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Posts Tagged ‘vu’

 

News Update July 10 Banner



Summary

 Riot is cracking down on 3rd party skin-selling websites and making codes unredeemable past July 23rd. Also, Ricklessabandon is on the community forums discussing the upcoming PBE changes to Muramana (and Manamune). IronStylus talks VU directions for Cho’Gath, Kassadin, Warwick, Pantheon and Zilean and explains why the Champion release schedule has been so inconsistent lately. Finally, in the Single Posts collection is a response to the “Featured Matches” presented on the client’s landing page and what LeBlanc’s poor win rate across ELO ranges can (or can’t) tell us about balance.

Single Posts

 

Recent News

Soulstealer-Vladimir-Banner

Client-Visual-Update-Banner

PBE-Update-July-8-Banner

 

 

3rd Party Skin Sites Banner

 

 

Draggles New PortraitGetting scammed sucks. Unfortunately the internet is full of shady people who take advantage of others. At Riot we strive to protect players from these scammers, and recently we’ve noticed an increase in fraud around 3rd party skin sites and skin reselling. 



These sites promise limited edition skins for League of Legends, when in reality they acquire codes illegitimately and exploit players. They charge excessive prices (we found one skin for over $1,000!) and sometimes take payment and never provide the content. You can’t predict the outcome, and no purchase is ever guaranteed regardless of what the seller says. To make matters worse these services typically use bots. Bots are lame to play with and chew up additional server bandwidth, negatively impacting everyone.

Riot is taking action against these scammers at the source. We are working with multiple payment processors to inform them of the situation and recommend they no longer process fraudulent payments from these sites. Additionally we will be deactivating all previously issued skin codes starting today. If you have a skin code that you acquired legitimately please send a request to Player Support and include proof of ownership. We’d be happy to help redeem the content to your account, but please note after 07/23/14 we will no longer be redeeming codes for any reason. 

For more information about codes and how to send Player Support a request, check out our code cards FAQ.

Followup: Player Support will not be retroactively removing content and skins that have already been redeemed prior to this announcement.

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Will you be deactivating already redeemed skins Banner


Yuka New PortraitHi iMonox!


We won’t be deactivating skins that you’ve already redeemed on your account using a code. What it means is that we’ll be deactivating all codes that currently exist. So anything that hasn’t been redeemed yet cannot be redeemed using the code in the normal way.

If you’ve recently attended an event and received a skin code from a Rioter, and you haven’t had a chance to redeem it yet, you can contact support. They will need to see proof that you own the code card (e.g. a photograph).

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Follow Up

Yuka New PortraitAny skins you have will not be removed from your account.

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Can I still redeem codes I have left

Yuka New PortraitGo try the codes in the client – if they don’t work, contact support and send them a photo of your codes with your summoner name written next to them. 

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How will skin code cards issued at events work

Yuka New PortraitCards issued at future events will have a set amount of days before they expire. (usually 5-7 days)

We are also experimenting with a digital alternative, which was trialed at Japan Expo in Paris last weekend.

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Why are you disabling working skin codes

Boompje New PortraitUnfortunately, many of them were obtained in ways we don’t want them to be obtained, as well as that a high amount of those transactions that happened “on the internet” are very shady, and often result in people losing their money without getting the skin they bought.

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How will you inform everyone of these changes

Yuka New PortraitHi Mooncloud!

A lot of our content creators have previously advertised skin shops in the past – we’re hoping that they will help spread the word via their channels. There’s also currently a thread on Reddit, and multiple Rioters are spreading the word on Twitter.

Most of these skin shops will be shutting down now as well. As was mentioned in the main post, we are also working with online payment processors to block payments going to 3rd party skin shops.

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What should I do if I have content that needs redeeming

Hollymonster New PortraitYou need to write in to get them redeemed now. We won’t process anymore of these after the 23rd as per the announcement.

Just make sure you submit the physical cards with a piece of paper and your Summoner name/Username so we can get your content asap.

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Offtopic How do you plan to resolve DDOS drophacks

Boompje New PortraitWe are very much aware of drop hacks and DDoSes and have regular meetings and activities to try and decrease the impact and amount of them. Unfortunately, this is not a trivial problem to solve  but I can tell you that we are working rather hard on this topic!

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PBE Muramana Changes Banner

 

 

Ricklessabandon New Portraithi friends~

tl;dr is that i’ve got some changes to muramana on the pbe and i’d love feedback for it! the most recent version of the changes should be in this post, along with a history of updates and a ‘frequently asked questions’ section. please leave any questions, comments, or concerns (on either the changes or this format for gathering feedback) in the comments section below!

and maybe it goes without saying, but these are all experimental and therefore highly subject to change! things like tuning, damage type, costs, etc could all be completely different by the time this ships (if any of it even ships at all)!

thanks in advance!

 muramana (last updated 2014.07.10 @ 03:06)

this will temporarily be off of the pbe while we prepare the 4.12 patch

 

Muramana[added] passive :: gains +10 bonus true damage (increased by 2% of maximum Mana if any number of azure stacks are active). also gain 1% attack speed for every stack of azure active.

[remade] active :: spend 60 mana to gain 10 stacks of azure, then doubles the current mana cost and stack gain of this active. azure has a fixed duration of 9 seconds, and when it expires this active resets its mana cost and stack gain and then goes on cooldown (30 second cooldown).

edit: to clarify, the passive mana-to-ad conversion from ‘awe’ is unchanged!

 

update! (2014.07.10 @ 03:06)

okay, got some really helpful stuff from the first iteration! i’m going to go forward with the build path changes to manamune in the 4.12 patch, and continue explorations with various muramana actives. the next version should hit the pbe sometime after 4.12 goes live. until then, i’ve updated the item details above.

also, there were several bugs affecting tear, manamune, and muramana due to a one-time refactor we did that should all be worked out. just need to get the new tooltips in after 4.12 ships and then things should look much more normal!

oh! one last thing… i did want to mention that i’ve been reading every comment posted here as well as any tweets that mention me and a handful of forum/reddit threads. i haven’t had time to directly respond to them unfortunately, but they’re definitely read and count for something!

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Frequently Asked Questions (last updated 2014.07.03 @ 15:05)

Q) why?

A) this turns out to be a fairly large question as there are a lot of reasons—the goal set for the changes hit a lot of things we’re hoping to explore/accomplish. to get the gist of it out up front, we want to create/improve the build foundations for mana-based champions. not just current kits that we ‘gate’ with mana, but also for a future in which we want to make mana more enjoyable/exciting (instead of it being like rationing out money to purchase food, imagine it being more like how to spend tokens at an arcade). some champions do this well on their own, but since a champion’s mana paradigm isn’t necessarily consistent across all kits there’s value in exploring systemic solutions to making mana much more interesting and meaningful.

of course, the ‘now’ is super important, so we’re doing this a piece at a time by exploring new ways to gain and spend mana in addition to your champion’s kit (which should already have awesome things like jayce’s shock blast through acceleration gate). the reason muramana is a candidate for this in addition to being a mana item is due to some issues with its current implementation (e.g., the item is most powerful when you don’t spend mana, but the reason a champion buys this is because they have really good ways to spend mana and they want to do that!) and because the item could stand to have more synergy/scaling with other items given its identity as a ‘late game’ item.

Q) which champions are intended to benefit from a change like this?

A) champions that care about heavily scaling their basic attacks throughout the game, and can also do cool things with their own abilities when they get a lot of mana. more specifically, this would apply to ezreal, corki, sivir, irelia, jayce, kog’maw, et al.

Q) what about current manamune/muramana users not in the above?

A) champions that tend to buy only one or two offensive items, and/or rely very heavily on spells (in relation to their reliance on basic attacks) likely won’t appreciate the attack speed and are more guarded about their mana usage. that leaves champions like urgot and yorick feeling a little awkward about the changes as a whole. that said, the build path change, extra attack damage, and new on-hit damage should theoretically help them out more over the course of the game than the muramana on live. as an urgot player that works next to a yorick player, this is definitely something we’re watching.

Q) what can apply the true damage?

A) basic attacks, single-target spells that deal physical damage, and any other abilities that applies on-hit effects. this is more or less the same as live muramana, but notably excludes single-target spells that deal magic damage (e.g., ryze’s overload or syndra’s unleashed power). this is primarily a preventative measure to keep abuse cases (like adding 420 true damage to syndra’s ult) from restricting the other tuning levers we want to use to make sure the item feels good on champions that should like buying muramana for everything it does. we know there are collateral effects to this (such as jayce’s thundering blow no longer triggering the effect) so we’ll be watching for data related to those specific cases to make sure things are still just fine for those cases.

