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MidYear Mage Update

Statikk New PortraitHey all,

The next class update will be focused on “traditional” Mages and I’m here to give you guys and gals some of the initial details. Similar to the Juggernaut and Marksman releases, these updates aim to take look at an entire class of champions and accomplish 2 primary goals:

  1. Ensure the class as a whole is relevant and satisfying to play
  2. Differentiate each champion within the class

Why Mages?

Many Mages are intended to lack mobility but have not necessarily been given clear answers as to what they should do about it or why they work without it. For each sub-class of Mages (this is something we’ll dive into more in a different post) these answers will vary, but our intent is to make it clear that each of these champions is powerful in their own unique way.

On the flip side of the coin, many of them no longer meet our evolving gameplay standards of interactivity, depth, uniqueness, etc. This is also an opportunity to go back and adjust these champions (especially some of our older ones) making them more interesting to play as, with, and against.

Who are we working on?

Similar to the Marksman update, we’re aiming to release ~6 significant updates. The champions we are currently considering (but are still subject to change) are Malzahar, Vel’Koz, Brand, Vladimir, Cassiopeia, and Zyra.

For each of these champions we aim for them to be 3 things:

  1. Distinct – offer a unique reason to be picked
  2. Cohesive – deliver on their core thematic and gameplay fantasy
  3. Healthy – balance-able and fun to play as and against at all skill levels

Note that given the scope of these projects, we won’t necessarily solve every issue on every champion – and fortunately we won’t have to since all of the champions already succeed in their own way at some of the above.

On top of the 6, we are again looking to do a sweep across the entire class (as we did with the Marksman) to find potential tweaks that will make them more unique, interactive, and exciting to play. The smaller-scale changes done to Twitch and Lucian are good examples of this.

What can you expect? When?

We’ve learned a lot from our previous projects and better understand the line between something unique and something unfamiliar. Our priority is to find ways to evolve and enhance the current direction of a champion while still accomplishing the above-stated goals.

In some ways, the feeling of change is unavoidable; we are updating these champions so things WILL be different. We’re confident that we can retain the things you guys love while adding new dimensions.

This is all still a far ways off, so don’t expect anything soon. As you can infer from the title, we’re aiming to release these changes around mid-year and we’ve only just begun to delve deeply into these projects.

How can you help?

We’d love to have your guys’ feedback and opinion on the Mages before and during their development process rather than only at the tail end – especially for the “big 6” (Malzahar, Vel’Koz, Brand, Vladimir, Cassiopeia, Zyra).

We are most interested in the following about your favorite champion:

  1. What aspect is most core or sacred to their identity?
  2. What issue bothers you the most when playing them?

This doesn’t mean we’ll be magically giving everyone dashes or any other instant remedies to all their problems (weaknesses often exist for a good reason). Instead, this information will help us understand which direction to take each champion and where the opportunities lie.

We won’t be talking in the short-term about exact changelists since we’re still in such a state of flux, but we hope you guys are as excited as we are about the updates ahead!

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Dont ruin Malzahars jungle potential with his voidlings

Repertoir New PortraitI can’t guarantee voidlings will be exactly the same as they are now, but this perspective is something I’m trying to strongly consider when working on Malz.

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Why did you pick VelKoz for a rework and not Swain

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Statikk New PortraitSwain was definitely very high on our “want to do” list. What it really came down to is that we feel he really needs a full-on rework (gameplay, thematics, visuals) similar to Sion or Poppy in order to really deliver on an awesome version of Swain.

A large reason why we have chosen the current 6 is based off our confidence that we can deliver a solid update given the more limited scope they will get being as a part of a class update. We’re being a lot more careful about over-reaching since it’s definitely bitten us in the past.

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Follow Up Banner

Statikk New PortraitReally substantial change for Swain’s likely to be quite a way off yeah (highly unlikely this year, can’t predict so usefully beyond that). We do think he’d benefit a lot from a full overhaul, he’s certainly not in Taric, Yorick etc tier though, they’ve got significantly bigger problems than he does.

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Why are you changing VelKoz Isn’t he fine right now

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Statikk New PortraitVel’Koz is a great champion, but he honestly lacks Distinctness. He has some hints here and there of uniqueness (Q targeting, true damage from Deconstruct, etc.) but none of them are pushed to a point where it truly differentiates him.

Don’t worry, even within the 6, the amount of change each champion will see is pretty drastically different.

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Follow Up Banner

Statikk New PortraitI think you guys will be pleasantly surprised, we’re pretty aligned on where there is potential for Distinctness in Vel’Koz’s kit. We just don’t agree that he’s there just yet.

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Follow Up Banner

Meddler Final PortraitWe’re not going to be ready to talk details of what will/won’t change for quite a while. It’s likely that Vel’Koz’s changes will be at the small end of the spectrum though, he’s fundamentally solid apart from his lack of distinct enough outputs (what he does isn’t distinct enough, how his does it is very distinct though).

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What about Fiddlesticks Why isnt he schedule dfor a rework

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Statikk New PortraitFiddle is also a champion we considered, but ultimately felt wasn’t the right fit.

To do a quick rundown on our perception:

  1. Distinct – Fiddle is extremely distinct on the roster. Playing as and against him offer unique experiences.
  2. Cohesive – Fiddle is decent in terms of cohesiveness. He has a somewhat niche thematic as a terrifying scarecrow, but it’s understandably cool. It could probably be pushed a bit further especially in terms of the satisfaction from all his base spell (Drain, Terrify, and Dark Wind).
  3. Healthy – This is debatable, but Fiddle is certainly not the largest health problem in the game. Tactically, his spells’ gameplay could probably be more robust in terms of interactivity (counterplay). Strategically though, there are many ways to deal with Fiddle whether through vision, knockbacks, stuns, etc.

Fiddle is certainly a bit dusty and old-feeling, but that means he may be more in need of a visual / polish pass more than anything. It’s not like he wouldn’t benefit with some more significant work, but he’s a champion that we feel can be a put in a decent spot even with just some minor number tweaks.

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Dont ruin the botlane strengths of Champs like Zyra Brand and VelKoz

Statikk New PortraitReally good point. We don’t intend to destroy Support playstyles, but truthfully many of these champions’ fantasies and gameplay manifest best in a role where they can get gold and be the primary threat for their team.

We’re very aware that Zyra, Vel’Koz, and even Brand to some extent all have identities in the Bot Lane.

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I hope Zyra gets a new passive and more ways to interact with her plants

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Repertoir New PortraitWe haven’t yet started work on Zyra other than ideation, but one of the things we tended to be excited about was more plant interactions, like she brings the forest alive around her. Not sure where that means we’re going to take her, but I am excited to see what the team comes up with.

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Follow Up Banner

Repertoir New PortraitThe more we work on these group champion projects, the more I think we tend to find that if someone already has something going for them (like Zyra an “counterengage mage”), it’s usually a good idea to start ideation with how we might be able to crank that current strength up to 11.

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Keep the reworks simple We dont need more Skarnertype minigames

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Statikk New PortraitSimple is a great rule of thumb to lean on. We’re definitely keeping that in mind for these projects.

We agree with you on the “mini-games” thing. Mechanics start feeling like forced “mini-games” when they feel arbitrary, uninteresting, or simply don’t align with the expectations and desires of the champion. We understand this space a lot better after the past few projects.

