Archive for the ‘Red Posts’ Category


QA with Lyte Banner

This is a work-in-progress post. I’ll continue to add answers here.


Lyte Final PortraitHey everyone,

We recently launched a set of features in the 5.18 patch that upgraded the Instant Feedback System. You can read more about the design of these features in a blog by Neurocat here:

1) We introduced Intentional Feeder Detection to the Instant Feedback System for the first time, and now intentional feeders can be banned within 15 minutes of matches. We’ve started the settings relatively conservative to start because figuring out whether a player is intentionally feeding or just having a bad game is a tough problem, so we’re not catching ALLintentional feeders today.

2) We introduced Reform Cards in the client, and for Chat Restrictions for the first time. Reform Cards are basically summaries that show evidence for behaviors that led to your ban, whether it’s match histories for Intentional Feeders, or chat logs for Restrictions/Bans.

3) We introduced a new version of the penalty escalation system. Now, punishments in League of Legends work like this:

  • First Offense: 10 Chat Restrictions
  • Second Offense: 25 Chat Restrictions
  • Third Offense: 14-Day Ban
  • Fourth Offense: Permanent Ban

However, if a player is showing more severe behaviors, it is possible to be escalated straight to the 3rd Offense Tier, and immediately get a 14-day ban for your first offense. This also means that if you get another offense after that (even if it’s a less severe behavior!) you will be escalated to a permanent ban. By showing neutral or positive behaviors, it is possible to improve your account standing and drop punishment tiers as well.

So what are we doing here? Well, because player behavior systems have changed A LOT over the years, there’s a lot of questions about what’s current, what’s coming in the future and what’s no longer true for player behavior systems in League. We’re also getting questions to review chat logs for players who believe their punishments are undeserved. Neurocat and I will be happy to answer any questions about player behavior in this thread, so let’s get started!

IMPORTANT CAVEAT: If you ask a question related to your penalty (Restriction/Ban), you will be consenting to us discussing your chat logs or in-game data publicly. Please use Player Support tickets if you wish to have your questions answered privately.

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Have you ever had to talk to a Rioter for being toxic ingame

Lyte Final PortraitYes. Sometimes Rioters have bad days too, and go a bit off rails. We take it pretty seriously though, so there haven’t been many cases.

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When reviewing a report do you guys see the rest of chat as well

Lyte Final PortraitThe Tribunal voting system will have full chat logs with scrubbed identifying info.

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Follow Up Banner

Lyte Final PortraitYes, we can check chat logs from pre-game and post-game lobbies.

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Is it wrong that I vent by reporting bad teammates for being unskilled

Lyte Final PortraitWe’re in the process of re-making the Report System and cleaning up the report categories, so apologies for some of the jankiness in the current system. But, reporting for Unskilled Player does not affect your report weights, and the report is never used to directly punish or ban a player. However, Unskilled Player reports are used by the matchmaking system to tune the system and help us figure out weird cases where a player was accidentally propelled to an inappropriate skill level.

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Will you let players vent in some way without taking it out on other players

Lyte Final PortraitWe definitely understand the need to “vent” and how filing a Report helps resolve some of the frustration of playing in that particular game. We have some elements of the new system that help players understand more about where their reports are going and their impact, to help players feel better about what just happened.

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Have you considered punishing toxic players by lowering how much IP they earn

Lyte Final PortraitNot exactly, but we’re considering bonuses to IP for positive players. This is part of a feature in the new Tribunal voting system that we’ll talk more about in the future.

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How well has your Intentional Feeder Detection system been working so far

Lyte Final PortraitThe intentional feeder detection system is tuned pretty conservatively right now, so it’s just catching the more egregious intentional feeders. Not surprisingly, there aren’t many true intentional feeders in League anymore like the ones that buy 5 Zeals and just run down mid over and over. Sure, some players find examples and post them on Reddit, but you only see a dozen or so of these in a game with 67+ million players playing games nearly everyday.

The system isn’t tuned yet to perfectly catch the more nuanced feeders, who play normal 80% of the game, then suddenly walk into towers or run away from a team fight on purpose. These more nuanced behaviors will require more research and advanced machine learning to tease apart, and are being punished by Rioter manual reviews today.

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If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


Kindred QA Banner

Kindred’s Q&A is currently live on the NA Boards. I’ll be updating this article as more questions are answered.



ADillonMostDirty Final PortraitHey guys,

We’ve gathered a bunch of Rioters from the Kindred team for some Q&A about the Eternal Hunters! Whether you’re interested in Kindred’s gameplay, story, or art, ask away and we’ll be happy to answer!


Check out these links if you need to get up to speed:


They Are Coming: Listen to their tale.

Champion Reveal: Kindred, the Eternal Hunters: Check out Kindred’s reveal.

Champion Insights: Kindred, the Eternal Hunters: The story behind Kindred’s creation.

A Good Death: All audiences loved a good death, and they loved Magga’s more than any other.

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GENERAL Banner Kindred Small Banner



Will Kindred be enabled when Patch 519 hits live

RiotWrekz Final PortraitKindred will be in that patch but will not be turned on initially. They will be enabled later during the patch.

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When will they come out

Stellari Final PortraitNext week, hopefully! =)

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What are some major changes that happened during Kindreds development

RiotWrekz Final PortraitThe first iteration of the ultimate the ring was semi-global. It would affect everyone anywhere near a teamfight. Over time it shrunk down to isolate the good gameplay.

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Are they evil or can they be classified as positive

Stellari Final PortraitThey definitely not evil. But they’re not positive/negative either. They’re a force of nature. Kind of like a tornado isn’t inherently good/evil.

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Whos the dead king in Kindreds splash Any backstory on him

Stellari Final PortraitIt’s a noble.
It is not the Ruined King. ;)

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Is there any lore between Kindred and Karthus

Jaredan Final PortraitKindred and Karthus’s relationship will be looked at to some extent in Karthus’s upcoming new extended character introduction. Expect it in the next month or so.

In my mind (and that’s a scary place), Karthus actively rips people away from the fate that should be Kindred. His actions are an abomination to them. You’ll get more about Lamb and Wolf’s view on undeath and the Shadow Isles in their extended intro—which should be released later today.

There are no current plans for a cinematic version of A Good Death at the moment.

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Roughly when and where does A Good Death take place

Jaredan Final PortraitThanks! Faux and the team did a great job. A Good Death is set in Demacia, pre-Jarvan III.

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Have any escaped Wolfs bite by seeking Sorakas help

FauxSchizzle Final PortraitIt’s important to note that any true “escapes” from Kindred are essentially more like pauses. Death comes for all things.

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What are Kindreds thoughts about resurrection

Jaredan Final PortraitThey think it’s a bad idea. Also, you are guaranteed that Wolf will be coming for you at the end of your newly borrowed time.

Kindred remembers the end of every being.

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What makes Kindred influence death and not let death just occur naturally

FauxSchizzle Final PortraitEveryone that dies has a direct interaction with Kindred. Some get to mee them earlier, others only at the moment of death.

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So they are omnipresent

FauxSchizzle Final PortraitGreat question! Without neglecting other questions, yes. Kindred as entity do not follow normal rules that apply to us beings of space and time.

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Will there be a draw in the extended lore about pre split Kindred

FauxSchizzle Final PortraitProbably not. The story of the Pale Man is not intended to be literal, but a coded origin story, one most likely made up by people, and therefore it grasps certain truths but fails in the details.

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Jaredan Final PortraitPre-split Kindred is a myth that has become widespread across Runeterra, though the myth will be present among its people, we’re not planning on telling a specific story about what Kindred was before they were Kindred—as that is what they have always been.

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If Kindred are so old why do they take the shape of a lamb and a wolf

Stellari Final PortraitLamb & Wolf are just one of the interpretations of Kindred in Runeterra.

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If Lamb cant feel anything why does she laugh and what does Wolf feel

Stellari Final PortraitLamb is someone who feels little, but knows many things. Wolf, on the other hand, doesn’t know much–but he feels deeply.

Also, you don’t have to feel anything to laugh /creepy

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Can Kindreds masks be removed

Jaredan Final PortraitYes, they can. But you don’t want that to happen. Ever.

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Does Kindred prefer creamy or crunchy peanut butter

RiotWrekz Final PortraitLamb likes creamy, Wolf prefers crunchy. An eternal conflict.

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Is Kindred Helmet Bro in disguise

Stellari Final PortraitPerhaps Helmet Bro is more powerful than we ever imagined.

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If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


Red Posts 29 09 Banner


Topics Banner


Recent News Banner

PATCH 519 NOTES Banner




Why wasnt Championship Riven brought back for sale

[ Note ] You can find the list of Worlds store content HERE.

Championship Riven Banner


KateyKhaos Final PortraitChampionship Riven is a limited skin, as opposed to Kalista, Thresh and Shyvana which are legacy skins.

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Championship Riven was a Limited skin not Legacy

KateyKhaos Final PortraitThese are easily confused, as some of this content was actually ‘limited’ at one point. We did a switch in 2013, where this content was swapped over to a ‘legacy’ status.

You can check out which skins were originally part of this, and how we accomodated players who had already purchased the content here -

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Follow Up Banner

KateyKhaos Final PortraitShe’s also available if you correctly predict all of the Worlds Pick’ems this year.

Hippalus did mention the possibility of Championship Riven, however, we haven’t announced any additional information.

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Are you considering nerfing Vayne

Vayne Banner

Meddler Final PortraitWe’re currently testing a small reduction to Vayne’s starting AD, our belief being that Vayne’s currently got too strong a lane for how powerful her late game is (with the strong late game a defining feature of hers and a strong lane not intended). That nerf’s deliberately being kept small given the changes to a number of marksmen and marksmen items in the coming preseason and the belief that we’re currently seeing a solo queue meta that’s very favorable to Vayne (lot of tanky dudes to fight). Post preseason disruption we’ll then assess both Vayne and marksmen in general, see where changes are or aren’t needed.

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Can Vayne and KogMaw both exist in the same meta as tank killers

Meddler Final PortraitOur belief is that there’s room in the tank killer space for both Vayne and Kog, since they offer pretty different takes on it. While both are really effective against high health targets, and have at least some capacity to shred or ignore mitigation, they’re pretty different otherwise. Kog’s got a decent amount of poke, even with an AD build, has much greater average attack range come late game and offers some team utility (shred, slow, vision). He needs to be protected pretty carefully though, getting a lot of value from speed boosts and peel in particular, so places demands on his team’s comp. Vayne by contrast’s got high sustained mobility and functions well independently (she’s got a number of duelist traits). She brings very little team utility however, and lacks both AOE and ability to affect enemies outside of her auto attack range.

Whether or not the two are are appropriately balanced, relative to each other and other marksmen, gets a lot of debate, we’re pretty confident there’s enough room within the space of ‘tank killing marksmen’ for both Kog and Vayne though.

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Why does Kassadins Force Pulse E require charges to be cast

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Meddler Final PortraitKassadin was created long before my time at Riot, some benefits I can see to the charge system though:

  • It allows Kassadin to use his E significantly more often in team fights than some 1v1s, giving a champion with strong duelist power a boost elsewhere
  • It modifies how favorable some match ups are for Kassadin, giving him an edge against certain opponents and therefore adding a bit of extra depth to the decision of when to pick him or not, without getting into hard counter territory.
  • It adds a small amount of extra decision making to both Kassadin’s play and his lane opponent’s (value of next spell cast changes slightly in some circumstances if it’s the one that allows an E cast).

Now, if Kassadin were to be buffed, we certainly could remove that gate on his E, that would add power to him. Initial reaction personally though is that it’s a mechanic that creates some optimization and adds a little bit of distinctiveness in some circumstances, so if we were to add power there would likely be more interesting ways to do so that created, rather than removed, gameplay.

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Are any changes planned for Zilean

Zilean Banner

Meddler Final PortraitWe’ve got a few tweaks for him planned for somewhere around 5.21-5.22. Looking at some small responsiveness improvements to his Q (attach logic and feel improvements), plus we’re exploring some experiemental stuff with his passive (still giving XP to allies, but potentially in a way that generates at least a little more interaction on the Zilean player’s part).

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Lets talk about the Server Skin

CptStupendousHey everyone,

I want to give you all an update on where we are at with the regionally-inspired skin.

Back in 2013 when the server first opened there was a history of offering a regionally-inspired skin as part of a server launch. We had some discussions with the skins team to do this for Oceania, but it soon became clear this would take a long time and we didn’t want to hold up the launch, so we unlocked Pool Party Ziggs as a bonus for coming over to the new OCE server.

We messed up soon after that by saying that a server skin would also come out.


We went through an exhaustive process of coming up with ideas internally and reading every single boards/Reddit/social media post we could find. These ideas were then workshopped and taken through the standard skins criteria.

What made this process so challenging was trying to come up with an idea that represents all of Oceania, while also making sure it resonates with players no matter where they live. Themes like Dropbears, Ned Kelly, Kangaroos, Kiwis, and hundreds of others were where we went initially (we even started concepting on some of these). But the issue is that it would really only represent one of the countries that make up OCE and we needed something that represented everything. This took way too long and that sux.

There was also an expectation that this skin would be available for free. We really should have clarified this earlier for everyone. Because we already offered a free Pool Party Ziggs for everyone who transferred before 13 July 2013, we’re not going to unlock another free skin.

