With every region racing against each other to not only have the best professional league, but also the best development league, China is once again taking charge. As announced on Thursday, July 14, China’s secondary league, the League of Legends Development League, will be adopting a new type of champion draft effective immediately. This new “Fearless” mode will make each team rethink draft choices in Games 2 and 3 in each series going forward.
LDL officials will adopt the Fearless mode in Bo3. When Bo3 goes to game 2 and 3, all champions picked by your team in the previous games in this series will not be available for picking in the following games, while the opposing team is not restricted by this rule. #LPL #LDL pic.twitter.com/OuqPOYnxt4
— LPL Fanclub (@LPLfanclub) July 14, 2022
Fearless mode is a simple concept; simply put, teams cannot use the champions they have used in previous games during a series. This means instead of having five bans per game, teams will have 10 bans against them on Game 2; if the series makes it to Game 3, 15 bans. This forces teams to think outside of the box in champion select and allows players to experiment with their picks. The rule essentially makes it so no player is able to play the same champion twice during a series.
In one of the first series with this rule in place, Team WE’s academy team went up against Royal Never Give Up’s academy team, and the series went to Game 3. The champion select screen was wild; several champion portraits at the top of the screen had a red slash through them. The new mode worked as intended in this series, as both teams had to dig deep into their champion pools. With complaints of stale meta champions and an eagerness to see different champions in games, the initial public response has been overwhelmingly positive on social media.
LDL adding some draft diversity to the world https://t.co/vWrPPekfoo
— Marc (@Caedrel) July 14, 2022
This mode’s long-term impact is yet to be seen, but it’s definitely sparked interest in fans everywhere; at the very least, it’s an exciting development. For now, it looks like this mode will stay in China; as of writing, no other regions have announced their intentions to implement this change.