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Posts Tagged ‘Jungle’

 

Joining LGD in early December, Top Laner Jang “MaRin” Gyeong-Hwan and Jungler Xie “Eimy” Dan spoke with NoL on their transition into LGD, team synergy, the upcoming season, and more.

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MaRin

 

What was going through your head after you won the World Championship and the MVP of the event?

I was very happy over the fact that we had won, but I was even happier to have received MVP. I think that the KOO Tigers, who handed us a loss at the World Championship Final, were our most difficult opponents.

 

What is your biggest goal on LGD and what do you feel is your strongest attribute?

I left SK Telecom to experience new challenges. As long as I call pro gaming my profession, my constant goal is to win the World Championship. A “strength” would be that because I am living in a new environment, it’s more fun.

 

Are you already learning Chinese? What are you doing to overcome the language barrier, and do you plan to continue shotcalling in LGD alongside PYL?

I did buy a Chinese language book, but I didn’t have time so I couldn’t really learn much beforehand. I must now begin to learn, so I think I’ll be busy.

 

As for shotcalling, because we have to all play scrims and give/receive feedback to set our teamwork, I’m not quite sure yet.

 

Who do you consider your biggest rivals in the top lane?

I haven’t been able to scrim in China yet, so the only players that I’ve met are the ones that I’ve met while in tournaments or official matches. Therefore, I can’t choose a rival. Right now, I want to work hard with the mindset that everyone is a rival.

 

Who are you most looking forward to playing against in China? Why?

I’m looking forward to all of the teams, but Vici Gaming is a team I’m looking forward to playing the most. I think it’ll be fun because I was on the same team with Lee “Easyhoon” Ji-hoon, and now we’re facing each other as opponents.

 

What are your thoughts on Illaoi? Do you think we’ll see her played competitively?

I haven’t played Illaoi all that much, but I feel that she’s unable to use her strengths against ranged champions, and isn’t able to make all that much of an impact during team fights. I do think that if the player has researched and practiced Illaoi a lot, it can definitely be used in tournaments.

 

Anything else?

I don’t know Chinese all that much yet and haven’t had much practice, so the spring season opening is a bit of a worry. Regardless, I will try my hardest. I would be very thankful if you’d cheer for me and be patient, even if I show a lacking performance.

 

 

 

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 Eimy

 

You’ve qualified for the LPL on two separate occasions. Is there a bit of relief not having to qualify to compete this time?

I feel really lucky that I don’t need to qualify this time around, and I’m very grateful to LGD for giving me this chance to play with them in the LPL.

 

How did you get in contact with LGD and what led to your decision to join?

During the offseason I told my team Unlimited Potential that I was interested in changing team, so they told L.Ace I was available and interested in other clubs. That was how LGD knew I could be contacted. I chose to join LGD because I thought that I would fit well with the members of the team.

 

What do you hope to bring to LGD and accomplish in the season?

Right now I’m not yet sure what I can bring to LGD, but I’ll have a better idea once we start practicing. I hope that we can be the champions this spring season.

 

You have played with Heart and pAinEvil in the past. Does it feel good to play with former teammates and do you believe it will help the team to mesh faster?

I think that we’ll mesh together quickly again this time. Last time when I played with them we had good chemistry.

 

What is your take on the jungle in the preseason so far, and are you enjoying the faster pace of the game? Are there any specific changes you want to see to the jungle in Season 6?

I think that personally I can adapt well to any meta, no matter how much the pace of the game changes. As a jungler I’m also very team-focused, so I will adapt to my team. Personally for Season 6 I would maybe like to see some stronger jungle items, or some new jungle items.


Caymus is a journalist and content creator for SoloMid. You can find him getting caught out in the depths of solo queue, or on twitter talking about eSports.

Translations by: @LGDReira and @xoprestige

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When the 2016 North American LCS begins in January, Hai “Hai” Du Lam will be starting his third season under Cloud 9. Making a switch to the Jungle from Mid Lane in the middle of the Summer Split, Hai once again finds himself in a different role, this time as the teams Support. He spoke with NoL on changing roles, Cloud 9’s new roster, and more.

 

How are you enjoying support so far? Was there something in particular that was hard to adapt to?

It’s fun, it’s the role I hate the most in Solo Q but probably one of my more favorite ones to play in competitive. I think the main thing I have to adapt to is my “power level”, I’m significantly weaker in terms of power than I ever was before. So it makes it harder for me to do things on my own.

 

How did you enjoy your time as Jungle, though limited it may be? What was the biggest surprise in playing the role competitively for the first time?

It was fun! Definitely a bit different from mid, I was strong but still had to cater to people’s needs more so than when I played mid. I think the biggest surprise in the role is the fact that “strength of jungler” doesn’t matter as much as a ton of other junglers always brought it. For example, there are strong early game junglers but that doesn’t mean you keel over and can’t ward/gank, you just have to be smarter about what you’re doing.

 

What is your favorite support champion or lane combo to play as? Against?

I like play Alistar and Lucian/High kill pressure ADC. I like playing against kill lanes, doesn’t matter what support.

 

You’re known to be quite the shotcaller. Is is easier for you to direct the game from support as most people imply? What do you think it is that makes you stand out so much in terms of your ability to make the right call?

Well, it is easier since I don’t have to worry about losing the game if I’m too busy trying to figure out how to win the game. Generally when a support dies that doesn’t mean baron or turrets are gone, just you can’t fight. However when I died as mid/jungler, it did mean an objective was gone, so that’s nice. As far as my ability to shotcall, I’d say it has to come from the kind of person I am, my personality is a very dominant and confident one. When someone is consistently telling you what to do, and you win, you really have no reason not to follow that voice, no? So loyalty comes from success, and success comes from intelligence.

 

How has the team been adapting to the addition of Rush? What element does he add to the team that wasn’t there before?

We actually get along really well with Rush, the guy is a beast. Definitely a better jungler than me and reminds me of myself because he’s super aggressive albeit he makes a lot of dumb plays (which is fine). As long as I keep him in check with what he’s doing, he’s easily the best jungler in NA.

 

How has it been playing with BunnyFuFu and a two support system? We’ve seen a similar situation with teams in the past, but generally mid laners. Do you think having two players rotate can benefit any position?

I enjoy playing with Bunny a lot because for one, he adds a lot of stability to my stress/emotions outside of the game. We go to the gym together and I get along with him really well, he’s like a little brother to me because he’s basically a wide eyed deer staring into the vastness of the world. I think this system is nice because it lowers the stress level a lot and for us specifically, it helps alleviate my wrist issues that I still have. It’s nice to have a break/play not as much and have a reliable substitute.

 

With the introduction of the preseason patch, a lot has changed. How do you feel about the preseason so far and what are you loving/hating the most? Do you enjoy the shift towards a more AD centric meta?

I personally like the preseason due to a few reasons ;

They fixed the RNG waves at level 1, meaning sometimes a bot lane/top lane would get EXP off a minion due to no skill of their own and the other side wouldn’t. This swung the lane a lot and made it feel really bad to play.

They allowed teams to snowball better and be able to close out games more, you can’t really “farm in base” and hope for a comeback anymore. You get punished for playing passively, and I think that’s great.