What will be happening is the regionally inspired skin will be discounted to 50% off only in OCE with all funds raised in the first two weeks from OCE going to charity. The type of charity will be chosen by a vote and be between:

  • Environmental
  • Animal Rights
  • Humanitarian Relief Efforts
  • Medical Services/Research

There will be more information about this process in upcoming posts after the skin hits PBE, but we wanted to share this news with you now.

If you have any questions about any of this please ask them below.

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Reminder Third Party Applications

Riot Cluvie Final PortraitHey there, Riot Cluvie here for the Risk team. We’d like to provide some insight into how we work with the Dev Relations team to determine which apps are and aren’t allowed.

Quick preface: third party applications are sometimes difficult to classify, and we know that can make it hard at times to find consistency in what we do and don’t allow. We’ve tried to stay flexible in our decision making to keep up with the community’s innovation, but the lack of clear policy surrounding the use of unapproved apps just generates confusion. So with that in mind, we’d like to set fair expectations by calling out some features that definitely aren’t okay.

To reiterate our stance on 3rd party applications from about a year ago:

> No software should interfere directly with the in-game player experience between when you press “Play” and the end of game screen.

It’s been said before, but we absolutely don’t like applications that provide measurable player advantage. If there were ever any modification that were to become so standard as to be required for competitive play, the integrity of our environment just wouldn’t be viable. You shouldn’t ever have to go digging for add-ons just to stay competitive. Some examples of measurable player advantage include:

  • Exposing information that’s intentionally obfuscated (cooldowns or timers)
  • Taking actions on your behalf (botting or scripting)
  • Drawing conclusions for you (predicting enemy positions)
  • Otherwise altering your field of intelligence (zoomhacks or global ult alerts)

For now, custom models and artwork sit firmly in a “use-at-your-own-risk” category, but we’re keeping an eye on them. We can’t optimize for assets we don’t develop, and if they do become a concern in the future (ie. they provide measurable player advantage), we’ll take action based on the stance we just discussed.

Gray areas aside, there are definitely applications which are blatantly not okay, and while the number of players in this space are very low (think a fraction of a percentage), we remain vigilant and have been handing out punishments to those who show patterns of consistent abuse. Suspensions will ramp up in duration across multiple offenses and will be accompanied by ranked reward removal where applicable.

Hopefully this post hasn’t come across as too doom-and-gloom! The third party ecosystem is full of devs making awesome applications that don’t run afoul of any restrictions. Our goal today is just to ensure we’re being clear on our end to provide them with peace of mind as they continue to innovate.

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Does this mean you guys are starting to detect scripters

mirageofpenguinsCan’t be too explicit into when or how, but I’ll keep this as informative as I can:


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What if 3rd party devs handed Riot their applications for approval

Sargonas New PortraitThis one is more up my alley than her’s, so I’ll chime in. (My team handles the 3rd party developer program)

It’s a good idea and something we have explored in the past. Ultimately however we’ve made the call (and least for now) to not dive into such a program. The problem is that the internet (links) and software (dev apps) are highly dynamic. What we review and approve on one day could the next be highly dangerous, either because the Devs pivoted in a new way, because their code was infiltrated (much like the recent security flaw that hit WeChat and many other common mobile apps due to malcious code snuck into 3rd party libraries they use), or multiple other concerns.

The amount of resources it would take for us to police this sort of ecosystem constantly to ensure that the “safe” list is 100% always safe is simply too large, especially when you factor in the damage possible by the ONE time that something snuck by. (For comparison, Apple has HUNDREDS of people who review apps for approval 24/7.) Instead, we prefer to create rules that say “if it fits within these policies it’s ok to use, in a policy sense, but the security and safety of your system and account are at your discretion.” This is also why we prefer to highlight and support web apps and tools that are cloud based, and not ones that require you to download software to your system. (It’s also why the most recent API dev challenge required all valid entries to not include downloaded components as well.) Truth be told, people SHOULD be scared about using these (downloaded) software, and we will always highlight that risk and concern. A lot of bad people out there want access to your info, and would love to use the popularity of league to further that agenda given the chance.

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Werent Curse Voice and Razor Comms approved by Riot for use

Sargonas New PortraitI know it may sound like I am mincing words, but i think it’s important to point out that the link you shared of my post does not have an actual “approval” of Curse Voice in it. They key phrase included is “Because of this, the latest revision of Curse Voice (version 6.1.X) and Razer Comms (version 2.1.X) no longer violate our current guidelines. “

In short, I clarified that it no longer violated the policies, I did not however give it a clear “approval”, and I even addressed this later in the thread elsewhere by stating that we did not keep an approved list nor intended to. As Applications can always change by their developer without warning, it’s better/safer for us to state what does/does not comply with the rules than it is to give something an “official seal of approval” which we might then awkwardly have to retract later due to unexpected changes.

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Follow Up Banner

Riot Cluvie Final PortraitWe will not be maintaining a list of applications that might be approved or denied, because honestly, we’re just not ever going to be able to continually audit every service or function for player security, especially in this ecosystem where devs so frequently improve and expand their apps. And just to clarify, Curse is not “100% approved” specifically either, though it is okay to use. We only spoke about it specifically by name to clear up confusion around the fact we did initially prohibit its use, but we want to make sure it’s clear that it is not “100% approved” as we do not make that statement about any particular app.

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The fan art of Legends Rising

Hitstreak PrimeHopefully you enjoyed Legends Rising! If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out here!

We featured some incredible fan art in Legends Rising Episode 1 – Faker & Bjergsen “History” and wanted to make sure to give credit where credit is due. Click on the links to go directly to the artist’s page where you can see more of their work.

“bjerg vs hai” by polkadotzombie
“Bjerg Zed” by Sasha-Cabbit
“Bjergsen [TSM]” by simoneferriero
“Bjergsen” by Roew
“Bjeeerg” by Polkadotzombie
“TSM-Bjergsen Leblanc FanArt” by Kanra-Tsuna
“TSM Bjergsen and Challenger Ahri” by SkyeExcalibur
“Bjergerking” by Annleigh
“TSM Bjergsen Speed Drawing – League of Legends” by sachos345
“Faker’s Zed” by OrekiGenya
“Faker-senpai” by Honolein
“SKT T1 Faker” by Pinoring
“SKT T1 Faker with plant” by Pinoring

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Positive play icon unlocked

Lyte Final PortraitWhen 5.18 dropped, we powered up the instant feedback system and shared that positive players would earn an exclusive Summoner Icon. If you met the requirements (no restrictions or bans 6/15–9/15), your icon should be unlocked right now.

Thanks for being a positive force!

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Here’s how the positive player icon looks like:


If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


Red Posts 22 09 Banner


Topics Banner


Recent News Banner




Could you update the Champion Update schedule

Scruffy Final PortraitWe’ll get to this very soon.

Spoiler (the nearer future):

Poppy (big)
Taric (big)
Shen (medium)
A bunch of small marksmen updates (like the juggernauts)

There are others that we’ve talked about (yorick, akali etc) but those are still in earlier phases.

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Are these reworks listed in the order theyll be released

Scruffy Final PortraitNo sorry, it’s not even 100% clear to me how they will shake out. Different “pods” on the team are working on different projects concurrently so sometimes things finish faster than others.

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Can you share which Marksmen women are slated for updates

Scruffy Final PortraitThere are a lot of them in progress, and we’ve mentioned a few already (MF/Quinn). Not sure if I should spoil the rest.

There will be a bunch of them with like 1 skill or mechanic change (like the juggernauts) focused on making them more unique. Some marksmen, Lucian and Graves for example, have a ton of overlap in playstyle and strengths/weaknesses. We hope to fix those type of overlaps.

On top of the characters getting “reworks” we are probably going to do a stat/scaling pass on nearly all of the marksmen to go with the updated marksmen items that are being worked on by the systems team.

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Is Caitlyn on your Marksman Update list

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Scruffy Final PortraitWe are indeed doing some work on Caitlyn as part of the pre-season’s Marksmen update. None of her abilities are likely to change substantially. As many have mentioned she’s fun and functional on Live. It’s just hard to identify a situation when she’s the right pick over other marksmen.

Here’s the gist of the present direction, roughly ordered big to small in terms of where our changes are likely to focus:

  1. Hone Caitlyn’s strategic identity as a siege/zone control-focused champion, likely by emphasizing her traps.
    Hone her thematic identity as a sharpshooter by emphasizing accuracy and range.
  2. Give a bit more depth to her playstyle, likely by emphasizing shot timing and target selection. You should know a person who has 30 games on Cait from one with 5.
    Add this depth through rewarding good planning and judgment, not pure mechanical skill.
  3. Retain/enhance her trademark safety, again likely through enhanced traps, in exchange for not being a great tank buster compared to less safe marksmen.
    Ensure she has access to offensive rewards should she trade in some of that safety, likely through 90 Caliber Net.
  4. Create limited windows of breathing room to her early pressure so that more champions, when properly played, can fight back against her laning phase.
    Use those windows to let us be comfortable with her being a potent lane bully.

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Where do you think Irelia sits in terms of being updated

Scruffy Final PortraitWe aren’t working on her currently, but she is a champ that we have a ton of interest in for the future. There is so much we could do now to better deliver on the promise of the “psi blade” character. It’ll be a lot of work and we’d probably want to build her from the ground up (new model, anims, kit etc).

When we do start working on her, we will definitely have some dialogue about what are the things that current irelia has that are really working. I would rather we enhance the things that irelia mains love than just create something cool, but too different.

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Could you elaborate on what changes youll be making to Quinn

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Repertoir New PortraitI appreciate your guys’ concern with the upcoming Quinn changes, and I do enjoy seeing threads like these that are well thought out and in the spirit of making a character everyone can be happy with.

We’re still not quite ready yet to discuss Quinn’s upcoming changes in detail, but I’m looking forward to being able to do so. I will say in advance that the above stuff that OP mentions Quinn mains agree on won’t necessarily be everything you can expect from the changes, and I do understand that there will inevitably be players that disagree with some of the changes I’ll end up making, as is the case with almost every update to a character. In her changes, we’re trying to mostly preserve what is cool and fun about the character while hopefully making the whole package make a bit more sense, especially from a gameplay perspective.

I will say that in the update, you can expect her abilities to mostly be the same, with changes here and there to their effects, cast types, numbers, etc.

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Whatre your thoughts on Darius being permabanned in Patch 5 18

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Meddler Final PortraitPersonal feeling is that his current ban rate made sense for 5.17 Darius, but doesn’t for 5.18 Darius since he’s lost a noticeable amount of power. He might still be ban worthy for some people/some match ups, and might or might not still be too strong, but not 90% ban rate worthy. I’d expect it to take a while for his ban rate to lower though, most people banning him won’t be seeing him in game in the first place to observe the changes (super high ban rates limit feedback), so it’ll take a while for them to get a read on his revised state.

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Follow Up Banner

Meddler Final PortraitAs far as follow ups go, if we needed to do something flat + % missing, or flat multiplied by % missing on the heal would definitely be one of the things we’d look at. Whether that’s the change we’d go for would depend on what the issue was though (no sense nerfing his heal if something else turns out to be an issue for example).

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Riot Music Team Update

Praeco Final PortraitHello folks.

With the Kindred theme coming out, I’d like to introduce you to Edouard “Ed The Conqueror” Brenneisen, who just joined our music team as composer. Kindred was his first project, and we’re all very excited to have him on our team, writing music for you all in the future.

With him, our team now consists of the following vagabonds:

  • Sebastien “Chemicalseb” Najand (His work includes the themes of Ekko, Braum, Urf, Super Galaxy Rumble, Rek’Sai, Bard, PROJECT, etc.)
  • Alex “Scherzophrenia” Temple (His work includes the themes of Bilgewater(including map music & champion themes), Snowdown 2014, Tiny Masterpiece of Evil, Tales of the Rift, etc.)
  • Jason “Protoshredanoid” Willey (He also joined our team somewhat recently. His work includes the theme of Tahm Kench, Pentakill & eSports music contributions)
  • Edouard “Ed The Conqueror” Brenneisen (As mentioned, Kindred was his first piece for us)
  • Myself, Christian “Praeco” Linke (My work includes the themes of Nami, Diana, Jinx, Vi, Amumu, etc.)

Together, we work on all musical aspects of League of Legends. We all have different and musical styles and backgrounds that we try to utilize intelligently for all the different projects that we tackle, and one of the awesome aspects of working on this team indeed is being able to learn from each other every single day.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask us whatever you’d like.

Also, for the curious, the awesome dudes from already uploaded the theme, which is currently on PBE:


Christian // Praeco

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Will we have more music from Pentakill

Praeco Final PortraitYeah! We’ve had a handful of get-togethers so far to write on some new stuff. We don’t have much yet, but we’re actually working on it :)

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Is there going to be an update to the League of Legends album

Praeco Final PortraitYes. Also in the beginning phase, but this one should be taking way less time than the first, because the newer music is produced much better, and hence will not require as much re-production.

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How did you develop the music for the Burning Tides event


Bilgewater was a fun project to work on, particularly as someone who probably plays 10 ARAM games for every SR game. One of the first things we looked at was what kind of instruments it should have, and whether there should be a “featured” instrument (in the way the Nyckelharpa is for Freljord). We decided that rather than focusing on one instrument, we could capture the melting-pot feel of Bilgewater better by using a variety of different instruments “imported” from other parts of Runeterra, brought together with some questionable playing techniques to make some unsophisticated noise at a pub down by the slaughter docks. The next question was, what should that ensemble sound like?

