Red Post Collection
- Mana cost reduced from 100/150/200 to 100 at all ranks
- Ability cannot heal more than 60/90/120/150/180 health from neutral monsters as well. (previous limited only to minions)
- Attack speed per level reduced from 4 to 3.2
- Each dash now increases the ability’s base damage, not total
If you have any questions about Riot’s latest Champion, chances are your answer lies somewhere here!
[grbee] How do you pronounce “Yasuo”?
[Ph4st] Do you have any ideas for future skins for Yasuo?
Ransom: Funny story – when Yasuo was originally pitched, one of our female designers demanded that he not be wearing a shirt. So when he was revealed, she immediately messaged me and said WHY IS HE WEARING A SHIRT NO SHIRT DAMMIT. So my response to her was that we should have a Laundry Day Yasuo skin – same exact outfit, except he forgot to wear his shirt! No word from the skins team as to how viable they think this idea is.
[ARealHuman] Where does his name come from?
ManWolfAxeBoss: Yasuo means honest or peaceful one in Japanese. There are a number of different characters that can be used to write it, but we went with this one: 康夫. The first character can be interpreted as “ease” or “peace” and the second simply as “man.” The name is fairly common in Japan, but has fallen in popularity over the last generation or two.
The reason we went with a name meaning “peaceful one” for a guy who killed his own brother is in part the interesting juxtaposition, but also because Yasuo is not his birth name. Yasuo was wild when he first came to the sword school and, as was common practice for them, he was given a new name when he joined. In an effort to steady his wild nature, he was given the name Yasuo, which in our world (because Japan/Japanese doesn’t exist in Runeterra) means calm. We’re not revealing his birth name yet, but definitely wasn’t peaceful.
[Captain50] Why did you choose to make a cowboy skin for him?
Ransom: The inspiration for the skin is drawn from the classic spaghetti westerns directed by Sergio Leone. Think “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” starring Clint Eastwood. Leone has always admitted that his inspiration for these films were the classic samurai films of Kurosawa, such as Yojimbo and The Seven Samurai. In fact, one of the early inspirations for Yasuo was Yojimbo. So this skin is our team’s way of paying homage to a very special part of the history of cinema.
[ApplePuncherd] How does he feel towards Riven?
Ransom: Good question – there’s been a lot of discussion about this, given the speculation about the true murderer in Yasuo’s bio and the lines in Yasuo’s VO regarding Riven. Regardless of whether Riven killed the elder, it’s clear that Yasuo suspects her. And from a storytelling perspective, these circumstances set up a really interesting conflict. After all, we know Riven committed some evil deeds in her past, but she’s not the same person she once was – she’s on a different path now. So by the time Yasuo finds her, she’s not at all the villain he has always assumed that she would be.
Not only that, but the two of them have a great deal in common – they are both outcasts of their factions whose sole companions are their blades. From these starting conditions, you simply don’t know where their intial encounter is going to lead. You’ll notice that Yasuo does not threaten to kill Riven in his VO – he speaks of reckonings and running from one’s past. It’s the beginning of a conversation between these two – and not the end.
[UchihaIkki] Why did you put a few Japanese lines in his VO?
ManWolfAxeBoss: Yasuo speaks a dialect of ancient Ionian. It’s related to the dialect that Karma speaks, but is not the same dialect. Think of the difference between Cantonese and Mandarin in China – very similar. (There’s actually no Japanese in his VO)
[sparksz91] Who originally came up with the concept behind Yasuo?
Initially, Joe Ziegler (manly designer of such manly champs as Talon, Viktor, and Jayce and #1 Nami fan NA) had a working prototype for a samurai which our design team thought was potentially viable. I remember that the ultimate was a giant Shen-style shadow dash that would stun everyone in the target area, and then inflict massive burst damage on all targets after a slight delay. Ridiculous. The funny thing is that, even though that kit got everyone excited about making a samurai champion, none of it survives in the final champion.
Joe “Manwolfaxeboss” Lansford was working in QA at the time, and took a keen interest in the samurai concept. He approached me about doing some writing for the champion, and revealed that he had majored in East Asian studies and had spent some time living in Japan. He pitched some cool story ideas and the name “Yasuo.” We quickly agreed to be co-writers on the champ. This is a classic Riot story, as Joe literally walked in the door from QA, and ended up writing Yasuo’s bio, one of his teaser pieces, and a good portion of his VO script. As Joe says, there is no such thing as “just QA” at Riot.
Meanwhile, one of our female designers at Riot was complaining about the lack of attractive shirtless male champions in League of Legends (I guess Tryndamere wasn’t hot enough for her), and gave us the mandate to come up with a concept that met her extremely specific criteria. Trevor “Trevolver Ocelot” quickly came on board to draw the initial Yasuo concepts, which exposed much of his broad chest.
