On Tuesday, senior designer Ed “SapMagic” Altorfer replied to a user on Twitter saying that ranked decay will only be for players who are Diamond or higher. The tweet was hidden in the jungle of replies to Altorfer’s many tweets about the upcoming preseason, but that’s big news!
Ranked players above a certain level are forced to play a ranked game every 28 days, or they risk losing League Points. If they continue to not play after the first 28 days, they’ll continue losing points every 7 days until they play a game. Master and Challenger players have a banking system where they can “bank” up to 10 games, with one game being removed every day. If their bank reaches zero, they begin to lose LP until they start banking again. It’s a vicious system to keep the best players actively proving that they’re the best.
Many moons ago, players in Silver or above would decay, but Riot changed this in patch 4.17. The company noted that it didn’t want lower leveled players to suffer, as ranked decay was just supposed to keep the cream of the crop players active in the game. Since that patch nearly four years ago, Silver and Gold ranks stopped decaying.
Since Riot is adding a new Grandmaster tier above Master and below Challenger, it makes season that Platinum will no longer decay.
Season 9 begins on Jan. 23 and we can expect more fleshed out details about the ranked season before that.