League of Legends

League devs suggest PvE modes like Odyssey "likely" won't return again

by Andrew Amos

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When every new event rolls around in League of Legends, fans yearn for something like the Odyssey event from 2018. The Extraction game mode was something players could get excited for, however Riot has yet again quashed any hopes of it returning.

Odyssey is often talked about in the League community with rose-tinted glasses. The 2018 event was a hit with players, thanks to the unique Extraction gamemode pitting players against AI in a dungeon-esque map.

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While players have long requested for its return ⁠— or at least something similar ⁠— Riot has knocked back request after request. It’s no different after Spirit Blossom.

Odyssey Extraction in League of Legends
Riot Games
The Odyssey: Extraction gamemode was a hit with players back in 2018, but it won't be returning.

Answering questions about the new month-long event on Reddit, lead champion designer Ryan ‘Reav3’ Mirales told players that Odyssey was a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Riot have no plans on bringing it back, or implementing something similar in future events.

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“[I] can’t say anything for certain but likely not,” he admitted on July 23.

“The reason we pivoted away from PvE modes is we saw really strong engagement for the first couple [of] days then a huge dropoff after people played it once. People just really want to play SR [Summoner’s Rift] mostly, and it’s really hard to create something that competes with SR.”

This is a sentiment Riot has echoed in the past. The League of Legends devs have stated that while there’s fun in the unique element of these new game modes, the novelty wore off fast.

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“Modes like this put a really unique twist on League’s core gameplay, but they didn’t hold [player] attention for long. In other words, players were excited to try the modes but would quickly return to Summoner’s Rift after the novelty wore off,” modes product lead ‘HBBONG’ told the community back in May.

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That’s not to say Riot aren’t trying to innovate events in League. From creating mini-factions and rivalries in Versus events, like the Galaxies event earlier in 2020, to the Japanese visual novel-style experience out of game in the Spirit Blossom event, Riot are trying to make every League event more exciting than the last.

“This is why we tried something different with this event, we created a meta-system meant to be enjoyed in between SR games, and that could be completed by just playing SR (or whatever game mode people want to play) since that is what people just want to do anyway,” Reav3 added.

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The Spirit Blossom event has been met with raucous applause from players. The storytelling experience out of game has connected players with their favorite champions, diving deep into their backstories and personalities.

Ahri Spirit Bonds screen in League of Legends
Riot Games
The Spirit Bonds system allows you to learn more about your favorite champions while playing the Spirit Blossom event.

If you haven’t started your Spirit Blossom journey, building your Spirit Bonds with the selected champions, now is as good a time as ever.

The Spirit Blossom event will run until late August, but if you want to get on your champion’s good side, you’ll have to start grinding early.