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On Visual Updates Banner


 

 

IronStylus New PortraitHi. I wanted to try out the new function that should be listed below this box that says “show as flat” and see how the system works. I wanted to see if a conversation could be had using either or both of the views.

While we’re here! we’ll have a general ChampUp pow-wow. All casual, this is mainly just to test, but if you have any questions/ideas/feedback we can also jam on those. I’ll be on here for a little bit then head to bed. I’ll check the thread in the morning also.

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Will Mundo be getting a Visual Update

IronStylus New PortraitWelp, I think he’s just a straight up fidelity update. I don’t think he’s slated for any time too soon, but at least I don’t think there’s a lot of challenge in just.. Mundo’ing up Mundo. Yeah, there’s just a lot of technical stuff I’d love to do with him. Bring him up to the goofy brute that he should be.

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What about Pantheon

IronStylus New PortraitHe’s sorta just a dude from 300 at this point. I’d really like to find a way to tie him more thematically into Targon. That’ll take some exploration though.

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Can Zilean be updated so he looks like a real time wizard

IronStylus New PortraitYeah.. the “old guy” fantasy is a hard one to capture. I think there might have to be something in there that moves him more into the “cool mage” sorta area. It’s fine being wise and older, but he’s not quite up there with characters like Captain Picard, Professor X, Sauramon, Magneto, or other more aged gents of wisdom and badassery, Might have to dial him just a bit younger or just make him feel a bit more fit, not so much afro-santa guy..

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Is Cho’Gath still being looked into for a Visual Update

Context: IronStylus mentioned awhile ago he was interested in updating Cho’Gath’s visuals. You can read the discussion here.

IronStylus New PortraitWell, we haven’t really even started concepting Cho, but he’ll have some pre-production work started on him soon. I still take the stance that I want him to be like a Kaiju of the Void. Whatever it entails to get that I’m up for! We have to scope it out though. That’s a big team discussion.

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Will Warwick have an evolving model in his VU

IronStylus New PortraitI’m not sure how much we’ll do with scaling or model changing in his normal state, though I’d like to see at least some body change. That’s just my opinion though! We haven’t yet full explored the ideas.

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Why hasn’t Kassadin still received a VU

IronStylus New PortraitHmm.. quoting in this thing is a bit awkward, gunna talk to the team about that.

Yeah, there’s a lot of discussion around Kassadin. For one, we could sorta just plug a new model onto him, but.. is that enough? Technically we’re not really happy with where he’s at in a number of places, especially animation. So the discussion is centered around scope. Since he floats it’s sort of a unique situation. It’d be REALLY nice to have a full fledged VU of him, but, is that too large of a production? Lots of questions being asked. That’s sort of what’s making up the discussion.

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Is there a list of Champions needing texture updates

IronStylus New PortraitNot really a list per se, more of just a general understanding that a lot of our textures need balancing. Right now there’s no one committed to doing TU’s 100%, my hope though would at some point to have a concentrated effort to adjust those textures.

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Why have we still heard nothing about the next Champion

IronStylus New PortraitIndeed, things have slowed down a bit. I’m not 100% up on the skinny, as you said I don’t work on the team really, but I think there’s a general desire to make sure things are super cohesive when a new champion comes out. I think that can take additional bake time. Aside from that I’m not privy to the nitty gritty of production, but I think one of the reasons Relaunch has become a bit more consistent is to help out the churning of new content. In some cases are team is pretty much making a new champion. My feeling is that things will always sort of be a hybrid of champions, skins and now relaunches as being integral parts of content packages.

I understand though. Champions are the biggest hype potential in terms of content, and can really have amazing promotional content, community discussion, and general excitement surround their build up and release. The champion release is still our biggest bang I feel. It feels like something huge is being added to the game, which it is.

For me personally, I miss some of the old days of slightly faster cadence, but I trust that the guys over on the Champion Team know what’s up and are fully aware of what their goals and deliverables are, and how fast those things should be put out.

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Give players updates on features Riot is currently working on

 

Pros:
– less overbumped threads about bugs
– people could track progress of any work
– Maybe RIOT could have an indicator about things that they began working on, but hasn’t finished it for a while, so they could pick up lost “threads” faster

Cons:
– I’m PRETTY sure that disappointed players would complain a lot about ongoing things they don’t consider important, while other things are not prioritized

Pros again:
– With this, RIOT could have a good feedback about what they should work on first

Cons again:
– There will always be people who are dissatisfied with the current priority list

 

Boompje New PortraitSo another big point I’d like to add to that:

We have a lot of stuff in development at any time, and by far not everything makes it to release. A few big and known examples are Magma Chamber or the Mac client (back in 2011). We really try not to raise any false expectations.

 

Another thing, although it’s easier to solve but not trivial, is a lack of context. Many people don’t know that it can easily take us way over a year for just 1 champion in development. The way we think about skins has also changed. When I just started playing league (back in 2009), skins were mostly recolours or just a small change in the skin. Nowadays, the skins are really a way higher quality.

Changing a feature from a technical point of view is also a lot more complicated than just.. assign it to an engineer and have it changed the next day. We have a ton of stuff all going on at the same time, so that list would also be very, very huge. And not everything will be going to release. Not at all.

Then another point to consider is that players may not know the context. Not everyone will understand that making a skin takes more than a few days of work, or that rewriting a large piece of software (hello Client!, see PBE news!) also is a huge piece of work, that also has implications on back-end and server workings.

For me, I’d feel a big blocker for doing this would be raising false expectations, or players having expectations that we in the end don’t meet. Also think of it from an Ultimate Skin point of view. PulseFire Ezreal and Spirit Guard Udyr are awesome skins, and the release events were a super nice experience. But it would be a lot more boring for players if they would be aware of how those skins were coming along in the moments before release.

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Can we see “Featured Matches” instead of LCS banners on the landing page

zerocontext: TL;DR: We definitely know some players care strongly about the Featured Matches on the current client landing page, and we’re still working on the experience!

Okay, here’s our general design philosophy behind how we want to surface content (both on the landing page and elsewhere, like the website): We want all players to have an easy and intuitive way of finding the experiences that they enjoy, which could of course include Featured Matches.

One complication is that only a slim percentage of players frequently interact with Featured Matches, which doesn’t mesh well with how much visual space we give to them at present (which we could be devoting to other exciting features). So, we think a happy medium can exist in which players who docare about spectating high-skill matches have an easy way to do so, while players who care more about other experiences don’t face the distraction of an über-prominent Featured Matches area on the landing page. Again, we’re still exploring how this experience might work in the new design.

We think the new client landing page that’s heading to PBE (and the new tech supporting it) will be flexible enough to allow us to do a better job of serving up more experiences that more players find relevant. It’ll take us a bit of time to fine-tune our approach, though, so I hope you’ll bear with us… and continue giving us regular feedback as we work to improve the experience. Fortunately, you won’t have long to wait before you can start judging for yourself the success of our initial efforts! 🙂

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LeBlanc performs poorly in both low and high ELO

Apothis New PortraitI think LeBlanc’s low win rate and popularity in LCS is likely an example of high skill floor and high skill cap. I definitely wouldn’t say that LeBlanc is a weak champion because her win rate is below 50%. I think you’re right, that most players playing LeBlanc haven’t played the champion enough to get the most out of her. However, players that ARE very good at the champion make her very threatening.

An interesting way of thinking about this would be to look at how win rate for a champion changed with the number of games played with that champion. With LeBlanc, you might see that, once players had played 100 or so games, their win rate with LeBlanc is ~70% (controlling for ELO). On the other hand, once players had played 100 or so games with Garen, the win rate might only increase to 55%.

Garen’s average win rate might be higher and his win rate might be higher if you’ve only played 5-10 games with him (vs. LB), but I wouldn’t immediately conclude he was the stronger champ. For a player without much experience with either champ trying to optimize for a single game, maybe Garen is a better choice. But for a player thinking about choosing a champ to climb ranked with (or a pro-team figuring out a comp) maybe LB is stronger. What do you think?

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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.

 

 

Sivir Heimer banner

 

Heimerdinger First Impressions

Red Post Collection

 

 

Heimerdinger First Impressions


 

See what we think of the recent changes!

 

 

 

 

Here’s the breakdown:

 

Techmaturgical Repair Bots ( Passive )

 

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

 

 

 

H-28G Evolution Turret ( Q )

 

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

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

 

 

Hextech Micro-Rockets (W)

 

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

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

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

 

 

CH-1 Electron Storm Grenade ( E )

 

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

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

 

 

UPGRADE!!! ( R )

 

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

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

 

RWH-28Q Apex Turret (R+Q)

 

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

 

RQHextech Rocket Swarm (R+W)

 

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

 

RECH-3X Lightning Grenade (R+E)

 

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

 

 

Why this new Heimer is a step forward

 

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

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

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

 

 

The math behind Ahri’s rework


 

Ahri banner

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

 

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

Are these changes not nerfs?