A lot of the “percussion” that you hear in the track is quite literally what you might hear in a Bilgewater pub: it’s recordings of mugs being slammed down onto wooden tables that I later cut up and assigned to keys in a playable MIDI instrument. Some of the other non-MIDI instruments were chosen based on what was available, which in hindsight I think fits the spirit of how a Bilgewater ensemble would be assembled. We brought back the same bouzouki that chemicalseb used all over Braum’s theme, but after traveling all the way from Freljord we thought it shouldn’t sound that great. To fix this, I tuned it down almost an octave to get a loose, nasty twangy sound from it. I also bought a cheap Mandolin for the project, and while I do my best to play it “correctly” on many parts of the tracks, I think we actually had much more interesting results when I played it with a violin bow. I thought of it as the sound of a drifter with a bit of mostly-forgotten fiddle technique bartering his way into possession of a mandolin somewhere in Bilgewater, and trying to play it like a fiddle because in his addled mind, it looked kind of like one. You can hear this in a lot of the drones, like the ones that begin most of the logins and the champ select music. The voices are a bunch of Rioters having a little too much fun for a Monday afternoon. We’d considered doing lyrics but concluded that it would be too distracting for in-game music.

Musically, I thought everything should be simple and unsophisticated – the kind of music that would be picked up through oral tradition rather than properly learned. Thematically this meant straightforward rhythms with a lot of note repetition and a lot of stepwise motion (moving up or down by just one note rather than in larger leaps). I developed all of this in the map music first, and then later extracted and re-purposed the themes for the various logins. We actually work this way on a lot of our projects, where we might do a promotional video first, and then expand certain elements into the login. (For example Shurima, Ekko, Freljord, and Summoner’s Rift were all done this way.) This often is due to project timelines more than anything else, but it also works in our favor, because it can be tempting to get carried away while working on a standalone login and write music that will be harder to adapt for a more time-locked format.

I have been meaning to get the rest of the music up onto Soundcloud, sorry for the delay! I’ll try to get it up this week :)

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How do you feel about the open mid situation developing in NA and EU

Ghostcrawler New PortraitIt’s a really nuanced conversation. The reason we don’t allow surrender immediately (for example once you see what the enemy team comp is) is because it’s often possible to win a come-from-behind victory, and we want to give players an opportunity to focus on strategy rather than focusing on campaigning the team to surrender. In addition, we don’t want to use quick surrender as a run-around leavers. For example, we don’t want to encourage someone harassing you to surrender because they didn’t get the position they wanted or because they didn’t get First Blood.

However, it does also suck when you are really, really far behind (say a couple of players never connected) and you’re just killing time waiting for that 20 minutes to tick down. Our surrender mechanic may need more flexibility in its design.

The open mid situation is further complicated by a number of factors. For example, teams may be throwing games just to get around the surrender limit I discussed above. Or maybe players perceive the game to be more snowbally than it really is, so they feel like playing from behind isn’t worth the effort. (Our data suggests the game isn’t more snowbally for players in most ELOs, but perceptions don’t always match reality.) Also, there may be a perception that since open mid started in Korea, and Koreans have a well-earned reputation as skill players, that they must be onto something. :)

We’re discussing what to do about it, if anything.

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PROJECT community creations

Jynx Final Portrait…SEARCHING… TARGET // FAN ART //




Akujin-b0x and crimson-seal


drweesnaw and goodknight2sday


grouchygutterrat and Gumae


kaerru and Kai Cosplay


KaerruArt and kiremeister


Maciej Kuciara and McDobo


MgnZ and MonoriRogue


Muju and Naheht


NE0SHIN and nerdrodder


Noscium and Polkadotzombie


Racchoi and RazeArmada


Shintaibee and Skullwidow


SuperKusoKao and synclairekapturart


Tropic02 and yuan lan


zymv587 and キノコ


Share more of your favorite PROJECT creations in the comments below!


If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


Red Posts 18 09 Banner


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Enemies cant see your team’s borders because it could lead to griefing

Sargonas New PortraitThat’s a key point. A lot of the reasons why we are ok with some of the functionality that 3rd party community sites have that we opt to not put into the game directly is the opt-in aspect. Some things may potentially negatively impact a players experience, but not so negatively if they opt into it with a small barrier of effort if it actually enhances it for that particular individual. In those cases it is much more ok with us, hence why we’re ok with the API being used to help build these things.

The effort to go out to a site and look these things up while loading in is sufficient enough of a barrier that few, if any, players who EXPLICITLY wants to know this is going to be at risk for having a lower quality experience that might be had by unintentionally knowing information that may cause a form of “opponent anxiety”.

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Why not have an option to show hide borders

Sargonas New PortraitIn theory, but a toggle-it-and-forget-it option in settings is a much lower barrier than taking the time to visit a website each time.

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Will we ever be able to hide from 3rd party sites mining our game stats
Sargonas New PortraitIt’s not Data Mining.. that implies the data is being hunted down and extracted through back-channels in a creative and unofficial way. We actively make this data available intentionally to the community as a supported service via the Riot API.

That said, we’re actually in the midst of a series of major changes to how this data is handled that affects your concern. Before too long, all non-ranked data (normals, ARAM, etc) will be the exclusive domain of the owner of that player data (you the player) and your friends (only if you so desire). No one else will be allowed to aggregate and represent that data about you to any other eyeballs. Ranked data on the other hand, will always be publicly available to all for the foreseeable future. Think of it like baseball stats.. everyone in the world is privy to your competitive stats because you are electing to take part in a public competition against the world at large, and these stats are part of that experience.

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Aatrox feels underwhelming to play at the moment

Meddler Final PortraitI’m with you that Aatrox has some issues, and that means he sometimes doesn’t feel very satisfying to play, I don’t personally feel it’s because he’s weak though. Statistically he does ok, nothing special, but pretty middle of the pack. I actually feel you hit the nail on the head with one of your other comments “need to look at him and make him stand out from the ordinary”.


That’s Aatrox’s big gameplay issue – he doesn’t have a distinct enough gameplay identity, so the only major gameplay reason to pick him is if he’s the strongest option in his class (diving fighters). Other divers have more unique things they bring to a team, so there’s reason to pick them even if they’re not numerically the strongest (Jarvan has strong synergies with Gnar and Vayne, Nocturne can join a fight from long range, Vi offers almost guaranteed access to and CC on a priority target etc). Since Aatrox doesn’t have something that distinct however he instead has to compete purely on more general grounds (damage, tankiness/sustain primarily). To feel good he’d therefore need to be noticeably overpowered.

The solution, following that logic, then is to find something special Aatrox can offer and put a significant part of his power budget there. We don’t have work on Aatrox currently prioritized, but have kicked around some ideas for ways to do that whenever opportunity to work on him permits. There’s one direction in particular I personally feel’s got a lot of potential (and some noticeable risks), before I get into details about that though I’d love to hear other people’s thoughts on what we could do to Aatrox to give him a unique space in the game.

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New Upgraded Private Chat Rooms

LimelyHey all,

Private, persistent chat rooms, now on the PBE for extended testing, are the latest effort at improving League’s social systems. The idea is to give you easier ways to stay connected with your core group of League players and we plan to expand on this feature for the next few months.

Long-term, features we create should make it easier for you to find and get friendly with people you want to play with. For more on the vision for social systems in League, check outthis chat between some teammates and I.

Persistent chat rooms will store any messages sent between members while you’re online and instantly be available when you log onto League. You can own one chatroom be a member of three at any given time.

Once you set up a chat room, you can:

  • Name the chat room
  • Invite new members
  • Promote current members to officers (they can invite and kick members)
  • Demote officers back to members
  • Kick members

Because this is PBE, we’ll be regularly pushing updates to the feature, and that means we’ll need to occasionally reset all of the chat rooms. We’ll let you know before we hit reset!

Let us know if persistent chat rooms make it easier to stay connected and hit the Rift with friends! Also, bug reports – give us those here. :3

Limely :3

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Will we be able to mute notifications from chat rooms

Limely: We are definitely planning on NOT having sound notifications for these chats in case they get busy. :3

We are looking into ways of letting you know there are messages without being totally obnoxious about it, but we promise no flashing and no sounds. :D

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Will Public chats also receive an update

Limely: Public chats will eventually be updated – we are actually doing some refactoring of the rooms so it’s not as easy as us just porting the feature over to public chat rooms, unfortunately. We are planning on building out a bigger system in which these new and improved private chats are just one piece in a larger plan.

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Will chat rooms be open to new members while still being moderated

Limely: Totally get where you are coming from here! We are definitely looking into this, as we want to make sure we can support more open communities in the future, but it’s not a capability that we have at the moment.

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Is there a chance well get an officelike role in Public chats

Limely: Not a stupid question – it’s been asked before and I’m thinking of making a FAQ to post in which case this question will definitely be on it! We have been developing in a separate space from the Public Chatrooms in an attempt to not disrupt existing rooms, but we are looking for ways to support existing communities with better tools in the future.

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Limely and Drevarius on Leagues social systems

NaKyle New PortraitHey all,

To share some insight into the PBE release of persistent chat rooms, Limely (product owner and designer) and Drevarius (designer) dished about the past, present and future of how we hit the Rift with friends. Read on to learn more about where we’ve been and where we’re headed with League’s social systems. We’ll hang out to answer questions below.


So, persistent chat rooms hit the PBE earlier today. How do you expect players to use them?


We expect groups of friends to use persistent chat rooms to stay connected, organize games, and potentially get to know friends of friends. Having a bit of chat history also makes it easier to have some context for the conversation when you log on and join the chat room.


We also put moderation tools in there so players can have some control and keep out unwanted guests like spam bots and sketchy dudes. Ultimately, this stuff is pretty overdue, but we’re still excited to get it out the door.


Cool. So, bigger picture: “Social systems” is a big and kinda vague term. What’s it mean to you? What are some of your guiding principles for building social systems and features for League?


Social systems are essentially features that connect players and encourage them to experience League together. This is still a big and vague description, but there are a lot of components that contribute to social, like finding IRL friends (Facebook friend discovery), learning more about the friends you already have (player hovercards), and sweetening the pot for playing together (party rewards).


These features all individually add value, but they’re pretty narrow and isolated in terms of the problems they solve. We want to start looking at “social systems” as something more cohesive. We want to get to a point where the whole suite of features work together to do all the things Drevarius mentioned and more.

That’s our big picture goal, but the actual implementation starts with some tedious overhauling of existing and foundational systems. That work was and still is time-consuming and almost invisible to players, which sucks. The strategy moving forward is to release larger features piece by piece, that way we ship stuff at a better cadence and iterate based on timely feedback from players. Persistent chat rooms, a pretty modest system on its own, is an example of one of those smaller, quicker steps.


How do small steps like persistent chat rooms feed into that broader vision for social systems?


Well, we’ve tried to make it easier to connect players with their friends, but we’ve learned that sometimes it takes more than that to get friends actually playing together. If you have no context as to the type of player your new friend is–jungler/silver/Warwick main–you might never go to the trouble of finding out if your playstyles are compatible, let alone jump into a game together.


It’s about more than providing playstyle context through hovercards though. Party Rewards get people playing together through bonus IP, but that doesn’t mean the friendship will stick and those players will keep playing together. So the strategic approach Limely’s talking about needs to include ways of finding players that you want to keep playing with.


You mentioned friends of friends. Do you see those connections as especially important?


Yeah, we do. You’re more likely to have things in common with friends of friends than outright strangers. And besides that, when we help you connect those dots, you can play together without that mutual friend.


Hopefully the mutual friend doesn’t get too jealous. What are some of the bigger picture social challenges you’d like to tackle in the future?


I think the big one we’re aiming at is giving players a reason to strengthen the bonds they have with current connections, maybe even helping them become genuine friendships. We think there’s something compelling about a group identity as well. That group identity can attract strangers who share similar playstyles, giving players even more people to play with.


We also want to make sure that the friends we’re helping you make are friends you can actually have a good time playing with. That mix of group identity, similar playstyle, and a mutual friend or two could be really compelling. When I group up with friends, I feel like I’m ready to take on the world–we want more players to experience that feeling.

The three of us will hang around the comments for a bit. Hit us with your questions about League’s social systems and look for persistent chat rooms to reach live after a bit of testing!

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Riot Games privacy policy updated now easier to read


We’re making a few changes to the Riot Games privacy policy and wanted to let you know what’s changing and why.

Starting on October 16, we’re replacing our current privacy policy (available here) with an updated version, which you can read in full here. After that date, your use of League of Legends and other Riot services will be covered by our new policy. Here’s what’s changing:

  • We’re making it easier to read. Documents like these can be overwhelming, full of dense language and endless legal clauses. In the revised policy, we’ve used more straightforward language that’s easier to read and understand. We’ve added section summaries, interactive elements, and more to help guide your review. There’s also now an entire section detailing the choices and controls you have to further protect your privacy.
  • We’re updating it to cover new features. Features like Add Friend are new to League, and they need to be covered by our privacy policy. Our new policy reflects these new features and more accurately (and clearly) explains how we’ll process info to support them.
  • We’re setting it up for future growth and development. Riot continues to grow and offer new types of experiences (like mobile apps and websites), and we continue to grow internationally – the new policy reflects that. Some changes in the policy also allow us to use industry standard advertising practices and to better surface content that’s relevant to players based on their preferences.

We know privacy is very important to many players. It’s important to us, too. Our goal with updating our privacy policy is to provide players with transparency and choice. We’ve simplified the language and added context to make it easier to understand, and we’ve taken care to ensure players have meaningful choices to protect their privacy.

Riot’s legal team will be on hand until 4PM PDT to answer any questions you might have about the new policy in the comments below.