As far as the meta I don’t necessarily see that much of a difference in terms of power for ADC, they feel the same to me. If fed/ignore, they kill you, if not, they die.

I enjoy no more Mordekaiser.

More mid laners and top laners are running ignite instead of Teleport now, this is good.

I like the trinket changes so far, less wards means more plays, which means the better team can control vision easier. (Minus baron baiting, that’s impossible with blue trinkets.)

There’s probably more but this is all I can think of for now.

 

What are your thoughts on the upcoming LCS season, with all of the new teams and wave of roster changes? Thoughts on the new TSM, particularly Yellowstar and his transition to NA?

My opinion of all the new teams/players is that I hope it elevates the level of play for NA. Anything to help our region grow is welcomed by me. There’s a lot of hype on Yellowstar being a great shotcaller, I want to see if their team lives up to that hype.

 

Which bot lanes do you want to play against the most in the LCS? Who do you rate as the strongest, based on current rosters?

I don’t really care about what lane I play against, we will win or die trying. (Sneaky and me are the best 100% chance, I’ll believe that whether I’m right or wrong.)

 

You’ll be competing at IEM Cologne soon, playing H2K in the first round. With h2k having recently completed a new roster, where do you stack up, particularly against VandeR/Forg1ven?

I actually know nothing about H2K’s new roster or EU’s power level after worlds, it’ll be interesting to see how things go. I’m excited to play support on stage for the first time though.

 

Cloud 9 to take the whole thing, right?

Of course, or we’ll do our damn best to.

 

Looking back at 2015, what is your favorite memory from the past year? Was switching roles twice the least expected thing to happen to you?

My favorite memory is probably qualifying for worlds, my entire team was just shocked and surprised we made it. I’m happy we went from almost being relegated to world’s contenders. My entire team/owner were pretty depressed before that whole chain of events, and to see the emotions change in such a short time is the reason why I played and still play. My teams happiness is extremely important to me.

 

Shoutouts?

Thanks for the interview and I’m looking forward to how our team develops and grows. For all my fans out there, thank you for sticking by my side through thick and thin. Cloud 9 for life, right guys? #Cloud9

 


Caymus is a journalist and content creator for SoloMid. You can find him getting caught out in the depths of solo queue, or on twitter talking about eSports.

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With Cloud 9 deciding to devote their time to preparation for IEM Cologne on December 16th,  Cloud 9  players Hai ‘Hai‘ Du Lam and Lee ‘Rush‘ Yoon-jae will be unable to attend the 2015 All-Star Event. Normally, Rush would have taken the place of Hai, who is now supporting for Cloud 9 after switching to jungle in the 2015 Summer Split. However, since both players are now on the same team and competing together at IEM, the spot goes to the 3rd place nominee. Receiving the third highest votes behind his fellow teammates, William ‘Meteos‘ Hartman will represent North America in the jungle at the ASE on December 10th.

Cloud 9 released a press statement explaining their reasoning behind the decision and addressed the perceived non overlap of dates between events:

 

Soon after the All-Star Event poll results began flooding in, it was clear that things were about to get complicated. While we were thrilled to see our players once again being recognized by fans, we were faced with a serious quandary: Is attending the ASE a viable option?

The short answer is yes. The dates of the ASE (Dec 10-13) do not directly interrupt our attendance and participation for IEM Cologne (Dec 16-21).

The long answer is no.  Unfortunately, the time commitment required for either Hai or Rush to attend the ASE is simply too disruptive to the teams preparation for IEM Cologne as the ASE runs for four days of public play and also includes extra preparation time off-stream. As the 3rd place vote receiver in the Jungle role, William “Meteos” Hartman has agreed to represent the North American LCS for the entirety of the event.

 

The 2015 All-Star Event takes place from December 10-13th in Los Angeles, California.

 

 

 

image credit: Cloud 9

 

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Looking back on the NA LCS playoffs, what would you have done differently? What do you believe you did well despite the outcome?

Our biggest mistake in the playoffs was not doing lane swaps correctly.  TSM got advantages out of lane swaps every game which put us at big disadvantages right away.

 

Heading into the summer split, what is your preparation like?

We have been scrimming as much as we can to get used to playing with our new roster.

 

What are your overall thoughts on MSI? How strong did you believe TSM was going in and whatdo you think went most wrong for them? Were you surprised by any of the other teams?

MSI was an interesting tournament, I think TSM was a little overconfident going into it and their loss against fnatic was hard on them mentally which rolled over into the rest of their matches in the group stage. AHQ played surprisingly well. In the past, Southeast Asia hasn’t done that well with the exception of TPA at season 2 worlds.

 

With Hai recently stepping down, what is the team dynamic like? Is there a lot of adjustments in adapting to playing with incarnati0n or is it more of him molding to the team?

The team dynamic is similar but I’ve had to step into the shotcalling role since Hai left. New rosters don’t run smoothly over night so it will take some time for everyone to adjust to the new lineup but it seems to be going in the right direction so far.

 

What is the biggest difference between Hai and Incarnati0n in the mid lane, so far?

Hai was a really selfless player who put a lot of emphasis on vision, roaming, and helping out everyone else on the team. Incarnati0n plays more of a carry style.

 

Hai was renowned for his shotcalling. Will you be assuming this role or will it be passed on to incarnati0n? What is the team doing to make sure communication stays on the same level or better with the loss of Hai?

I’ll be taking over the shot calling for the team. It was always a combined effort before with hai, where I covered most of the macro oriented shot calling while he did the micro stuff such as pulling the trigger for a fight or going for high risk plays. Those are things that I’m working on and hoping to have ironed out as soon as possible. I hope that the communication is good with the new roster. I think that our success as a team previously came not only from Hai’s shotcalling, but our ability as a team to listen to his calls without hesitation or resistance. We all had a lot a trust in Hai’s leadership so we followed him blindly and I hope the team will put the same level of trust in my calls.

 

Do you believe the current roster is a contender for worlds? What do you wish to improve on most individually? As a team?

Worlds is an entire split away and I haven’t even begun thinking about it. I think that everyone on the team is skilled individually but winning competitive matches goes way deeper than just mechanics. I’ll be happy with whatever result we get as long as we give it a perfect effort

 

How do you expect the newer teams, TDK and NME, to perform? Who do you see in the top 3 positions at the end of the split?

I haven’t played against TDK or NME in LCS yet so there’s no way to tell. They both looked good in the challenger series so only time will tell

 

How are you feeling on the current meta and state of the game overall? What changes, if any, would you like to see?

I think that Cinderhulk is interesting for the game because it changed up the champion pools but it has led to some weird stuff that I’m not a big fan of. I don’t like top laners running Smite or the fact that Warrior junglers get out scaled so hard by the % hp on Cinderhulk… I also really dislike any meta where Nunu is a top pick.

 

Describe your playstyle. Do you believe there is a “superior” way of jungling, or is there a way to make any style work within a team?

I don’t know if the way I play falls under a specific style. Limiting yourself to one style seems like a mistake so I try to be aggressive when I can and cautious when I need to be. I suppose you could say that my style is safer and more farm oriented than other junglers. I do not like going for high risk plays when I don’t have to and I care about vision control.