 

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

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

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

 

 

Sivir – new looks, same range


 

Sivir Banner

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

 

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

[Ratastok] You should listen more to seasoned Sivir players

 

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

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

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

 

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

 

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

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

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

 

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

 

Balancing the right way: emphasizing on unique mechanics

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

[Luscious Lenny] Suggestion box

 

Don’t buff her range

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

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

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

Do this and she will be a damm good adc



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






IMPORTANT


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


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

 

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

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

 

 

QA on Heimerdinger’s rework – Part 3


 

heimerdinger banner

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

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

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

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Yes.

 

 

 

 

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


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

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

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

 

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

 


 

[Vakarian Garrus] Will Heimerdinger get a visual update?

 

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

 

 

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

 

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

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

 

 

[exec3] Why do turrets shoot slower now?

 

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

 

 

 

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

 

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

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

 

 

List of known bugs

 

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

Known bugs:

 

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

Usability stuff:

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

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

Specific stuff I’m looking for data on:

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

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

untitled.jpg

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

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

 

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

 

 

 

 

Missed any recent updates? Check out the latest topics below!

 

 

 

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Skype: chefoslr

IGN: NoL Chefo, EUW

 

Sivir Kata Banner

 

PBE Update

Plans for vintage Limited Edition skins

Red Post Collection

Making of Warrior Princess Sivir

 

 

PBE Update


 

AatroxSquare

      Aatrox

Blades_of_TormentBlades of Torment ( E )

  • Damage lowered from 75/120/165/210/255 to 75/110/145/180/215

 

 

OlafSquare
        Olaf

UndertowUndertow ( Q )

  • Minimum slow increased from 1 seconds to 1.5
  • Maximum slow increased from 2 seconds to 2.5
  • Mana cost reduced from 55/60/65/70/75 to 60 at all ranks

 

Vicious_StrikesVicious Strikes ( W )

  • Attack speed increased from 20/35/50/65/80% to 40/50/60/70/80%

 

 

SivirSquare

       Sivir

  • Base Attack speed lowered from 0.658 to 0.625

 

Sivir_WRicochet ( W )

  • Now lasts for the next three auto attacks causing each to do ( 1 AD ) to the first target and ( ~.6 AD ) to each subsequent target. Only the first target is affected by on-hit effects Each target may only be hit once by each Ricochet
  • Cooldown increased from 7/6/5/4/3 seconds to 10/9/8/7/6

 

Sivir_ESpell Shield ( E )

  • Mana gain for blocking a spell decreased from 150 at all ranks to 60/70/80/90/100
  • Mana cost removed

 

Sivir_ROn the Hunt ( R )

    • Passive added: Sivir gains 40/60/80% Attack Speed while Ricochet is active
    • Active: Sivir rallies her allies for 6 seconds, granting all nearby allies an initial 60% Movement Speed bonus that decreased to 20% after 3 seconds

 

 

Lore

 

“When the people of Valoran speak of the ”Battle Mistress,” there is only one woman to whom they refer. Combining unflinching bravery with prowess in combat and endless ambition, Sivir’s reputation as a fortune hunter is only rivaled by her amassed wealth and acclaim. Faced with the revelation of her mysterious heritage, Sivir must now weigh her desire to follow her own path against the burden of a greater legacy. 

Sivir grew up among the desert nomads of Shurima, mastering the art of tomb robbing and enjoying a life without strong ties to any one place. She excelled at the mercenary life, accumulating riches, followers and reputation with ease. As her fame spread beyond the desert sands, she caught the attention of wealthy patrons across all of Valoran. The most influential of these benefactors was Noxus High Command. Sivir served the whims of the brutal nation with little concern for consequence. Their partnership proved to be a profitable one until the Ionian conflict broke out. She chose to take no part in the messy invasion and severed her ties. 

It was no surprise to Sivir when the Noxians next paid her a visit, but where she expected assassins, she instead received an offer. Cassiopeia, the daughter of one of Noxus’s most influential families, claimed to have unearthed the location of ancient Shurima’s greatest treasure. All that the noblewoman required was an experienced tomb robber as an escort. 

The expedition proved to be more than Sivir and Cassiopeia bargained for. The ancient tomb held neither the treasure Cassiopeia had promised, nor the weapon she coveted. Despite Sivir’s warnings, the Noxian flung open the door to the entombed vault, setting events in motion that would change not just Sivir’s life, but all of Shurima forever. 

What’s lost can be found… and sold.
— Sivir””

 

 

In-game Preview

 

 

 

New Audio

 

 

 

XerathSquare
       Xerath

 

ArcanopulseArcanopulse ( Q )

  • Mana cost increased to 80/90/100/110/120 from 70/80/90/100/110.
  • Cooldown increased to 8/7.5/7/6.5/6 from 7/6.5/6/5.5/5

 

Locus_of_PowerCosmic Strike ( W )

  • Mana cost decreased from 100/110/120/130/140 to 80/90/100/110/120
  • Slow duration increased from 2.5 seconds to 3
  • Slow for targets in middle of blast increased from 35/40/45/50% to 40/45/50/55/60%

 

Arcane_BarrageAscension ( R ) 

  • No longer reduces damage taken by 10%/20%/30%
  • Mana cost reduced from 100/150/200 to 100 at all ranks
  • After the ability ends, Xerath gains 30/40/50% Movement speed for 2 seconds
  • Xerath can now be moved by displacement effects while in Ascension

 

 

Plans for vintage Limited Edition skins


 

Kitty Cat Katarina Banner

 

 

Hey summoners,

For the past year, we’ve been exploring ways to solve a conundrum with Limited Edition skins. Here’s the crux of the issue:

  • During events from December 2009 through October 2011, we released 34 skins for a limited time and communicated they wouldn’t come back into the store.
  • Since then, our playerbase has grown so much that these skins are virtually never seen in game
    • The most common, Bewitching Nidalee, appears once every 971 games in NA
    • The least common, Ice Toboggan Corki, appears once every 116,586 games in NA
  • Every day we receive heartfelt emails with compelling stories from players asking for the chance to own or gift their favorite skin, either because they missed the brief store window due to travel, illness, deployment, etc., or because they hadn’t joined the LoL community yet.

We think it’s important to solve this, especially since we believe skins are primarily about self-expression and fun, not exclusivity. We’ve evaluated solutions such as a trading auction or achievement system, but each has significant negatives. We also feel that, while it’s important we solve this problem for the majority of players, it’s equally important that we preserve value for those who do own these skins.

 

Taking all that into account, we decided on the following solution:

  • The 34 Limited Edition skins will become available for purchase or gifting for a limited time during the following months:
    • Harrowing 2010 & 2011 skins during October 2013
    • Snowdown Showdown 2009 & 2010 skins during December 2013
    • Winter Games 2010 skins during February 2014
    • World Cup 2010 skins during June 2014
  • Given the reduction in exclusivity, we will be providing the following compensation to the original owners of these skins:
      • RP equal to the price they paid for the skin
      • Vintage treatment in the loading screen whenever they use the skin
    • + Exclusive summoner icon:
  • Going forward these 34 skins will be considered Legacy skins, and may on rare occasion also come back for future events without additional compensation

 

Please note these changes don’t have any effect on:

  • Limited Edition skins that were once in the store but are not part of these events (Rusty Blitzcrank, Urf Warwick, Championship Riven, Riot Singed). If these skins are ever brought back, they will be treated similarly.
  • Earned Limited Edition skins that were rewarded for events or achievements and never appeared in the store (PAX Twisted Fate, King Rammus, Victorious Jarvan, UFO Corki, etc.). We have no plans to make these skins available.
  • Other Legacy skins (Riot K9 Nasus, Zombie Brand, Nottingham Ezreal, etc.), which may still come back into the store from time to time without compensation

We believe this is the best solution for the overall playerbase, and look forward to hearing your feedback. To answer your questions on this and other eCommerce decisions, policies and features, we’re hosting an AMA on Reddit, Tuesday October 15, at 12pm Pacific Time. See you there!


