Before we go any further, clarifications should be made as for the term best meta. This does not want not saying that the balancing is perfect or that there are no major aberrations (spoiler: there are always some). The arguments presented in this article speak of a general point of view, without stopping too much from case to case. Finally, it is not impossible that the statistics are misleading, and this is the point that will be developed in the second part of the article.
Why does the meta look so good?
For Riot Games, a champion starts to become OP if his win rate exceeds 52% and a character must be upgraded if he falls below 48%. Today only ten champions are below of that number, and out of the 10, four of them are at 47.9% (ok, 47.88 and 47.87 for two of them, we rounded). Which means that there is none finally only 6 champions that wouldn’t be really competitive according to League of Legends publisher criteria. The previous patch had somewhat similar stats (9 champions below 48%, but none at 47.9), while having a very weak champion: Zeri (43%). Today, Aphelios is the worst champion in the game, but still has 46.27% WR, which is much more than Zeri in the previous patch.
Nevertheless, there is still 33 champions exceeding 52.1% of winrate. This shows that the balance is not perfect, because statistically there would be approx 24% of masters that are outside the publisher’s desired limits. But since many of them have a fairly positive win rate and very few are in the negative, it means that you can play almost any character and have a good chance to win the game. According to the statistics, therefore, it is not impossible that the current meta is one of the best known of the game.
The tree that hides the forest?
Nevertheless, a question may arise. As mentioned in this article, some archetypes seem to have little impact in the meta. Almost no champion of their type stands out among those who dominate the game, and the vast majority of them are in a range of 2 or even 3% winrate. There are then two ways to interpret this data. Either they’re all equally effective and the meta is so perfectly balanced, or they have such a hard time influencing games that no matter which champion represents this archetype, he’ll always be relegated to a second blade role . Of course, it’s impossible to be the MVP for every game, and it would be frustrating for the other 9 players. It’s just as problematic to never be, though, unless the opponents make big mistakes (of the opposing jungler type dying under your lvl 3 tower, giving you a double buff and first blood).
Despite the numbers in this article, we have we lack data to confirm if the meta is almost perfectly balanced or if, on the contrary, it is actually quite unbalanced and that certain archetypes will gradually disappear. The next changes from Riot Games will be the beginning of an answer.