After URF: A look back at Riot’s limited availability game modes

About five months ago, Riot announced that they would start introducing limited availability unique gameplay modes. They stuck to this promise, and since then we’ve seen no less than three game modes released ever since: One for All, Hexakill and most recently Ultra Rapid Fire. These game modes allowed players to take a break from their go-to ARAM, Dominion or Summoner’s Rift games and put their creativity to the test.

One for All

One for All was Riot’s first featured game mode. Released on the 22nd of November 2013, it featured the classic Summoner’s Rift map with a twist: all champions on both teams had to be the same. This allowed players to live out their fantasies of melting someone with five simultaneous Final Sparks or completely litter the battlefield with Syndra’s Dark Spheres. The game mode was a big success until it got disabled again on the 2nd of December.

Hexakill

​The next limited game mode to be introduced was Hexakill – Summoner’s Rift with six players on each team instead of five. Although it was not initially met with as much enthusiasm as One for All, the addition of two extra players quickly proved to make for a different game entirely and the mode rose in popularity. Hexakill was enabled from February the 20th until March the 2nd 2014, after which it was removed from the game. 

Ultra Rapid Fire

Originally an April Fool’s Day joke, Riot went all-out with Ultra Rapid Fire (URF) mode. Here, all mana and energy costs on abilities were reduced to zero and all ability, item and summoner spell cooldowns were reduced by 80%, among other changes. The first of April even saw professional teams around the world face off in order to showcase ”the future of competitive League of Legends”. The game mode was eventually disabled on the 13th of April. 

Game modes, game modes everywhere

Riot has historically liked to release modes that create refreshing takes on the game. We’ve seen several iterations of Twisted Treeline, Dominion and Howling Abyss (ARAM) come out in the past. These were meant to last, however, as opposed to One for All, Hexakill and URF. As noted at the very first announcement of upcoming game modes, their limited availability was intended from the beginning, something the community has been divided on since the release of One for All. Despite the explicitly stated possibility of the return of any of the released modes, numerous petitions were started for every one of the released and subsequently disabled game modes, but to no avail. 

With the high rate at which new modes have been getting released, we are sure to see Riot’s next limited availability game mode quite soon. They have also announced that they will be releasing more explanatory content on the philosophy and making of behind the game modes, specifically URF. 

What are your favorite memories of the game modes released so far? Which one would you like to see make a return? Let us know in the comment section below!

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