League of Legends' next few patches will be larger than usual, but not due to the number of gameplay changes that'll be included.
The increased update sizes for the next four patches and potentially Patch 8.10 will be due to two projects that are going on at once, the first being an upgrade for the audio engine in Patch 8.5 and the second being work from the Content Efficiency team that'll occur in patches 8.6, 8.7, 8.8, and maybe 8.10.
In a post on the League of Legends boards, Riot Eno and Riot Searsha explained what these two projects mean for players along with the reasoning for why the patches will be so large.
"For several years now, LoL has been using a third-party audio engine," Riot Eno said. "One of our challenges right now is keeping the audio engine robust, sustainable, and supported—even Audio can have trouble finding a good support now and then. To ensure this, we need to update our audio engine, which requires a full re-patch of audio data."
The Rioter explained that the upgraded engine would give Riot Games opportunities to "improve the audio mix" for League of Legends in the future while saying that Patch 8.5 could be as large as 2.2 GB with all the audio banks being re-patched.
As for the Content Efficiency team, the group that is responsible for League's systems and data management among other tools, the team is moving League's game data to a new format.
"As part of improving how easily and quickly our content creators can iterate using our in-house tools, we're improving how the game's data is managed," Riot Searsha said. "This involves migrating game data to a new format called WAD files, which are managed by our all-knowing, all-powerful Game Data Server."
Champion data is currently being moved over the new format and has been over the past few patches. To speed up the process, the next few patches following Patch 8.5 will be larger than usual as well with the remaining champions being converted to the new format, but the patch won't be quite as large as 8.5.
The changes will go into effect in Patch 8.5 which should go out in just under two weeks with the other large patches following afterwards.