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Why did you put minigames like Skarners crystal spires in the first place

Meddler Final PortraitWe think mini games, when well done, can feel like a really fun, natural part of a champion’s playstyle in a way that expresses their personality/theme. Draven axe catching for example taps into his show off nature, Bard’s chime collecting fits well on a weird dude that wanders and saves things etc. If the minigame doesn’t feel compelling, or doesn’t fit with the champion it’s on however then yeah, that can feel pretty jarring. I’d agree Skarner’s an example of that – if he had a reason to really want to defend the crystals in the jungle it might be another matter (e.g. if they contained others of his kind, frozen, that could eventually come out late game and join his fight).

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Why isnt Ryze on your rework list

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Meddler Final PortraitWe’re going to try and tackle Ryze before the mid year, we think he’s enough of a problem we need to act sooner . Unclear whether that’ll mean some degree of rework or just significant balance changes.

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Do you guys plan on doing anything with Syndra

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Repertoir New PortraitIf I recall correctly, Syndra made it pretty far through the selection process, but I believe we determined that she either needed a ton of work to really spice things up on her, or that we could give her a little love on the mechanics side closer to release and still get pretty good mileage. As these projects tend to fall in between these two amounts of work, we ultimately passed on her in favor of others.

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Xeraths in a weird spot right now Have you considered him for your list

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Repertoir New PortraitI’m interested to know why you think Xerath is in a weird spot. Is it because of the state of the meta-game? Or is it that there’s something he’s failing to deliver that he seems to be intended to be doing?

As far as what we thought, Xerath seems to be up to par in Distinction, Cohesiveness, and Health. I’ve seen some people argue his gameplay is too similar to Lux to be considered distinct, but we actually see Xerath as more of an extreme range DPS mage, whereas Lux is more of an extreme range burst caster that relies heavily on catching squishies out and killing them with quick full combos.

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Whatre your thoughts on Irelias  E from a balance design standpoint

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Meddler Final PortraitI don’t think it’s a great ability, in particular because it can be really unclear what result will happen before she uses it, leading to press the button and hope plays that can feel unfair (in a way you can’t influence) to one player or the other. It’s also an ability that, due to the way it can punish fighting back and its nature as a targeted spell, can leave opponents without apparent options.

Having said that though there are a lot of other champions/abilities I think we’d be much better off looking at first that need the work more. An Irelia rework someday’s a definite possibility, think it’s unlikely we’ll do one this year though.

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Is Singed scheduled for a rework

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Meddler Final PortraitWe don’t have any plans to make significant changes to Singed (almost certainly balance adjustments at some point, but none currently planned). He’s got a distinct playstyle, a deep mastery curve, creates great high moments and certainly isn’t a jack of all trades. He is a bit weird thematically, but not in a ‘this guy’s failing to deliver on his core fantasy’ kind of way.

I’m not personally convinced the root from the Fling/Mega Adhesive combo’s sufficiently relevant to justify its existence on the kit, could imagine a world in which we took that out and replaced it with something a bit less niche. I don’t play Singed much myself though, so I might be just unaware of a bunch of value that interaction provides.

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Do youve any changes planned for the Dragon buff

Meddler Final PortraitWe’ve been experimenting with some possibilities over the last couple of weeks, including changing the 4th buff to something a bit more felt than minion/monster damage. Currently waiting to get some insight into how dragon’s being valued in the start of the ranked season/first couple of weeks of professional play though to inform how big our changes should or shouldn’t be.

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The 2016 ranked season is now live

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Socrates New PortraitThe 2016 ranked season is now live! Gather your allies and gear up for all new challenges as you climb the ladder in 2016. We’ve introduced a swath of changes over the course of preseason, as well as new dynamic groups — now you can queue for ranked play with any number of friends. With new champ select, you’ll queue up for your two best positions — you’re guaranteed to always end up with one of the two positions you select — and join a team of players who’ve done the same.

To learn more about the 2016 Season, visit the season homepage here or check out the patch notesover yonder. It’s a new season of GGs, and we’ll see you on the battlefield!

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Ready set play Earn Party Rewards all week long

Celebrate the launch of new champ select and the 2016 ranked season with Party Rewards. How’s it work? Simple. The larger your premade group, the larger the IP bounty you rake in. The bonus is even bigger for new champ select-enabled queues like Normal and Ranked draft. The All-Star bonus from Team Fire’s win at All-Stars is active in Taiwan, NA, and Korea!

Check out the details below!

Premade size New champ select queues Other queues
1 0% 0%
2 125% 50%
3 175% 75%
4 225% 100%
5 450% 150%

Party Rewards are live starting today (10:00AM PST on January 20) until 11:59PM PST on January 24. We’ll see you on the Rift!

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Dynamic Queue system disabled further details

Ymir New PortraitTL;DR Dynamic queue was disabled because of a load issue, Solo/Duo Ranked is temporarily re-enabled, and all matches played in this mode still count towards your future Dynamic ranking.

Earlier today, we saw an issue on EUW that required us to disable the dynamic queue system. This was due to an issue with player load on the servers. This has also affected the KR server in a similar way.

As a result of this, all ranked modes based on the dynamic queuing system were disabled and remained down while we continued to investigate. When deciding on a course of action we had two options:

a) Leave ranked disabled until the issue was resolved
b) Re-enable the previous Ranked Solo/Duo queue

We chose option b) because we wanted to ensure that those of you who enjoy ranked could still play your placement matches. As we did not have a clear ETA on a fix, we proceeded to re-enable Ranked Solo/Duo until the issue is resolved.

What does this mean for your placements and rating?

Any games played on the currently available solo/duo queue system will count towards your placements and ranking when the new system is back up. For example, if you already played 2 games before the issues began in Dynamic Draft and 6 more in Solo Queue, you’d have 8 games played – and these all count towards your placements.

Why are other regions not affected?

Before we introduced this feature, we used a simulated environment to load test the entire system. Live implementation was first conducted on TR and NA with no major glitches. However, some subsystems of the dynamic queues didn’t scale up correctly when running on a larger live environment.

What are the next steps?

Our engineers are actively working to fix and re-enable dynamic queues in EUW. As of now we have no ETA but our tech teams will provide an update when we have more information to share. Thank you for your patience.

UPDATE: To answer a question some of you may have regarding Party Rewards, a several day event that offers bonus IP for playing with friends. We’re holding this event back for EUW until issues are resolved. Once Dynamic Queues are back we’ll look to enable Party Rewards and make sure that players on EUW have the same amount of time to earn IP with friends.

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If you have large updates why not test them on the biggest server EUW

Ymir New PortraitWe don’t consider Live environments as testing platforms. That would be dangerous and unfair to our players. Most of our features go through similar process after the development phase: functional testing -> load testing -> initial deployment to previously selected environments -> few days of player behavior testing (collecting players usage data) -> full deployment everywhere else. The NA & TR deployments week ago just helped us properly understand player reactions, gather important behavioral data and eventually tweak and adjust the service globally. You know, hundreds of dynamic variables here and there…

There were some minor issues in NA, but in general the service was and still is stable. Load testing of large services is always tricky though as one has to simulate the load in development labs. You can’t just get millions of players to test your service live — it must be done artificially as a set of ongoing software trials. We always go much higher than the expected traffic, and usually get highly expected results, like the one with the months-long EUW load tests before the new data center deployment in AMS. No matter how precise you are, live environments can be unpredictable and sometimes even tiny unexpected factor is enough to get one subsystem’s thread on hold. Obviously there are larger systems out there in the internet, but they are usually distributed and can handle the load separately. Our environments work differently — there is a distribution in given service’ cluster, but in general EUW, NA, KR, etc, are single entities handling the entire traffic all by itself.