 

What changes do you expect to see with patch 5.10? What are your thoughts on 5.10?

I expect the top junglers to be nerfed, the patch is probably going to feel bad for a while but then I’ll get used to the nerfs.

 

What’s your current favorite champion and why?

My all time favorite champions to play are Elise and Zac. I originally started playing each of them because I enjoyed their play styles and I found a way to fit them into my competitive champion pool which yielded pretty good results until they were inevitably nerfed.

 

Thoughts on Zac? Will we see him return at any point this season?

I liked Zac when Cinderhulk first came out but since then I’ve liked him less and less. I think there are a few problems with Zac. First of all, if you play him in a traditional jungle style of ganking and warding for your lanes while buying Sightstone and Locket, you’ll be way too squishy for team fights and drop dead as soon as you jump in. The only way to be strong enough for team fights on Zac is to play selfishly which doesn’t put much pressure on the enemy team. Secondly, Zac’s E is almost impossible to hit given how much mobility and how many knock ups champions have nowadays. Lastly, Zac doesn’t do very much damage with a tank build and he’s easy to kite.

 

Shoutouts?

Thanks to our fans and sponsors for the continued support!

 


Tim Kimbirk is a content creator and interviewer for SoloMid. You can find him in the depths of solo queue, or on twitter talking about eSports.

 

 

Alexey “Alex Ich” Ichetovkin and Alberto “Crumbzz” Rengifo have come together to create a new Challenger team.

Long time veterans of the LoL scene, the two have crossed regions to join forces and compete in North America.


From the official announcement:

Rengifo and Ichetovkin will be joined by Maria “Yuno” Creveling in the support position. Creveling previously played for Team Roar’s bottom lane alongside Shan “Chaox” Huang.

The AD Carry and Top lane positions have yet to be finalized, but the team is currently scrimming with Ritchie “Intense” Ngo (AD Carry) and Oleksii “RF Legendary” Kuziuta (Top lane). Badawi states that the scrims so far have been going great but that the team is still considering all available options and accepting applications.


See the official announcement for complete details as well as a Q&A with team owner Chris Badawi.

 

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Summary

On the board forums,Ghostcrawler and Sotere discussed in length the current balance issues with League – mobility creep, an overtuned jungle and a lack of champion diversity. Over on Reddit, Lyte commented on the new Tribunal and what features will carry on from the old one. Lastly, we have a confirmation that Team Builder will be available for Ranked Games, a minor buff to Urgot coming soon, a discussion on champions with ‘bad identity’ and an awesome community spotlight showing Katarina’s daggers forged in real life.

 

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How do you want or expect this season to play out

Ghostcrawler New PortraitWe want more champ diversity. A lot of the preseason changes were made with the goal of having games play out differently. Overall we are happy with the changes made to towers, objectives and the jungle, but it hasn’t yet created the space for more champs. (I should add at least within one region – if you look world-wide, diversity is preety good, but that’s largely because different champs are getting played in different parts of the world.) We knew the changes would be disruptive, meaning it might take players a few patches to explore the best strategies to use in the new environment, but things are starting to settle in now and diversity isn’t where we want it to be.

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What do you mean by wanting strategic diversity

Ghostcrawler New PortraitStrategic diversity refers both to champs and to the game itself. If every game is won with a similar comp (even if the champs are different) or every games be becomes a 5 dragon stack, then the risk still exists that the third game you play feels exactly like the previous two. On the topic of champ diversity specifically, it’s not a reasonable expectation or a goal to have every champ played equally. Champs have different play styles and themes and that all factors in. But we can do better than we do today.

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How exactly do you plan on dealing with mobility creep

Ghostcrawler New PortraitMobility is fun and useful or we wouldnt’t keep adding it to kits. The problem is that too often it comes for free just to give a champ a little extra pizzazz. Roles that need a lot of mobility, like assassins, aren’t a huge problem, but roles that already bring a lot to the table, especially mages and ADCs, can be. Even with these it doesn’t need to be an ironclad rule that they can’t dash, but they do need to pay for it elsewhere in their power budget. For these champs, we are less likely to nerf their movement mechanic and more likely to reduce their damage, survivability or control to pay for the mechanic.

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Would you agree the jungle is currently overtuned

Sotere New PortraitWe are constantly following up on the state of the jungle. Turret shields also have changes on the docket for 5.05. Giving players time to figure out changes could be construed a number of ways. Should we not change the jungle, and leave Turret Shields exactly the way they are such that players innovate around those changes?

I frequently think about and ask others in the office: what would happen to the game if we (Riot) took our hands off the wheel for a year? Would it be a better or worse game? Undoubtedly, players would innovate and we’d see some very creative meta manifestations. Overall, though, I’m confident that we do more good than harm with our updates.

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Sotere New PortraitIt is fair criticism that we overly focus on the jungle and not on the champions. I would say (as someone who works more on the jungle/systems side) we believe that the jungle can be a place that caters more favorably to tanks and that is something we have not yet delivered on.

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How do you feel about people saying that towers are too weak

Sotere New PortraitI can understand why people feel this way: we have a lot of tools available in the game to destroy turrets quickly. Full tanks, which are pretty common, can also sit and tank a lot of turret shots. However, I’m fairly confident that turrets are just all around stronger than they were before the season swap. So much so that it might have deleterious effects on the game as a whole. This is actually the most troubling mismatch of perception to power for me in the game at the moment.

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How do you feel champion diversity relates to the LCS

Sotere New PortraitThe LCS (and pro play across the world) impacts player perception and thus play rate pretty dramatically. It is hard to imagine a world where pro play has little diversity but common play does. This makes it tricky, because pros have a lot of legitimate reasons to not add a ton of variety into their play. They often use picks to steal away high priority champions from the enemy team. Teams, imo, also get advantages by practicing with similar squads in repetition, so ‘surprise’ picks are less valuable.

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Are you OK with the same champions being played most of the time

Sotere New PortraitI definitely want to see more diversity. I think even if we get champion diversity to a state where it’s “okay” in our view, we’ll still see some repetition in picks. I think balance issues are the primary culprit, though there have been some cases where professional play stubbornly would not adopt certain champions and held onto others too long.

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Do you think mobility like that of Kalista and Yasuo is good for the game

Sotere New PortraitJust wanted to touch on one point here: while they are ‘free’ in the sense that they don’t cost a resource most of the time, they are much more conditional than Kassadin. He has freedom to move any direction he wants. Yasuo can only dash into enemy targets, Kalista needs something to hit to access most of her extra mobility. To that end, they’re probably more healthy.

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If Kalistas mobility becomes a problem would you nerf her free jump from Q

ISotere New Portrait probably wouldn’t be the one to give insight to CertainlyT for her future balancing. I don’t have particularly great insights into her play. That said, Pierce is one of the things I would be least excited to see changed.

When he was in ideation he got me into a conversation about her. He asked, (paraphrasing of course) “shadow isles evil-ish marksman, what weapon do they use?” I said spear. He said he’d already settled on that but was just making sure it made sense. Then he was like, “when you think of a spear thrower, what excites you about what they do?” My response was that I really liked in movies when the character launches the spear after throwing their whole body (jumping) into it. The extra momentum really sells the use of the weapon for me. I think Pierce sells that fantasy the most for me.

