As Another Clash Tournament Ends, League Of Legends Players Beg Riot To Fix Smurfing

As Another Clash Tournament Ends, League Of Legends Players Beg Riot To Fix Smurfing
Credit: League of Legends via YouTube

League of Legends is one of the biggest games with over eighty million active accounts. That number is continuously growing every day, bringing new players into the fold with millions of others, some of which have been playing for the better part of a decade – but not every beginner is what it seems.

You may be familiar with the term “smurfing,” which is when a player that is skilled at a game creates a new account and purposely keeps it at a lower level or ranking. When the skilled player uses this new account, they’ll be matched up with other players of similar ranking that are there due to being new at the game and inherently not as good.

Suddenly you have smurfs in the lowest levels of play that are by and large better than everyone else due to their increased expertise over the game and mechanics. All in all, it ends up being a bad time for pretty much everyone involved, sometimes even including the smurf.

Fans of League of Legends have long been asking for a fix to this issue, and Riot, to their credit, has tried to fix it on several different occasions. But now that the Clash tournaments are a more common occurrence, smurfing seems more prominent than ever, and it’s having a significantly worse effect.

In a Clash tournament, eight teams compete in a single-elimination bracket with three rounds overall. Winners of all three rounds are victories overall, winning their group and claiming a variety of rewards.

Most important to the discussion of smurfing, however, is that there are four tiers, simply named Tier I – Tier IV, with Tier IV being the lowest. Iron and Bronze players will be most common in Tier IV, while Diamond and Challenger players are most commonly found in Tier I.

The issue comes from Tier I players making another account to join in on Clash and purposely losing games to stay towards Tier IV. Then when Clash comes around, these players clean house against the lower ranking players who are just trying to compete in their division, dominating their group and claiming whatever prize.

You likely don’t need much of an explanation of why this ruins the fun for countless players, who are simply trying to enjoy their time in a tournament. Many players have renewed their cries of annoyance to Riot, begging them once again to do something to combat smurfing and let players enjoy the game properly.

Is Riot likely to do anything about the smurfing issue this time around? One could certainly hope so, though it can be a tricky issue to really nail. Maybe by the next Clash, players will be able to compete properly instead of against challenger-tier players that have tricked their way into the wrong division.