Sorry for longer post. We’ll obviously do our best to get back to you with fixed Dynamic Queues asap 😉

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Update on Dynamic Queues for all regions

Draggles New Portrait Update: Dynamic normal queue is now disabled in all regions worldwide while we work on a fix (as an fyi, NA began to see similar issues despite the earlier launch on that server). Still no ETA to give but will be sure to have someone update this thread when that changes.

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Riot Eambo Final PortraitHi guys,

The PB team are the experts on this one, and their updates mean a lot more than mine. However, Lyte has been posted HERE with information – while unfortunately there’s not much to be said at the minute, the team are hard at work trying to fix this issue, get it tested, and get it out to you guys. We are as excited for this feature as you are – I honestly couldn’t wait to get home yesterday to play it, and I plan on leaving my placements until it’s back up and running due to the less stressful nature of things in the new champ select.

I know you guys want updates, and it sucks when we can only post “we’re working on it” – but that’s the truth and update we’ve got at the moment. As per Lyte, there’s no ETA at the moment, but I advise keeping an eye on the boards and Lyte’s twitter for updates as they’re available.

Thanks for sticking with us on this – we know it’s far from a smooth experience, but personally I truly believe the new champion select and dynamic queues are great features, and cannot wait to see them (back) on live to get some games with you guys on the rift!

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Champion Mastery Level 6 7

Socrates New PortraitHey all,

When we first announced that Hextech Crafting and loot was heading to PBE, we saw a few questions about how champion shards would work for players who already had all champions unlocked. We weren’t ready to answer those questions then, we are now at the point where we want to reach out to the community for feedback.

Here’s our current, leading design:

  • All players (whether you have all champions unlocked or not) can use champion shards that are duplicates of champions you already own to increase the Champion Mastery level cap of specific champions up to level 7.
    • This will increase the level cap, but won’t increase your actual Champion Mastery experience or unlock any associated rewards (unless you already have enough mastery points on a champ to be level 6 or 7, in which case you’ll immediately unlock those rewards)
    • Example: You own Jax. Using a Jax shard, you can raise the Champion Mastery level cap to 6 for Jax.
  • Alternatively, you can combine 3 champion mastery shards to unlock another level on any champion you choose.
    • Example: You spend three random champion shards to increase Champion Mastery level and a pop up appears allowing you to select any champion. You select Renekton, raising his Champion Mastery level cap to 6.

We also plan to offer chests in the store that can be purchased with IP that would contain specific types of champion shards. For example, we might offer a Demacian Chest for a limited period of time which would contain champion shards for champions associated with Demacia. We might also offer chests like these via other means, like rewards for accomplishments in ranked.

Our goal with this is to ensure champion shards drops always feel like a step towards something players care about and to make to the highest tiers of champion mastery feel exclusive and valuable. Ultimately we think this will make it more meaningful when you drop your mastery badge emote after a clutch (or not so clutch) play. It’s possible that there could be some other reward types associated with higher champion mastery levels, but this is still TBD. We’re excited to get Hextech Crafting and loot out to you all and curious to hear your feedback.

Thanks everyone for all the testing you’ve done so far!

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Does that mean we need shards to drop to reach Mastery levels 6 and 7

Socrates New PortraitIt’s the level 6 and 7 cap that unlock not the experience required for the levels themselves. So you’ll still have to earn your way up. Since the chests require strong performances (S grades) on champs, it puts more weight on unlocking these levels.

Somebody else pointed out since these rewards are more exclusive they should probably be cooler. That’s a good point also.

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As always, here’s a short collection of recent fan-art:

 

Zed by Citemer:

C76v1p9 9B7oRhc

 

Swimsuit Lux by raichoo:

swimsuit_lux_by_raichiyo33-d9onwp6

 

A New Dawn by haonguyenly:

a_new_dawn_by_haonguyenly-d9ot6qn

 


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

 

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[ Reminder ] The PBE is a testing ground for changes. What you see here may not reflect what you see in Patch Notes. Remember that developers want your feedback so if you disagree with a change, you can always submit your thoughts on the PBE Community Forums.

 

New Summoner Icons

The PROJECT: Poro icons is legacy and will be available for 250 RP:

 

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Champion Changes

 

Anivia Final Portrait

 


Revert BoxFlash Frost [ Q ]
Flash_Frost

  • Chill debuff duration increased from 2 seconds to 3 [revert on the changes in this PBE update]

 

Revert BoxGlacial Storm Final IconGlacial Storm [ R ]

    • Chill debuff duration increased from 2 seconds to 3 [revert on the changes in this PBE update]

 

 

Malzahar Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxNull Zone Final IconNull Zone [ W ]

  • Damage decreased from 4/5/6/7/8% of Max HP to 4/4.5/5/5.5/6%

 

 

 

Nidalee Final Champion Portrait

 

Buff BoxJavelin Toss Final IconJavelin Toss [ Q ]

  • Minimum base damage increased from 50/70/90/110/130 to 70/85/100/115/130;
  • Maximum base damage increased from 150/210/270/330/390 to 210/255/300/345/390.

 

Revert BoxPounce Final IconPounce [ Cougar W ]

  • Base damage decreased from 75/125/175/225 to 50/100/150/200 [revert on the change in this PBE update]

 

 

Quinn Final Portrait

GENERAL Banner

  • Base damage decreased from 56.5 to 54.5

 

Nerf BoxBlinding Assault Final IconBlinding Assault [ Q ]

  • Base damage decreased from 25/55/85/115/145 [+ 0.8/0.95/1.1/1.25/1.4 Total AD] to 20/45/70/95/120 [+ 0.8/0.9/1.0/1.1/1.2 Total AD];
  • Mana cost increased from 50 at all ranks to 50/55/60/65/70.

 

 

Rumble Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxFlamespitterFlamespitter [ Q ]

  • Now deals full damage to jungle monsters (half damage on live).

 

 

 

Skarner Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxFracture Final IconFracture [ E ]

  • No longer has a cap on maximum targets that can be hit (6 on live).

 

 

Nerf BoxImpale Final IconImpale [ R ]

  • Total AD ratio increased from 0.4 to 0.6 [1.0 on live, partial revert from this PBE update]

 

 

 

MASTERY CHANGES Banner

 

Assassin [ New Ferocity Mastery ]

  • You deal 1.5% increased damage when there are no allied champions nearby.

 

Murderous Intent [ New Ferocity Mastery ]

  • You deal 5% increased damage to champions until you gain a kill or assist (afterward the mastery is disabled for 15 seconds).

 

Buff BoxThunderlords Decree Final IconThunderlord’s Decree

  • Bonus AD ratio increased from 0.2 to 0.3.

 

 

UPDATED ZHONYA VFX Banner

The active on Zhonya’s Hourglass now contains 200% more sparkle:

Zhonya VFX 1 Zhonya VFX 2

 

 

POPPY INCLIENT LORE Banner

Poppy’s received her shortform in-client lore:

 

”I’m no hero. Just a yordle with a hammer.” 

Runeterra has no shortage of valiant champions, but few are as tenacious as Poppy. Bearing a hammer twice the length of her body, this determined yordle has spent untold years searching for the ”Hero of Demacia,” a fabled warrior said to be the rightful wielder of her weapon.