In her development she also would do more damage when moving forward with her passive, which I thought made a lot of thematic sense.

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I miss doing Tribunal work

Lyte Final PortraitEvery once in awhile, I see a thread like this and it’s a 🙁 day.

Tribunal’s been down for 9 months, and we know that’s a long time. However, player behavior in League has been at record bests due to a few different systems that were implemented while Tribunal is being re-worked.

1) The new LeaverBuster has been out for 2 months now, and has pushed leavers/AFKs to a record low in the history of League. I’m hoping to share more data around this when we wrap up analyses.

2) The machine learning system has been extremely aggressive at combating racism, homophobia, sexism and death threats. Right now, these types of behaviors show up in approximately 2% of games globally. An interesting “test” is to think about your last few games, and think about the last time you actually saw someone use the “n” word, or c*nt, or similar obscene phrases.

3) There is a new intentional feeder detection system that has been banning out intentional feeders outright. We have a record low in number of players who are actually intentionally feeding (the old days of 0-20 and 5 Zeals are gone).

But, this is not an excuse for the Tribunal’s delay. It just turns out that re-working the Tribunal required re-working several foundational pieces of League, such as the Report System’s backend, how chat logs are generated on the platform, and how websites/front-ends are created across every server. When players think of “just” re-working the Tribunal, they don’t think about all these other pieces which are each complex systems.

In addition to the above, the new Tribunal will have the ability for players to review positive behaviors and reward players with in-game bonuses, and some algorithmic upgrades to improve efficiency of the system, accuracy in detecting troll voters, and improves overall system accuracy.

I’m happy to answer some questions for a bit tonight, but apologize for the delay in the system coming back.

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Being personally involved in cases feels rewarding

Lyte Final PortraitWe completely agree, there’s huge value in the ability for players to directly contribute to the community standards, whether it’s rewards or punishments.

Part of the re-work is actually re-working the Justice Review (the place players can visit to see their contributions to the community overall). What are some stats that players would like to see on the Justice Review?

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The Justice Rating made me feel bettering the community was worth it

Lyte Final PortraitThanks for the feedback. You’ll be happy to hear that we agree with a lot of it, and # of cases judged correctly, total number of cases, and toxic days prevented are staying.

In addition, we’re adding number of positive players you influenced (after all, it’s pretty awesome to know you made someone’s day!). We’re currently back and forth about what to do with the Justice Rating and Longest Streaks and whether we just need to change the definition of those things to motivate players to always make the best decision instead of what they think will increase these numbers.

The Tribunal’s tuning was always on the conservative side; toxic players might not agree and once in awhile you used to see these players complain on Reddit, but the system was always tuned such that we’d rather err on the cautious side and make sure no innocent players received a penalty instead of trying to target all known negative behaviors. Perhaps in the future we can allow top Tribunal voters (in terms of accuracy + engagement) be able to flag cases for our Player Support if the verdicts were wrong. We’ll see.

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Leaverbuster doesnt work leavers should be handled by the Tribunal

Lyte Final PortraitWe agree, there will always be some amount of emergency AFKs/Leavers.

However, before LeaverBuster, there were a lot of intentional leavers as well; surprisingly, a lot of players came from FPS/MMOs/etc where leaving really had no penalty, so they just Alt-F4’d or left in League thinking there were no penalties for MOBAs either.

We had to tackle that problem first, then it becomes a question of what should we do when there is the rare 4v5 match. We have some solutions in mind already, but want to see how LeaverBuster shakes out, and what the remaining issues are with leavers/AFKs.

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Upcoming minor buff to Urgot

Meddler Final PortraitWe’re going to try a small mana ratio on his shield in testing soon. That was something that showed some promise when tried briefly last time we were testing possible changes for Urgot. Didn’t proceed with it at the time due to a desire to focus on other things first and see what impact those had. The last set of changes certainly didn’t overbuff him though, so we’re going to look at it again.

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Do you think a champion can have a bad identity that can only be reworked

Meddler Final PortraitI’d argue it’s definitely possible to have a champion with a core identity that isn’t worth keeping. This will be a bit hyperbolic, but imagine a champion that was built around the core idea of ‘complete randomness’, expressed through things like a passive that reads ‘When attacking champions you have a 50% change to kill yourself per auto attack and a 50% chance to kill your target’. There’s a really distinct identity there, but it’s not one that’s going to result in good gameplay.

That’s a pretty extreme example though of course, and one that assumes something went really, really wrong during a champ’s development. Being more realistic, what we tend to see are problems with how an identity is executed on, more than problems with core identity. Old Soraka was a strong example of this. Soraka’s identity has always been as the healerest healer in LoL (even if she hasn’t necessarily always putting out the most actual healing). Her old, old kit however, that allowed her to spend mana to heal an ally and then top up her own mana for free, resulted in some lanes where nothing really happened. In some match ups Soraka’s lane couldn’t kill you, but damage dealt to her or her ADC didn’t stick, resulting in low action farm fests. Our conclusion there, eventually, was that ‘dedicated healer’ was a solid identity it was appropriate to include, but that it needed to be done in a way that didn’t nullify past action as strongly. As a result Soraka’s recent rework allowed her to put out significantly more healing per second, but at the expense of her own health, avoiding stagnant lanes. Same foundational concept, pretty different execution on it basically.

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 Why are Veigars changes locked for Patch 5 4

Meddler Final PortraitIn case it’s unclear the changes aren’t necessarily ‘permanent’ but they are what’s going into patch 5.4. Locked in this context means we’ve reached the patch deadline and can no longer make changes to content going out in it. We’re confident enough in this direction for Veigar that we think it’s appropriate to put the changes out, assess how he performs and then adjust as appropriate in following patches.

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Team Builder coming to Ranked Games

Lyte Final PortraitWe’re working on a Team Builder version of Ranked that is just selecting positions. That system in particular should help address problems like the one you noted.

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Follow Up

Can you explain how the system will work for Ranked

Lyte Final PortraitWe are locking down the final designs of Ranked Team Builder, so it’s still too early to talk about it!

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DJ Sona QA on February 24

DJ Sona’s tech crew steps out from behind the curtain for a question and answer session at 12:00 PSTon February 24. If you’re looking to go backstage with DJ Sona and the rest of the skins team, swing by with your questions!

If you missed DJ Sona’s opening set, get all the details on League’s premier disc jockey here.

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How to make Katarinas Daggers

Here’s some amazing blacksmith skills brought to the world of League:

 

 

 

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

 

 

News 08 10 Banner

 

Summary

The balance team has detailed major balance changes to objectives and items during preseason, including a Dragon Buff and the removal of Dragon gold, an item that helps with split-pushing, updates to existing items and lots more. Following yesterday’s post regarding the NA server infrastructure upgrade in November, we now have a list of goals Riot wants to accomplish to ensure stability in the server region. Lastly, we have some clarity on the upcoming jungle items during preseason, one of which will be able to Smite champions.

TL;DR in featured comments.

