Even at the height of League of Legends, I think a lot of us can agree that the game was still plagued with people who left the game for a host of reasons, regardless of which server you played on. To address this issue, the LeaverBuster system was developed to dissuade players from repeated offenses. This ties in with how Riot plans to address toxic behavior during gameplay. Let’s take a look at how it works and what you can do to avoid the dreaded low priority queue.
LeaverBuster: Getting to Know You
First and foremost, let’s get a few facts straight. There are a couple of factors that decide the outcome of the LeaverBuster judgment. Things like the total number of matches, the time elapsed between leaving, and just how many matches were left unattended all come into play during this decision. Naturally, an initial warning is given to the player before any actual sanctions are put into effect. This gives them a bit of a heads up and helps correct this behavior, assuming it’s done on purpose.
To be clear, this only applies to matchmade games. This means that ranked, normal, co-op vs. AI, and game modes trigger the effect of LeaverBuster while game modes like custom games do not, regardless of whether or not the warning shows up on-screen after quitting. Repeated offenses may eventually lead to low priority queues, or worse… queue lockouts.
The Nuances of Co-op vs. AI
You might be wondering: if co-op vs. AI triggers LeaverBuster, can I use the same game mode to get out of the penalties from the low priority queue? Simply put, that’s not how the world works. Ranked games have higher stakes than normal game modes. Naturally, this results in abandoning ranked games being treated more severely compared to alternatives.
When Does it Reset?
Riot doesn’t release the exact formulas going through their system, so the best we can do is use a combination of past experiences, testimonials, and first hand information from their website. At the start of the article, we explained how triggering the penalties of LeaverBuster depend on a host of different factors. If we were to simplify it, we could say that it’s percentage-based, and hinges on how often it happens in any number of games.
Let’s give an example. Leaving 3 games in a week sounds like a lot right? However, if you played 60 games in that same week, suddenly it doesn’t sound as bad as it initially did. Think of it like diluting the poison to make it digestible. In a similar vein, 3 games in a month doesn’t sound as bad, but if you’ve only played 3 games in a month, that gives you a track record of a 100% abandon rate.
What we’re really getting at here is that, to avoid the low priority queue from triggering due to the formula from LeaverBuster, you’re going to have to try to space out the gaps between your abandons. This isn’t to say that we can always help it, but planning out simple things goes a long way. We should count ourselves lucky, in fact, because during the early days of Wild Rift, leaving a couple of games actually resulted in queue lockouts that lasted several days at a time in certain areas.
While it is in fact called LeaverBuster, it isn’t just leaving that triggers it. Being AFK in game for extended periods of time, leaving during champion select, leaving when the game asks you to accept or decline the match (declining is different from just leaving), and declining multiple times repeatedly, all contribute to the negative credit score you get in their system.
Also read: Best Peeling Abilities
We can’t always avoid leaving a game. In fact, scouring the forums of League and Reddit tells us that there are a number of reasons why it could happen. Players who live with their parents (we can’t pause online games, mom) happen as often as a spotty connection. Sure, we encounter the occasional troll once in a while, and we can’t always keep a spotless attendance record, but this makes us think twice about leaving when we do have control.
This was intended to keep the game fun for everyone. Sure, pumping out new content is always good fun, but systems like these are in place to promote healthy competition. While we all understand that life just happens sometimes, systems like these are arguably good because it makes the real ragers out there think twice about leaving and ruining it for their teammates. It might sound cheesy, but having fun is the most important part of playing League. That, and your pentakill. Yes, that’s important too.