 


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

 

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Champion Insights Poppy Banner

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CHAMPION REWORK POPPY Banner

 

 

Quinn currently has a 73 winrate

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Repertoir New PortraitShe’s too strong. We’ll nerf her early game through some base AD and some Q nerfs, and then she should be in a better spot. I had some stuff submitted on Wednesday to the build that goes to PBE, but it looks like we didn’t ship to PBE on Wednesday due to the holiday week. Expect to see some stuff show up there on the next PBE build.

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Have you thought about tweaking how her passive scales with crits

Repertoir New PortraitYes, but I’m not sure what the right call is on that yet.

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What do you think happened to Quinn between patches 5 22 and 5 23

Repertoir New PortraitQ is dealing too much damage for the utility it provides, or it is providing too much utility for the damage it deals (or both).

Harrier is a bit stronger around levels 3-6 before she’s backed and bought any AD (because it now has a base damage that is scaling with her level rather than being all AD dependent).

Some other stuff that may be contributing:

  • She’s really good against Illaoi
  • Not having the option to rush Homeguards (which was fun, and many people were doing) may actually have been a buff because players are buying more combat-effectiveness in their early items.

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Why did you give Quinn her blind back

Repertoir New PortraitSo that in a balanced state she does not need to be snowballing incessantly in order to be useful for her team. That isn’t to say she’s balanced on this patch; she most certainly isn’t.

In a balanced state, she’ll be able to hit a good Q on a mage or marksmen to help her team win a fight, rather than having to have all her value loaded into her R and raw damage.

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Do youve any plans for Ezreal

Repertoir New PortraitEzreal feels like he fell a bit short of what we expected to see from him in the 5.22 preseason patch. We should look over him along with some others like Ashe, Sivir, and Twitch before the preseason ends. For him specifically, we nerfed some stuff to make room for the improved Q cooldown reducing effect as a precautionary measure, but it may not have been necessary.

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Follow Up Banner

Repertoir New PortraitWe expected him to be fine, and he’s honestly not super far off. He tends to sit at a lower-than-average win rate when considered balanced by us and most players.

op.gg has him at a 48.5% win rate over the last week in Korea, where he has always been and continues to be a very popular pick, so that seems like decent evidence that he’s not horribly far off. I don’t think he requires much more than a slight adjustment, really.

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Can we please get some utility on Ezreals W back

Repertoir New PortraitIt is sad, and we’re not happy with it either. If we had the right low-cost approach (resources seem to mostly be allocated things at the moment), there may be something we could do. Of course there are things we could do, but it’s more a matter of finding a good long-lasting approach.

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Why is Veterans Scars being nerfed so hard on the PBE  from to flat HP

Repertoir New PortraitI’m not in charge of these changes, but one thing to keep in mind here is that changes to the early game power of something have a far greater effect than changes at all other points in the game. It’s why reducing someone’s base HP by 40 or base AD by 3 can result in substantial performance hits to champions.

I imagine this change is intentionally aimed at keeping it powerful in the early game (45 base HP is significant power, as noted above) without it scaling well into the late game. I do believe most the rest of the Resolve tree tends to scale very well into the late game.

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This nerf will make the midgame for tanky champions worse

Repertoir New PortraitVeteran’s Scars’ placement in the Resolve tree does make it accessible to more than just tank-types that are going down to Resolve keystones.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

Could tanks then also get a better secondary option than Veterans Scars

Repertoir New PortraitThat seems like a good solution if there is currently nothing attractive in the other trees.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

Why nerf the effectiveness of the tank tree so other classes can dip into it

Repertoir New PortraitIf we wanted trees to belong to only one class/archetype of champion, they would be 30 points deep instead of 18 so that you had to invest all your points in that tree in order to get to the keystones.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

FOLLOWUP Mordekaiser Update

Mordekaiser Single Banner

Statikk New PortraitHey all,

We’re going to be trying out methods of making our internal design reviews player-facing. These reviews are mostly done on major champion releases, updates, and systems tuning that we roll out. We may dig into our archives for recently released champions as well.

These reviews will probably not be very ‘polished’ in their presentation, rather, they’re meant to be a way of showing how we examine our work. By looking back at our original goals and then examining what’s currently working (or not working) in the present day, we can be more transparent about followup changes while also being able to discuss what ‘good’ looks like.

This is very much an experimental process, but hopefully it proves valuable in the long run. Our first trial is going to be… Mordekaiser.

Goals

  • Solidify Mordekaiser in the Juggernaut space (low mobility, high close-range threat)
  • Offer a different non-Marksman duo lane experience
  • Add new strategic meaning to Dragon

What’s Working

  • Strengths / Weaknesses profile aligns with Juggernaut space
  • Provides a different bot lane experience and has unique ally synergies
  • Dragon creates unique and memorable moments

Concerns

  • Extremely early / mid game dominant – lacks true, exponential late game scaling
    • Both Morde and Dragon follow this power curve
  • Too difficult to interact with in lane, due to sustain on top of sustain
  • High AP ratios (especially on R) still leading to Morde being potentially too bursty
  • Q damage ramping is extreme and readability is poor – leads to weird “what happened?” moments on Q3 hits
  • Tankiness is extremely inconsistent (unlike other Juggernauts) due to Passive’s scaling with direct damage output – increases snowball dependence
  • Dragon / pet controls are still clunky
  • Experience bonus passive may not be the optimal solution – it is effective and functional, but low in satisfaction and hard to understand

Next Steps

  • Lower sustain early, better damage scaling late
  • Dragon needs more late game relevance and potentially less early game power
  • Flatten Q damage out (more on 1, less on 3) while still preserving the 3rd hit as a big, high moment
  • Increase the importance of effectively utilizing Passive / E to survive in lane and fights

Hopefully this gives you guys a bit more insight into our current thinking on Morde and helps explain the direction we’re moving him in with the recent patch.

Feel free to chime in with any thoughts, questions, or concerns.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Why havent you mentioned solo lane Mordekaiser in your post

Statikk New PortraitThis is a good point, definitely an oversight on our part.

I have personal opinions on this, but I don’t want to misrepresent the entire team’s analysis and design direction for Solo Morde.

I’ll try to get some analysis and thoughts back to you guys on this topic after the upcoming break.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Its difficult to build Morde as a bruiser given the current AP itemization

Statikk New PortraitThis is an open question. In development, we didn’t think that Morde would continue to be so reliant on AP itemization. We envisioned him having access to the new Juggernaut items in addition to the hybrid AP / AD items.

What do you WANT to build when you play Mordekaiser? I think this would give us a better idea of where to push his itemization incentives.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Follow Up Banner

Statikk New PortraitIf AP itemization is what Morde should be buying, I really like the idea of hybrid defensive / AP items being his mainstay (like you stated above – Rylai’s, Liandry’s, Abyssal, Zhonya’s make sense).

I think it’s a lot trickier when Morde’s optimal builds make him a glass cannon – so I’m pretty personally weary of pushing him into items like Nashor’s or Deathcap.

Would a build like Rylai’s + Gunblade + Tank items make sense for Morde?

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Why not nerf his AP ratios and give his

Statikk New PortraitI think more importantly than nerfing the AP build, we want to provide alternate build paths that allow Morde to truly live out the Juggernaut fantasy.

