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Players weren’t lying: 2022 MSI ping clocked at 48ms early

The 2022 Mid-Season Invitational (MSI)’s ping was not what we thought it was. Beyond forcing players to play on 35ms latency for competitive integrity reasons, the latency value showed incorrectly. Indeed, it clocked at 48ms, 13ms higher than anticipated.

Riot Games Tech Blog: Artificial Latency for Remote Competitors – By the Riot Esports Technology Group and League of Legends Engineeringhttps://t.co/FwgSGyqAAZ pic.twitter.com/vhP7Q14qJX

— LoL Esports (@lolesports) May 17, 2022

What’s the situation?

Players were unimpressed with the ping at the 2022 Mid-Season Invitational. And they were right, as they were playing on an average of 48 ping.

Pros regularly play offline tournaments at 7ms latency, and many attributed their unease to that. But when Riot Games announced that they were remaking Royal Never Give Up’s games for competitive integrity reasons—and why—, players had received validation for their reports.

However, nobody could tell how badly they were affected until Riot highlighted exactly what they did wrong. By the way, if anyone from Riot’s tech is reading this: kudos for the report.

Riot Games addresses the issue

Buried in a wall of text explaining why things went wrong in Riot’s artificial latency tool (tl;dr: latency increase not taking under account intermediary connections), they specified the following:

“While the configuration change was correcting for a bug in the ping calculation in the game, one side effect was that after posting the change the on-screen (ctl-v) overlay that shows FPS and ping would show an incorrect number for the players in the Busan venue such that the number on screen would be lower by about 13 ms than the actual latency.”

LoL Esports

Overall, Riot did one thing—and only one thing—wrong in the entire situation (beyond nearly leaving event sponsors Cisco liable to mockery): they did not communicate the issue to the community, resulting in criticism towards MSI’s validity.

Beyond fans being left in the dark, teams were informed from Day 1 that Riot were investigating the issue. And as they remedied it, we can return to our regularly scheduled programming of talking about how MSI’s format could improve. About that: stay tuned.

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