Home > LoL News, Original Content, Red Posts > Heimerdinger First Impressions: Video + Gameplay Breakdown! Reds: Phreak talks Old Ahri vs New Ahri, Morello on Sivir’s Balance Rework and 20thCenturyFaux answers your questions about Heimy!

Heimerdinger First Impressions: Video + Gameplay Breakdown! Reds: Phreak talks Old Ahri vs New Ahri, Morello on Sivir’s Balance Rework and 20thCenturyFaux answers your questions about Heimy!

October 13th, 2013

 

Sivir Heimer banner

 

Heimerdinger First Impressions

Red Post Collection

 

 

Heimerdinger First Impressions


 

See what we think of the recent changes!

 

 

 

 

Here’s the breakdown:

 

Techmaturgical Repair Bots ( Passive )

 

Techmaturgical_Repair_BotsStill that one passive your duo buddy says is good when he/she picks Heimer support.

 

 

 

H-28G Evolution Turret ( Q )

 

H-28G_Evolution_TurretScience: They’re definitely a lot tougher this time around, but they don’t have the special upgrades-per-level anymore. At level 1 Heimerdinger can only store one turret in reserve, but he easily can drop the maximum (3) before minions have spawned. These new turrets hit slower and deal less damage, but to compensate, they occasionally fire lasers automatically which can hit both enemy creep and Champions. They do so once a gauge below their health bar is filled. It takes 12 seconds for a turret to build up to a laser shot, but the first one can be fired as early as 2-3 seconds after the turret’s been placed. The activation range of the laser is around 650-675 (the laser itself is much bigger) and is displayed via an AoE circle around Heimerdinger’s turrets. If Heimerdinger isn’t within 1200 range of his turrets for 8 seconds, they will shut down.

Gameplay: The added laser beams allow Heimer to both bully melee Champions out of lane and discourage assassins from jumping on him. Even though the additional attack is a skillshot of sorts, it’s really hard to dodge by just walking to the side and it actually travels way further than its shown range. Aside from that the turrets are very much similar – less sustained damage but more resists, they can still easily push most Champions to their tower… and they can still get eaten/thrown/smited. One neat feature is a sound that plays whenever turrets hit a Champion off-screen – this can be heard only by whoever’s playing Heimer and it greatly encourages the use of turrets as wards. An awesome map-awareness feature all-around – place one near Dragon’s cave to warn your teammates of any grouping there. Max this ability if you want to just farm up and push, old-school Heimer style.

 

 

Hextech Micro-Rockets (W)

 

Hextech_Micro-RocketsScience: A unique skillshot – Heimer’s rockets now cluster at the location of your cursor and spread out afterwards. Like most multi-hit abilities, consecutive hits on the same enemy deal less damage (20% on Champions, 60% on minions). The rockets outrange most mids, but they cost a lot of mana.

Gameplay: The projectiles become slower the longer they travel – Heimer players will need to get a feeling for how much they have to lead their targets based on distance. The rockets don’t actually deal AoE damage, so you should place your cursor in front of creeps when farming to fan them out. Heimer’s new W is similar to Nidalee’s spear in that it gets blocked by the first target hit – pressure the enemy with your turrets to force him to leave the safety of his minion wall before harassing with rockets (don’t overextend to aim). During laning this is a poke-trade tool – max this first if you’re against someone who’s gonna jump at you often and leave it second if your opponent is passive.

When dealing with tower-huggers, spread the ability a bit towards the end so there’s less chance it can be dodged. During teamfights it’s best to consider this a single-target nuke- the weird skillshot makes it difficult to aim at several enemies. Overall this is a really cool ability to use and it deals some impressive damage – hitting all 5 rockets is near-equal to Malzahar’s E.

 

 

CH-1 Electron Storm Grenade ( E )

 

CH-1_Concussion_GrenadeScience: Instead of blinding, the grenade now slows targets hit. Enemies in the center are again stunned. The projectile is significantly faster but deals less damage than its old iteration. Also, it no longer flies in a straight line – it’s instead lobbed in the air (you know, like an actual grenade).

Gameplay: You can now hit enemies who aren’t DC-ed with a grenade! It really is Heimer’s most considerable change as it makes the ability so much less situational – it’s a great initiator to a gank, a viable poking tool in lane and a reactive escape mechanism. The damage is less, however, meaning you won’t be nuking with the grenade as much as you’ll be using it for its slow/stun. Take one point in the ability for the control it provides.