I can talk to the Live team / CertainlyT about the base stats situation.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

How about changing Mordekaisers shield so it decays slower

Statikk New PortraitWell if we made this change we would probably have to reduce how fast it generates as well, otherwise that would be a pretty significant buff especially in the lane phase.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

So your plan is to make the Ghost Dragons HP and damage scale with his ult ranks

Statikk New PortraitWell we’re not married to this exact solution, but overall we feel like an early / mid-game Dragon can be pretty overwhelming to deal with. As the game goes on though, the Dragon Ghost eventually just melts to the exponential late game damage scaling. We think this mostly has to do with survivability tuning.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Why was Swain nerfed on the PBE

Swain Banner Single

Meddler Final Portrait We’ve felt Swain’s been borderline too strong for a long time, but his low play and ban rate have been a deciding factor in leaving him as is and keeping an eye on him. We’re now seeing him perform really well post preseason changes, so feel we need to take some power off him. Current thinking (still going through testing, so not a locked change yet), is that as a sustained damage, drain mage-tank, that CC’s the best strength to hit, hence the change to Nevermove so it’s got a lower duration at lower ranks.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

When was the ratio on Master Yi

Master Yi Banner Single

Meddler Final PortraitLooks like it got changed during the rework. I’d assume it was part of the balancing sweep that happened in the last month or so before the rework’s release and documentation was missed.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

Whats the context for the Ziggs changes on the PBE

Ziggs Single Banner

Meddler Final PortraitWe feel Ziggs is in a weak spot at the moment, and has been for a bit. We’re not looking to go back to the days of endless wave stalling though, so we’re adding power to places where it’s more anti champion/objective than anti lane minion (sweet spot on ult, tower damage from passive).

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Why not give Ziggs a different AA animation when attacking towers

Meddler Final PortraitSounds like a really good idea. Will bring that up if we’re doing some animation work on Ziggs at some point we could bundle that in with.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

 

Whats with the Skarner nerfs on the PBE

Skarner Update banner

Repertoir New PortraitFrom what I understand, the team just wanted to try out a few different avenues as to how we want to nerf Skarner. Though it won’t show up on the PBE over the holiday weekend, I believe the plan is to go with a pared down version of these nerfs for final changes.

It seems worth noting here that it can be difficult to really try more than one thing out at a time in an effort to land on the correct change when it comes to nerfs and buffs, because we tend to get large reactions from players when we do so. I’m not saying that reaction isn’t justified (since we don’t have the greatest history of being fully transparent on every change you see on the PBE), but I do think that’s what is going on in this case.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Why is he being nerfed in the first place

Repertoir New PortraitWe think he’s too strong. Incredibly overpowered? No. But slightly too strong, hence going with a small set of nerfs. You’re free to disagree with that assessment; that was my first reaction too. That said, this is a character that is around a 54% win rate, with an experienced player win rate that appears to easily break 60%, so it’s not unreasonable to assess him as overtuned.

Skarner does have a low play rate, so yes, he can probably be balanced resting north of a 50% win rate. These changes aren’t intended to (nor do I believe they will) be an enormous power hit, just a small power trim.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

Skarner already has a low win rate the ult nerf will completely gut him

Repertoir New PortraitFirst of all, you could hardly call a nerf to his ultimate “taking a dump on him,” so please don’t blow things out of proportion.

As to trying to address a low play rate, there is an assumption here that we would like him to be a popular champion, or at least more popular than he is now. It’s unlikely that Skarner will ever be popular, given the theme, fantasy, and kit of the character.

His theme and fantasy aren’t bad, just niche. And his kit just doesn’t really have the best gameplay built into it, and it never really has. Keep in mind, when I mention good gameplay, I don’t mean that the kit has never been and will never be fun; it’s more that his moment-to-moment power has always been very stat checky. We’d have a lot of work to wholly fix that, and though we tried to chip at it with the Juggernauts update, it would be disingenuous of me to say that it was fixed. He’s now more strategically interesting insofar as he thinks about and tries to set up where he fights you, but it’s still not particularly interesting how he fights you when he does.

For what it’s worth, this isn’t an isolated Skarner case. It’s pretty consistent with many of the melee guys out there, especially the ones that we made 3-4 years ago.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Will you end up nerfing Skarners spires or other areas of his kit

Repertoir New PortraitWe still think the spires should be important to his success, but there’s also an argument to be made for him having too many eggs in one basket, so to speak. For now, I believe we’re sticking with the ult AD ratio and leaving the spire strength intact.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

What are your thoughts on Yasuo at the moment

Yasuo Single Banner

Repertoir New PortraitYasuo is likely too strong, though it’s hard to say by how much. Honestly, and I don’t expect this to be a popular opinion, he’s probably just more frustrating than he is actually overpowered.

This could be me not remembering correctly, but I was under the impression both Brand and DFT were getting nerfs on the PBE.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

If Yasuos frustrating but not too strong shouldnt he be reworked

Repertoir New PortraitMaybe. It depends how frustrating a champion should be. I think there’s an argument to be made that if a champion isn’t frustrating in one way or another, it’s probably not very compelling/unique/interesting, though of course that isn’t to say we should intentionally make frustrating champions.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Follow Up Banner

Repertoir New PortraitYeah, Yasuo feels great to play because he often has so much agency over how his lane goes. Unfortunately, that often seems to come at the expense of his opponents’ agency, so it may be fair to say that’s what’s so frustrating about him.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

By agency in lane do you mean his opportunities for outplays

Repertoir New PortraitBasically, yes. It’s about how much control someone has over their fate. If a character is 100% in control of how a lane goes if played well, then that implies it doesn’t even matter what their opponent does to defeat them, and it sucks to be that opponent and know that I can play as well as I want and it doesn’t even matter all that much.

 

It’s just a barrier based on how well the person can play their champion. These champions are commonly ones that people claim are overloaded. Yasuo, Lee Sin, Nidalee (to use a champion that I was responsible for) have all been guilty of this, and this is some of why we see them needing to be balanced around lower than 50% win rates; because when you actually play things perfectly on champions like these, you leave little room for your opponent to do much of anything.

Unfortunately, these champions are also commonly very popular because they have that feeling of being able to do anything with them, so it does someone beg the question of whether we should be trying to make more champions like that (that players feel like they are in full control of their destiny), or ones with clearer weaknesses for opponents to exploit (at the expense of some of that control).

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Why was Hecarims unit collision ignore moved from his passive to

Hecarim Single Banner

Repertoir New PortraitI don’t have any deep insight into the particular Hecarim changes on the PBE, but I imagine it has to do with Hecarim’s perma unit collision avoidance being somewhat fundamentally flawed given the kit he has. He just gets near you and then spams circles of damage onto you. If he is stronger and you don’t have a tool to get away, he will win.

On the one hand, yes, he’s always been this way, so the need for this particular change on this very patch is probably no greater than on any other patch. On the other hand, if he’s deemed too powerful at the moment by the balance team (which seems to be the case), it seems like a good place to trim power.

For what it’s worth, permanently ignoring unit collision is probably not something we should just put on champion kits, and I wouldn’t really be opposed to us taking this from Fizz and Kassadin as well, even if it meant we had to compensate them with power elsewhere. It’s just not that exciting for how powerful it is. I don’t think anyone selects any of these champions primarily because they are excited about ignoring unit collision. As any of these champions, I’d rather have just about any of my spells be a bit stronger rather than always avoiding unit collision.

Even if someone was picking these champions solely for these reasons, this to me is more an argument that pathing/collision should be more tolerable on average than having players choose champions that ignore the rule.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Why not just remove unit collision in general

Repertoir New PortraitI’m not really the guy to make that call, but I will say I’d prefer that we do that over having champions that selectively ignore it on a case by case basis.