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FAQ Banner

What is the Riot services privacy policy?

Our privacy policy explains what info Riot Games collects when you visit the Riot services (like League of Legends), as well as ways we might use or share it.

What’s changing?

To see all the changes, we suggest you take a look at the full policy – but here’s a quick rundown:

Most of the changes are aimed at making the policy easier to read, with straightforward language, section summaries, and interactive elements. There’s also now an entire section detailing the choices and controls you have to further protect your privacy.

The new policy also includes some changes to cover new and future functionality for Riot services: for instance, features like Friend Importer and mobile apps like Blitzcrank’s Poro Roundup are new territory for Riot, and need to be covered under our privacy policy.

When does the change take effect?

The new policy will take effect on October 16.

Why are you changing the privacy policy?

Our goal with updating our privacy policy is to provide players with transparency and choice. We’ve simplified the language and added context to make it easier to understand, and we’ve taken care to ensure players have meaningful choices to protect their privacy. Besides accessibility, we also needed to update the privacy policy to cover new and future functionality for Riot services – it’s been awhile since we last updated our privacy policy, and these are frequently-updated documents that reflect a company’s present day operations.

What can I do to further protect my privacy?

Our new privacy policy includes a section detailing the choices and controls you have to further protect your privacy.

How do I accept or reject the new policy?

The new policy applies to playing League of Legends or using Riot services after the effective date – if you play League of Legends or use any Riot services after that date, it’ll be covered under the new policy.


If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


Red Posts 16 09 Banner


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You can find Kindred’s official Champion reveal HERE.


Can Kindreds passive hunt be activated during combat

Meddler Final PortraitMark of the Kindred is actually deliberately locked out while Kindred’s in combat. That’s because we want Mark of the Kindred to be something you engage with strategically, picking targets to hunt ahead of time, rather than something you put on a target you think will die during the current fight. For that reason there’s also a delay between selecting a target and being able to collect on the mark (so that marking something right before you engage on them a second later isn’t the optimal play).

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Will Kindreds passive current HP damage work against all targets

Meddler Final PortraitYes, once you’ve killed a marked target all your future auto attacks will deal % current health damage to their targets. Monsters get marked occasionally by Wolf, until you’ve completed 6 hunts. Damage from Mark of the Kindred is uncapped, so in an infinitely long game you could get infinite damage. In reality though given the CD on the Mark and the way you need to kill a specific pre selected target you won’t normally be able to get as crazy late game as Veigar or Nasus frequently do.

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Why doesnt Kindreds Q damage prioritize Champions over minions

Meddler Final PortraitIt’s intended that Kindred’s Q does not automatically prioritize champions, we don’t want to make the spell auto optimize itself each cast to that degree. It will however prioritize the target of Kindred’s last auto attack, so if there’s a particular enemy you really want to hit you have the option of doing so.

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Follow Up Banner

Meddler Final PortraitThe first of the three arrows will fire at your auto attack target. The second and third arrows will fire at other targets based off their proximity to Kindred. If the target you recently auto attacked isn’t in Q range the first arrow will also fire at a nearby enemy instead.

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Will Kindred have a separate dialogue line if you steal a kill

RiotUtora: yup! if you take Kindred’s marked jungle creep from her, she will say a line that only the thief can hear.

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Is Kindred reliant on the stacked Mark damage to be a carry threat

Meddler Final PortraitIt’s intended that Kindred will be reliant on Mark of the Kindred for a significant amount of their damage, later on in the game in particular.

The ult’s there in part to give a baseline contribution that’s independent of how farmed Kindred is or isn’t. It’s also a way of allowing a squishy, short ranged sustained damage dealer to take risks without that being a completely terrible idea. On top of that it’s a way to distinguish Kindred from other moderately similar characters (farm junglers and other short ranged mobile ADCs). It also doubles down on the power within a specific area concept that the W also presents.

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Meddler has shared a list of teams currently working on features, champion updates and balance changes:


A quick look at a few teams at Riot and some of the stuff theyre working on

Meddler Final PortraitHi folks,

Following on from a couple of longer posts on Juggernauts recently I thought I’d try some longer posts on some other subjects as well. First of those is below, which is a quick look at a part of Riot called Core Gameplay, for anyone interested in a mixture of how some of Riot works and what that part’s working on. Core Gameplay’s focus is on the components of LoL that drive choices within the game itself (champions, items, minions, map layout etc). Core Gameplay’s composed of four teams that deliver different sorts of projects, plus a playtesting team that provides advice and expertise.

There’s quite a bit of overlap between the work the teams below tackle (all of them were contributors to the recent Death Recap fixes for example). Each team is primarily focused on a specific type of work though and is staffed with people who have expertise in that area.

The Live Gameplay Team (also referred to as the balance team)

  • Live Gameplay’s focus is on regular changes, usually quicker and smaller than those from other teams. Balance changes are the most common thing the team works on, though they’re also involved in other work (e.g. long term game health. provision of expertise on high level play to other teams, some new content creation). Also worth calling out that while Live Gameplay does more balance work than the other teams they’re not solely responsible for the balance of the game.

  • Recent examples of Live Gameplay’s work include heaps of champion balance changes, the addition and tuning of Zeke’s Herald, mastery tweaking.
  • Live Gameplay’s just finished working on patch 5.18. Because 5.18 is the patch the World Champs will be played on changes in it focused on balance changes for high level play, generally on a pretty small scale. Now that that patch is out of the way Live Gameplay’s shifting focus to work on a mixture of some stuff for the preseason patch late this year and balance changes for 5.19 (including possible MF buffs and a bug fix on Shen’s E where it’s not reducing damage from taunted enemies). .

The Systems Team

  • Systems focuses on long term work, looking particularly at the parts of LoL that aren’t champions (items, runes, the jungle, minions, summoner spells, gold income etc). That work tends to get released in large amounts every so often (e.g. preseason, or big patches like 5.16), rather than being present in every patch.

  • Recent examples of Systems work includes the AP item adjustments, new Juggernaut items (Dead Man’s Plate, Titanic Hydra, Sterak’s Gage), items for the Bilgewater event (in conjunction with the Events team).

  • Systems has been primarily working on preseason work for a bit now, and will continue to do so for quite a while (post preseason launch they’ll swap over to preseason followup, with balance adjustments as needed and possibly some additional content afterwards if there are things that don’t make the preseason itself). A lot of the team’s work has been on items recently (marksmen items especially). They’ve also been exploring some other stuff that preseason’s the best time to do (e.g. can we speed up game start a bit by having minions/the jungle spawn earlier, while speeding up the homeguard effect out of base to keep invade timings the same?).

The Champion Team

  • The new champion team primarily makes new champions as you’d expect, while also doing a bit of other work as well (initial balance follow up on new releases, overhauls of champion systems like death recap etc).

  • Recent examples of Champion work include Tahm Kench, Tahm Kench’s teaser and the balance changes to him in the first couple of patches after his release (in discussion with the Live Gameplay team of course).

  • At present we’ve got half a dozen champions in development (which is pretty standard). Those range from the nearly finished that are getting final work done before they hit PBE (‘They are coming’) to really early idea brainstorming (we’ve just kicked off work on a new champ for sometime next year, with so far just desired class, plus some possible tonal and thematic notes, identified). Champion team’s also working on some improvements to what we call ‘zombie mode’, which is the state dead, but still acting, champions get put into (e.g. Karthus passive or Yorick ult). That work, whenever it ships, won’t be very noticeable in the average game, but should fix a number of bugs and make it easier for us to create additional characters that use zombie mode if desired.

The Champion Update Team

  • Champion Update works on existing characters in the game that need more work than just balance adjustments. That work ranges from full overhauls like Sion, to visual only updates like Karthus, to smaller projects like Ashe or Maokai’s changes a while back.

  • Recent examples of Champion Update’s work include the Gangplank update, the Juggernaut changes and Fiora’s update.
  • Champion update’s got a few different things going on at the moment. One part of the team’s just finished some balance follow up work on the juggernauts from the 5.16 patch (teams own balance on content they create for a couple of patches post launch on average, before the Live Gameplay team takes over). Those folks will be pretty focused on some work for the preseason period now. Another part of the team by contrast’s working on bigger, longer term reworks (Poppy, and some exploration into which other full scale relaunch might follow her). Finally Champ Up’s also looking into doing a sizing pass on a number of champions, which would involve shrinking champions that are inappropriately large (e.g. Tristana) and increasing the size of champions that are inappropriately small (e.g. Malphite).

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All player punishments up to this point are being wiped; check out how those will be handled with updates to existing systems like Chat Restriction:


Upcoming Upgrades to Chat Restrictions

Neurocat New PortraitHi everyone! I work on Player Behavior and want to take you through some updates to chat restrictions launching alongside the big instant feedback upgrade. But first, a little context:

Punishments for negative behavior in League should accomplish three things:

  • Encourage moderately or occasionally negative players to reform
  • Shield players from negative experiences
  • Remove players who won’t reform from League

Since we launched chat restrictions last year, we’ve observed a few problems. Some negative players accumulate ridiculously high numbers of chat restrictions, yet use their limited chat to spread negativity without any sign of reform. Others reform their behavior, but still need to work off hundreds of chat restricted games before learning if they’d reformed or continued earning punishments. Still others would receive chat restrictions, but not know what specific behaviors their fellow players found objectionable and subsequently have difficulty reforming.

Here’s how we’re fixing these issues:

  • Punishments will rapidly escalate for those who don’t reform. Here’s how it works:
    • First offense: 10 game chat restriction
    • Second offense: 25 game chat restriction
    • Third offense: 2 week ban
    • Fourth offense: Permanent ban
  • We’re reducing the delay between action and consequence (which we’ve observed significantly increases rates of reform) by handing out chat restrictions within 15 minutes of a game’s end. Along those same lines, restricted players now receive escalated punishments as they ‘earn’ them, rather than waiting until their restriction expires to learn what’s next.
  • The offending player now receives direct feedback about their behavior. Players now receive in-client reform cards containing the chat logs their peers found troubling.

One last note: because of the scope of these changes, all chat and ranked restrictions will be reset and past restrictions won’t count against you in the new system. Everyone’s slate is wiped clean (for these restrictions), so this is a great time to turn over a new leaf.

All these upgrades go live over the course of this patch (5.18). Let us know what you think!

EDIT: I’ll check back later to answer further questions.

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How will punishment decay work

Neurocat New PortraitAn account will generally have a permanent record of past punishment received. However, there will be systems in place to show consideration to players who demonstrate long term, genuine reform.

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If a players been banned for 2 weeks a year ago would that affect the system

Neurocat New PortraitThis system won’t take into account those older bans before instant feedback. Consider this a fresh start.

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Why isnt there a punishment step between a chat restriction and a 2week ban

Neurocat New PortraitGenerally, we’ve observed that bans shorter than 2 weeks don’t have a significant enough impact on the play patterns of the average player. Take for example a player who only plays on weekends – if this player gets 3 day banned on a Sunday, that’s probably not going to be very significant to them.

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Can you elaborate on what it means to have our previous punishments wiped

Neurocat New PortraitAll previous chat restrictions are wiped, and any future chat restrictions are only based off of new behavior (aka this patch and forwards).

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How will the new system determine if a person actually deserves a chat restriction

Neurocat New PortraitOne thing to keep in mind – when you’re talking with strangers over the internet, they don’t necessarily have the same context you do. What you see as ‘constructive advice’ may come across to others as mean or insulting. Next time in game before you give someone feedback, take a second and put yourself in their shoes. How would you feel if you weren’t doing well and heard this from a teammate? Properly framing feedback is a pretty useful skill not just in League, but in life.

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Introducing Blitzcrank Bot

Bluefire Final PortraitGreetings fellow human beings (for real),

I’m BlueFire, just one of many behind the creation of Blitzcrank Bot, the newest agent of our support team. Who is Blitzcrank Bot? He’s a sophisticated, precise, and friendly robot we built to answer your tickets as fast as possible. We surveyed many of you who submitted tickets at the beginning of this year and the number one thing you guys wanted was faster tickets! We heard you and have not only increased our staff to serve you, but also invested heavily in this new piece of technology to answer you as quickly as possible. I wanted to get an FAQ in front of you as you start seeing him.


Q: How will I know if I am talking to Blitzcrank Bot?

A: We plan to make it very clear that you’re speaking to our Blitzcrank. You’ll see his picture and name in the response and the reply itself will reinforce this through text.

Q:What if I want to talk to a person?

A: Simply reply to the ticket and we’ll forward you to an agent. Its that simple!

Q: How fast is Blitzcrank Bot?

A: If Blitzcrank Bot can both understand your ticket and help you solve it he will normally do it within 5 to 10 minutes. He shouldn’t respond to any conversations you’re already having with agents if they happen to be faster.

Q: How accurate is Blitzcrank Bot?

A: Right now we have him tuned for about maximum accuracy; which is actually above what we can reasonably expect from humans. Sometimes people write in unusual ways which both confuse Blitzcrank and our agents. Seriously, one time I received a ticket that merely said “help” with NO OTHER INFORMATION. We think that the occasional miss will make-up for the fact that we’ll generally be able to help you much sooner.

Q: What issues will Blitzcrank Bot be handling?

A: We will start with English Account Recovery tickets. This is because these are one of our largest ticket problems and someone else having access to your account when you don’t feels really bad. We hope to expand to other languages and issues if you guys like him.

Q: I hate Blitzcrank bot!!!