 

 

UPGRADE!!! ( R )

 

UPGRADE!!!Science: The next ability is Empowered and free-to-cast. This doesn’t reset Heimerdinger’s existing cooldowns. UPGRADE!!! is only considered used when an Empowered ability is actually fired – it will otherwise be canceled after 3 seconds or if the ability is reactivated before that.

Gameplay: Heimer’s new ult carries a sort of Karma-esque vibe, with a lot of decision making and game-changing abilities, but less of that passive power the old ult’s CDR provided.

 

RWH-28Q Apex Turret (R+Q)

 

  • Places a giant freaking turret on the ground. This one doesn’t cut into Heimer’s existing turret cap, charges its laser two times faster, hits in an AoE, slows enemies, deals more damage with both its auto attacks and automated beam and pays your bills.

 

RQHextech Rocket Swarm (R+W)

 

  • Fires 4 waves of rockets, each with its own (increased) damage cap. They’re shot almost immediately, but they all follow the first one’s skillshot path. Late game (~600 AP) this ability can deal more damage than Syndra’s ult if she had 7 spheres up.

 

RECH-3X Lightning Grenade (R+E)

 

  • Lobs a grenade that, after landing, bounces 3 more times, dealing damage and slowing each time. The slow %, area of effect and base damage are all increased. Enemies can only be affected by the slow/stun of the ability once. The bounce is uncontrollable – the grenade will always bounce in the direction it was thrown.

 

 

Why this new Heimer is a step forward

 

As the video suggests, the new kit allows Heimerdinger players a lot more decision-making during games -  should I use my turrets to scout, place them in the back so I can farm at peace or perhaps pressure the enemy laner with lasers so he can expose himself to rocket hits? This kind of organic strategy translates into teamfights – should I use my ult to make a bigger turret for higher DPS, fire a Rocket Swarm to quickly nuke down an enemy or lob an upgraded grenade into the fray to help with CC?

With the remake of his grenade, we can finally see Heimer’s E being used consistently and successfully. No longer is the Turret Master forced to wave his wrench awkwardly whenever his jungler ganks the enemy laner – now he can set up the gank himself. Aside from that, a lot of counterplay has been introduced into Hextech Rockets – though they can potentially deal much higher single-target damage, they can now be dodged, limiting the frustration that laning against Heimer often imposed.

What do you guys think of the new Heimer? Do you think you’ll enjoy playing him? Will he be a competitive pick? Share below!

 

 

The math behind Ahri’s rework


 

Ahri banner

A fellow Summoner has released an impressive number of spreadsheets and graphs showing Ahri’s performance pre- and post- PBE changes.

 

 

Phreak Button Rioter Phreak: As a math nerd, I have a few bones to pick with the data you put up:

1. You are showing “difference in damage” and not “total damage dealt.” It’s really easy to make a super biased graph that says, “LOOK GUYS, FOUR HUNDRED DAMAGE DIFFERENT” except that when your full burst is 4,000 damage, no one cares that you killed TWO Ashes. She’s already dead. Showing the numbers in context of actual damage dealt gives a much fairer view of “pain.”

2. There’s a lot of extraneous useless points on the graphs. Tracking Ahri’s 800 AP burst at level 5 is disingenuous because that’s actually impossible in a real-game situation. I realize some cropping may make the graphs harder to track, but showing, “Damn -140 on a level 4 Q-W combo?” is extremely bias-inducing.

3. Your choices in data are disingenuous. What I saw from your graphs are that in almost every single case, your single target damage goes up if you land charm. That’s the intended behavior. Showing “GUYS SHE DOES SEVEN HUNDRED LESS DAMAGE (if you count ambient damage to targets you don’t actually care about because they’ll hit minions most of the time anyway and she still one-shot your ADC) is really, really, really poor form. You sought out the worst possible situation, one that actually doesn’t ever happen in game, and then said, “LOOK HOW BADLY SHE GOT RAPED GUYS!”

Now, here’s the thing about Ahri’s design that we’re looking to change.

1. A freaking ton of her damage comes from non-skill shots. That’s why the nerfs are aimed at W and R. Because you don’t get to outplay Ahri. If she has the stats on you, you just die. You can’t outrun her. You can’t CC her for long enough. You can’t even juke her. You just die if she hits her buttons in the right order.