Unit collision between champions is actually something I do think is good, and I do think it’s nice that my minions may cause small reroutes for enemies that are ahead of me, so unit collision isn’t all bad. However, I do understand how frustrating and inconsistent it has felt on Live lately, and that’s not ideal either.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Do you have any plans for Rengar

Rengar Banner Single

Repertoir New PortraitI hope we have some plans for him, but I’d need to look into it next week.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

 

 

Meddler on various ingame mechanics

Why does…

Garen still have a silence

Fizzs ult increase damage taken

Veigar ult scale with other person ap

Udyr have Phoenix stance

Ahri charm not increase damage taken anymore

What’s the purpose of urgots ult

Enemies knocked back into bards magical journey not go through it

Meddler Final PortraitWe want to remove silences from highly mobile, high burst champions since those are the cases that leave very little counterplay if played correctly. Garen’s not very mobile, so we feel it’s appropriate he has a silence still.

Fizz ult has a damage amp on it so that more of Fizz’s burst combo is dependent on a long cooldown. That makes his choice of when he goes all in, and on who, more significant than if he can repeatedly use most of his full burst combo.

Veigar’s ult scales with the opponent’s AP so that Veigar has somewhat different target and match up preferences than other similar champions. It does add a bit more champion select counter feeling than we tend to prefer though, and can get drowned out by the sheer amount of AP he himself builds up, so there’s some debate over how appropriate a mechanic that is.

Phoenix is there to offer Udyr an AOE option should he wish it, and to add some nuance to his damage pattern, particularly while jungle clearing.

The damage amp was removed from Ahri’s E to shift her towards more of a mage pattern and less of a pick into kill model (contrast with Fizz being somewhat longer fight times, lack of untargetability, ranged versus melee etc).

Urgot’s a bit of a mess, and his ult doesn’t fit particularly well with the rest of his kit. It can lead to some cool plays, whenever we do an Urgot rework one of our goals will be to give him a kit with less conflicting notes to it.

While knocking enemies through Magical Journey would be cool it’s both quite a lot of power, in a really team dependent way, and likely to lead to a lot of unintended displacements. Bard’s already got a pretty hard to master playstyle and a fair bit of unreliability, so wouldn’t want to double down further on those elements.

[ Link to Post ]

 

 

Fan Artist Feature Shilin

Hey Summoners! In today’s feature we’ll be hearing from Shilin, a talented community artist from Canada who enjoys telling stories and has her own original comic series! Continue reading to learn more about her awesome art and process.

You can also follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Twitchto see even more of her work!

If you know someone that you’d like to recommend for a future Fan Artist Feature, please let us know here.

 

How did you get started creating League of Legends fan art?

My first league piece was actually the current Sona classic splash art that I had the honour of doing! I didn’t play league at the time because I was terrified of any PVP environment, but eventually my now girlfriend babysat me into the game through playing bots and learning about the champions’ stories, which inspired me to do a bunch of drawings as gifts for her of her favourites (Riven, Vayne). I also got a bunch of my own favourites after learning more about the champion lores, and out came all the fan art that I did!

 

What’s been your favorite piece to create, and why?

My favourite and most natural piece to create is the Nami/MF piece I did, Shipwreck. The composition came to me out of nowhere and the entire rest of the process was just putting what’s in my head onto the canvas, rather than battling the drawing to try to make things work out. I enjoyed thinking about the interaction between the two in the picture a lot, even more than the process of drawing itself. Did Nami strike at a time when MF is most vulnerable? Did Nami save MF from impending fiery doom and just savoring the moment before returning MF to the land? Thinking is the most fun part of drawing!

 

Do you have a dream project you’d like to work on?

I am extremely lucky because I am already working on my dream project–an original series called Carciphona (at carciphona.com). I don’t know how, but the public has given me enough generous support for me to be able to do this work of my own full time, write/draw/publish the story at my own pace, without the confines of a publisher’s deadlines and writing/art direction restriction, or fear of the series being dropped because it’s not mainstream or successful enough. Even to this day I feel baffled just putting this down in words; being able to do what you love for a living to this extent is like heaven for every creative, and I am so privileged to be there already.

Who’s your inspiration? Do you have any favorite League content creators?

In most cases, my inspiration lies in “what” rather than “who”. I feel most frequently inspired by things I see–even mundane things down the streets, stories I hear–be it a masterwork of fiction or the rundown of a friend’s day, news, experiences… There is so much to think about in everything that happens and there is always something to express through art.

 

But that is not to say fellow artists are not inspiring as well! I look up to many professional and peer artists alike and find motivation in seeing the fruits of their hardwork and gems of their genius. Some of my favourite League fan artists are:

Suqling – bask in her masterful storytelling and gorgeous art right before she strikes your vitals with her savage puns.
2gold – for her charming characters and beautiful colours!
Kaisinel – from monsters to people, kaisinel makes everything look SO GOOD.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with the community?

Please allow me a moment to convince you how awesome it would be to have a League MMO. Wouldn’t it be amazing to be able to explore all of the breathtaking lore and world building work Riot has put in!? MAYBE IF WE SPAM ENOUGH RITO PLS, WE CAN CHANGE DESTINY??? 😀

 
 
 

Last but not least, some awesome videos sharing Shilin’s painting process!

[ Link to Post ]

 


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

PBE Round-up: Patch 5.18

September 12th, 2015

 

PBE Roundup Patch 5 18 Banner

Patch 5.18 will hit live in the early hours of September 16th, assuming there are no delays:

 

Store Content

Balance

 

 

CHAMPIONSHIP KALISTA

Championship Kalista will be available in store for 975 RP.

 

Kalista_Splash_2 Kalista_2

 

MODEL Banner

Kalista Championship Model 1 Kalista Championship Model 2

 

Recall Banner

Kalista Championship Recall

 

PIERCE Q

Kalista Championship Q 1

 

SENTINEL W

Championship Kalista W 1

 

 

New Summoner Icons

Icons for this year’s Worlds teams will be available in store for 250 RP each. As always, a portion of the profits from these icons will go to the respective teams:

 

profileIcon915 profileIcon916 profileIcon917 profileIcon918 profileIcon919

profileIcon920 profileIcon921 profileIcon924 profileIcon925 profileIcon927

profileIcon928 profileIcon929 profileIcon931 WC_Emblem_Team_paIN WC_Emblem_Team_ktrolster

WC_Emblem_Team_Invictus WC_Emblem_Team_EDG

 

Also, four jungle-themed icons have made their way on the PBE. No clue how you can get these yet:

profileIcon932 profileIcon933 profileIcon934 profileIcon935

 

 

Champion Changes

 

Braum Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxWinters Bite Final IconWinter’s Bite [ Q ]

  • Mana cost increased from 45/50/55/60/65 to 55/60/65/70/75

 

 

 

Caitlyn Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxYordle Snap Trap Final IconYordle Snap Trap [ W ]

  • Mana cost decreased from 50 to 30
  • Cooldown decreased from 20/17/14/11/8 seconds to 16/14/12/10/8

 

 

Darius Final Portrait

 

Change BoxDecimate Final IconDecimate [ Q ]

  • Health per target decreased from 15% to 12%
  • Maximum heal increased from 30% to 36% (Decimate can now heal from 3 targets)
  • Mana cost increased from 30 at all ranks to 30/35/40/45/50

 

 

Elise Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxSpider Form Final IconSpider Form [ R ]

  • Base damage on spiderlings decreased from 10/20/30/40 to 10/15/20/25
  • AoE damage resist on spiderlings increased from 20% to 25%

 

 