These initial concepts were much more grizzled and rough-and-tumble than the Yasuo we know today – they were firmly rooted in the down-on-his-luck ronin fantasy. We felt, however, that something was missing from the concept and quickly decided upon the idea of wind as a source of power for the character. Wind is really what gives Yasuo his special sauce, and elevates him beyond being a stock samurai; everything about Yasuo, from his abilities to his thematics to his voiceover, touches upon the idea of the wind.
The one thing Joe Lansford and I both thought would work for the champion was the idea that he was wrongfully accused of a crime he didn’t commit. This was a classic anti-hero trope that hadn’t been done before in League of Legends, and with 117 champions in the game, we’re always looking for stories we haven’t told yet. We thought this angle would give him a bit of an edge, as we didn’t have enough room for yet another benevolent swordsman.
[JohanEhr] What was the inspiration for this champion?
Ransom: As much as we love Master Yi in all his sword-boot glory, we felt there was room in the game for a more traditional and serious Ionian swordsman. One thing that we definitely set out to capture was the tone of classic Samurai movies – these films are so oppressively fatalistic and melancholy and drenched in blood.
People are killing each other, not because they want to, because they are obligated to. Only in feudal Japan! It’s such a macho code of honor type of setting, you know? We knew we had delivered on this fantasy when one of the translators responsible for publishing Yasuo’s bio wrote us a note saying it had made her cry. Joe (who wrote the bio) should be proud of that.
[tomato-andrew] How did you go about choosing voice actors?
ManWolfAxeBoss: As Ransom mentioned in another post, we did four did different records for Yasuo’s voice and had already listened to a ton of auditions before those. Hitting the perfect amount of tough guy, while still maintaining Yasuo’s somewhat introspective personality without making him sound too young or old turned out to be quite a challenge. Liam O’Brien ending up knocking it out though. Really happy with the end product.
[tomato-andrew] How much of Yasuo is taken out of Samurai Champloo, or other animes?
[tomato-andrew] Can we expect Yasuo’s somewhat “drunk motif” to lead to future interactions with Champions? (eg. Gragas)
[Hellifant] Did you guys take inspiration from Miyamoto Musashi?
[moobeat] What old iterations of Yasuo’s kit can you tell us about?
Yasuo’s Wind Wall used to be placable at any point within 1000 units of him (like Anivia’s wall). He’d just place it in front of Miss Fortune any time she ulted.
He went through a number of Q’s, including one that was “handed” — sometimes he would strike to his left and sometimes to his right. This turns out to not work very well in LoL for two reasons, a) No one could figure out how to use the dang thing and b) with no turn time in our game, it didn’t really serve a purpose other than making the player have to position their facing awkwardly before each cast.
[mizukey13] How hard was it to code and bugfix Wind Wall?
CertainlyT: RiotJHa has owned the QA process for the ability. I would say it’s the single biggest QA challenge we’ve faced from an ability perspective, on par with Yorick ult. Unlike Yorick ult, Yasuo’s Wind Wall involves a lot of subjective decisionmaking for edge cases. We’ve had a number of arguments within the design pit about just what Wind Wall should block (for example, Lux’s Prismatic Barrier, which doesn’t deal damage and Diana’s Pale Cascade, which orbits her — Wind Wall blocks both BTW).
[mizukey13] How much time did it take to iron out the bugs?
CertainlyT: RI developed a prototype that involved indivudually tracking all missiles created on the map and testing their location every 0.03 seconds relative to the windwall. This was very taxing on the game server, sometimes fast projectiles like Caitlyn ult would sneak through, and occasionally it would kill missiles on the other side of the map for reasons I still don’t understand. It did, however, allow us to test the ability prior to its final functionality being implemented.
Design playtest is always an adventure.
[MartyMartinso] Can Yasuo ulti an enemy Ziggs when he goes airborne with W?
SmashGizmo: Nope. There were iterations of Yasuo’s ult that worked on any jump as well as knock up and they were incredibly frustrating to say the least :p. Tristana especially got screwed because she has such a long cast time on Rocket Jump.
[xDonny] Where did the idea come from to have him dodge skillshots with his ability?
[Gaming4Control] What happens when returning skillshots like Sivir’s Q hit Yasuo’s wall?
[skeletonmage] Will you make Tenacity reduce the duration of knock-ups to allow counterplay when Yasuo is comboed with certain Champions?
Morello: You’re confusing “counterplay” with “hard counter mechanic.” Tenacity isn’t counterplay, it’s a way to spec out against CC. Yasuo’s ult has a lot of counterplay…he has to build up stacks and then aim tornado at you. If you dodge, prevent him from stacking, or pressure him away, he can’t always reach it.