2. As a result of this, we are saying “Okay well your guaranteed damage isn’t very high unless you land a skill shot first.” Suddenly, counterplay! And with the fact that her single-target burst goes up in every single situation but one, I’m pretty sure the numbers are close. Your graphs also support this. The problem is, you’ve clouded that by saying, “But she does less damage to minions 95% of the time!”

 

 

Are these changes not nerfs?

 

Phreak Button Rioter Phreak: I am not denying that we’re nerfing Ahri.

I’m denying the sevrrity of the nerfs to Ahri. I’m denying that she’s nerfed at all if she lands Charm.

The point of the changes is to condition her high damage upon landing Charm.

 

 

Sivir – new looks, same range


 

Sivir Banner

Morello jumps on the forums to explain the team’s decision to leave Sivir struggling to reach the creep wave.

 

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: There’s a lot of moving pieces on the Sivir rework, for sure. Let’s talk about a couple of points (this is a well-reasoned, if long, post so I want to highlight it as a good way to have a discussion).

I do want to address the “the only way to fix her is to make her have equivalent attack range”. My core stance is that Sivir now has a number of levers we can use to tune her correctly. I’m actually not terribly interested in what the current tuning is because that can be fixed quickly as long as the core gameplay is good, but we’ll talk about where that’s true and not on the new kit.

1) Sivir’s short range is largely a cost she pays to allow ricochet to be more aggressively tuned. This wasn’t the case before the VU because of ricochet being more basic and not adding a ton of pressure on its own, but the new ricochet allows for higher-pressure haraass while wave-clearing to create a more claustrophobic lane for enemies. Original Sivir had a long range and an uncapped ricochet, which basically prevented her from exposing herself to opponents at all. It was like a super-Caitlyn!

The new W looks to go back closer to that paradigm. While not uncapped still, ricochet is core to Sivir’s power and should be tuned as aggressively as we can manage – it is, afterall, the most defining, non-power feature of the character. The nice part of the new one is that its built as a variable number of shots.

For example, let’s say 3’s too low. Sivir is likely insane if we made that number “your next 300 shots.” There’s a number between 3 and 300 that makes this skill satisfying and balanced, and we’ll be looking for that number (along with other tweaks that make Ricochet do its job better). It has a cooldown window and resets attacks, providing at least basic decision-making and counterplay to use.

2) Sivir’s core strategic strengths are pretty unique; marksman-level AOE damage, high mid-game burst thanks to Q double-hitting, and a team-based engage/disengage skill. That means we should (and are) going to embrace those unique factors, while providing costs in other things other people do well. This likely places Sivir in a place that’s more niche than a Vayne, but that’s part of what having a a character stand out and be something that feels different is about. Balancing Sivir through homogenization is very possible, but not the direction we generally want to go wherever we can avoid it. If she’s not doing these things, then she has the hooks to tune them.

3) Sivir might be bad in some metas, and good in others. This is not only fine, but preferable. This goes a lot in-line with my above point, but this is more similar to Kog’Maw – other game states and comp choices will change the viability of that champion, especially as we’re thinking Sivir’s likely harder to play than some other characters.

So is Sivir perfectly balanced? Probably not – but that’s not the meaningful issue, especially as a character like her who has needed some work to be usable for quite awhile. Now, however, we have tuning points available to us to make sure we get her in the right spot, for the right reasons, all while making sure she has a space that’s all-her-own within LoL.

 

 

[Zerglinator] Why didn’t you make Ricochet a toggle?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: That version was untunable, because mana is not a good enough gate in both early and late game. X shots is, and allows us to give her an AA reset that can improve overall damage in all situations.

 

 

 

[RockMan EXE] Why are Sivir’s base stats so low?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: Not sure (Statikk might!), but that’s very, very simple to fix. We can change base stats easily if it’s needed!

 

 

 

 

[Arlunn] Has the cast time on Sivir’s ultimate been removed?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: We were happy to fix that too!

 

 

 

 

 

[Typhnox] Was Sivir’s auto-attack reset a balance concern when you were reworking her W?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: For cooldown, yes, but for number of shots, they’re independent. That gives us a lot more control over this spell so we can balance it as we see how it goes.

 

 

 

[Blaine Tog] Why, then, is Jinx allowed to have so much range on her Rocket Launcher?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: Might be hard to tune, haha. But bounces are more wild – they scale very differently in different situations, where AOE/Range is more concrete.