Ezreal Final Portrait

 


Buff Box Arcane Shift Final IconArcane Shift [ E ]

  • Now additionally has a 0.5 AD ratio

 

 

 

Fiora Final Champion Portrait

General Box

  • Health decreased from 662 [+92 per level] to 635 [+85 per level]
  • Base armor decreased from 30.5 to 27.5

 

 

Gangplank Final Champion Portrait

 

Nerf BoxPowder Keg Final IconPowder Keg [ E ]

  • Bonus damage to Champions decreased from 80/110/140/170/200 to 60/90/120/150/180
  • Armor penetrate decreased from 50% to 40%

 

 

Garen Final Portrait

 


Nerf BoxDemacian Justice Final IconDemacian Justice [ R ]

  • Enemies that kill Garen aren’t marked as “villains”

 

 

 

Jarvan IV Final Portrait

General Box

  • Base Armor increased from 27 to 29

 

 

Lulu Final Portrait

General Box

  • Health per level decreased from 82 to 74

 

 

Buff BoxPix, Faerie Companion [ Passive ]Pix Faerie Companion Final Icon

  • Pix can now trigger Tribute (passive from Spellthief’s Edge/Frostfang/Frost Queen’s Claim) once per basic attack from Lulu

 

 

Mordekaiser Final Portrait

General Box

  • Armor changed from 28 [+3.5 per level] to 26 [+3.75 per level]
  • Base Armor decreased from 22 to 20

 

Change BoxHarvester of Sorrow Final IconHarvester of Sorrow [ W ]

  • Can now be self-cast (can’t do double aura damage but can still be reactivated)
  • Can no longer do double damage from two allies standing near each other with the aura
  • Reactivate base damage increased from 50/70/90/110/130 to 70/95/120/145/170
    • Health cost increased from from 0 to 25/35/45/55/65
  • Reactive now heals for 25% of the damage dealt to minions, decreased from 33%
  • Maximum number of drained units decreased from 3 to 2

 

 

Morgana Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxDark Binding Final IconDark Binding [ Q ]

  • Mana cost decreased from 50/60/70/80/90 to 50/55/60/65/70

 

 

 

Skarner Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxFracture Final IconFracture [ E ]

  • Slow strength decreased from 45/50/55/60/65% to 30/35/40/45/50%

 

 

Syndra Final Portrait

General Box

  • Mana-per-level increased from 50 to 63

 

 

Twitch Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxAmbush Final IconAmbush [ Q ]

  • Delay until Twitch can stealth while taking damage has been decreased from 6 seconds at all ranks to 4.5

 

 

Veigar Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxBaleful_StrikeBaleful Strike [ Q ]

  • Now additionally grants AP for Champion assists (gives AP for kills only on live)

 

 

Buff BoxDark_MatterDark Matter [ W ]

  • Cooldown now starts at the beginning of the cast, not the end

 

 

 

Zilean Final Portrait

 

Rewind [ W ]Buff Box   Rewind Final Icon

  • Mana cost decreased from 35 at all ranks to 0

 

 

 

Item Changes

 

Nerf BoxDead Mans Plate Final IconDead Man’s Plate

  • Active can no longer trigger while the user is silenced or blinded

 

Nerf BoxDevourer Final IconDevourer Enchantment

  • Now grants 0.67 magic damage on-hit per stack, decreased from 1

 

Nerf BoxSated Devourer Final IconSated Devourer

  • Base magic damage on-hit decreased from 60 to 50

 


Quality of Life Box FinalSterak’s Gage
Steraks Gage Final Icon

  • Tooltip now displays the exact shield value for the user’s current level

 

Buff BoxWarrior Enchantment Final IconWarrior Enchantment

  • AD increased from 40 to 45

 

Nerf BoxZekes Harbinger Final IconZeke’s Harbinger 

  • Armor decreased from 35 to 30

 

 

 


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

 

PBE 09 09 Banner

 

[ Reminder ] The PBE is a testing ground for changes. What you see here may not reflect what you see in Patch Notes. Remember that developers want your feedback so if you disagree with a change, you can always submit your thoughts on the PBE Community Forums.

 


New Summoner Icons

The last four icons for World Championship qualifiers have been added. From left to right: paiN Gaming, KT Rolster, Invictus Gaming and EDG.


WC_Emblem_Team_paIN WC_Emblem_Team_ktrolster WC_Emblem_Team_Invictus WC_Emblem_Team_EDG

 

 

Champion Changes

 

Evelynn Final Portrait


Revert BoxRavage [ E ]
Ravage Final Icon

  • Base damage increased from 50/90/130/170/210 to 70/110/150/190/230 [revert on yesterday’s nerf]

 

 

Gangplank Final Champion Portrait

 

Nerf BoxPowder Keg Final IconPowder Keg [ E ]

  • Bonus damage to Champions increased from 40/50/60/70/80 to 60/90/120/150/180 [buff compared to the change in this PBE update, live value is 80/110/140/170/200]
  • Armor penetrate decreased from 50% to 40%


 

Skarner Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxFracture Final IconFracture [ E ]

  • Slow strength changed from 25/35/45/55/65% to 30/35/40/45/50% [change compared to the value in yesterday’s PBE update, live value is 45/50/55/60/65%]

 

 


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

 

[ Reminder ] The PBE is a testing ground for changes. What you see here may not reflect what you see in Patch Notes. Remember that developers want your feedback so if you disagree with a change, you can always submit your thoughts on the PBE Community Forums.

 

This file has snuck its way onto the PBE as part of the recent swirly “They Are Coming” teaser:

TheyAreComing_Base_Promo_Mask

 

 

Champion Changes

 

Darius Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxDecimate Final IconDecimate [ Q ]

  • Mana cost increased from 30 at all ranks to 30/35/40/45/50

 

 


Evelynn Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxRavage Final IconRavage [ E ]

  • Base damage decreased from 70/110/150/190/230 to 50/90/130/170/210

 

 


Fiora Final Champion Portrait

General Box

  • Base Health decreased from 570 to 550

 


Gangplank Final Champion Portrait

 

Nerf BoxPowder Keg Final IconPowder Keg [ E ]

  • Bonus damage to Champions decreased from 80/110/140/170/200 to 40/50/60/70/80

 

 


Jarvan IV Final Portrait

General Box

  • Base Armor increased from 27 to 29

 


Mordekaiser Final Portrait

General Box

  • Base Armor decreased from 22 to 20

 

Nerf BoxHarvester of Sorrow Final IconHarvester of Sorrow [ W ]

  • Base damage of aura decreased from 140/200/260/320/380 to 140/180/220/260/300

 

 


Skarner Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxFracture Final IconFracture [ E ]

  • Slow strength decreased from 45/50/55/60/65% to 25/35/45/55/65%

 

 


Zilean Final Portrait

 

Rewind [ W ]Buff Box   Rewind Final Icon

  • Mana cost decreased from 35 at all ranks to 0

 



Zyra Final Portrait

 

Revert BoxStranglethorns Final IconStranglethorns [ R ]

  • Duration of knock-up decreased from 1.5 seconds to 1 (reverted to live status)

 

 

 


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

 

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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:

http://boards.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/c/gameplay-balance/GzunkiGw-initial-juggernaut-thoughts

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:

http://leagueoflegends.wikia.com/wiki/Easter_eggs/Hidden_Passive

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 nolchefo@gmail.com.

 

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[ Reminder ] The PBE is a testing ground for changes. What you see here may not reflect what you see in Patch Notes. Remember that developers want your feedback so if you disagree with a change, you can always submit your thoughts on the PBE Community Forums.