 

Recent News

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Jungle-Changes-Banner (1)

NA-Servers-Banner

 

 

Preseason 2015 Banner

 

 

Feral Pony New PortraitHi there!

Riot Reinboom and Feral Pony here to bring you an objective look at the objective changes we’re making for the 2015 season.

Philosophically, our big goal this season is to encourage more strategic diversity in League of Legends. This touches a lot of different areas but it all boils down to making your high level decisions matter (versus tactical decisions like last hitting, fight mechanics, etc). What champions can I bring? Where do I go on the map? How do I respond when the enemy team takes an objective? What can I do now that we’ve secured dragon? How does my build impact my interactions on the map? These things currently do matter, but we feel there’s room for improvement and we’re excited to explore some of these opportunities with you.

Along with this goal, we also want to ensure that we have more options in place to better balance the game. We want to be able to tone down problematic strategies and enhance weaker strategies without having to nerf or buff every champion involved in that particular playstyle (if anyone remembers Shen or Rengar pre-rework).

It’s kind of hard to talk about these changes without directly referencing some specifics, so I’ll highlight a few changes that speak to the above philosophy. Also worth repeating: all of the below are rough examples and very subject to change / may not even ship!:

One opportunity we have is examining the currently similar rewards of Dragon and Turrets – that is, gold. Often teams will trade these objectives and end up in roughly the same spot that they were at prior. Our hope is that by differentiating these rewards when a trade occurs, both teams can end up with different strengths and options as to how they progress the game from that point on.

Dragon

In more specifics: we’re going to be piloting a change where killing the Dragon grants a permanent “Dragon Blooded” buff that increases in power and function as your team kills more dragons. Since this reward increases the more times a team slays the Dragon, this puts an increasing value on the Dragon as the game progresses, both for the dragon-slaying team seeking greater buffs and for the opposing team trying to prevent them from powering up to take the victory. This change should add additional tension as the game progresses while also keeping the Dragon a more relevant objective as the game continues.

Turrets

With Turrets, we took a slightly different perspective. They already do their job well when it comes to shaking up the game; taking a turret means the enemy has less vision and defense to return to, and their playstyle changes accordingly.

So instead of changing the reward, we wanted to take a look at how teams were taking turrets. Our current idea is based on the concept that teams will need to play slightly different with each turret layer they encounter. For example, a strong split pushing team might be well-equipped at taking outer turrets but will need to switch up their tactics as the fight moves deeper into the enemy base. This allows for more variety when a team is trying to opt into a fast-pushing strategy, as they’ll have multiple layers of objectives to account for.

And more to come

The above are just two examples of the space we’re investigating when it comes to strategic diversity in League of Legends. There’s a lot more on our preseason plate as we look to things like Baron Nashor, early game objectives versus late, new forms of objective rewards (e.g. map utility), and more.

In the end, our hope is that by creating uniquely incomparable rewards for different objectives, we’ll be able to differentiate each game based on the accomplishments therein. A team who controls map objectives and wins by mounting pressure should see victory in a different way than a team who, for example, fast-pushes their way to a win.

Also remember that objectives aren’t the only way we can pursue this goal. While Fearless and Axes spoke about the new item changes for the jungle in the 2015 preseason, we also have a some additional changes to items to assist with the above goals, so without further ado…

Hi!

We’re back again with news of what’s in store for items with season 2015.

A Choice Most Strategic

When we looked at all of the high-level strategic opportunities in League, some questions and opportunities arose. Through items, could we follow the same path as objectives in allowing teams to opt into different strategies? Where would the meaningful choices be found? What would they be? Could there be a method to protect yourself against opposing strategies?

We set out to investigate.

Ultimately, the philosophy we’re pursuing with preseason items feeds into the same goals as before: strategic diversity. As such, we want to create and retune items with a specific focus on macro-level value (ie: pre-fight, or out of combat) over micro-level contributions (more on this in a sec). If more teams can pick up the items they need to change course in a game (ie: switching to split pushing or sieging through item purchases rather than relying purely on champion composition), we hope to provide the right tools for strategic innovation to prosper in League of Legends.

‘Macro’ items versus ‘micro’ items

As a foreword: you can think of this preseason patch as a light ‘macro’ item revamp, in that we’re looking to create items that interact and enhance the broader game: a team’s ability to siege, initiate, split push, recover from a siege, etc, rather than items that interact on a fight-to-fight basis, like Zhonya’s Hourglass or Locket of the Iron Solari. By focusing our efforts here, we hope to see teams really branching out in terms of innovative strategies, and that we’ve created the proper ecosystem for opponents to react with unique responses of their own.

Radiant Glory

For soft initiation tanks, it can be tough to opt into the play pattern you’re expected to excel at (that is, aggressive initiation) if you’re not ahead. Historically, the ability to initiate with tanky ‘run-at-you’ champions was provided in the form of an old item of yore, “Shurelya’s Reverie.” The speed boost from Shurelya’s was often good enough for champions like Olaf to get into a fight without having to rely on Flash or Ghost. We want to give that strategic opportunity back while also focusing its design.

Zz’rot Portal

We want to give tanky dudes a way to rapidly devour turrets. With minions. As a team, opting in to a split push is your choice and we didn’t want to lock that in just at champ select. This items allows for better split pushing, as it spawns little dudes who go on to assault nearby turrets.

Warmog’s Armor

An example where we’re trying to find strategic power in items that already exist is something like Warmog’s Armor, where we’re tripling its out-of-combat regeneration (although we’ll be reducing its maximum health bonus). The big goal here was to create an item with a strong focus on skirmishing and poke recovery rather than simply being a pile of regenerating combat stats. As to what strengths a Warmog’s purchase will offer, well, we’re leaving it to you to discover!

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When will we see the stats of these new items

Feral Pony New PortraitWe’re not quite as new item heavy this preseason as we have been in previous seasons overall, but we’ll have specific numbers and changes as the game as we move onto PBE.

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What stats will Radiant Glory give

Feral Pony New PortraitNo CDR currently, but yes health and mana. It builds out of Catalyst atm.

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Won’t the split-push portal item be problematic

LtRandolph New PortraitThere is some amount of space for an item that helps a non-split-pushy champ split push that an innately split-pushy champ wouldn’t want. I would imagine that a Tryndamere would opt into just hitting faster and harder, rather than getting little helpers via the Portal. But a Maokai who’s going full tanky would be more likely to want some company.

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Will Dragon still grant gold after these changes

Reinboom New PortraitThe last hitter gets the standard 25 gold. Otherwise – no. This could still change after some testing.

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Feral Pony New PortraitIt does not currently give global gold. The dragon bonus is instead of the large sum of gold.

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Won’t this Dragon buff lead to very one-sided matches

LtRandolph New PortraitOne thing to keep in mind is that dragon is already snowbally, just in a hidden and not very clearly differentiated way. By shifting power from global gold into other forms of power, it makes choosing between a tower and a dragon, for example, a much more interesting choice.

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Reinboom New PortraitThey serve differing purposes now and their value is individualized to each team.

In some cases, you really need to setup and burn your control to ensure you get the next dragon fight, even if it might cost you baron.

Individually, Baron is still the boss of the map and the star of the “man, I really want to make this river purple” show, and as such still holds a generally stronger overall benefit.