A: Sorry you had a bad experience. We’re going to be surveying players who received an answer from him and seeing how everyone feels about him. If you guys don’t like him we’ll reconfigure him or potentially even scrap him. So your feedback matters!

Feel free to ask further questions or report problems here and I’ll try to get back to as many as I can.

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If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


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Thoughts on the juggernaut reworks Where were up to after 4 weeks

Meddler Final PortraitHey folks,

Wanted to provide an update on our thinking about the recently reworked juggernauts. Initial post from a week post launch here:

Overall the juggernauts have definitely been too strong (our bad). Making comparatively immobile melee effective is something we’ve had trouble with in the past, which in retrospect’s lead to us putting too much power into this group. We have been seeing some distinctive play generated by each of the reworks though, which hits on one of our primary goals for this work of making different characters have distinctly different effects on the game. Fairly optimistic we’ll see that continue once we’ve got balance into the correct spot, though won’t count those chickens before they hatch of course. What we’re thinking for patch 5.18 below, with a few longer term thoughts mixed in.

Garen Final Portrait

Garen did turn out to be too strong as initially suspected. The mobility nerfs in 5.17 have helped with that, we still feel he’s a bit strong at present though. Next major change we’ll be doing in 5.18 is making it so that people no longer generate Villainy stacks by killing Garen himself. Biggest impact there is that you won’t get punished for killing Garen in lane, which in some match ups makes it really hard to get a real advantage in lane against him (or even turns what should be a winning action into a losing action).

Darius Final Portrait

Went from significantly weak to too strong with the hotfix and buff in 5.17. We’re nerfing him in 5.18 as a result, giving Q a scaling mana cost and reducing the amount he heals per target hit by Q (with an increase to the max possible healing). Goal there is to nerf his healing overall, in lane in particular, while allowing some big moments still if he can catch 3 enemy champions with the blade. Longer term we’ve also been talking about whether straight % missing health is the correct model or not for Darius’ heal, given how much a tanky Darius can heal for. It’s possible we’ll shift towards a flat + missing% model instead at some point, still discussing/waiting to see how the 5.18 nerfs impact him.

Skarner Final Portrait

We were pretty happy with how the hotfix hit Skarner, since it dropped his power substantially without going too far and leaving him too weak. He’s still too strong, so we’ll be following up on him as well in 5.18, with a nerf to his E slow, reducing the power of his ganks in particular.

Mordekaiser Final Portrait

Now that the dust’s settled somewhat it’s pretty clear Morde’s significantly overpowered as a farming duo laner, and very weak as a solo laner. We’ll be nerfing Morde’s base Armor, W healing and W damage (no longer deals double damage when overlapping, base damage increased somewhat). For solo Morde W’s going to be self castable for the healing effect (though not the damage). Expectation is that we’ll need to do more to Morde in follow up patches as well, though as usual we’ll see what effect those changes have first.

Bonus items section: So far Deadman’s Plate, Titanic Hydra and Sterak’s Gage are looking pretty reasonable. They’re doing the right sort of things on the right sort of champions. No current changes planned for them as a result, though we’re still keeping a clear eye on them of course as builds continue to get tested and refined.

Finally it’s also worth noting that since 5.18 is the patch World’s will be played on we’ve been putting a lot of focus into how the juggernauts are performing in professional play (since balance tends to be somewhat different between normal games and organized 5s, high skill level 5s especially). The recent LPL games have been played on 5.16 with the hotfix, which has been a useful data point for us in assessing juggernaut power. We’ve seen Darius and Skarner picked there (Skarner much more than Darius), both looking strong, though not overwhelming so. No sign of Garen isn’t surprising (the nature of his kit’s a better match for solo queue). No Morde picks or bans is a harder one to interpret. It’s possible his weaknesses are such that an organized team can just shut him down, or that he’s new enough teams haven’t had enough time to drill into his changes yet, so aren’t interested in picking him for now even if he’s theoretically strong (I’m personally in this camp, though definitely not 100% certain about it).

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When can we expect Miss Fortunes balance changes to hit live After Worlds

CertainlyT New PortraitThe present plan is for MF’s changes to come out with the pre-season (so after Worlds), as they require particle updates to her base and skins.

Not to get everyone too excited, but we are also having to do a lot of performance testing to ensure that the number of bullets her ult fires at level 16 doesn’t destroy min spec computers.

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Can we get a visual indicator for Miss Fortunes Impure Shots W stacks

Repertoir New PortraitMF is getting some tweaks in the pretty near future, and I believe that part of this package is better visualization for Impure Shots.

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Do youve any plans for Poachers Knife Is there any use for the item

Meddler Final PortraitIt has, outside of the occasional really niche use. Odds are high we’ll remove it come preseason when we do an item pass (updating, adding, removing various items).

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Meddler Final PortraitWe wanted to try an item that really clearly telegraphed your intent to counter jungle a lot, with power loaded into the action of counter jungling specifically (as opposed to an item that’s good for counterjungling, but also has other uses, like boots). Conclusion at this point is that that’s too narrow a space for an item, given its tendency to lead to one jungler or the other failing really hard early. We want early actions to matter, but not to effectively decide games, and Poacher’s risks games snowballing too hard too fast for one team or the other.

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Can you say whats in store for next season as far as drastic changes go

Meddler Final PortraitWe’re focusing much less on the jungle specifically this time than past preseasons. There’ll be some tweaks to it, but nothing as large as the overhaul last year.

Details on what we are focusing on to follow closer to the time once they’re more certain (lot of early experimentation in progress at present).

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Are there other items thatll see drastic changes like this next season

Meddler Final PortraitNone as clear cut as Poacher’s. We’re experimenting with a lot of stuff at present, it’ll be a while though before most of that’s solid enough to talk about usefully though.

One thing I will mention, since I’ve seen it requested a lot, is that we’re looking at a reworked version of Executioner’s Calling (AD Grevious Wounds item). Way too early to make any promises it’ll necessarily be coming back, it is one of the things we’re looking into though.

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What are you thoughts on Grevious Wounds in general

Meddler Final PortraitCurrent thinking is that Grevious Wounds serves a useful function keeping healing/regen in check, but that we may not have been offering it in the right ways. For starters the % may not be right, – 50% is such a larger difference that characters with strong healing end up being really feast or famine depending on whether they’re facing GW or not. Shifting to a lower %, and reducing healing/regen amounts somewhat, might be more appropriate.

As far as GW on individual champions goes we’ve stripped it off a number of champions because of the amount if felt like some match ups were decided in champion select. We’re still talking though about whether there are some good spots for GW on champion kits (e.g. is the problem regular application of GW in lane, rather than GW on kits in general).

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Can we have some QoL buffs for Azir that would make him easier in Solo Queue

Meddler Final PortraitYeah, Azir’s learning curve’s extremely steep (hardest in the game last I checked). Having a long learning curve for a champion has a lot of value, it means there’s almost always something you can learn and improve at. In Azir’s case though his curve’s both very long and, during your initial games, really steep. That means there’s a really punishing period to get through before you can start playing him reasonably well, given we need to balance for players who know what they’re doing on him. Ways to make him a bit more accessible, without removing depth, would be really valuable as a result. We’ve been considering doing that at some point later this year already, thoughts extremely welcomed on things to look at.

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The health on Shacos boxes should scale with level spell ranks

Meddler Final PortraitWe’ll fix clones not getting the Villain marker in the next patch, it’s not intended that that gives Garen’s team a constant way to tell clones and champions apart.

The Devourer wolf does stealth when Shaco stealths. If there are certain circumstances that’s not happening in let us know and we’ll get them fixed.

Finally as far as Shaco boxes go I’d be really hesitant to mess with their health model without doing significant other work to Shaco, given that’s going to impact his jungle clearing in particular. Definitely a thought worth noting in case we do a Shaco rework at some point though (nothing currently planned, there is some stuff it would be good to improve however).

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Kalistas auto attack range should be nerfed from 550 to 525 or even 500

CertainlyT New PortraitKalista was 525 for a decent period during her development. Feedback was very negative to this at the time, though feedback tends to be negative toward mechanics that reduce the player’s margin for error during this phase, as most players are unfamiliar with the champion. Perhaps at some point we will revisit the issue. Certainly a few things about the champion would need to change to compensate for the range loss.

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Is Talon slated for a rework anytime soon

Meddler Final PortraitWe do think Talon could do with a bit of work at some point, aimed at making him more distinct from other assassins and improving counterplay available for some enemies. Overall though there are quite a lot of other characters that need the work more, so he’s not a rework priority.

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Whats the status of Yoricks rework

Meddler Final PortraitThe Yorick rework Xelnath was experimenting with did get ice boxed. We do plan to do a full rework (Sion/Poppy level) for Yorick still at some point, at the very least that won’t be happening this year though. Yorick’s got some major issues, Poppy, and likely Taric, are ahead of him in the full relaunch queue at a minimum though.

In terms of class we do think juggernaut would be a good fit. Given his minion summoning theme the direction we’re most likely to go is a juggernaut with strong pushing power (split push, counter push, tower sieger or some combination of the above).

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Is Leona crying in her PROJECT splash art

BIOLUMINESCENCE Final PortraitI don’t know for certain if she’s crying or not, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that were the case. PROJECT isn’t (despite Leona’s presence) all sunshine and smiles. It’d be nice to hear more about that world.

I think they’re still on for releasing them on 9/8, right? Not too long now.

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Why doesnt LoL have more in-game quests to promote its backstory

BIOLUMINESCENCE Final PortraitYou rang?

I think there’s been a few things that sort of touch on this, referred to as hidden passives:

In that list you’ll find little treats for Vi/Caitlyn vs. Jinx, Leona vs. sunglasses, pirates vs. ninjas, etc. These are super subtle things that might add 1g or -1hp or something of that scale – nothing particularly game-breaking for the most part. I don’t know what the development cost is for making (and more importantly – maintaining) these things are, so I can’t speak to if they are easy to add, or more trouble than they’ve been worth. I see that they removed the item for Rengar (in the Kha’Zix/Rengar quest) and turned it into a passive stacking buff instead.

I agree with TurquoiseYoshi and ChromaticEagle that 200g is a hefty chunk of change that could change the course of a game, if it came at the right moment. The number of times I’ve been short even 50g to get my next item I can hardly count!

I think the kind of effort that’s going into these things is usually channeled into the taunt quotes (which have been pretty extensive, recently, I thought).

What I wouldn’t want to see is more reasons for players to fight for results that don’t align with the rest of their team. You sometimes see this in events – if you’ve got half your team wanting to kill more turrets, and another team wants to win fast, then you get players who are misaligned in their goals, and that can lead to intra-team conflict. Maybe you argue that 200g isn’t enough to create that sort of conflict – but I’ve seen how even in normal games, an upset player can begrudge a jungler some CS, or a player in a vs. bots game might be disappointed that they didn’t practice a baron kill before ending the game. I could only imagine the anger some players would display if they were playing Lucian and the jungler killed the enemy Thresh. Or how annoyed the rest of the team might get if Lucian, determined to get that gold, took a risk that they maybe shouldn’t have done. :(

I could see something like these things turn up as hidden passives in the future (if it’s not a maintenance nightmare – I don’t know) or as something that could turn up in a future event, or more likely be something we see a lot of in taunts between champs.

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I enjoy gamemodes thatre tied to lore like Black Market Brawlers

BIOLUMINESCENCE Final PortraitI like them too – especially as they’re opt in, and everyone has an understanding of the expectation for the mode.

There have been times (like when different people were on different stages of the recent Bilgewater event) when it could get a little confusing, but again – as long as it’s opt in, I think the positives outweigh the negatives. (Though if I can suggest ways to improve them even more, I’m not going to hold back ;)

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Is IronStylus still at Riot

IronStylus Final PortraitI’m quite here :)

Lots been going on recently. Lot’s of pretty crazy life stuff, honestly. Perhaps when it’s all over I’ll tell the tale.

Aside from that though, I’ve been working quite hard on Taric recently. Been a long ride, but we’re getting close to a concept which I think will work. Here’s hoping!

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If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


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Are Lulus PBE changes meant to push her off solo lanes and back to support

[ Note ] You can find Lulu’s changes from this PBE cycle HERE.

Phreak New PortraitNo, Lulu is fine in either. See: Lulu, Karma, Zyra working in both. Varus, Ezreal, Corki working Mid/Bot. Nautilus working Top/Support. You’re injecting your own assumed intent and cherry-picking examples and saying, “Yep, this is a pattern.” The issue with Soraka is that consistent self-healing often ends up being extremely problematic, as once you hit enough mana regen to keep the spell up, you no longer have gameplay in the lane.

Lulu may not be super common in NA/EU. But she is almost 100% red side ban or blue side first pick in both Korea and China and finally growing in Western popularity. League of Legends is played globally and honestly, the Asian teams just end up being faster at picking up on this. In short: Lulu is overpowered in solo lanes right now.

So let’s circle back to these changes.

Most mid lane and some top lane matchups are magic damage focused. Very few bottom lane matchups are. Her durability is now roughly equal vs physical (plus, hp5, damage blocking via the defensive masteries, potions, and her shield further inflate the value of armor) but definitely weaker vs. magic. Thus, Lulu is weaker in solo lane matchups more than in support matchups. Plus the Spellthief buffs on her.

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Is Riot hesitant about implementing Mercy because it could be abused

[ Note ] The “Mercy” system is a old fan concept for a system that pardons teams who have an AFK-er on their team.


Slumber Jack Final PortraitLet me ask some different questions, because perhaps people ‘abusing’ it might not be the only way to think of it.