[AloisiusXV] Aren’t manaless champions a problem? Why does Yasuo have no resource?
Morello: Manaless champs aren’t the issue when those champs are melee. Most of the cost of being melee is…well, you’re melee. Manaless tends to be a problem on ranged/mage characters (Kennen and Katarina have been hard to balance historically because of this). Other fighters without mana aren’t problematic because of their lack of mana (Nasus isn’t weak because he has mana), they’re problematic because Fighters tend to lack gameplay weaknesses in their play patten.
[bibbibob2] Were you guys afraid that his W would be broken?
Morello: I was worried about this, but I think that’s actually important to do – it’s a necessary risk for creating unique characters. The key was to make sure it wasn’t super frequent and had big windows of downtime.
[professorn] Was Yasuo developed/tuned with the Season 4 changes in mind? Where will he fit in the meta?
SmashGizmo: Yasuo has been almost exclusively tested with the preseason 2014 changes since we knew he would be released after them. As for where he will lane, it’s really hard to tell because a Melee carry who actually functions as a Melee Carry just isn’t something we’ve had in our game before. We’ve gone through phases of thinking his primary position would be in every non-support position at different points in time, even including potentially as a bot lane Carry, and honestly, I still think he can work in any of those positions so long as: 1. His team has a heavy frontliner 2. His team has a ranged tower pusher.
In a solo queue setting, I think he’ll gravitate towards the two solo lanes with some players favoring the consistent farm of the jungle to fill out Yasuo’s midgame power lull before he hits Infinity Edge.
[DXCharger] Is there going to be an increase to the speed of his E?
jinho8001: We want him to look targetable when he is using E. And his dash cooldown is about 1 sec, so if he dashes faster it is going to be so hard for the enemy to keep track of his location in the game.
[Glaedien] Will Yasuo’s ult work with Nami’s Q?
CertainlyT: Last Breath, Yasuo’s R, can be cast on any knockup or knockback applied by Yasuo himself or one of his teammates. The ability is about coordination and synergy, so it didn’t make sense to include enemy leaps (such as Tristana’s Rocket Jump) or neutral monster knock ups (such as those cast by Baron/Vilemaw).
We actually playtested a version where Yasuo could grab enemy champions who leapt out of the air with his ult. It seemed cool on paper. In practice, I, who was playing Yasuo, spent the entire post-6 laning phase mashing the R button while RiotFan, sitting next to me playing Jax, refused to ever once use his Leap Strike. Jerk.
Was it your goal for Yasuo to be a mid laner and do you expect he will be played top?
Yasuo’s combat pattern, wave clear, and power curve are well suited to the short, safe lane so we’ve seen him as one since his kit came together. I’m hopeful that he’ll work in mid lane because the team compositions in which he will be the most successful are those that have tanky champions (most often found top and jungle) to complement him.
If he sees play elsewhere, that won’t bother me. We actually put little emphasis internally on where a champions shouldn’t be played, with the exception of champions that are frustrating and uncounterable in off positions, such as release Lulu in top lane.
[Aeide] Are you happy with Yasuo’s ult having a requirement to be cast?
Mainly, I think that powerful targeted CC is really frustrating to play against, since all that is required in terms of skill is putting one’s mouse over the enemy. It’s difficult to appreciate, for example, that your opponent expended a cooldown leaving them vulnerable in the future. By linking Yasuo’s CC to landing a skill shot in the dueling case or making the quick decision to de-position himself in response to an allied CC, he has the sort of high variance in performance that I think makes for an exciting champion.
[stennisl] What is Yasou’s main counter?
[Dyspr0] Will Yasuo break the curse of the “terribad” melee carry tier?
SmashGizmo: I would say that ‘terribad’ is an overstatement of the state of our Melee Carry roster, but it’s certainly true that we’ve struggled to find a place for that class within League of Legends. They always seem to end up falling into either assassin roles during teamfights (Master Yi, Fiora), or find themselves relegated to split pushing and forcing duels and skirmishes all game (Tryndamere).
With that in mind, Yasuo takes a very different approach to functioning as a Melee Carry. He brings much more in the form of teamfight utility (cc via Q3 and R, unique zoning potential off of wind wall) than any other attempts at creating a Melee Carry, at the cost of some raw damage output and free target selection that have historically pushed the class towards assassination patterns. The net result feels much more like a carry play pattern in practice, as Yasuo uses the windwall to create the space he needs to hit the opposing front line without dying to the opposing carries. My experiences with the character are leading me to believe that Yasuo will be the most functional Melee Carry our game has seen and as such, I’m optimistic about his ability to shake some of the stigma surrounding the Melee Carry class.