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NA Servers Banner 2

 

 

RiotPDB New PortraitHey, everyone. I’m on the NA projects team and we want to clarify plans around NA’s future as a server. Currently, service is not equal across the region, and that sucks. Even worse, it feels like we’ve talked about plans to improve things for a long, long time with no real visible action taken. We currently have multiple projects aimed at addressing ping issues in NA, so read on.

 

Yesterday, we were so excited to start talking about the new server infrastructure build, but we chose our words poorly. While technically we’re rebuilding the servers from the ground up somewhere new, the word “migration” naturally sounds like we’re moving to a central location, which we’re not ready for just yet.

We want to apologize for the confusion, and do more than say “we’re working on it,” because you’ve all heard that before. Allow us to put the infrastructure rebuild into context and map out the three-phase plan we’ve outlined for NA. We can’t promise to dish details about everything because we’re still finalizing some projects, but we can give you a better idea of what we’re doing behind the curtain.

Right now, there are three main issues with the NA server environment:

  1. Out-of-date infrastructure (poor stability)
  2. ISP traffic routing (network optimization)
  3. Server location (ping distribution)

Ideally, we’d tackle all three at the same time, but these are big changes and we want to make sure we’re getting each one right before moving on to the next step. Measure twice, cut once.

  1. The Infrastructure team is leading the charge on building a new server infrastructurefrom the ground up to make sure the game experience is stable and more secure. Instability causes cascading problems like fluctuating ping, downtime, and poor service, so we want to address this challenge first. Expect a more stable connection on these shiny, sturdy servers this November.

  2. The Internet Optimization team is actively working with ISPs across the US and Canada to build what’s known as an internet backbone for League players. This backbone will decrease variances and chokepoints in connections across the region, resulting in a better optimized connection to those shiny new servers. Expect these internet superhighways to roll out in early 2015.

  3. Finally, our team is dedicated to scoping out what will ultimately be the new locationthat the NA servers and optimized backbone connections will call home. We aren’t ready to share where this new home will be or when this project team will be ready for prime-time, but we want you to know that the ultimate goal is providing a comparable, stable ping no matter which coast you’re playing from. As these first two projects finalize, we’ll know more and will be ready to share additional details.

Stay tuned for more info from us in the future!

  • RiotPDB, NA Projects Team

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Taric Banner


 

 

IronStylus Final PortraitGot my eyes on him as of late. This isn’t at all a confirmation of any release or production work any time soon, we’re just snooping around the concept potential now.

A lot of people have a lot of different opinions on Taric, and many of them differ. This discussion has been had before, I’m sure it will be had again, but I’d like have you guys spitball some ideas. This isn’t a mechanics discussion as much as it’s an art and theme discussion. Taric as a character, visually and thematically.

There’s a lot of nuance that people have gleaned from our Gem Knight, despite him being quite the old and outdated asset. Pizza feet, a whole 16 VO lines and a whole lotta gems. The line that we always have to walk is how to we retain/enhance/reconstruct what makes that champion special while also doing the hard work of an overhaul, which objectively, the character needs.

I maintain that Taric is an interesting and complex case. Almost a blank canvas due to how low fidelity and limited his in-game assets are and even the supporting story and themes around him. However, many people see different things when they see Taric. Be they enthusiasts or newcomers. It can be difficult to parse what’s objective reality and what’s been created and filled in by the player. Currently, one of my assumptions is that so many people have different projections as to what Taric is because right now there’s no solid foundation as he exists. You can pretty much project whatever you like to on him, and currently, that projection tends to be a bit of a joke.

Despite that, there’s great opportunity with Taric. But the question is.. what sort of opportunity? What do you see as important aspects to consider, to build upon, or to remake when it comes to Taric?

What would you do? Feel free to throw reference imagery here, personality write-ups, or just drop your 2 cents.

Thanks, guys!

EDIT: You guys are awesome. I’m reading every single one of these comments, just so you know. Keep them coming and don’t be hesitent to post even if it’s far down. I’m still skimming and reading! Gunna start another thread to ask for some reference that players think would help define Taric’s look. Thanks again!

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Part 2 - Images you relate to Taric
IronStylus Final PortraitHey guys,

So that other Taric thread is an amazing gold mine (or should I say GEM MINE! AHH? GET IT? Anyways..) of ideas and suggestions. The sentiments and discussions are absolutely fascinating and extremely helpful. I’m always floored by how insightful and thoughtful, you, our players are, and how in depth you go. You have no idea how valuable that insight is.

What I’d like to ask for here is reference. As artists we constantly look at reference imagery for a number of reasons. Sometimes it’s to look at anatomy, to make sure we’re creating a body correctly. Other times it’s for light or color, so we can see how a scheme will serve an illustration. In this case however, I’m looking for design reference.

What does that mean? Armor! Gems! Motifs! Flourishes! Portraits! Anything that could be pointed to and said “Hey, I think Taric could incorporate elements from this!”, or, “This image really hits me in the feels, those are the sort of feels I want to feel when I look at Taric.”

So while the last thread (which is still going strong, please continue to post in there) there was a lot of visual suggestions, explanations in written format sorta dominated. That’s totally fine. Here I’d love to see you throw some images at me!

Thanks!

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Jungle Items Banner

 

 

Missed the preseason jungle news? Here’s the announcement:

Jungle-Changes-Banner

 

 

Can you give us details on these new jungle items

Riot Axes New PortraitThe items will focus on your job as the jungler, augmenting the kinds of actions junglers need to take (invasion, ganking, etc). Can’t promise no junglers will ever just disappear into their jungle to farm forever, but the items generally encourage you to take action, not avoid it.

 

Now, a successful counterjungler on one team might mean relatively few ganks for lanes – but it will be because of another pvp match happening on the map (directly through combat or indirectly through camp stealing), not because the junglers aren’t interested in participating in a pvp game until 30 minutes go by or anything like that. We are looking at ways to let control of the jungle translate into better ability for your laners to roam, but that kind of system would be pretty light and you would not see ganking at today’s frequency.

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Fearless New PortraitSo, we don’t want to throw out too many details, just because there are a ton of elements in actual flux, and setting the expectation that anything is for sure, or here to stay is a real risk when we release details.

With the caveat that this could still get pulled, changed, etc., one of the new jungle items allows you to use your Smite on enemy champions. Still figuring out what effect is going to be (damage + slow, just a crazy slow, ???). Mainly just very excited about the patterns that emerge when Smite has more pulls on its usage so that Smite becomes a multidimensional choice.

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

 

 

Jungle Changes Banner

The jungle is getting a major overhaul for Season 5; here are the changes we can expect on the PBE soon:

 

 

Here’s a link to a shorter version of the upcoming changes:

 

Fearless New PortraitHi all!

Riot Fearless and Axes here to talk about our goals for the jungle. In the 2015 preseason, we want to improve strategic diversity: both in which champions can get played in the jungle andwhat different options each one has.

This season, a jungler’s perceived strength is largely tied to their ability to gank. While there are those who are functionally better at clearing / counter-jungling / objective control than others, the impact that ganking junglers have can really overshadow other strengths.

