Who do you hate laning against? Who do you see as a potential threat? Who has a high win-rate right now? Do you want to help out a teammate, banning their request instead of your own?
Look into your heart and do the right thing: ban Shaco.