Here is the list of affected skins and when they will temporarily become available in the store (at some point during the month):

October 2013 (Total Bundle Cost: 8840 RP)

  • Mundo Mundo – 975 RP
  • Pumpkinhead Fiddlesticks – 975 RP
  • Kitty Cat Katarina – 975 RP
  • Lollipoppy – 975 RP
  • Zombie Ryze – 975 RP
  • Nosferatu Vladimir – 975 RP
  • FrankenTibbers Annie – 975 RP
  • Definitely Not Blitzcrank – 520 RP
  • Bewitching Nidalee – 975 RP
  • Haunting Nocturne – 520 RP

December 2013 (Total Bundle Cost: 8515 RP)

  • Snow Bunny Nidalee – 520 RP
  • Workshop Nunu – 520 RP
  • Happy Elf Teemo – 520 RP
  • Earnest Elf Tristana – 520 RP
  • Old Saint Zilean – 520 RP
  • Re-Gifted Amumu – 520 RP
  • Santa Gragas – 975 RP
  • Reindeer Kog’Maw – 975 RP
  • Candy Cane Miss Fortune – 975 RP
  • Ragdoll Poppy – 975 RP
  • Nutcracko – 975 RP
  • Silent Night Sona – 520 RP

February 2014 (Total Bundle Cost: 5460 RP)

  • Vancouver Amumu – 520 RP
  • Team Spirit Anivia – 520 RP
  • Ice Toboggan Corki – 1820 RP
  • Union Jack Fiddlesticks – 520 RP
  • The Mighty Jax – 520 RP
  • Festival Kassadin – 520 RP
  • Whistler Village Twitch – 520 RP
  • Curling Veigar – 520 RP

June 2014 (Total Bundle Cost: 2535 RP)

  • All-Star Akali – 975 RP
  • Goalkeeper Blitzcrank – 520 RP
  • Striker Ezreal – 520 RP
  • Red Card Katarina – 520 RP

 

 

Red Post Collection

 

Riot logo decoration

 

 

Sivir’s relaunch on PBE


 

Sivir Decoration

What was the artistic focus behind Sivir’s rework?

 

 

Riot Pwyff Button Rioter Pwyff: We’ve already been talking about Sivir and our plans to relaunch her; now that she’s heading to PBE, we wanted to discuss some of the reasoning behind her changes.

 

Art and Visuals: As one of the earliest champions in the game, Sivir’s visuals and effects didn’t match the look and feel of newer champs. We’ve designed her silhouette around her weapon and improved fidelity and readability of Sivir in-game, giving her an aesthetic that matches the battle-hardened mercenary personality she’s always had. New effects on her abilities emphasize the boomerang-like nature of her weapon, and should make playing Sivir feel more like dashing around the fight tossing ricocheting blades and whittling enemies down from unexpected angles.

Creative: When we revisited Sivir’s lore in preparation for her relaunch, we identified a few mysteries we could explore. Our goals were to clearly identify her place in the world and deliver on the mercenary fantasy inherent in her story. Generic battle platitudes and lack of deep motivation previously made it difficult to become personally invested in her successes or failures. We’ve added new voice-over that ties in to her expanded lore and relationships. With more of her back story and a glimpse into her possible future revealed, players will have more opportunities to learn about Sivir.

Gameplay: Sivir has a unique feel among ranged marksmen. She’s a powerful counter to spell-reliant champs and offers different skills for teamfights than many marksmen with her ultimate and passive. It was extremely important to us to ensure that any changes to her kit preserved her ability to split-push, initiate and counter-initiate while opening up new options for Sivir players. With that in mind, Boomerang Blade and Spell Shield still operate the same way, with some slight tweaks as we continue to test her. Ricochet can bounce to more enemies, although it cannot hit the same target twice. On the Hunt was redesigned to deliver a massive move speed boost, no longer have a cast time and we’ve reduced the cooldown.

We’ll go into more detail about all of the ability changes once she’s closer to going live, but we’re excited to see how players on the PBE use her new kit. As always, we’re looking for your feedback along with the testing that’ll help us squash any pesky bugs.

 

 

[CynicalGiant] Why is the AS boost for Ricochet tied to her ultimate?

 

Statikk Button Rioter Statikk: This decision was made for several reasons – balance, power curve, and use case incentives. As a note, the AS boost was originally on Ricochet itself. I will admit it’s a bit awkward that it exists on her R, but if you think of it more like artificial bonus Attack Speed per level, it starts to make sense.

We wanted to retain some kind of offensive incentive on her ultimate without forcing Sivir players to make un-optimal decisions about how they wanted to use the mobility part of it. So we ended up separating them into a passive and active.

This also helps us curve out her power better to reflect that of a carry. She still gains a lot of power once she hits the end game at level 16+ instead of power spiking crazily at mid-game level 9 or 13. This allows us to put a lot of power in the Attack Speed bonus while not making her OP.

 

 

[CynicalGiant] Why does her Q still have an insanely high mana cost?

 

Statikk Button Rioter Statikk: I wouldn’t agree that it is insanely high, but it’s certainly a significant amount. Her Q needs to have a significant cost if it is to remain a potential high burst-damage poke spell as well as a powerful wave clear tool.

We have reduced the Mana cost pressure across the kit by removing the costs off of Spell Shield and On The Hunt. So that should help in this department.

 

 

[CynicalGiant] Suggestion: Lower the damage loss % on Q

 

Statikk Button Rioter Statikk: We actually tested several different iterations of the spell. We ended up sticking with the Live iteration since with the new Ricochet, Sivir really doesn’t have issues clearing creeps, and we want to make sure hitting clean-cut Boomerang Blades can remain difficult to execute but still meaningful and satisfying when it happens.

 

 

[CynicalGiant] Why does Sivir only have 500 AA range?

 

Statikk Button Rioter Statikk: Sivir has access to several tools that other marksmen don’t. Top-of-the-line wave clearing, a Spell Shield, and team-wide mobility utility. We chose to emphasize those strengths rather than homogenizing and making her more similar to other marksmen.

 

Statikk Button Rioter Statikk: Going to answer a bunch of questions / concerns being raised here. Sorry that I’m not exactly quoting:

 

 

1) Her low Attack Range is why she is not widely played

Although I can agree with this statement, I don’t think it should automatically lead us to the conclusion that we MUST increase her Attack Range. Sivir I believe will always fill a niche role in the game, but that’s okay as long as players who learn and master Sivir are actually powerful contributors to their team and that she is an enjoyable experience to play.

2) Removal of team-wide Attack Speed boost

From a design perspective, we decided that a 15-30% Attack Speed boost was one of the most unsatisfying ways we could deliver power through Sivir’s kit. Although it did provide a somewhat strategic niche, we felt that the mobility part of her ult was always what was more closely associated with Sivir’s identity, so we amped that up instead.

At the end of the day, we believe it provides more room to buff cool things about her kit. I do have a fear that she might be currently undertuned due to us having a couple of really good Sivir players internally that have done really well on a consistent basis. That’s okay though guys, that’s the reason for PBE, we can tune what we need to before she hits the Live servers.

3) Her ult is just a glorified Shurelia’s

In a way, yes you can say that, but it’s also important to take into context what she brings to the table relative to her competition. As far as I know, other marksmen don’t have access to Shurelia’s especially at level 6. Her ult may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I think that’s okay. It’s more important that the entire package is something Sivir players can identify with and enjoy.

4) Reduction of her base Attack Speed / Attack Speed per level

This was done for 2 reasons.

1. As a balancing factor due to how much power I wanted to put into the Passive Attack Speed bonus on Ricochet from On The Hunt. If Sivir isn’t able to compete with other marksmen, then I would like to investigate buffing the Ricochet Attack Speed bonus (say 50/75/100% rather than the current 40/60/80%) instead of giving her Attack Speed the old boring way.

2. By making the Ricochet Attack Speed bonus important to her power, this increases the viability of Cooldown Reduction as a good stat on Sivir. CDR Sivir is a super fun build that I would love to see as an effective alternative to the generic marksmen builds that we traditionally see.

Once again, there’s still tons of tuning we can do here, so feel free to try her out and give feedback. Thanks guys and gals!

 

 

Statikk Button Rioter Statikk: Hey guys,

After reading your feedback and talking to the team, we’ve put in the following changes (not sure when you guys will get the new PBE build though):

 

 

Sivir_WRicochet ( W )

  • Damage % dealt to subsequent targets increased from 60% at all ranks to 60/65/70/75/80%

 

Sivir_ROn The Hunt ( R )

  • Total duration increased from 6 seconds back to 10
  • Initial Movement Speed boost duration increased  from 3 seconds to 4
  • Cooldown increased from 80/70/60 seconds to 100/80/60

 

The goals here were:

1) Make sure Sivir brings top-of-the-line wave clear / AoE damage to the table
2) Make sure Sivir’s ultimate feels impactful in its intended use case

 

 

[common source] Does Ricochet still reset Sivir’s auto attack?

 

Statikk Button Rioter Statikk: Yes, activating W still resets her basic attack.

 

 

 

 

Visual Updates – the ins and outs


 

Sivir Banner

Why are Visual updates such a rare novelty? And why are they so awesome? Find out below!

 

 

[Luscious Lenny] Why was Sivir’s dance downgraded?