To explain more: slow, health-focused junglers quickly lose their advantage after their first purchase because there’s so much sustain built into tier one jungle items. Objective-focused junglers rarely have the opportunity to flex their muscles when a ganking jungler can kill a lane and then take the objective with less risk. Finally, I’m sure all of you remember when we introduced Feral Flare to support heavy farming junglers, but quickly toned it down after release. It was here we realized we needed a larger suite of changes to make these different strategies actually viable, and we’re hoping that this preseason will be our opportunity to do that.

So what’s all this mean?

First, we’re going to be increasing the number of objectives for junglers to take and control, with the goal of giving them more tools to set up plays in a game. We’ll be testing a concept where each camp gives an extra reward when Smite is used on it, with rewards like counter-jungling protection, increased lane safety, or increased vision control of the map. These mini-objectives should create more variance in jungle routes while also leading to more jungler vs. jungler interaction.

Second, we’re planning to increase the base difficulty of the jungle. Up front: this does make the jungle a more complex place (especially for those new to it), but this is something we feel will be necessary as we continue to promote real diversity in the position. Ultimately we want to create a world where a player can pick up Xin Zhao, Warwick, or Hecarim in the jungle just as easily as they can find a place for Elise, Lee Sin, or Kha’Zix. By increasing the durability and damage of jungle camps, junglers will start to value a wider array of strengths. Jungle clear speeds end up having greater differentiation and gradation; area-effect vs. single target, sustained vs. burst, etc, where previously most had enough power to take any camp with similar, minimal costs. The balance between healthy jungling and fast jungling becomes extremely important as high sustain junglers can clear with less risk while fast junglers have the potential for big payoffs alongside higher chances of disruption.

Changes to the the jungle, however, are only half the story. To talk about jungle items, we have Riot Axes:

Right now, jungle items are almost entirely role-based – you’re a Fighter, you want Spirit of the Elder Lizard. There’s a little bit of flexibility, but you’re pretty much buying your baseline clearing power plus the stats you want most later in the game.

In the 2015 preseason, we want to overhaul jungle items to support all sorts of different playstyles. These new items will be oriented around how you want to specialize as a jungler rather than what kind of role you’ll fill later in the game. Your jungle item choice will give you more power as a ganker, say, or more incentive to invade the enemy jungle to steal camps.

Our hope is that some junglers might use these new items to ‘double down’ on their pre-existing strengths while others will use them to shore up some of their weaknesses. In the end, each will have to make a tradeoff. The premiere ganker who also buys ganking jungle items might run into trouble when being counter-jungled, while the jack-of-all-trades might have extra difficulties in a 2v2 gank against their specialized opponent.

Items also matter for the late game, of course, so we want your jungle items to upgrade into powerful and unique items that matter. We’re currently exploring an enchantment system – similar to that used on boots – with enchantments providing the late game power that you can expect from a real item without compromising your meaningful choices of jungler strengths.

Bottom line, we want you to be able to opt into the jungle strategy that best suits you and your team before then customizing your items to fit your champion later in the game. We want to make jungling more engaging by offering you real choices in how you go about taking camps, purchasing items, and punching/slapping/stabbing/smashing/anchoring/biting/draining/ponying/burning/puncturing/clawing/kicking/hugging your enemies in the face.

We hope you’ll check out these changes on the PBE, and let us know if we’re heading toward that target.

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Won’t these changes hurt the clear speed of tanky  junglers

Fearless New PortraitThe systematic changes are very likely to cause some champs to have real trouble clearing, and some champs to do too well. As we get further along and start to have more data, we’ll be making champion changes if needed.

That being said, we’re expecting to see a lot more variance in the health and speed of junglers in their clear, especially in the cases of people who have crazy gank or team fight power.

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So there’ll be a mix of camps for different jungler types

Fearless New PortraitPart of the goal of the changes, along with the preseason changes more generally, is to give us better mechanics on the design side to adjust the power level of playstyles that are lacking. In regard to tank junglers specifically Fearless and Axes have a number of mechanics in place that can be used to assist “tanky” junglers as a class should they prove too weak or underwhelming.

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

 

 

Introduce yourself!

 Hello I am Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski, I am Polish and I play Jungle for Team ROCCAT in the European LCS.

 

You finished 3rd in the playoffs, but you’ve had a rough season so far? What’s going on?

 We are underperforming because we did not really adapt to the new meta, but we are playing a lot right now which hopefully will lead with us catching up and managing to fight for the top spots

 

What do you think are the biggest issues in the team? What influences your play the most?

 Our individual decision making is currently not on par with the other teams. Our team fights are lacking the microgame, so we are trying to improve it.

 

Do you think the team can recover? Is going to worlds still in your crosshairs?

 We are doing our best to recover, I think we are on the way on getting back competing for the best slots, and I definitely think that we will be fighting for a worlds spot at the playoffs!

 

How does the team operate in game? Who is responsible for primary shotcalling? What is your mindset like entering a game?

 I think main shotcallers are me and Overpow, but everyone has its calls and ideas in game. We do not limit ourselves to one or two persons, we all have our tasks during the game.

And about the mindset – #ROCCATFIGHTING

 

How do you deal with criticism on social media/from fans? Is it hard or demotivating, or do you take it and use it positively?

 Lately people are actually trying to help us rather than criticize and bash on us. Which i think its quite helpful for us. People are trying to cheer us up on our social media rather than flaming us for losing. And usually those things dont really affect me in a bad way.

 

The tables seemed to have shifted quite a bit. How big of a skill difference do you believe there is between the top half of teams and the bottom half?

 I think SK and Alliance are ahead of the rest right now, but most of the teams right now are able to catch up with them with the time if they continue adapting the way they are right now. I think we are one of those teams that can catch up to them.

 

How strong is Alliance? Do you think they are still only warming up? What’s it like playing against Shook, who shares a similar champion pool to you?

 

Alliance is currently the best team in Europe. Most of their players solo skills are the best in the region and not only that but right now they are even good with their team play and rotations. I don’t see anyone beating them for now in EU. Shook is the best jungle in European LCS and I really like to play against him because i learn new stuff, and it is always a challenge.

 

You seem to be relying on old favorites in the jungle. Is this personal or team preference?

 I think everyone right now is relying on the old champions like Elise, Lee and Eve. They are just the best options right now for the jungle, and those are anyways my personal favorites.

 

What do you feel are the most viable junglers right now in competitive play, and do you think we will be seeing anything new?

 If the 3 OP’s are not available, we might see Rengar, Jarvan, Vi, Skarner – but you need to build a team around them specifically for them to be as useful in game.

 

Shoutouts?

 I want to thank all the people that support us even when we are losing – that means a lot to us! Also i would like to thank ROCCAT and AMD for the continued trust and support, without them we wouldn’t be able to be where we are. Also a big thanks to my girlfriend for supporting me and being there for me!

 

Top Tier Korean Solo Queue Banner

 Note: This article was not written by me, but by a friend of mine who’d like to write for the site.