For players on the losing/outnumbered team, how will they perceive teams that choose to not show them mercy?

For winning teams, are we creating an expectation or a feeling that unless they show mercy that they’re not as good of players as those who would have?

EDIT: Gotta get back to work, but I saw this thread and wanted to facilitate a bit of discussion. We appreciate the desire you guys have to help make things better!

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Its unlikely that a Mercy refusal would happen a lot

Slumber Jack Final PortraitHappening a lot would be a possibility. After just having someone leave their game, could that further hurt a player’s general perception of the community when many of these players who deny mercy might otherwise be perfectly well-behaved and fun to play with?

EDIT: Let me re-frame this. Would we be giving outnumbered players a reason to feel differently about those on the other team when they otherwise would have been ok with them? That, perhaps, not only are they unlucky for having a leaver in their game but also unlucky for getting matched against people who chose to not grant mercy?

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The Mercy vote should emphasize that the enemy didnt deserve the loss

Slumber Jack Final PortraitHmm. Well, we’re working on improving the way honour (and in this case, ‘Honorable Opponent’) works, so perhaps it’s just a matter of making this button the obvious use case in these situations (and of course, to make it feel more rewarding — we’re working on it). Interesting.

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Why would a Mercy vote make one feel like a better player

Slumber Jack Final PortraitPerhaps showing mercy wouldn’t make you feel better because there are situations where you feel it’s the expectation (if you think they deserve it). Perhaps the only situation is to make you feel worse if you don’t: do I lose the game, or do others think less of me because I personally held a belief that they didn’t deserve it?

Everyone will have different reasons for why they think they should/shouldn’t give it. You can see them in this thread: Do you simply think they should? Why was someone afk? Was it from the start? Was someone on the enemy team a jerk at any point? Am I sacrificing my first win of the day (this could probably be mitigated)?

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What exactly did Zyras AI Tweaks touch up on

Meddler Final PortraitPlants should now consistently target Zyra’s most recent auto attack target, rather than sometimes attacking things Zyra had attacked previously. They’ll also interact a bit better with FoW and should be a bit more responsive around their facing/tracking of targets. Might be some other more subtle stuff, can’t recall off the top of the head.

Got a playtest in on the AI changes yesterday and they felt reasonable to me (I play a moderate amount of Zyra). Nothing that felt dramatically different, so not sure if I’d have known the changes were there if I hadn’t been told, did feel like there weren’t the moment or two of plants being unresponsive I’d normally notice in a game though.

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Follow Up Banner

Meddler Final PortraitZyra’s plant logic will not be that much different. Here’s the actual logic for those curious:

1) Units that have taunted the plant (e.g., Shen), whatever their range.. they will just stare at an out of range unit while taunted
2) Champs Zyra has auto-attacked in the last 3 seconds (prioritizing most recently attacked)
3) Champs that have recently been attacked by any plant (prioritizing nearest)
4) Champs within 350 units of the plant — for reference, 350 is the size of Lee Sin’s E1 or Evelynn’s R (prioritizing closest)
5) Non-champs Zyra has AA’d (prioritizing most recently attacked)
6) Any unit in range (prioritizing closest)

The changes in 5.18 are that:

  • 2 and 5 now use “most recent” over “closest”, allowing Zyra to better re-direct plants to higher priority targets;
  • Plants will no longer get hung up on invisible targets, such as champions in fog of war;
  • Plants will no longer sometimes mis-believe that they attacked on spawn (which caused a long delay before their first real attack);
  • Plants will quickly move to face the target they are going to attack next, so you can get a better sense for how your actions shape their priorities.

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Why does almost every new Champion have a linear projectile Q that slows

CertainlyT New PortraitOur infatuation with lines is matched only by our love affair with circles.

We overuse the line nuke missile, but there’s a reason it’s our dominant cast type: it tends toward good gameplay around minions/Braums, reads very clearly since it emanates from the caster directly and produces threat that fairly smoothly scales down with distance (creating somewhat linear reward for approaching your enemy, which is risky).

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What happened to Syndras PBE passive buffs

[ Note ] Here are Syndra’s reverted PBE buffs in question:


Buff BoxTranscendent Final IconTranscendent [ Passive ]

  • At rank 5, the 15% bonus magic damage on Dark Sphere is now true damage
  • At rank 5, Scatter the Weak’s width is increased to 100%, up from 50%


Scarizard Final PortraitJust that we were still investigating them. We’re still looking at ways to make the passive cooler (more for W+E), but no sign of the ETA.

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Arcade community creations

Jynx Final PortraitTime to level up with some awesome arcade community art, videos, and cosplay! Click on the artists’ names to see more of their work.




yomi_UR and yochris72


SongJiKyo and Skull Tooth


ryjenic and RinRinDaishi


Polkadotzombie and Ofskysociety


NoamyFrerius and Ninja-Dee


Lighane and KilljoyDET


Ka-hoKiseki, Quist, Khymichi and Kai



justduet and finalbossveigar-replies


Duckui and Danielle Beaulieu



ArtKirby-XIV and AninhaT-T




Community collaboration with Hyun’s Dojo



Share more of your favorite arcade creations in the comments below!

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If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


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Update on NA Game Servers

Riot Noc New PortraitOn August 25, the NA game servers are moving to Chicago, IL. We anticipate zero downtime. However, ranked will be disabled from approximately 5:00am PDT to 12:00pm PDT (noon). The migration will take several hours and, until it’s complete some games will still be played on the old servers, so you may not immediately see a change in your ping. You may also bounce between Chicago and the old servers from game to game until the migration is complete. Read more about the server move here:

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[ Taylor Meabon ] What’s your position on have 5 bans, maybe even 1 for each player? Its kind of frustrating to have none of your own input when 1 of 5 random people gets to ban 3. Also I think the champion pool is big enough to justify more bans?‎  

Ghostcrawler New PortraitTimely question. We have had a few meetings on this topic lately. Would be interested in community feedback right now on what problems you think the existing system has and your opinions about the right way to fix.

(Also specify if you’re talking about pro play or non-pro ranked play. We don’t strictly have to use the same system for both.)

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Additional resources:




Here are the changes to Thornmail that will hit live with Patch 5.16:


Nerf BoxThornmail Final Icon Thornmail

  • Price increased from 2100 Gold to 2300
  • UNIQUE Passive now reflects 15% of damage + 25% of the user’s bonus Armor, changed from 30% of damage



Can Thornmails passive trigger off all sources of physical damage

Repertoir New PortraitIf Thornmail comes out next patch and is too weak, it seems like the better approach to take would be to make it better at what it’s supposed to be good at rather than just making it good against all physical damage. It doesn’t really seem right that we should just make it really good against all physical damage. If we need an item that allows tanks and other frontliners to properly deal with Riven, we should make that item, rather than trying to balance an item with a largely different ideal case around also being able to do that.

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What if Thornmail applied Grievous Wounds to enemies hitting the player

Repertoir New PortraitWe had something very close to this on Thornmail for awhile internally, but I believe it resulted in a question of what options auto attackers even have then if Thornmail not only damages them significantly, but also halves their Lifesteal.

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What if Ruby Sighstone granted 20 CDR on item actives

Repertoir New PortraitWhat’s the intended outcome of this change? That Ruby Sightstone becomes generally more desirable to upgrade to? Or is it more that Ruby Sightstone feels better to upgrade to for a support when they manage to go full build?

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It doesnt feel good to upgrade Sighstone lategame even if its gold efficient

Repertoir New PortraitCool. Thanks for the interesting thread, Saixos. Sounds like people are maybe wanting more of an interesting transformative element when upgrading Sightstone. From what I’ve read, players seem okay with upgrading it late in the game, but even then, it’s mostly just because you can, and not that it feels good to do so.

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Immobile mages should be updated in the same style as Juggernauts

Scruffy Final PortraitImmobile mages definitely need the same treatment as what we’re doing for the juggernauts. Not because “buffs” (those can happen at any time), but because they really need true uniqueness from champ to champ.

If you asked the question “I’m a champ that brings a bunch of aoe spell damage and some CC, who am I?” you could answer Velkoz, Zyra, Syndra, Brand, Cass, Malzahar, and ziggs. Ideally we could find what makes these champs unique and sharpen it enough so that the reason you would bring those champs to your team isn’t just whoever has the highest numbers.

As for the buffs that you’re asking for, I’ll have to run it by the live balance team and they can better speak to if any of them are in an underpowered state.

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Will Swain also be part of this update

Scruffy Final PortraitHe might need a bit more than some uniqueness sharpening.

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Why is the balance team not considering nerfs for Vayne

[ Note ] There’s been some recent community feedback on Vayne’s early game being too strong. The posts from Repertoir are a continuation of those threads.

Repertoir New PortraitWhere did we say this? Just talking around the office, that’s really not the impression I get. If you had said, “The fact that Vayne isn’t getting nerfed in 5.16 is sad really,” then that’s more reasonable. I can assure that in the last few days I’ve had several conversations about Vayne that weren’t just on the boards.

Is she getting changes in 5.16? No. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean we aren’t aware of the community sentiment on the subject.

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Meddler stated a month ago that Vayne is in a fine spot balance wise

[ Note ] You can find Meddler’s comment HERE.

Repertoir New PortraitOr at least she was about a month ago, but a lot can change in a month. I suppose I should just ask him in person!

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Do you think Ryze is in a good state currently

Scruffy Final PortraitOne of the big issues that Ryze has currently that makes him feel weak is that for the “100 games played, master tier ryze player” he is actually very very strong, but for the average/majority of players that isn’t the case.

We’re slowly working on some changes that will hopefully shorten the gap in success between an insanely top tier ryze player and everyone else. Probably still a few patches out though.

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Whatre your thoughts on LeBlancs current state

Repertoir New PortraitShe may have been overnerfed, and I believe there are W speed adjustments in on 5.16 PBE at the moment.

That said, she historically falls into that Azir, Ryze, Kassadin, etc. category of champions that is balanced for higher levels of play when their solo queue win rate is in the ~45% range. This isn’t to say that any of these champions must be weak; it’s more that their performance dramatically increases with skill level and/or player experience, to the point that if they were balanced around a 50% win rate for all players, they would be 56/57%+ for experienced/skilled players. Most recently, we saw this on Ryze, whose experienced win rate jumped up above 60% by some measure despite being ~50% in solo queue at average elos.

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Are you planning on reworking LeBlanc

Repertoir New PortraitThere’s currently no rework planned that I know of.

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Zyra is a poke support who needs gold to function and sees zero pro play

Repertoir New PortraitWe actually generally agree with this assessment, and I believe we’re currently looking into what we may be able to do to help Zyra out. I’m not sure if it’s going to come right away, and it’s not likely to be a large scale change, but she should get some attention nonetheless.

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How do you feel about Sions current state

Scruffy Final PortraitPersonal opinions INC but here’s my 2c:

  • Numerically he seems balanced, reasonable win rates on our data and all of the external sites like OP.GG etc
  • As most sion players (myself included) prefer top sion over jungle, there may be room for a slight power shift towards top sion rather than jungle
  • The W 2->3s delay nerf was warranted in terms of power, but the feels hit was probably not ideal. Maybe there’s a power neutral change that we can do to shorten that delay some without buffing him

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Does this mean Sion players will be forced to lane top instead of jungling

Scruffy Final PortraitNot at all what I mean. Sion jungle is stronger than Sion top statistically, so I was just saying there may be room for top love. I DEFINITELY wouldn’t want that at the cost of his jungle viability.

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Why was Lee Sins rework scrapped due to player feedback but Mordes isnt

Scruffy Final PortraitI wasn’t personally involved with the lee sin changes back then (not a ‘rework’ really just some live design tweaking), but I can give you my opinion for what it’s worth.

I actually think the community outcry then was totally legitimate and called us out on what would have been changes that would have pushed out some of the core late game functions that lee sin players actually liked and aren’t unhealthy for the game. For context the changes would have made lee sin more of an attack speed dmg carry late game rather than a pick focused tank like he his now. This is the type of feedback/response that I am glad that we are doing.

There have been a few other threads with some more in depth Morde discussion, but I can repeat/bring the discussion here. We have heard the feedback on morde and are both reacting to some of it before release and planning for possible future changes if things don’t turn out exactly as we hope when he goes live. The big asks I’ve been seeing for morde are about his solo lane viability, and we are aiming to not hurt his play there while also adding a very new and interesting option for him to play bot lane. Once morde goes live, we will be listening to the feedback from top, mid, and bot lane morde players and reacting with whatever changes are appropriate.

Some of the other comments you have about us “picking sides” or “changing the whole game around lee sin” must be a deeper level of conspiracy than what we even know ourselves. The strategy the balance/systems team has been taking on creating/improving jungle diversity isn’t centered around lee sin but rather the champion pool as a whole. Things like Cinderhulk and Devourer are general changes to support other jungle characters that don’t really have anything to do with lee sin’s balance.

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Why werent the changes to Cassiopeia Veigar Zilean reverted then

Scruffy Final PortraitI saw a good comment earlier in this thread about how the important thing isn’t about being right 100% of the time. Instead it’s about having a consistent mindset/approach.

So admittedly some reworks and balance changes don’t turn out as good as others. That doesn’t mean that we are or should be taking a different approach or use different values for each individual champion. The changes made to the three champions you listed were consistent with the same design values that we apply to all champs in league.

That said, I know we’re not satisfied if cass, veigar, zil players aren’t so I’m sure that we will continue to iterate on those champs and keep improving them in the future.