 

IronStylus Button Rioter IronStylus: In certain cases, we’ve de-prioritized dances in trade for more comprehensive animations elsewhere. Smoother quality in more often seen animation sets, recall animations, and other places where polish can really go a long way. It’s a very simple cost/benefit.

 

Relaunch recently has been critically evaluating dances. Dances are places we’ve used a lot of resources in the past. Remember, we hand animate everything. No mo-cap, no cutting corners. Every animation is made at a cost of another animation. It’s just how you assign the cost and the benefit in relation to each other.

Currently, as the pipeline stands, we feel animation muscle could be used more impactfully where you see animation most frequently. Runs, spells, etc.

In the end, simplified dances, especially for VU’d champions, means we can spend resources differently, and we feel, more appropriately.

 

 

[Burger Betty] Follow-up: You’re saying Riot doesn’t have the money to include detailed dance animations in reworks?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: You’re assuming we all work under one monolithic department.

We’re on content. Completely different animal with cinematics.

 

 

 

[Serkaidemor] Follow-up: Can’t you hire more staff to do character animation?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: You’d be surprised how few people there are in the world who can hand animate characters to the level that we require.

 

 

 

 

[Serkaidemor] Follow-up: Isn’t Riot too strict in its requirements for animators?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: We want this.

They are extremely hard to come by. So, despite you being skeptical, it is indeed the case.

 

And no, we’re not being too strict. Just like any craftsman, or specialized skilled worker, we need extremely specific skill sets, personalities, and experience levels to fill the roles we need. We interview and bring in people from around the world and yet we only have so many people to do the work. Our guys in all disciplines, crafts, whatever are amazing, but we need more. The people we have, they’re the best at what they do, they are awesome people, and they are rockstars in their field. That’s why they work here. They’re the rarest of the rare.

 

 

[Serkaidemor] Follow-up: Did all the animators move to mo-cap?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Yes.

 

 

 

 

 

[Serkaidemor] Follow-up: When is it preferable to use handmade animation?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: A lot of companies, games, films use hand animation. It’d be pretty difficult to mo-cap a creature from Monsters Inc, or a raid boss in WoW. Again, it’s about the medium. One is not necessarily better than the other, it’s about what’s right for the product.

 

 

 

[NihilisticGlee] Sivir’s massive boomerang cuts into her animations in Model Viewer

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: That’s why we don’t design for model viewers 

 

 

 

 

 

[Xyrne] Why hasn’t your team moved to mo-cap?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Mo-cap gets you exactly what you “pay for” in that it’s just that, capturing motion. Works great for games like GTA, or many 3rd/1st person games. It doesn’t do much for an RTS, Moba, or even most MMO’s. Basically, the more fantastical your game, the less you can rely on mo-cap. The more realistic, or movie-ish your game, the more mo-cap works for the given situation.

We’ve got a lot of guys who used to do a ton of mo-cap, Ohmikegoodness being one of them. He not only worked with the motion captured rigs, but he actually used to DO THE STUNTS. It’s pretty crazy.

In our game though, mo-cap doesn’t deliver the exaggeration, impossible moves, and a whole lot of craft execution that hand animated assets do. Mo-cap is fine for a lot of games, just not League.

 

 

[hashinshi] Why does it take Riot so long to release visual updates for Champions?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Short list of reasons:

Decision making, planning, concepting, production, tracking, balancing, promotion, testing, QA..

Additionally, it’s not one model. It’s, in essence, an entire, be it small, game. Think of a champion as essentially it’s own game. It’s packed full of art, design, story, and a ton of other features that affects everything around it. That’s the whole picture. Art is one section of that package.

I’d really like people to stop looking at content development in a dismissive way of being just making a widget. We’re making encapsulated systems that have a lot more layers on them than what you have at face value, from many different angles. Those systems take a lot of effort from many different people working together on many different levels. It’s not as simple as it might appear.

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Development has changed a lot. A whole lot. More goes into champions in terms of mechanics, art, story, everything. More craftsmanship goes into a VU or a rework. It’s a global rise in quality/involvement/standards/etc and therefore timelines are pushed.

There are benefits for reducing the cadence of release, and costs. No one is going to deny that. But throwing more “resources” at the problem isn’t always going to make things more efficient. Still takes 9 months to make a baby no matter how many mothers you have.

 

 

QA on Heimerdinger – Part 2


 

heimerdinger banner

Catch up on Part 1 here!

 

 

[Aerophobia] Is Heimerdinger’s grenade still as slow?

 

20thCenturyFaux Button Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: The grenade gets to be a hell of a lot faster precisely because it shed the blind 

 

 

 

[Aerophobia] How does the new turret AI work?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Heimerdinger’s autoattacks and grenades direct his turrets to immediately use their beams, and while they do use the beam on their own, they are reluctant to do so without Heimerdinger’s intervention. The only exception to this is if someone attacks Heimerdinger directly–the turrets are very proactive about defending the Dinger.

When the turrets use the beams should be pretty clear to the Heimerdinger player after a game or two. I share the worry about “iffy on when it uses” for non-Heimerdinger players, it’s tough to expect people to learn AI patterns. Since the beam is dodgable, though, I hope it will still work.

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Turrets autoattacks operate by checking the area around themselves every quarter second or so (slower for less important stuff). If they find a champ Heimer has attacked or hit with a grenade, they focus that first. Then they look for champs that have attacked Heimer recently. Then they try to last hit nearby stuff. Then they just shoot whatever’s closest. They remember their priority target until it leaves, but do not attach priority to stuff without Heimerdinger’s direct intervention.

Turret beams work a little differently. The turret will use its beam on priority targets immediately if available, out to max distance. Turrets acting independently will beam enemy champions who approach to about 2/3 of max beam distance, and will beam creeps that are close enough to seriously threaten the turret itself. Hitting a grenade on a champion will cause all turrets to beam the target if within range.

The beam targeting AI is where most of the sophistication lies. They don’t just shoot directly at the target, they look at target speed, heading, and whether the target is approaching/fleeing the turret directly or at a tangential angle. It all plugs into a formula to determine how much the turret leads the target, which I basically arrived at by hand-tuning it a ton of times until it felt good.

It’s not superduper complex, but it’s very tricky to get right. AI tuning is one of the hidden levers we have on Heimerdinger, and can be used to great effect if we don’t like the way his turrets are behaving.

 

 

[crzymdscntst] Heimerdinger’s passive feels underwhelming

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Yeah, I feel like the passive doesn’t feel awesome. I know intellectually why I ended up with it the way it is: I can’t see a way to put a different passive on Heimer that leaves him feeling more awesome instead of less awesome because a bigger passive usually requires power or mindshare cuts elsewhere on the kit.

PBE to the rescue! If we can come up with an awesome + low power + low attention required passive that won’t step on the toes of other Heimer abilities, I’ll implement the **** out of that passive  . That said, I’d be happy if this passive went live, because it does two things I really like.

First, it lets Heimer recover from mistakes. All of Heimer’s power involves a lot of planning and setup, and the best laid plans of mice and men tend to run into an angry clown who turns invisible and shoves knives into your big brain-hair. Second, it’s super simple. The kit has a ton of complexity fear and is very overwhelming for new players, so I definitely want a passive that just does what you want and doesn’t demand you think about it.

 

 

[crzymdscntst] Is the turret shutdown necessary?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: I’d agree it’s not if turrets were worth 12g, but they’re down to 5g now. Clearing a full nest is worth only slightly more than the destruction of a single old turret. For me, that’s what made me happy with it. I also enjoy that if Heimer leaves his toys behind, clever enemies get to use them as a lil piece of candy–not too much power, but a nice feel of 5g in your pocket. It goes towards reducing the sheer hate people have for Heimer turrets without sacrificing any of their power.

 

 

[crzymdscntst] Is there something added that makes turrets more tanky?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Good eye–the turrets do have one more durability mechanic. It’s not spelled out in the tooltip, but they gain resists based on Heimer’s champion level non-linearly. So they receive some during lane, but as you progress through midgame they get a big chunk.

 

 

[Like a BALLZ] Does using R+Q cost a turret kit?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: The main cost on the Q isn’t the mana, it’s the turret kit–RQ doesn’t cost a kit and can be placed if Heimer gets caught with no turrets ready ^^

 

 

 

[liHDlGinzo] Suggestion: Label Heimerdinger’s turrets so players know which turret they’re moving

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Ooo, I like this idea. It’s not something I’d want up all the time, but if I can rig something up where, say, mousing over Q shows what turret is what? That owns. I’ll look into it for sure.

 

 

 

Why do the turrets not disappear when Heimerdinger dies?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: I get feedback frequently that Heim turrets should die when he does, but imo it’s actually pretty important to being what he is that his turrets persist. They don’t last the full 8 seconds, but they last long enough to make diving Heimerdinger something you think about rather than do from habit.

