LoL: The worst champion in history? A humiliating fact about Ryze embarrasses Riot

League of Legends works like a wheel. Riot Games is constantly updating the game so that no champion spends too long dominating others or is in bad shape for too many patches. Champions who are at the top today will struggle in the future and will eventually come back through updates. The truth is that the model is interesting and allows all the characters over a few seasons to have their big moment. However, there are a few exceptions to this system that never reach the top.

A devastating fact about League of Legends balance

The most obvious case is that of Ryze. He is one of the iconic champions of League of Legends, having been part of the game even before its official launch. However, even with his first version, he was a problematic champion. Riot Games had to modify its abilities during the weeks of alpha and made several reworks in the twelve years since the game launched. An enormous amount of work which, despite everything, did not yield results. Currently, the Runic Mage is the worst character in the game and has accumulated historically negative records.

All champion data is negative and already in the previous patch he could only reach 42% win rate. This is a very poor record for the game’s highest MMR (Platinum+), and even worse when put into context. In his most unfavorable mid lane matchups (Pyke, Cassiopeia, and Annie), the champion loses an average of 64% of matches.

Given the number of champions in League of Legends, one would expect there to be at least a few matches where Ryze could pull through. However, a thorough analysis only makes the results worse. Throughout patch 12.8, Ryze only racked up a positive win rate against Kai’Sa on the mid lane. For context, it must be remembered that the ADC was nerfed in its AP version and that a few days after the introduction of the affected patch, it almost entirely disappeared in this position.

Ryze has a favorable win expectancy only against a champion (via LoLalytics) - League of Legends
Ryze has a favorable win expectancy only against a champion (via LoLalytics)

This stat is shocking and unique in League of Legends history. It is true that some champions accumulate similar records when they arrive in the game, but only during their first hours in the title. Since Riot Games allowed in-game data collection, no character has ever found themselves in a similar situation. Even less for several patches in a row. Ryze received a nerf when he was already among the worst champions in the game and his situation has not improved in the current patch, 12.9, and nothing seems planned for the next cycle which is currently on the PBE.

The best chance for Ryze players will be in the upcoming balance adjustments after the big mid-season changes. It is quite possible that Riot Games wanted to be careful despite the character’s dire situation. However, we should not expect great miracles either. While small improvements are possible, only a major gameplay update can prevent the champion from remaining the worst in history.

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