If you are familiar with gaming jargon and terminologies, then smurfing might be a word you already heard of.
Smurfing in gaming is the act of a player who uses a new account to grind and climb up again the rank ladder of a game wherein he or she already has an original account from the same game that has reached an above-average or high rank. This happens to most games nowadays, including Riot Games’ League of Legends (LOL)
This may sound interesting since most online competitive games are about grinding and such, but is smurfing healthy to the LOL gaming environment? Or does it ruin the game?
How Smurfing Affects The League of Legends Players
Smurfing affects the LOL players in many ways.
For the side of the smurfer, he or she would eventually rank up faster compared to other players since the skill level he or she has (outside the calculated MMR since it is not a system-based element) is higher compared to the other players who have low-ranked main account.
Also, the smurfer may tend to satisfy himself or herself by defeating low-ranked players which may even be an easy thing for him or her to do. He or she can also try and experiment with new strategies and champions in the smurf account – a way of practicing somehow.
As for the side of a player who has a main account but is classified in the lower rank, he or she could struggle more and may have an even harder time to climb up the ranks since he or she could eventually face a smurfer during games. This may be only one reason but the impact it entails is already a big one.
Riot’s Response To Smurfing
Last year. Riot posted on Twitter their two cents about smurfing in LOL.
"This is intentional. We really don’t want players creating alt accounts just to blow through the climb. We encourage players to stay on their mains. Smurfing ruins the game experience for others,"
Does Smurfing Ruin League of Legends?
As Riot themselves mentioned, smurfing ruins the game experience ‘for others.’
The others they are talking about would be the players who stay to play their main accounts even though they struggle to rank up compared to the other players out there. Although for the smurfers, of course, smurfing is their way to somehow manifest their ‘redemption’ towards their frustration to their main accounts.
But for real, the slow climb Riot has been implementing to ‘fix’ the smurfing issue may not be the solution at all.
This solution may be the system Valve has been implementing for DOTA 2. Their climb is much faster compared to LOL which results in players staying to their main accounts most of the time.
And another thing is the number of games a newbie should play first before unlocking the ranked mode – 25 placement games, followed by a number of games ranging from 1-100 depending on their calculated performance from the first 25.
All of the things DOTA 2 has been doing to eventually prevent smurfing aren’t perfect after all. But it somehow impacts the game to have a better gaming environment where everyone can fight fair and square. Riot might want to take a look at these, though.
READ MORE: League of Legends: How To Level Up Fast