[luddelol] Do you think Yasuo will be able to snowball too hard due to his double crit chance passive?
CertainlyT: To address the snowballing point, one reason why I like the crit steroid is that critical strike chance is a capped stat (as is the AS to CDR conversion on his Q). This means that while access to core items (Personally, I use IE+Statikk shiv) is fundamental and after that the player is more free to build defensive items than a Riven or Pantheon.
[moobeat] Can you extend the self-only timer on Yasuo’s E to work for Udyr’s Bear Stance stun?
[DanielZKlein] What if a Windwall blocks another Windwall while both teams have Miss Fortunes ulting across the resulting singularity? WHAT THEN?
[Pwyff_Sucks] True or False? Pwyff sucks.
PS. He sucks.
[ieatgravel] When it comes to peanut butter, does Yasuo prefer creamy or crunchy?
Morello jumps on the forums to answer why Champion releases have slowed down compared to last year and why that is.
Why did Riot release 12 champions less this year compared to last?
Morello: Mostly, all things take time and resources. Because we have a large champion pool, we thought it was important to repurpose those on other things that support the larger champion pool. Namely, reworks/VU’s/Relaunches.
We have a lot we want to do there on both the game design and visuals front, so we needed to redouble our efforts to make a dent in that backlog. That’s the primary reason we’ve slowed champion production.
What made you decide VUs and Reworks were the way to go?
Do you plan on increasing the Champion ban limit in Draft mode?
How many more Champions do you think can fit in League?
Four champions, sadly forgotten in this day and age. Can Riot bring old-time favourites back to glory?
Why haven’t these champions received buffs / rework?
Morello: In my previous thread, I mentioned why we slowed down champions to focus on reworks. One thing we’re shoring up as we speak is the prioritization – which until now has been prett willy-nilly and “what can we get done in X time” focused.
Upcoming this year, we’d like to focus much more on these long term marginalizations. Shaco is my top pick, with Alistar, Poppy (even though she’s crazy with gold right now) Sion, Warwick and Zilean, with Urgot somewhere in there too.
So, simply, I agree. Game development’s difficulties typically revolve around prioritization/resource management, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be improving here.
I will continue to take the stance of not letting one character poison the well for over 100 others, but we need to be more aggressive on prioritizing said champions.
Why did you shoehorn Alistar into a support role when he was rising as a jungler?
If you want to make Shaco’s abilities better, why not remove the permanent slow on his E first?
Our plan with the ult is AWESOMELY insane. I hope so much that it works. (vaguevaguevague)
Aren’t a lot of mid/top matchups decided at Champion select right now?
Bot has this right now, but most of that is S4 mistuning craziness
What are your plans for Poppy?
Follow-up: Are you taking her in a fighter or assassin direction?
Any plans to make Darius’ ult fun again?
It won’t be watered down if we do this version – not worth doing if you don’t go ham.
Are Urgot and Warwick’s reworks really scheduled to happen in the coming year?
Unsure on Urgot. Would like to, but have to match up on total upgrade (old art + gameplay > just gameplay).
Have you done any testing on Urgot?
It’s allll resource management. Game development turns out to actually be pretty tough!
Phreak: Can confirm I’ve seen a number of Urgot kits. Not all of them work out, and if people hit brick walls, they often go try something else with a different champion. Unfortunately (fortunately?) there are a lot of dudes who could use the attention.
Isn’t it a core issue that nonmobile casters are completely outclassed by mobile assassins?
Morello: It’s a core balance issue with a classification of characters, but that is tunable. It hasn’t always been that way, so look back. What changes occur that create that scenario? What differences in the game contribute? What can these difference characters bring?
Non-mobile casters are beaten by mobile casters because they do the same thing AND are mobile. That seems like a thing that is exactly tunable (people will just not like it because it means the fun, OP champions have to lose power).
The following champions will be free-to-play until December 10th!
- Aatrox - 6300 IP / 975 RP
- Cassiopeia - 4800 IP / 880 RP
- Lux - 3150 IP / 790 RP
- Malphite - 1350 IP / 585 RP
- Miss Fortune - 3150 IP / 790 RP
- Nautilus - 6300 IP / 975 RP
- Sivir - 450 IP / 260 RP
- Talon - 4800 IP / 880 RP
- Taric - 1350 IP / 585 RP
- Wukong - 4800 IP / 880 RP
The following champions and skins will be free-to-play until December 6th!
- Fizz – 487 RP
- Maokai - 440 RP
- Tryndamere - 292 RP
Commando Garen – 260 RP
Guerilla Tristana – 487 RP
Volcanic Wukong – 487 RP
Missed any recent articles? Check below!