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Riot have released an official tech blog where they’ll share more under-the-hood aspects of updating League:

Hello, world! What a long, strange trip it’s been. Some things have held constant since the beginning of Riot engineering: we still hold the player experience above all else, we still focus on constantly improving ourselves and our technology, and we still love to play games. But other things have dramatically changed for our team: we no longer fit in 500 square-feet, we now serve players all over the world, and supporting 1,000 concurrent players is no longer our biggest challenge. At the beginning of this journey, we couldn’t have imagined the challenges that’d arise from the scale we face today, and that influence everything from the technology we create to how we shape a player-focused engineering team.

I’m excited to introduce Riot’s new tech blog where we’ll discuss engineering topics along the breadth of these challenges. League of Legends players have given us the awesome opportunity to tackle these problems, and we’ve learned a ton that we’d like to discuss. Our goal is to share with you, the engineering community, our journey developing technology while we learn from your questions and comments.

What you won’t find here is a discussion of technology for technology’s sake. Rather, what’s important is how and why we wield technology to ship value to players. In fact, Riot isn’t a technology company, which might sound odd in the context of announcing a tech blog: Riot’s a product company. We believe the only path to success is a focus on players, which means a focus on products.

A focus on products is why we’re not only building League of Legends, but also new games, esports experiences, a merchandise store, creative ventures, big data pipelines, and more. Our engineers create the technology for those products to succeed in delighting players. As players ourselves, we know the joy of truly great game experiences, and we’re dedicated to creating new ones.

We plan to discuss facets of our engineering challenges that we hope will resonate with the community. To release content at will, our teams must move quickly and own their work end-to-end; to support that need we’re developing private cloud infrastructure and working to evolve our continuous delivery platform. With our desire to make data-informed decisions, we’ve invested in our Insights Tech team and their work building out our global data pipeline to analyze petabytes of game data. In our quest to continually improve the LoL player experience, we’ve implemented machine-learning algorithms to better understand how players interact with our game, both positively and negatively. To maintain the highest level of availability of Riot’s game and web properties, we’ve placed them atop tech stacks comprised of both our own work and invaluable open-source technologies we couldn’t live without. And, in the constant battle to stay ahead of malicious attacks, we’re supporting our security team and their efforts running a bug bounty program, developing security tools, reviewing Riot code, and educating Riot engineers on cutting-edge trends and best practices.

Riot engineers from teams around the world look forward to sharing stories related to the topics mentioned here, among many others. This blog is our chance to engage with you and we want to focus on quality content and the dialogue that follows.

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If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at


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Why are you buffing Zed again

[ Note ] This is the PBE change in question:


Zed Final Portrait


Buff BoxDeath Mark Final IconDeath Mark [ R ]

  • Delay on recasting Death Mark has been decreased from 1 second to 0.5



Repertoir New PortraitI didn’t do these change, but if Juggernauts release on the strong side, Zed’s going to need the buffs. Those guys just wreck him.

Honestly, I don’t know if there’s anything sadder for Zed than being the Villain.

Edit: this was a bad joke on my part. Zed getting buffs has nothing to do with Juggernauts. He should be weak against Juggernauts. He should be strong against squishies. And I should re-read posts before pressing Save so that I don’t give people the wrong impression as to why he (or any other character) might be getting changes.

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If you buff Zed hell be even stronger against immobile mages

Repertoir New PortraitAren’t the proposed buffs to Zed to reduce the blink-back time on R with rank? This seems like a pretty sound approach to me, tbh. .75 and .5 seconds are long enough in the early and mid-game for a single defender to hit some cc on him when he comes in, and though .25 seconds is pretty short, there should be teammates around to help then.

At the end of the day, Zed is probably supposed to be pretty strong against immobile skillshot mages, similar to how juggernauts are supposed to be strong against him.

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Repertoir New PortraitThe juggernaut reworks aren’t at all being released to help counter Zed. My apologies if that’s the impression I gave.

As an assassin, Zed should be strong against squishy targets. They should have a fair chance to defend themselves (especially early in the game), but the upper hand should probably be his.

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Light buffs to mobile assassins in 5 16

Meddler Final PortraitWe’re putting a bit of power back into Zed and Le Blanc in 5.16, in both cases partial reversions of the previous nerfs, they got hit harder than intended.

5.16 also includes an overall nerf to Ahri’s passive (same healing at level 1 and level 16, less healing at the levels in between though).

Fizz we’re still talking about. He’s a possible candidate for work in 5.17, depends in part on how 5.16 goes though and how the state of the game does or doesn’t change.

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Riot there are 126 Champions and 6 bans We need 5 bans per side

Repertoir New PortraitThough I personally don’t know why the ban count is three instead of 4 or 5 or even 2, what has actually changed recently that would make it so that you now need 2 additional bans per team? I could see the size of the roster growing being a reason, but it’s really not THAT much larger than it was at the beginning of the year.

I actually think that having another ban or two could be cool, but mostly for reasons that are due to my own personal preference, and not necessarily because I think it makes the ranked play system any better. Even in the example you provided above, assuming those champions are ban worthy, the two captains could still only ban 10 of those 13 champions, and there would still be 3 left over. And of course, there would be all the champions that every other player in the game thinks are ban worthy that did not get banned, so it’s hard to tell in that case if we’d really be any better off. One thing that would be especially painful about having 4 more total bans during the ban phase is how much longer each Draft Queue game would take. It may not sound like a big deal, but champion select already seems to drag on an eternity sometimes. I guess at the end of the day, I’m not really sure if we’d better or worse off with more bans.

Maybe a different ban system entirely would be cool, like one where everyone in the game gets to ban 1 champion in the first thirty seconds or something. That would be faster, though it would come at the cost of ban overlap or team miscommunication getting a team off to an unfriendly start. Maybe ranked 5s and competitive play should be using a different system than solo queue; not sure entirely.

We were talking internally about some adjustments to the draft phase of champ select about a year ago, but I’m not sure any particular idea stuck out as the right solution. It’s probably something worth exploring some more, since it is a part of every draft queue game we play.

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This is not a new problem its just more relevant with the growing Champ pool

Repertoir New PortraitYeah, I didn’t mean to suggest necessarily that this is a new problem this year. With that comment, I more meant to suggest to ask OP why the need was so dire now as opposed to before.

I definitely agree that it would be great if the draft system was better suited for building out team comps better as a team and banning out stuff that threatened it rather than just banning the fotms.

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Skarners passive is lackluster and is a bunch of extra work for sub par rewards

Repertoir New PortraitAbout it being lackluster, that’s certainly not the intention. If the reward just isn’t there, that is something that can be easily addressed. If it’s that they’re tedious, maybe the channel time is too long or some of them are just too far out of the way to be useful.


As per your suggestion, one of the things I actually think is really important to them is their static positions. It gives Skarner players, teammates, and opponents an expectation as to how they’re going to play about them in any given game. This is important to me because, even following these changes, we aren’t aiming to have Skarner be extremely popular and in every game. We’re okay with his niche appeal, and we just wanted to give a little more uniqueness to the games he’s in, as well as another point of mastery for Skarner players. Whether good or bad, his ultimate really isn’t that unique anymore, and it can’t really be made much more powerful, so we looked elsewhere.

I think another thing that seems tedious about them is that players feel like they should be trying to control them all whenever possible, and that’s really not the intention. Played optimally, Skarner should try to control the ones he thinks he’ll need in the next minute or two, or maybe stop to cap one over when he’s nearby. There’s no bonus for holding all of them, so I don’t really want Skarner players making the choice to go activate a crystal in the enemy jungle when there’s a lane that needs ganking or something, unless maybe taking that crystal helps them steal a buff or do some counterjungling.

I hope this helps to explain some of the reasoning behind the goals for his passive, even if it’s not exactly what you wanted to hear.

As a follow-up, if you want to continue to help me understand what makes them ‘lackluster and a bunch of extra work for a sub-par reward,’ I’m happy to talk about it. Though some things are probably set in stone for the upcoming patch, that doesn’t mean everything is, and it doesn’t mean that I won’t be doing follow-up work on Skarner if he falls short in unintended areas.

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Will you be pulled to another project like Stashu was with Cassiopeias rework

Repertoir New PortraitI am not my own manager, but I also do think I am capable of making positive change with the right effort and focus. You guys probably remember that Ashe got an update earlier this year? That was just an extra thing that I picked up on the side and then put together with the Champion Update team’s help, and I think it went really well.

For me, I don’t usually find that one project is enough to keep me occupied, so I like having follow-up or other stuff to work on on the side.

If a few months down the road, you think there’s follow-up that I’ve ignored or forgotten, please do hold me accountable to at least letting you know what’s up. Worst case, I’ll hopefully just be able to let you guys know what’s up, even if the decision isn’t what you want to hear. Leaving you hanging wouldn’t be cool, though.

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Arent the crystals on the enemy side just 30 free gold for the enemy jungler

Repertoir New PortraitThe crystals on the enemy side of the map start on their team, and they can’t get any gold from them unless they capture them. Technically, if you never went into the enemy jungle and left those crystals alone the whole game, they would never swap over to your team, and thus never present the chance for opponents to ever capture them for the small gold reward.

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Its tedious having to run back and recapture crystals that an enemy has capped

Repertoir New PortraitI think that feeling of being compelled to reclaim it in all cases will go away after a few plays, and you’ll just focus on the ones that are going to help you in the foreseeable future. Additionally, even in the case that someone takes a crystal from you, you do get information as to there whereabouts if you’re paying attention, so it’s not all a loss.

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Why is Skarner labeled a Juggernaut when his gameplay doesnt reflect that

Repertoir New PortraitWe actually agree that Skarner is probably the odd one out amongst the four releases coming up, but we’re actually okay with that. He’s more about CC than the others, and probably less about damage overall, but we don’t think it’s absolutely necessary that there be a single damage profile that these guys all adhere to.

Skarner will probably function full time as some kind of off tank guy, while being a full on Juggernaut damage threat while under the effects of his passive.

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How would Skarner compete for objective control with Nunu

Repertoir New PortraitGood question. I’m on my phone more so I won’t be too wordy.

First, we don’t actually consider Nunu to be in the same class as Skarner, in that Skarner is intended to be more of a damage presence than Nunu.

If you wanted objective control, but needed damage still, I’d expect skarner to be a better choice. Also, Nunu controls objectives primarily through his secure combo, whereas Skarner through fight presence and power around the objectives.

Less relevant, but still interesting, Skarner’s Impale will prevent Nunu from Smiling or Consuming, so he can actually shut that down if played well.

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The community was promised that Garens silence would remain the same

Repertoir New PortraitFrom what I understand, any messaging about Garen’s update said his Silence would still be there, not necessarily that it would go untouched in any way, shape, or form. Can you show me where we said that? Because that seems like a big goof up on our end if that’s the case. So, on that topic, yeah, no one should have promised that :(

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If Garens silence is a problem why does ChoGath have 3 forms of CC

Repertoir New PortraitThough historically we haven’t made many efforts to differentiate between tanks like Cho’Gath and tanky guys like Garen, we’re trying to establish that differentiation to some extent. Though we haven’t really investigated Cho’Gath directly yet, he falls much more toward the general idea of what a tank is. Durable, heavy crowd control, and low sustained damage (though his sustained damage may be too high for this to be true).

Garen, on the other hand, is being pushed toward a much higher sustained damage pattern than he’s ever had in the past, to the point that we’re classifying him as a carry. I think we can probably agree that carries shouldn’t have a high level of crowd control, though it doesn’t necessarily follow that a 2.5 second silence is a ‘high level of crowd control.’ Maybe Cho does too much damage for a tank or is unfair in some other way (like his silence duration), but it’s probably not the best idea to reduce Cho’s silence duration because we’re reducing Garen’s, and it’s also probably not the best idea to think we have to leave Garen’s silence alone because there are other characters whose silences are longer.

I will say this about the duration reduction on Garen’s silence. I lowered it to a duration that felt fair given the higher damage the character will now do. Is 1.5 seconds too low? Possibly, but it definitely wasn’t reduced because Riot doesn’t like silence. With his upcoming changes, we’re trying to put him in a spot where he can be seen as a real threat, and less of a guy whose usefulness falls off dramatically as the game goes on. If we’re not hitting that mark after his release, I’ll try to calibrate upward.

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Why did you revert Courage W back to a stacking resist buff

Repertoir New PortraitThis update aims to increase Garen’s affinity for Health items, and flat resistances are a good way to do that. Maybe this just reads as a nerf or something, but in almost all cases, it’s just not. I sure don’t think ‘scaling/stacking benefits are toxic,’ and if that was formerly our stance, we have changed a lot in the past few years, and the game has too. Overall, he should not be squishier, except in the case of full tank builds.

As to ‘complete and utter gutting,’ that seems to imply the character is going to fall to a sub 45% win rate or something. With the changes going in, I’d be truly surprised if it was closer to 45% than 55%. I could be wrong here, but we’re definitely not aiming for a gutting, or even a nerf at all. If he comes out and proves to be weak, I’ll be happy to admit we missed the mark on him, and buff him up a bit, probably in places where we took some stuff away.

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Repertoir New PortraitI really do want to make his W active more interesting in the future, if I get a chance to come back to it and power permits.

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Isnt the point of Juggernauts that theyre rewarded for closing the gap

Repertoir New PortraitThey should indeed be rewarded for getting on top of a target, and in most cases following the update, I’d expect a late game Garen to easily kill a late game Vayne in a 1.5 second silence if he manages to close the gap and get a silence off on her.