 

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Check out the PROJECT skins for Fiora, Leona, Lucian, Master Yi and Zed!

 

 

New Summoner Icons

Six PROJECT icons have found themselves on the PBE; the latter five correspond to the recently released skins.

 

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Champion Changes

 

Darius Final Portrait


Decimate [ Q ]
Buff BoxDecimate Final Icon

  • Base damage increased from 40/65/90/115/140 to 40/70/100/130/160 [live value is 20/40/60/80/100, previous PBE buff HERE]
  • Hitting an enemy champion now heals Darius for 15% of his missing Health, increased from 10% [note, cap is still 30%]

 

Buff BoxCrippling Strike Final IconCrippling  Strike [ W ]

  • Additionally, if Crippling Strike kills its target, the mana cost and 50% of the spell’s cooldown is refunded

 

 

Garen Final Portrait

General Box

  • Base Movement Speed decreased from 345 to 340

 

Nerf BoxDecisive Strike [ Q ]Decisive Strike Final Icon

  • Movement Speed buff strength decreased from 35% to 30%

 


Change BoxDemacian Justice Final IconDemacian Justice [ R ]

  • Now deals 28/33/40% of the target’s maximum Health as magic damage, changed from 1 damage per every 3.5/3/2.5 points of Health missing

 

 

Fizz Final Portrait

[ Note] Fizz received changes to his [ W ] and [ R ] in this PBE update.

 

Buff BoxUrchin Strike Final IconUrchin Strike [ Q ]

  • AP ratio increased from 0.3 to 0.35

 

 

 

Janna Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxMonsoonMonsoon [ R ]

  • AP ratio increased from 0.4 to 0.5 [live value is 0.6; this is a buff compared to a recent PBE change]

 

 

Skarner Final Portrait

General Box

  • Base Movement speed decreased from 345 to 335
  • Base AD decreased from 61 to 57

 

Nerf BoxCrystalline Exoskeleton Final IconCrystalline Exoskeleton [ W ]

  • Now shields Skarner for 10/11/12/13/14% of his maximum Health, decreased from 12/13/14/15/16%

 

Nerf BoxFracture Final IconFracture [ E ]

  • Base damage decreased from 40/75/110/145/180 to 40/65/90/115/140
  • Skarner now deals 25/35/45/55/65 bonus physical damage to targets hit by Fracture, decreased from 25/50/75/100/125
  • Cooldown increased from 13/12.5/12/11.5/11 seconds to 14/13.5/13/12.5/12

 

 

Syndra Final Portrait

 

Revert BoxTranscendent [ Passive ]Transcendent Final Icon

 

 

ALL PBE UPDATES FOR PATCH 517 CYCLE

 


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

 

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CONTEXT FOR RECENT ZED BUFF ON THE PBE Banner

 

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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DISCUSSION ON GARENS REWORK

 

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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Follow Up Banner

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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ROLE OF JUGGERNAUTS IN A TEAM Banner

 

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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Follow Up Banner

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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IDEAS FOR NERFING VAYNES EARLY GAME Banner

 

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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CONTEXT FOR RECENT LEE SIN BUFFS Banner

 

 

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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BUFFS TO FIORA IN 5 16 AND UPDATE ON WARWICK Banner

 

 

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 nolchefo@gmail.com.

 

PBE 07 08 Banner 2

 

PBE 07/08

 

[ Reminder ] The PBE is a testing ground for changes. What you see here may not reflect what you see in Patch Notes. Remember that developers want your feedback so if you disagree with a change, you can always submit your thoughts on the PBE Community Forums.

 

PBE 04 08 Reference Banner

Check out the four Academy skins, Arcade Riven, Battle Boss Blitzcrank, the updates toDarius,Mordekaiser, Garen and Skarner, as well as the Armor & MR item changes and the two new items –Titanic Hydra and Sterak’s Gage!

 

 

Champion Changes

 

Ahri Final Portrait

 

Nerf BoxEssence Theft Final IconEssence Theft [ Passive ]

  • Flat heal decreased from 2 + 1-per-level to 3/5/9/18 [values for levels 1/6/11/16]. AP ratio unchanged

 

 

Elise Final Portrait

[ Note ] Elise’s Neurotoxin was reworked into a DoT in yesterday’s PBE patch.

 

Revert BoxNeurotoxin Final IconNeurotoxin [ Q ]

  • Cooldown increased from 1 seconds to 6 [reverted to live status]

 

 

 

Garen Final Portrait

[ Note ] These changes are relative to Garen’s PBE update.

 

Decisive Strike [ Q ]Buff BoxDecisive Strike Final Icon

  • Duration of Movement Speed buff changed from 1.5/2.25/3/3.75/4.5 seconds to 2/2.5/3/3.5/4

 


Nerf BoxCourage Final IconCourage [ W ]

  • Bonus Armor and Magic Resistance per kill decreased from 0.3 to 0.25 [still an increase compared to 0.2 from yesterday’s patch]
  • Champion / Large Monsters / Epic Monster kills again grant 0.3 bonus Armor / MR, down from 1 [revert from this PBE update]

 


Change BoxJudgement Final IconJudgement [ E ]

  • Total AD ratio decreased from 0.47/0.49/0.51/0.53/0.55 to 0.46/0.47/0.48/0.49/0.5
  • Judgement’s damage once again scales with Crit Chance

 

 

LeBlanc Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxDistortion Final IconDistortion [ W ]

  • Travel speed increased from 1300 to 1450

 

 

 

Mordekaiser Final Portrait

 

Buff BoxSiphon of Destruction Final IconSiphon of Destruction [ E ]

  • AoE range increased from 650 to 675

 

 

 

Skarner Final Portrait

[ Note ] These changes are relative to the huge update Skarner got in this PBE update.

 

Nerf BoxCrystal Spires Final IconCrystal Spires [ Passive ]

  • Movement Speed buff around shrines decreased from 150 to 100

 

 

Buff BoxFracture Final IconFracture [ E ]

  • If Skarner stuns an enemy with Fracture [ E ] or Impale [ R ], he gains all the bonuses from his Crystal Spires for the duration of the stun / suppression and reduces the cooldown of Fracture by the same amount
  • Cooldown increased from 12/11.5/11/10.5/10 seconds to 13/12.5/12/11.5/11

 

 

Tahm Kench Final Portrait

 

Revert BoxThick Skin Final IconThick Skin [ E ]

  • Duration increased from 5 seconds to 6 [reverted to live status]
  • Shield once again rapidly decays over the duration [reverted to live status]

 

 

Teemo Final Champion Portrait

 

Buff BoxNoxious Trap Final IconNoxious Trap [ R ]

  • Now additionally reveals stealthed enemies hit by a shroom

 

 

Item Changes

 

Titanic Hydra Final IconTitanic Hydra

  • Recipe changed: Now requires a Giant’s Belt [1000 Gold], not Ruby Crystal [400 Gold]. Combine cost decreased by 600 Gold (total cost unchanged)

 

[ Note ] Titanic Hydra is a new item that introduced in this PBE update.

 
Titanic Hydra
 


Steel Legion Garen Villain VFX

Steel Legion Garen’s received unique VFX for his Villain passive on Demacian Justice [ R ]:

 

Steel Legion garen Villain 1 Steel Legion Garen Villain 2

 

ALL PBE UPDATES FOR PATCH 516 CYCLE

PBE Reference August 6

 


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