 

 Hey everyone. In this article I’ll go over last month’s top 5 Champions for each role in Korean Diamond Solo queue. I will list each pick’s win rate, games played and Kills-Deaths-Assists (KDA) ratio so you have a clear idea of each Champion’s potential. There are a lot of unorthodox picks that Koreans use to dominate; personally, I didn’t expect to see some of them make the top 5. Keep reading and find out who the hidden overpowered picks are and why you should consider them for climbing the ladder.

Jungling is my main role, so I’ll start with Korea’s top junglers.

 

 

Top 5 Jungle Picks

 

Fiddlesticks New Portrait

  • 54.39% Win Rate
  • 45,390 Games Played
  • 2.66:1 KDA

 

Pantheon New Portrait

  • 53.48% Win Rate
  • 30,389 Games Played
  • 2.61:1 KDA

 

Shaco New Portrait

  • 53.45% Win Rate
  • 14,747 Games Played
  • 2.53:1 KDA

 

Wukong New Portrait

  • 53.38% Win Rate
  • 8,606 Games Played
  • 2.56:1 KDA

 

Jarvan IV New Portrait

  • 52.54% Win Rate
  • 71,950 Games Played
  • 3.40:1 KDA

 

Before we begin: I know Fiddlesticks can be played support and Wukong, Jarvan and Pantheon can be played top or mid, but the key word here is can. In the majority of games you will see these picks in the jungle. I was honestly surprised when I saw Fiddle and Shaco in the top 5, because they are some of the hardest junglers to play properly. Fiddlesticks and Shaco have always been strong and can still carry an entire team, but only if you are really experienced with them.  They have a plethora of weaknesses your enemies can exploit. so unless you really know what you are doing, I wouldn’t advise playing them in Ranked.

The rest – Pantheon, Wukong and Jarvan IV – as aggressive junglers with a solid early game, are pretty straightforward. They’re not hard to pick up and, as such, get a solid recommendation from me, even if you’re just now exploring jungle picks and don’t have experience playing them.

 

 

Top 5 Mid Picks

 

Note: Kayle data is irrelevant.

 

Talon New Portrait

  • 56.15% Win Rate
  • 18,546 Games Played
  • 2.55:1 KDA

 

Akali New Portrait

  • 54.99% Win Rate
  • 15,934 Games Played
  • 2.31:1 KDA

 

Kayle New Portrait

  • 54.96% Win Rate
  • 35,947 Games Played
  • 2.46:1 KDA

 

Brand New Portrait

  • 53.64% Win Rate
  • 6,469 Games Played
  • 2.38:1 KDA

 

Katarina New Portrait

  • 53.43% Win Rate
  • 35,311 Games Played
  • 2.84:1 KDA

 

Xerath New Portrait

  • 52.16% Win Rate
  • 16,362 Games Played
  • 3.13:1 KDA

 

 Seeing Kayle in the top 5 comes as a shock to no one, but if you’re thinking about playing her, let me stop you right there. In the last week Kayle has dropped down to a 47.99% win rate due to the recent nerfs and I would advise against playing her, at least until she receives some buffs or a new overpowered build is found on her. For these reasons, I’ve included Xerath to fill the missing spot.

 Talon has been a great pick for the assassin role ever since Zed got nerfed. I was most surprised to see Akali and Brand in the top 5. Whenever I’m forced to play mid I tend to pick Akali and I have a pretty good win rate with her (57.1%). That I don’t play laners at all and still manage to do well with Akali should be an indicator that she’s worth considering in Solo Queue. It bears reminding that Akali and Talon can be played in other lanes, but tend to do way better on mid.

 Also, Katarina and Xerath. Xerath has been gaining popularity and even our lord Faker himself has started to play him. All in all some pretty interesting and unexpected mid laners have become popular in the Korean scene and if you’re wondering what to play you should give them a shot.

 

 

Top 5 Top Picks

 

Rumble New Portrait

  • 55.99% Win Rate
  • 14,382 Games Played
  • 2.69:1 KDA

 

Fiora New Portrait

  • 53.35% Win Rate
  • 4,887 Games Played
  • 1.88:1 KDA

 

Lulu New Portrait

  • 53.35% Win Rate
  • 52,419 Games Played
  • 3.14:1 KDA

 

Riven New Portrait

  • 52.50% Win Rate
  • 64,130 Games Played
  • 2.18:1 KDA

 

Tryndamere New Portrait

  • 51.64% Win Rate
  • 8,390 Games Played
  • 1.87:1 KDA

 

 The reason I put Lulu as a top and not a mid laner in my ranking is because I rarely ever see her mid and from watching the pros they also mostly put her top nowadays. As for the fifth place, I was debating between Tryndamere and Ryze, but Ryze is becoming more common on mid than on top.  The clear oddities here are Rumble and Fiora, who, if you’re looking for someone new to play top, are worth your attention.

 

 

Top 5 ADC Picks

 

Kogmaw New Portrait

  • 53.44% Win Rate
  • 39,425 Games Played
  • 2.73:1 KDA

 

Jinx New Portrait

  • 53.23% Win Rate
  • 34,312 Games Played
  • 2.75:1 KDA

 

Draven New Portrait

  • 52.89% Win Rate
  • 20,732 Games Played
  • 2.56:1 KDA

 

Miss Fortune New Portrait

  • 52.38% Win Rate
  • 4,089 Games Played
  • 2.61:1 KDA

 

Sivir New Portrait

  • 52.31% Win Rate
  • 7,073 Games Played
  • 2.91:1 KDA

 

 Seeing Kog and Jinx here is no surprise after the recent Bloodthirster nerfs and the rise of hypercarries. Draven is like the Lee Sin of ADCs – useless if bad and amazing if good. On that note, it makes sense that he’s dominating in high Korean ELO, but you shouldn’t pick him up expecting to win without having a fair bit of practice. Miss Fortune and Sivir are fairly unpopular picks, but they can snowball and become carry machines if played well.

Last, but definitely not least, the supports.

 

 

Top 5 Support Picks

 

Braum New Portrait

  • 54.26% Win Rate
  • 18,095 Games Played
  • 3.20:1 KDA

 

Morgana New Portrait

  • 53.51% Win Rate
  • 58,436 Games Played
  • 3.05:1 KDA

 

Sona New Portrait

  • 52.38% Win Rate
  • 9,340 Games Played
  • 2.92:1 KDA

 

Leona New Portrait

  • 51.54% Win Rate
  • 38,172 Games Played
  • 2.69:1 KDA

 

Blitzcrank

  • 51.49% Win Rate
  • 44,421 Games Played
  • 2.75:1 KDA

 

 Braum being first is to be expected. This guy is insanely overpowered and fun to play; you can try and pick him up, but good luck getting past his 72.5% ban rate. Morgana is the ideal counter to Braum and so logically takes second place. The odd picks here are found later down the ranks;  I never imagined that Thresh and Nami would be overshadowed by Leona and Blitzcrank, but there you have it .

 

 

Why it’s worth to follow the Korean ladder

 

Although a lot of the Champions I listed here are used in NA as well, some of the picks are wildly unexpected and underrated, and thus deserve your attention if you’re looking for a fresh and, possibly, sleeper OP Champion to climb the ladder with. In League, you learn from those better than you and Koreans are leaps and bounds ahead, so learning how they compete is always worthwhile.