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Is the silence nerf aimed at reducing Garens lane presence

Repertoir New PortraitLane silence isn’t actually really an issue at all. It’s still the same at rank 1, after all.

This discussion does seem to keep coming back to some players saying “trust us, his silence duration needs to be what it’s always been” and me saying “trust me, I don’t think it does anymore when he does more damage.”

I understand that that’s an uncomfortable situation for you guys to be in, and I don’t mind talking having the discussion really. Since Garen went on PBE about a week ago, there were some changes that, following discussion with you guys, didn’t seem like the right changes, and I tweaked some and reverted others. That said, there are some changes that I think are important for hitting the goals of his changes, like being more about damage in the late game, and less about his silence.

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You want Garen to be a Juggernaut but it seems hell be played as an assassin

Repertoir New PortraitThough he will now do a lot of damage to a target, Garen lacks the mobility profile and target selection of a real assassin. Assassins get to blink or dash to where they want to be, try to kill a guy, and then get out, and they often have the tools to do all that. Garen has to run at a guy, stick to them for 3 seconds, and then run away. As such, I don’t really see him as an assassin.

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Whats Garens highlight supposed to look like after the rework

Repertoir New PortraitGaren does the baseline stuff of a Juggernaut (tanky, high damage, low mobility profile) with some additional assassin-like tendencies against a single, semi-random target.

When I think about what these Juggernauts are, they should all be really tanky, they should all deal high damage to the enemy team, and they should all be relatively immobile, PLUS one or two additional differentiating aspects (Villainy, in Garen’s case).

Maybe the “increased damage when hitting a single target” doesn’t send a perfect message, but Garen’s damage in teamfights should still be on par or higher than these other guys. I expect his aoe damage to still be really high despite that addition.

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Would you nerf Judgements E damage if it proves too high

Repertoir New PortraitIf it turns out Garen is too strong following his update, I’d prefer to nerf his Q speed or base MS slightly over hurting his damage.

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Why should I pick Garen over other Juggernaut top laners

Repertoir New PortraitThere are a couple potential reasons that I could see to pick Garen (outside just liking him). First, he’ll still be a lane bully for several matchups I imagine, and picking to win your lane can often be a good idea. Second, relative to other tanky top laners, Garen will have possibly the best combined package of sustained speed, durability, and damage. Basically, he’s a good pick when you need a tanky damage dealing presence and you can anticipate fights that will move a lot.

Strategically, he may be the perfect pick when you have a team that can support him (especially with speed buffs, like Lulu or Sivir) and the opposing team has only one or two damage threats (bonus points if at least one of them is a melee threat). This is the ideal pick scenario for him because the opposing team needs their limited damage dealers to get fed in order to win the game, and if they get fed, they become the Villain. Having that extra effectiveness against that Villain when the opposing team is heavily reliant on them can actually be a big deal.

Another fun interpretation of where I think Garen is a good pick, though it isn’t strategicwithin the game is when you know the opposing team relies on a certain player to get fed in order to win. This could potentially translate to competitive play, though I think it’s more applicable and fun to pre-mades with friends. When you’ve got that one Diamond guy in your premade that you know is going to stomp a bunch of Silvers, pick Garen against him and show him who’s boss in the late game.

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What problems does this rework solve for Garen

Repertoir New PortraitBefore making any changes to him, Garen was in the unfortunate situation of:

  1. Having to work super hard to get to people in fights (this used to be the standard in LoL)
  2. Not being all that impactful if he actually managed to get to people

This update doesn’t change the former. In fact, he statistically becomes slightly worse at getting to people. However, it is intended that he’ll have a huge impact if he actually manages to get to people now. Whether or not the exact numbers we have on PBE right now will perfectly accomplish that goal, that is indeed the goal, and I’ll work to get him there if he falls short of it on release. At the end of the day, Garen is never going to be able to compete with champions like Irelia, Hecarim, or Riven (this isn’t to say that any of these three characters are necessarily balanced either) when it comes to getting to specific targets, so he should be meaningfully more impactful than them in some way if he pulls it off. In his case, he’s just going to deal a ton of damage to things he sticks to.

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What role are Juggernauts supposed to fill on a team

Meddler Final PortraitWe see juggernauts as a sub class of fighters/brawlers/bruisers/whatever else you want to call them. That’s a really large group of champions that ranges from the really mobile characters that build damage only, like Tryndamere, to the immobile champs that build tanky like Nasus. We’ve been looking at a series of sub groups with that larger fighter group as a result as follows:

  • Juggernauts – Immobile, tough, build one to two offensive items on average (e.g. Nasus or Garen)
  • Divers – Pretty mobile, and really good at getting onto specific targets they want to kill, builds a little bit more offensively than juggernauts (e.g. Irelia or Xin Zhao)
  • Light fighters (need a better name for this group – Highly mobile, builds almost entirely offense, often good at killing multiple targets, usually squishy with windowed defense of evasieness (e.g. Trynd or Fiora).

Biggest contrast between tanks and juggernauts is in what each group is trying do. Tanks are generally trying to initiate or peel more, kill by themselves less. They build almost mainly (sometimes exclusively) defense/utility and have a greater amount of mobility, generally tied to initiation or peeling actions.

As far as other juggernauts go, Olaf, Shyvana are the next two we’re planning on looking at. Yorick’s arguably a juggernaut, he’ll get a full relaunch though. Volibear could be described as a juggernaut, though he’s also got some diver and tank bits to him. Mundo also shares some juggernaut characteristics, but doesn’t really match overall (which is fine, we’re looking to use these descriptions as ways to map similarities and differences between champions, not because every champion has to be forced into a specific category).

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Meddler Final Portrait‘Juggernaut’ is a term we’re using to talk about a type of champion that’s pretty much always been in the game. We haven’t previously put enough time into identifying their strengths, weaknesses, item needs, role in lane, role in a teamfight however, so we’re doing some of that work now.

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Will you be working on other subclasses like Divers or Light Fighters

Meddler Final PortraitWe chose juggernauts as a group to focus on because we felt they needed the work the most. Next step’s going to be follow up work post 5.16 release (balancing if we’re off on power, adjusting mechanics if some of our theories get proven wrong etc). We’ll then assess how successful this work was or wasn’t and use that to help inform how we tackle other characters.

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Would you classify Shyvana as a Juggernaut

Meddler Final Portrait We think juggernaut’s probably the closest description for Shyvana because damage output, and ability to kill enemy champions herself, is a really core part of her identity. She’s happy soaking some damage certainly, but she’s not there primarily to set up/enable her team. Gragas and Cho we’ve been looking at as tank/mage combinations, Trundle as tank (though he’s definitely got some juggenaut characteristics and doesn’t fit the tank mold that cleanly), J4 as diver or tank (definitely not a juggernaut given the amount of mobility on his kit).

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Why not turn Shen into a Juggernaut

Meddler Final PortraitAs in remove his dash and make him more about auto attacking/damage output? Not seeing the Shen+Juggernaut fit sorry, and that’s before looking at thematics too.

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Is Poppy being pushed more towards a Tank or Juggernaut role

Meddler Final PortraitMore tank (stronger CC focus, so more like Sion than like Garen).

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Why hasnt Riot toned down Vaynes HP true damage

Repertoir New PortraitSeems like something we’d prefer not to touch since it’s such a core part of the character’s identity. If I had to nerf Vayne, it certainly wouldn’t be the first place I’d look to hit. I’d prefer to just nerf her early game or reduce the flat damage component of Silver Bolts, but the percent part of it seems pretty core to the identity of the character.

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How would YOU nerf Vaynes early game

Repertoir New PortraitIf I had to nerf Vayne’s, I’d probably try to first think about why she’s too strong in the first place. How did she go from someone seen as having a bad early game to someone seen as pretty average in the early game?

Though these first few suggestions aren’t directly nerfs to Vayne and have other implications, I’d probably ask why Caitlyn, Lucian, and other historical lane bullies aren’t doing their job to keep her in check. So first, I’d ask why other lane bullies that used to give her trouble aren’t being played anymore, and maybe look into that (though that’s a multi-champion change).

Also, I’d probably try to determine what exactly is the issue with her early game. Is her early game actually too strong? Or does the state of the game just more or less guarantee that she gets her late game? This second part can be especially relevant, because it makes less sense to have champions that are so disproportionately strong in the late game if games are tending to go five minutes longer than they used to (not sure on the exact numbers on game length at the moment, to be honest).

I’ll admit I’m absolutely not an expert on marksman balance, so don’t take my suggestions here as gospel. However, there are lots of ways to nerf a champion’s early game. Off the top of my head:

  • Base AD nerf and increase AD/lvl. Just a couple Base AD makes a huge difference in early game power. I reduced Nidalee’s base AD when she was a terror in top lane late last season, and she basically disappeared from the lane.
  • Scale her spell damages or cooldowns non-linearly, with the later ranks giving more value than the first. This is unconventional, but there’s no reason we really can’t do it. For instance, if Tumble’s cooldown was only reduced by .5 seconds at early ranks, and 1.5 in the last few (or something like that.
  • Probably a bad idea, but maybe Vayne could have 325 or lower MS and have her passive MS increased. I think one of the things about Vayne is that she’s supposed to be a statement pick, like “I know this champion isn’t good early game, but I’m better than you and can win regardless.” Something like this may play that up, though at the expense of snowballiness.

Anyway, just some thoughts off the top of my head.

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Do you think Vaynes kit synergizes with Blade of the Ruined King too well

Repertoir New PortraitImo, BotRK rush is generally probably just too strong, especially on champions it synergizes with.

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Why is Lee Sin being buffed on the PBE

Meddler Final PortraitThese are buffs intended to give power particularly to players who aren’t amazing at Lee Sin. We like that Lee Sin’s got a pretty steep mastery curve that really rewards practice, but it’s a bit too extreme, making it really hard to put him in a good spot balance wise (if he’s balanced in top tier play he’s very weak for the average player, if he’s at least tolerable for the average player he’s probably too dominant in top tier play). They will add a bit of power to competitive Lee Sin play too, we’re looking to avoid too much of a buff there though.

As far as the specific changes go:

  • Ult now deals damage to people hit by the champion knocked back based off the bonus HP of the champ kicked. If you can Insec well, this isn’t going to be a very appealing play generally. If you can’t however, and are regularly using the ult just to get enemy divers out of the fight for your team this will offer a bit of extra power to try and optimize. Will be some niche cases where it helps out in high level play as well, we expect those situations to be pretty niche though.

  • Energy restore from passive now frontloaded onto the first auto attack (20 first auto then 10 second auto, instead of 15/15). This buff will help out both new and experienced Lee Sin players, expectation is it’ll be significantly more useful to newer players though as they learn energy management and when to weave auto attacks in between spell casts. A frequent source of failure we see from new players is constantly trying to weave in 2 autos per cast, even when that’s a really poor idea or, at the other extreme, running out of energy frequently. Giving people room to learn and grow’s great of course, we’d like to get some signalling in there to encourage people to consider 1 auto per cast more often when they’re first learning though.

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Why not balance him instead

Meddler Final Portrait‘Balanced for who?’ is one of the questions behind this work. We choose to balance for high level play, with some reigning in of massive outliers at lower skill levels. If the difference in performance between experienced and inexperienced player gets too far out of line however that means we’re forced to make a champion really hard to succeed with and unsatisfying for the average player if they’re to be balanced at high level play. Making a champions skill floor a bit more accessible, without lowering their skill ceiling, is an approach we feel’s valuable as a result, and this work is, in part, an example of that.

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Follow Up Banner

Meddler Final Portrait5.16’s also got changes to a number of other champs we believe also need some help. Currently in testing stuff includes:

  • Kassadin (ult AP ratio)
    Le Blanc (partial reversion of the W speed reduction)
    Lissandra (self cast ult heals Lissandra)
    Lucian (W MS bonus can now be triggered by allies)
    Nami (buffed passive, ult applies double strength passive)
    Twitch (lower Q mana cost and very slight ult damage increase late game)
    Vel’koz (secondary missiles on Q have more range)
    Zed (shorter delay until ult can be reactivated)

That’s all potential stuff in testing, so not guaranteed to go live of course, but Lee’s definitely not the only champ we’re looking at in that regard.

Yorick’s a champ we believe needs a full kit overhaul, in the same way old Sion did/Poppy does. He’s not in a terrible spot power wise so, given we don’t believe he’s good for the game, we don’t want to add any power to him at this point.

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Will Warwick receive an update soon

Repertoir New PortraitWarwick is one of the champions that pretty regularly shows up on the list of ‘champions to work on’, but I don’t think there are currently any plans for him. That said, there weren’t any plans for Garen, Morde, Darius, and Skarner until May, so who knows…

If you don’t mind me asking, what is it about him that makes him your favorite character?

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Fiora should receive some minor buffs

Meddler Final PortraitWe’re with you that Fiora seems to be pretty underpowered and are working on a set of buffs for her at the moment. One of those will increase her mobility, overall though at least for a first set of changes we’re looking more to add baseline effectiveness to her. From the look of it we ended up being significantly too cautious about her balance overall.

Current changelist (note, work in progress, so not set in stone) looks like this:

HP / level 80 >>> 92
AD / Level 2.5 >>> 3.3
Q CD 18/16/14/12/10 >>> 16/14/12/10/8
W CD 21/19.5/18/16.5/15 >>> 19/18/17/16/15

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If you have any questions, feel free to ask me at @NoL_Chefo or e-mail me at