 

 

 

 

[HigeR] Why was the team AS aura buff removed from Sivir’s ult?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: We talked about that, and this was a tough choice here. We agree the AOE AS buff gave her really cool synergy with certain team comps. MS is more universal, and thought that might also help her be useful on a wider variety of teams (something we thought she could use with her other specific power set).

 

 

 

[RockMan EXE] Will you make Sivir easier to last hit with?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: Especially important that last-hitting feels good on marksmen, for sure. I’ll see what Statikk thinks (as he mentioned in his post, we’re worried good players on internal tests caused some conservatism on numbers).

 

 

 

[Ratastok] You should listen more to seasoned Sivir players

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: We did listen – we removed the cast time on her ult and allowed her to fill the lanes with bouncing missiles again, commonly-requested Sivir changes.. We just don’t do every single suggestions because we’ve given a laundry list of reasons why we’re choosing not to.

Remember we have a whole ecosystem to think about, and what “X champion players want” can be at costs to overall good health. We do what we can, but it’s rarely “everything.”

 

 

[HigeR] Can you decrease the CD on Sivir’s E to help her early game?

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: Shield is mostly tun-able through CD – easy to do and valid.

 

 

 

 

[Irish Red Cap] Sivir doesn’t have a gap-closer

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: Her ult’s a gap-closer – a pretty good one at that!

Are you really worried about the lane matchups, or teamfighting? It seems people are really focused on laning to me on this.

EDIT: So her team movement speed is NOT a gap-closer? dafuq.

 

 

 

 

[I am Trynda] Suggestion: Increase the number of bounces on W, reduce the bounce speed to introduce more counterplay

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: Very true. If we can get away with more, I’d like to push on that when we see actual balance.

 

 

 

 

Balancing the right way: emphasizing on unique mechanics

 

morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: OK, forums. Let’s talk.

I’ve seen more weird downvoting of informative posts lately, and in this case the message that sends to me is;

We want homogenized power, stop trying to carve out unique spaces for stuff because it might not be super powerful. “Just make it strong!”

Because if you’re telling me “don’t do what you just did,” that IS what is left over by default. Every single piece of power has a cost, and 50 range is a lot of power budget.

So what is the alternative? We can make Sivir “not quite as good Corki” at 550. Her ricochet would need to be nerfed, her ult less fight-changing, and ultimately, a pretty flat character who would be easy to replace with other marksmen.

I know that cost isn’t apparent because power is apparent, and there’s a lot of examples of powerful characters that do this. It’s like saying a mage is weak if it can’t burst.

 

 

[Luscious Lenny] Suggestion box

 

Don’t buff her range

Her W needs base damage. (heavily nerfed her crit sustain damage) 250 plus a crit.

AA animation needs to be cleaned up. (like you did with Ryze)

Base attack speed needs to be buffed back up. (6.2 come on man)

Do this and she will be a damm good adc



morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: Agreed – she’d be really strong like this.






IMPORTANT


morellovatar Button Rioter Morello: And this is why so much thrash happens on GD. There’s little understanding the difference between balanced and balancable. If it’s not the strongest, it’s trash, and its design is trash.


FFS. The disagreements don’t bother me (those can be very good!) the anger doesn’t bother me, it’s that I don’t have time to teach 10’s of millions of people about game design, but they want to tell you how much they know about how to do it. And without it, it will be a lot of posts like this that taunt me into posting on them instead of something good.

 

This goes towards the vocal minority that overshadows legitimate feedback. Simply telling off the developers on their work is no way to conduct a conversation. Please understand that Rioters are people, they’re just as easily affected by negative comments as you are, only they’re less inclined to show it. If you disrespect their effort to provide you a better experience at every turn, then how do you expect to be treated the next time around? Shallow complaints and whining doesn’t help the balancing team, it doesn’t help readers gain a perspective on the matter and it doesn’t help you feel any better about whatever change has happened.

I appreciate substantial comments on this site and I’ve started re-directing some of them to NA forums. Thanks to everyone who voices his/her concerns in a civilized manner!

 

 

QA on Heimerdinger’s rework – Part 3


 

heimerdinger banner

Catch up on Part 1 and Part 2 if you haven’t!

 

 

[emTmyclipin2u] The missiles are a great skill to level up first in certain scenarios

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Yay! That’s exactly what I want to see. I put a bunch of effort into making sure Heimer could level W first if he queued a blind pick and ran into someone like Kart–a mage who can easily and efficiently destroy turrets.

 

 

 

[Echeerie] Can Heimerdinger move while casting R+W?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Yes.

