League of Legends divides its Ranked play into yearly seasons to help you track your Ranked journey and regularly reward your efforts.
Each season starts early in the year (usually January) and wraps up near the end (November-ish). You'll begin each new season unranked, but you can jump back on the ladder by playing ten placement games. Once those are finished, you should find yourself at just about a full tier below your final rank the previous season, though results may vary depending on your performance in your placement games and in the preseason.
Also note that the highest you can begin a new season is at Platinum I. If you wanna climb higher, you gotta earn it!
While proving yourself on the Ranked ladder is its own reward, you'll also be granted prizes along the way and, depending on how high you climb, at the end of the season.
Ranked Regalia—the rewards you earn throughout a season—comes in three flavors: Armor, Banners, and loading screen updates.
Armor displays your current rank and appears in your profile, the loading screen, and as an optional replacement for your Summoner icon in pre-game lobbies. There's a crown atop each armor display, which denotes your current division.
Banners display your previous season's rank and appear in your profile, the loading screen, and in pre-game lobbies. If you didn't earn rewards last season, you'll just have a plain banner!
Loading screen borders display your current rank for the queue you're in (in normals, this is your highest Summoner's Rift rank). You'll also be able to click players in the loading screen to see more information about their ranked status and champion mastery.
You can opt out of displaying both armor and banners in the icon selection screen. To hide your banner, uncheck "Show Past Ranked Banner", and to hide your armor, select "Prestige Border", which displays based on your level.
If you end the season in Gold or better in any Ranked queue, AND have at least Honor level 2, then congratulations! You just earned yourself that season's exclusive Victorious skin, which includes the champion along with an extra chroma for each additional tier you climb above Gold. Take a look above to check out 2020's Victorious Lucian!
Reach honor Level 3 or higher, and you'll find yourself handsomely rewarded for your outstanding sportsmanship! The specifics of the prizes change year after year, so keep an eye out for an announcement near the end of the season to learn what you stand to win.
End of Season Info
Last year's End of Season 2020 article lays out all the specifics of what you stood to gain last year. Curious about 2021? Just hold out a little longer! We usually post more information around October.
Seasons are divided into three splits, each of which lasts for three months. You'll earn Split Points by winning games during the split. Earn enough points, and you'll instantly unlock rewards to show off your progress. Splits don't reset your rank or MMR; those carry on throughout the season with you. Split Points, on the other hand, reset at the end of each split, so you'll have to consistently win games throughout the season to earn all the split rewards.
Win a game in any ranked queue during a split, you'll earn Split Points. Accrue enough points in a split, and you'll earn rewards unique to that split. At the end of the split, your points will reset and a new split will begin. Earning points is simple:
Victory in Summoner's Rift ranked (Flex or Solo/Duo):
- 20 points for playing your Primary or Secondary preferred position
- 25 points for voluntarily playing Fill
- 30 points if you're autofilled
- 150 points - Split Icon, themed to the current split
- 250 points - Split Ranked Regalia, a Regalia upgrade themed to the current split
- 500 points - Split Emote, themed to the current split. This Emote will upgrade or downgrade to reflect your current rank at all times until the split ends, at which point it locks into your final rank for that split
- 750 points - Eternals Capsule, which contains Eternals shards for two random champions
The block of time after one season ends and before another begins is called the preseason. You'll still be able to enter the Ranked queue during this time, but you won't receive any rewards for climbing to new tiers. Your MMR, however, will continue to change, so do your future self a favor and play to win!
The preseason is also when we tend to make big gameplay changes, which have previously included totally revamping Runes, spicing up the map, and giving items a much-needed facelift. These alterations undergo heavy finetuning during the preseason before going permanent at the start of the regular season, so queue up while we're still figuring things out so you can hit the ground running when the regular season begins!
Transfers and Ranked Placement/Rewards
Ranked standing is unique on each server, so you'll need to play a new set of placement games after transferring. Your placement is also based on your current MMR (which transfers with you) relative to the MMR of everyone on that server, which means you may end up in a different tier or division than your original server.
Additionally, your old rank on your original server will be lost. If you decide to switch back, you'll have to start the process from the beginning, placement matches and all.
For more information on what does or does not come with you between servers, refer to our guide on account transfers.
Other Ranked Resources
Have questions about other aspects of Ranked? Find the answers in our Ranked FAQ!