 

 

[Pandavenger] Is the bigger turret (R+Q) immune to control effects?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Big turret is immune to CC, excepting Syndra W. If it’s being tossed around, I’d call that a bug–please let me know!

 

 

 

 

[Lionhrted199] Those upgraded rocket turrets are too strong! Riot pls

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Hahaha yeah, RW is definitely something to watch balance-wise.

 

 

 

 

[Lillemanden] Could the turrets get some health scaling based off Heimer?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: We actually thought the same thing, and playtested it extensively. What’s more, we tried turret health scaling off AP, too. Both were a whole lot more mischief than we originally thought.

The first bugbear was turret tankiness varying based on Heimerdinger’s performance. When Heimer was ahead, his turrets got stupidly tanky; when he was behind, supports could kill them and he felt sad.

The second was the way it warped his build. Heimer is so much about turrets, and turrets that don’t die feel so good for Heimer, that we found Heimer virtually always stacked turret HP to the moon. Super tanky turrets are actually unhealthy for Heimerdinger himself, not just his opponents! It’s strange, but what ends up happening is this:

In Tanky Turret World, heimer drops a couple and then chills out. He stops making interesting decisions with his Q cause he’s happy with the ones he has, he doesn’t feel pressured, he saves his kits to replace them as soon as they die (making the problem worse D: ). The speed of engagement is slowed if scaling with HP, because he bought less AP. If scaling with AP, it was so powerful that it hogged a bunch of power budget.

The last problem was in it being basically impossible to figure out how tanky they were. You just see the little green line; you don’t know if they’re normal or half size or 3x as big or whatever unless you understand Heimerdinger’s Q scaling, which is kind of hard to do for people who doesn’t play him.

If the game were PvE and you could keep buying more items forever, I’d do it in a heartbeat. With 6 slots and other players to consider, I’d need some new twist to make it work. Still though, very good idea! We liked it enough to spend a bunch of time on it, hehehe xD

 

 

[Lillemanden] Could the turrets get a short period of invulnerability when dropped so they can reliably fire their beam?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: They start with 70% of a beam charge, if that’s the type of thing you were looking for :3

 

 

 

 

[Corvo Cuervo] The particles look kind of unpolished

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: They absolutely are unpolished. I made ’em myself, and I am in no way a particle artist. Apologies!

Any particle feedback is very welcome. The upside of them being all designer art is that I get to change them whenever I want.

 

 

[SonicTheHedgedawg] How viable will Heimy’s new turrets be?

 

20thCenturyFauxButton Rioter 20thCenturyFaux: Our testing made me think they went from “destroy melee champions” to “cripple melee champions”, hehehe. It’s mainly the bros who go top lane that can push Heimerdinger around, XZ and the like. Heimer tends to punish zed / fizz / et al with great prejudice. If that turns out to be wrong from PBE testing, though, I’ll be sure to fix.

Nunu/cho eat ’em, to be sure, but Heimer has 3 on his Q and Nunu just has 1 bite. If Cho wants to spend an ult to kill a normal turret, he’s welcome to it. Cho eating RQ feels fair to me, an ult for an ult; if Nunu tries to eat RQ, RQ just survives–it even lives through Smite, though Smite + some other damage will bring it down.

It’s interesting that you mention reduced damage from ranged attacks. For a long time, they had 40% damage reduction against champion ranged autoattacks. I even made a little “feel no pain” particle variant for ’em. At the end of the day, I felt it was no longer necessary for a few reasons.

First, Heimer is a lot more comfortable replacing turrets now. He’s got an extra one, a big one, and they only cost 20 mana. Second, I used non-linear resistance scaling based on champion level for the turrets. It’s a little mathy, but basically they get wrecked by ADC for the first few levels but do well against mage autoattacks. Later on, when ADC do a billion damage a shot, it’s actually a pretty good deal for everyone involved: ADC only waste a shot on turrets if they are forced to by Heimerdinger, ADC kills a turret in one shot that didn’t go to one of Heimer’s teammates, the ADC clears the turret from an area he wants to control, and Heimer replaces it in a new area that he wants to claim. The big win there is the last thing–it lets Heimer keep setting down turrets in a teamfight without having to feel like he’s sacrificing anything to do so.

I have all the code for the damage reduction still handy, and can turn it on if PBE testing shows the need for it. That being said, I’m actually quite happy that the turrets don’t oppress ADC in bot lane. I like Heimer support builds, but damage reduction against ADC made Heimer support into this weird thing that puts turrets down that then fight his own ADC for cs, te

 

 

Making of Warrior Princess Sivir


 

 

 

Missed any recent updates? Check out the latest topics below!

 

 

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skype logo Skype: chefoslr

 

 

Ao Shin Banner

The PBE has been updated with visual and balance changes to Garen, an Improved Options Menu for Keybindings and Graphics, a brand new skin for Viktor and new, less sparkly minion effects! CertainlyT iterates on above changes to Garen, IronStylus and GrumpyMonkey discuss his Visual Upgrade in detail, we get a sneak peek into what is probably the coolest-looking Champion in development, Ao Shin and to top off this news batch, we have Scarizard sharing his vision of Rengar as well as a couple neat ideas for Bonetooth Necklace!

 

PBE Update

CertainlyT on Garen’s PBE notes

For the glory of Demacia – Garen’s Visual Upgrade

Champion Sneak Peek: Ao Shin

Scarizard on Rengar and Bonetooth Necklace

 

 

 

PBE Update

 

Champions


 

 

GarenSquare

     Garen

 

PerseverancePerseverance ( Passive )

  • Now takes 9/6.5/4 seconds to activate again after taking damage, improved each 6 levels, increased from flat 9 seconds

 

JudgmentJudgment ( E )

  • Spin can no longer be deactivated by using the skill again
  • Cooldown increased from 13/12/11/10/9 to 15/14/13/12/11 seconds
  • Damage decreased from 20/45/70/95/120 to 20/40/60/80/100
  • Chance to crit changed from half of Garen’s own crit chance to an independent 10/15/20/25/30% chance

 

 

 LucianSquare

      Lucian

 

Piercing_LightPiercing Light ( Q )

  • Bonus AD Ratio reduced from 60/75/90/105/120% to 55/70/85/100/115%

 

The_CullingThe Culling ( R )

  • Bullet damage increased from 40/50/60 to 50/55/60
  • AD ratio reduced from 25% to 20%

 

 

Tooltips


 

 

ShyvanaSquare

  Shyvana

Dragon's_DescentDragon’s Descent ( R )

  • Active now states: Shyvana transforms into a dragon and takes flight to a target location, breathing a long trail of fire in front of her as she flies, dealing magic damage and leaving a trail that deals the same amount of damage over 4 seconds. Enemies along her path are knocked toward her target location. While in Dragon Form, Shyvana’s attacks and abilities have extra range.

 

 

Items


 

Kage's_Lucky_Pick_itemKage’s Lucky Pick

  • GP/10 increased from 4 to 5

 

Shard_of_True_Ice_itemShard of True Ice

  • GP/10 increased from 4 to 5

 

 

Improved Options Menu


 

Rayven Button Rioter Rayven: Need to quickly set all your hotkeys to Smart Cast? Things just got easier with improvements we’ve made to the options menu. We’ve sped up common tasks and made things more intuitive and easier to find, meaning you’re back in the game with your options fixed up faster than Hecarim with homeguard boots. This is the first step towards improving options in LoL – we’ll continue iterating and improving the experience going forward.

 

OptionsMenu2_KeyBinds

Updated Key Bindings

 

Here are the highlights from the new menu:

Usability Improvements
• Reorganized and clearer navigation that lets you easily switch through different pages
• Changes are preserved across pages until you hit OK
• Restore now defaults to a per-screen basis so you don’t clobber all of your settings at once
• Scrolling. Yes, scrolling with your actual mouse wheel

Hotkeys
• Dedicated buttons so you can quickly enable and disable Smart Cast
• New ways to quickly change your main hotkeys or find that seldom used one lower down in the list

Video
• A new slider that adjust all video/graphic settings to an overall quality level
• Switching resolutions should be noticeably faster for many players

Interface
• Key interface options now update in real-time as you adjust the slider (this includes the HUD, minimap and chat scaling, as well as a test sound to indicate volume levels)

More Options
• Just kidding, we removed this section and re-organized its contents into other, more appropriate sections

As players ourselves, we understood there was an opportunity to make the options menu experience better so players can spend less time navigating and more time playing League. As with anything on the PBE, we need your feedback to improve this feature. Hotkeys and options differ widely from player to player and we’re interested in how these changes impact you.

