League of Legends

League of Legends' ranked play mode explained - Ranks, Positional Ranking, and more

by Wyatt Donigan

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With Season 9 of League of Legends on the horizon, Riot Games has introduced a revamped ranked system for players to dive into.

While it’s possible to just play casual League matches forever, eventually you might want to jump into ranked mode to try your hand at playing with the best League has to offer.

Ranked mode might be a foreign and confusing concept for new players, especially considering that Riot made some key changes ahead of Season 9, but we’ve got you covered with everything you need to know.

For starters, accessing ranked mode requires that players have reached level 30 and have at least 16 champions. Once those requirements are met and you hop into a ranked match for the first time, you’ll do a series of placement matches.

These 10 placements games will help determine your skill level to put you in the right rank when you start off. The good thing with these placement matches is that you’ll be able to see your provisional rank as you go along, giving you an idea of where you’ll eventually land.

There are a total of nine ranks in League of Legends' ranked mode.

Once the 10 matches are done, you will be placed into one of the following nine ranks (two of which - Iron and Grandmaster - are brand-new to League):

  • Iron
  • Bronze
  • Silver
  • Gold
  • Platinum
  • Diamond
  • Master
  • Grandmaster
  • Challenger

Each rank has four division within it that go from IV (lowest) to I (highest) and as you play matches, you will move up or down within those ranks depending on how much LP you’ve gained. When it’s time to rank up, you’ll enter a best-of-three or best-of-five promotion series to move between tiers.

Riot Games
Riot Games
League of Legends' Season 9 is set to start in early January.

For players in Platinum, you’ll want to make sure to keep active since your LP will start to decay after 28 days (the time limit is just five days for Master and above).

Make sure you have time to play each match and don’t get too upset since rage quitting or dodging queues could lead to bans if it happens too often. 

Starting in 2019, Riot will also be implementing a “positional ranking” system that will assign a separate solo queue rank for each position, allowing players to get matched up with opponents of similar skill levels in each position.