11 Year Old Bug in League of Legends No One Noticed

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30 July 2020

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While playing League of Legends, do you ever get a gut feeling that something doesn’t quite add up? Well, after a recent bug discovery, it turns out that a lot of people did. We all know the red vs. blue side opposition is as old as the game itself. But how fair was it until now? A few days ago, a fan found a bug in League of Legends present since 2009 when the game was first launched. The data showed some differences between the red and the blue cannon minions. What is Riot going to do about it?

Cannon Minions Bug: The Consequences

Picking between minion colors never seemed like a big deal, right? Even though the players have been recognizing the blue side’s superiority for a long time now, there were no actual facts to support this claim. With Riot constantly making balance changes and updates over 10 seasons, it is even more unbelievable there is such a basic setting bug in League of Legends.

The value difference was discovered by a Reddit user. While going through some data files, he noticed that the blue cannon minions have a 300 attack range, while the red ones have a 280 attack range.

The consequences are simple: they do not attack at the same time. Even though these 20 points make a just slight advantage, it means that all this time, the blue minions were able to attack earlier. 

To put it in other words, if there is an evenly matched trade, blue side minions are more likely to win and the waves will be slowly pushed towards the red side. 

Cannon Minions Bug: The Consequences
Gif via Reddit

Player Experiments

This discovery has made players curious, so they’ve done their testing.

In order to get the exact range values, an experiment was done using Syndra’s W. After being thrown, the red cannon minions had a different reaction. If they could attack without walking, that would mean they are inside the attack range. On the other hand, if they have to nudge forward, that means they were thrown further from its attack range.

Conclusion? The blue minions attacked from about 20 units further than the red ones, while the red ones had to move before being able to attack.

To illustrate, this is how it looks when the longest throw doesn’t make the minion nudge forward. It’s not a big difference, as it makes about 5% of the attack range.

Player Experiments
Image via Reddit

Another experiment showed that if the minions are left to fight on their own, with no player intervention, the blue ones mostly push to the red side. 

Additionally, when comparing win rates, it seems the blue team generally has a higher overall winning percentage in the game.

Riot: Problem Solved!

Riot has rapidly responded to this matter. An interesting thing is they involved in the Reddit thread where the bug was first mentioned, with an interesting remark:

This is such a weird coincidence. Just last week I was looking through the minion data and found this bug. I legit spent like 2 hours double triple checking to make sure that these values were actually the ones controlling range, like who would’ve thought this would be in the game since Alpha.

Anyways, the very fabric of league of legends is probably gonna break and minions will never be the same after this. (It seems pretty much the same on internal environments tbh). What a wild bug, and what a hilarious coincidence.

They’ve acknowledged the existence of the bug and revised the values to 300 as it was supposed to be all this time. The changes have already been applied to the PBE, and will be live with the 10.16 patch. 

Players’ Reactions

We found some interesting players’ comments on Reddit regarding the subject.

Kayclol

No! If that 280 is changed to a 300, the very fabric of the Summoner’s Rift will fall apart! This range difference between the two sides is the prime coordinate of all the spaghetti in the game. It is the original noodle if you will. The creation of all things and origin of the very spaghetti foundation is at stake.

Devastaitor

I may be wrong here, but isn’t this intentional actually? I’ve heard there are minor differences in minions because of the fact top has less screenspace, because of the bottom skillbar.

Edum18

So its been in the game for 11 years and Riot and a player find it almost at the same time?

To sum up, even though there had been a long debate about the blue side winning more often, the silent rumors have always assumed the reason for this is the Summoner’s Rift’s map layout. This 11-year-old bug really came as a surprise. No, it is not such a big deal that will erase the entire LoL play history, but it sure made some “coincidences” more clear.

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