 

 

Update on ETA

 

Reinbloom Button Rioter Reinbloom: To note, the new options menu is not slated for 3.12 as we would first like to ensure it’s as fit for your scrumptious consumption as possible. 

I’ve attached what it looks like for those who can’t currently login to the PBE with my [Foxfire] Ahri setup.

 

OptionsMenu2_KeysRebound

Example Setup

 

 

Can we adjust the settings without being in-game?

 

Rayven Button Rioter Rayven: Not with this release, but we know that players want to set their options outside of the game. With this set of improvements, we wanted to focus on speeding up the in-game options experience.

Please test the menu out for yourself and let us know if we’ve improved it for you!

 

 

Will this allow for both normal cast and smart cast to be used at the same time?

 

Reinbloom Button Rioter Reinbloom: Yes, there is still a keybind grid below the primary hotkeys that you can make individual (and separate) setups with.

 

 

 

 

Can you clarify on what the graphics slider does?

 

Reinbloom Button Rioter Reinbloom: The graphics slider is a tool only to quickly get to specific groups of settings quickly. It also helps to inform what parts of our system is actually costly (like shadows and effects).

You can change the individual settings instead of using the graphics slider. The graphics slider just goes in to “Custom” mode.

 

 

Creator Viktor Skin


 

 

 

Minion VFX Available for testing


Click here for more information.

 

 

CertainlyT on Garen’s PBE notes


 

Why were the Garen changes made?

 

CertainlyT Button Rioter CertainlyT: Three general points:

First, these changes to Garen are very nascent. To be honest, they went to the PBE because I accidentally placed them in the wrong folder. They are currently closer to the “Stuff a designer prototypes on his machine” level of completion than “Stuff we ship to Live.” Feedback is always welcome, but hyperbolic statements like “they’re ruining him” are not necessary and needlessly breed panic over changes that, when the dust settles, are almost certain to leave him stronger overall.

Second, since this was an accidental promotion, it also did not include all of the changes to Garen – in the version we are about to begin playtesting, his passive is dramatically improved during the later phases of the game (healing values up/cooldown down) and his base stats and stats per level are slightly different.

Third, you have misapprehended the direct effect of some of these changes. For example, Garen’s Judgment (Spin to Win) is not on a longer cooldown. Rather, the cooldown begins when you press the button rather than when you end your spin. This means that Garen scales better with cooldown reduction. For example, at 34% CDR (say, Black Cleaver + Spirit Visage + masteries) Garen would have 25% less downtime on Judgment compared to Live. At 0% CDR, the spell is unchanged from Live in max uptme.

What are these changes really about? Let’s consider the Garen on Live: As you’ve identified, he’s a lane bully who lacks a purpose in the lategame. You seem to believe this is all Garen can ever be. I disagree. Every champion should have a purpose, a clear and potent contribution they can offer their team, in the late game when the game’s focus is on team fights and objectives. The goal of these changes is to trade a small amount of lane strength for a fundamental re-think of Garen’s late game.

My vision for Garen is that he is a relatively low mobility fighter (unchanged) with low combat ranges (unchanged) who a) is more or less immune to poke damage, b) inflicts immense damage to anyone within his reach, and c) if forced out of a fight but not killed, will rapidly regenerate health to return to the fray for cleanup duty. Think of him as an inverted Mundo/Singed – lower in-combat sustain but dramatically higher out of combat sustain. Pre-fight, Garen should walk in front of Nidalee spears and /laugh. Within fights, Garen should cleave a path through the mid-line, force the enemy ADC so far out of the fight that they cannot participate, turn and shut down the enemy mage or tank, execute the other while at 5% life himself, then solo dragon while his team takes an inhibitor.

As a final note, this isn’t just about Garen. We’re looking closely at our fighters as a class for season 4, individually and as a class with the goal of making the top lane experience more enjoyable – (while being in it and after emerging from it).

 

 

Why can’t Judgement be canceled anymore?

 

CertainlyT Button Rioter CertainlyT: I don’t want to dwell on specifics because, again, these are first draft changes that have not even been playtested once outside of the lane. The reasoning for the change though was to make casting E a major commitment. Again, not every change will make Garen stronger. Every change should open space for us to make Garen stronger in the right hands.

 

 

What are your plans for the Fighter class come Season 4?

 

CertainlyT Button Rioter CertainlyT: We’ll hopefully start talking publicly about that in 2-6 weeks! Then the plan is to iterate on thoughtful feedback/playtesting from the community and have a more enjoyable fighter class, and top lane/jungle experience (the three are inextriacbly linked) ready for season 4.

 

 

 

For the glory of Demacia – Garen’s Visual Upgrade


 

New Garen Banner

Rioters discuss the recently previewed VU for Garen and why he has taken priority over other Champions in dire need of better looks.

 

 

Why did Garen’s VU take precedence over Sion’s, Morgana’s, etc?

 

IronStylus Button Rioter IronStylus: Going to x-post this because I know it’s going to come up a lot, about our priorities and basically, Garen, why?

_____________________

We have to space out our champions from High-Risk to Low-Risk. If you’ve seen what we did at PAX, we’ve revealed Sivir, but we were honest in saying she wasn’t next. All the champions you’ve mentioned are high-risk, with maybe the exception of Nasus.

Garen is Low-Risk and high reward. Not our worst executed champion, but of tremendous player value in how common/approachable/archetypal he is.

He was relatively “low cost” for how much value he’ll bring to players.

Sion, Eve, etc, are all on the List. Sivir is coming up soon, but she also, was high-risk, requiring a lot of ideation.

I can non-hyperboilicly say that he’s really epic in his execution and it’s a well deserved VU.

 

 

Follow-up: High-Risk vs Low-Risk VUs

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: A large thread did pop up asking if Garen could get a VU.

We’ve held a high-risk vs. low-risk ever since we did a number of high-risk champions in general proximity. Karma, Trundle, Sejuani, etc.

The fact that “no one” complained about him doesn’t mean he didn’t need to be updated to fit quality and stylistic standards now in place.

We always run the risk when we change something players are used to, but we do our best to make sure we’re fulfilling and enhancing the fantasy of that character. Making them all around more fun and appealing to play by those who love them, and those who are new to the character.

 

 

Who is behind Garen’s rework?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Grumpy Monkey did the base and I did all the skins 

We wanted to push the skins just a bit more. They all equated basically to recolors/geometry swaps. Not a ton of thematic shift. So, for example, we pushed Sanguin more towards almost a vampire warrior. Pushed Desert Trooper towards a Demacian Laurence of Arabia thing, made Rugged a bit more… Rugged, and so on.

We did the same with Master Yi wherever he had simple recolors. Tried to add a bit more thematic flavor.

 

 

Update: Garen’s face

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: Hey Guys! I am looking at these screenshots and I think some tweaks to the faces on the Skins are in order! So expect that to hit on the PBE, also to everyone asking “Sivir Where?” The Relaunch team did a panel at Pax Prime where we revealed some stuff you might be interested in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3s38TE4Zmog Thanks for the kind comments and for the objective criticism! We are still working on tiny things while he is on PBE. Thanks for the feedback. 

 

 

Why wasn’t Morgana updated first?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Morgana has some issues with rigging and other things. She’s a higher risk thematically right now also because she’s literally a fallen angel. We have to figure out how that broadly fits into the IP if at all.

 

 

 

Off-topic: Will there be any changes to Sion’s kit?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Sorry, Morello has already spoken to the most-likely demise of AP Sion.

 

 

 

 

Why did you downgrade Rugged Garen’s signature looks?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: We;re looking into doing a texture update for Rugged Garen based on feedback.

 

 

 

 

Follow-up: Why is Rugged Garen wearing two shoulder-pads in the VU instead of one?

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: Right next to me, Grumpy Monkey is making adjustments to his shoulder pad. There needs to be a “shoulder pad” of some sort due to weighting issues and some model deformation during certain movements. But the current pad is being downsized and recolored to match the jacket. Like a leather pad.

 

 

 

Suggestion: Give Garen a bear and add damage to his clothing so it doesn’t appear so immaculate

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: Great Suggestions. I agree.

 

 

 

 

Suggestion: Make Dreadknight Garen’s armor darker

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: When I left work the texture artists were working on some adjustments.

 

 

 

 

Conclusion: Justifying Garen’s VU and its quality

 

IronStylusButton Rioter IronStylus: I will maintain that this VU has been executed masterfully, and when you get your hands on him, you’ll feel how much more substantial he is, and how better he feels in terms of being integrated into the game’s evolving style.

Big choices were made. Stylistic changes happened, but we feel this is in-line. Why? Not because we’re building it and plugging it in, it’s because teams of people have developed these characters and experienced them full hand as we’re creating them. They’ve been a part of this evolution. Everyone at Riot has a hand in creation. We’re players, we have the minds of players, we act upon what we, as players, would want to see.