 

 

 

 

[RainbowTrenches] How far does Heimerdinger have to move for his turrets to shut down?


20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: It’s the same range as passive, so you can make it visible by mousing over the passive icon, if that helps any.

 

 

 

[LordFacepunch] Suggestion: Passive rework – Heimerdinger’s turrets heal themselves and Heimer for 10% of the damage dealt

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Hmm, interesting. It gives the same resistance to mistakes and it doesn’t require concentration. It forces you to max Q in lane, but it wouldn’t take much fiddling to let you max W too. I’ll need time to think, but there’s potential here for sure.

 

 

 

[LordFacepunch] How tanky is the R+Q manmode turret?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: It actually does get a bunch more hp than normal turrets, and in fact is big enough to live through Smite, Consume etc. It might still be too squishy, just like the other turrets, but I figured I’d point it out :3

 


 

[Vakarian Garrus] Will Heimerdinger get a visual update?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: I’ve heard from players who follow the art bros that Heimer VU is likely, so it’s probably more a matter of when than if. I don’t have a ton of visibility into that stuff, I’ve been pretty absorbed into Heimerland for the last quite a while.

 

 

[SonicTheHedgedawg] How about adding a ranged damage reduction to turrets?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Our ADC playtesters got so mad at me when they couldn’t kill the turrets, so much rage you have no idea lol

I had a really hard time figuring out a damage reduction value that wouldn’t create “corki shoots turret twice, turret still alive” some of the time :[

 

 

[exec3] Why do turrets shoot slower now?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Slowing the attack speed down lets you pick its damage out of a crowd more easily. It also makes it feel bigger, which is cool, and more like a tower, which is awesome.

 

 

 

[SonicTheHedgedawg] Are you worried players will use turrets as wards?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Worried? I added a special sound to make them better wards ^^

Heimerdinger is all about invention and creativity, imo. I will do anything I can to support as much weird diversity as the Dinger can manage.

 

 

List of known bugs

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Hello! Just wanted to pop in and say I’m still reading every post, I’m just focused on wrangling all the bugs that PBE testing turned up.

Known bugs:

 

  • Turret resists not scaling with Heimer level (non-linear, basically only matters at levels 11+)
  • Tooltip on RQ slow incorrect
  • Tooltip on RQ duration bugged

Usability stuff:

  • Range indicator on Q placement as well as turret range size
  • Range post-deploy circle for RQ
  • Maaaaaaybe a way to check what turret was the last one placed? Not sure how doable this is, gonna be barking up this tree though

The weird thing about the resists bug is that it hasn’t proven as problematic as I thought. We’re definitely getting reports that they feel too squishy, but the impact is less than imagined and people are finding clever ways of playing around it. I’ll be checking in fixes for most of this stuff today, resists included, and I’ll be watching how they change the Heimer turret game very closely.

Specific stuff I’m looking for data on:

  • The special Heimer-only ‘turret hits champ’ sound. Annoying? Useful? Thoughts pls!
  • Turret tankiness at champ levels 11+. How fast are they dying? How fast are you replacing them? At how much CDR?
  • Turret AI bugs! I’ve heard scattered reports of the AI being dumb, but it’s hard to pin down.
  • Wacky playstyles! If you come up with a way to Dinger like no ding has donged before, please share it! This is way more important than it seems. Heimer is a bit of an oddball in that his balance depends hugely on how he’s played.

Thanks for all the kind words and feedback! I’m blown away by how big/awesome this thread is and I can’t wait for this to go live.

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[Aerophobia] Doesn’t the shutdown range prevent Support Heimer from using the turrets as wards?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Yeah, I’m curious about this too. It’s my hope that it won’t be too oppressive to go within range every 8 seconds or so, specifically because the times when you can’t are also times when you’re pushed to your own tower, making the ward less necessary anyway. Support Heimers, is this true? Why or why not?

 

 

[NegativeZ3ro] Where does the new Heimer fit in terms of damage output?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Heimer is a bit of an oddball. He puts out huge damage and can reduce a champ to dust very quickly, but he can’t do what Ahri type champs do in terms of jumping someone and killing them. His kills are more about forcing people to fight in his turrets or following up an ally’s engage with a rowdy RW.

 

 

How does Banner of Command interract with Heimer’s turrets?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: It works on turret autoattacks but not turret beams. Note that this does include the Apex RQ turret’s autoattacks.

 

 

 

 

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