When we create, teams at large have access to the playtests, the assets, art, etc. Visibility is key at Riot. We would not feel confident about these choices if those around us felt otherwise.

 

 

Champion Sneak Peek: Ao Shin


 

Ao Shin Concept

Ao Shin Concept

 

As the League of Legends community expands and grows around the world, so too do our influences and inspirations for the game. We thought it would be fun to give you guys a very early peek at one of the champions we’re working on while he’s still in the early stages. Meet Ao Shin, a powerful storm dragon and guardian of the natural world. Legend holds that when Ionia faces its greatest crisis, Ao Shin will descend from the sky.

Let’s start with the inspiration for his name: Ao is the family name of the mythological dragon kings, who rule water and weather. This tells us right away that this is a powerful, elegant being, above the concerns and rules of men. Shincan mean many things, one of which is prosperity. It also means a rising storm. Ao Shin embodies this elemental duality, capable of raining good fortune on his allies and, in the very next breath, bringing stormy, thunderous ruin upon his foes.

 

Ao Shin Sketches

Ao Shin Sketches

 

 

Will this Champion take away from Shyvana’s unique lore?

 

Meddler Button Rioter Meddler: Fair concern, quite agree we should avoid disempowering existing champions with new ones. One of the things that appealed to us about Ao Shin in the first place though was that we saw an opportunity to do something pretty different dragon wise that wouldn’t step on Shyvana’s talons. Another western fire breathing dragon on the other hand would have created those sort of problems.

 

 

How will you differentiate Ao Shin’s abilities from Janna’s?

 

MeddlerButton Rioter Meddler: Differentiation from Janna’s definitely important, thankfully there’s a huge number of different things you can do with this sort of theme so that’s something we’ve borne in mind, rather than a significant problem. And yes, size is also something that’s got a decent amount of discussion, as is how to capture the sort of power associated with dragons in a way that’s both satisfying and balanced. We’re not ready to talk details yet, great topics for discussion once we are though.

 

 

How long have you been working on Ao Shin?

 

MeddlerButton Rioter Meddler: Ao Shin’s one of those champion concepts that we’ve been considering for quite a while (initial art concepts for example started last year). Until recently though there were still some big outstanding questions, story and gameplay in particular, that we hadn’t answered, so we weren’t ready to go ahead with him as a champion. We’re not ready to talk about a lot of his details yet, we definitely will once we can of course though.

 

 

 Scarizard on Rengar and Bonetooth Necklace


 

rengar decoration

Stabb-Stabby Rengar is getting some sweet updates to his signature item!


All discussion on Rengar thus far:

 

 

Will we see some numbers on his updated skills soon?

 

Scarizard Button Rioter Scarizard: Yeah, i’ll do that soon. I just wrote up a big changelist with items and everything internally and am editing it based on changes (Today i buffed Q’s cooldown back to 6 at all ranks and gave his bola a 1.0 bonus ad ratio  )

Still unlikely to show numbers until he’s in a PBE state – while i can always post anecdotes, it’s more that i don’t want to get people hyped about OH MAN LOOK AT THE COOLDOWNS AND DAMAGES! and then have to take them away at a moment’s notice due to some imbalance – in the past, this has led some people to be like ‘wtf why didn’t you ship -that- version?’

This is also why we don’t talk about numbers in our PBE context threads, since a lot of that stuff can and will change up to the night before a patch locks.

I know it’s difficult, but i appreciate you guys sticking with it. I sat down with Classick today and talked over the changelist and he thinks it’s an overall buff (with obvious nerfs to what we’ve talked about/deemed abusive) and that the general playerbase should see better results with Rengar across the board.

tl;dr – i’m at home now, but when i get in to the office tomorrow i can update the main post with a skeleton of the one i wrote up earlier today.

Stay bloodthirsty, my friends.

 

 

Will you make Rengar a better assassin?

 

Scarizard Button Rioter Scarizard: I actually main assassins and fighters, so Rengar has always been a really attractive champion to me – i just appreciate that assassins are a class that requires finesse and nuance, as well as a good sense of game knowledge, situational awareness, and the ability to be opportunistic. Things like this draw me to the Class as a whole, and things like Rengar’s 500% AD triple-q-in-less-than-a-second doesn’t make me feel clever, or like i’m outplaying anyone – it just makes me feel like i’m subverting gameplay in a way that makes our game more dry as a whole.

Naturally i’m giga-biased, but this version of Rengar makes me feel like i have options and real choices, and that when i pull off stealth ganks in a lane or shrouding mid-fight and surprising people i’ve gotten a high degree of satisfaction and feel really accomplished. Even the Q-Train (Q2 giving 3 Ferocity) makes me feel like i have a planned ‘combo’ similar to Ryze (Which spell do i begin with and then end with to get the most Ferocity Spells?) that i think is fun and lets me press a bunch of buttons. 

tl;dr Assassin Rengar being ‘unviable’ was never a goal, just the way that he was executing his play felt unfair and unfulfilling.

 

 

Update on Bonetooth Necklace

 

Scarizard Button Rioter Scarizard: So, i’m redoing the numbers on Bonetooth atm. Thinking of adding a secondary passive to make it more attractive to Rengar players in lane, while also having synergy with Jungle.

How does this sound?


Bonetooth_Necklace_itemBonetooth Necklace

  • Heals X amount on kill. On champion or significant minion/monster, the Heal is multiplied (by maybe 3 or 5, whichever makes sense and is significant.)


So i don’t know what the number would be, but the idea is that it gives him a minor level of sustain that synergizes with last-hitting (minion kills could give you a small amount of sustain, with Siege Minions giving you the Significant bonus, ala Thresh/Nasus/Veigar collection games) while also being a useful mitigation in the jungle – esp on camps like Wraiths where you’d likely outheal the little guys.

Thoughts?

 

 

Suggestion: Bonetooth grants 5x health for killing Baron, Dragon or Vilemaw

 

Scarizard
Button Rioter Scarizard: Unlikely that the heal will ever be -that- big, my target strength to have this be similar to a Doran’s passive (Like 5 on kill, 50 on Significant) may be a possibility. While it’s something that -could- make him more snowbally, it seems less snowbally to me than say Vampiric Scepter on dudes with AA steroids or Doran’s Blades. However, getting a toplaner interested in something at an 800g cost when you could just get Doran’s + Boots or Vamp scepter makes it a hard sell @_@

Possible we could do +100 HP on champions, but my gut says that’s unlikely. I wouldn’t want to give out +100 on significant monsters/minions, and i also wouldn’t want to create more than two points of healing (like Small, Medium and Large heal).

Haven’t put it in yet, but i’m thinking somewhere around 5-8 per kill and somewhere between 50-65 on big kill.

 

 

What does Empowered Bola ( 5 Ferocity + E ) do in this iteration?

 

Scarizard Button Rioter Scarizard: Deals damage that scales with Champion Level (as do all 5-points now) and the root duration is extended.

Preeeeeeeety extended.

 

 

 

Won’t a Bonetooth Necklace be lackluster for sustain when compared to a Doran’s Blade?


Scarizard Button Rioter Scarizard: It’s not as good, but you also would sometime get ~50+ for killing golems, or siege minions. Or you could just build both 😛

Like i said, throwing a number out. I don’t suspect i’ll put 5 in for testing, but something around the numbers Doran’s items have is what i’m looking for.

 

 

The purpose of BTN

 

Scarizard Button Rioter Scarizard: Not going to put anything crazy like Stealth on it. This is an 800g item that is giving you Attack Damage, Butcher Passive and upgrades into champion-specific bonuses. For what it’s doing, it’s pretty cheap…which is why i’ll reiterate again that whatever the passive comes out to be will be a minor, yet useful passive that:

  • Appeals to laning Rengar in the early phases of the game
  • Has a secondary synergy with jungle Rengar.

So yeah, expect whatever 2nd passive makes it onto his BTN to be tiny, but useful. (The reason i keep bringing up Doran’s Items is their passives far outlive their statistical usefulness, and don’t feel poor as item choices regardless of their lack of buildpath.)

 

 

Missed any recent updates? Check here!

 

Visual update for Garen || Patch 3.11 Notes – Changes to Draven, Galio and Zac, 3v3 and Dominion Balance & New Spectator Mode Features || New Minion Effects, News on Rengar, Nika leaves Riot, Cosplay Pictures from PAX, tweaks to Season 3′s Rewards and the latest Sale!

Double AMA for Lucian: get all your questions answered! Rengar returns to stealthing, rollback on W and the latest Sale!

Patch 3.10A – Riven jumps over walls, Nerfs to BotRK, Phage Reworked; PBE Update: Balance & New Turret UI; Dunkmaster Darius teased at Gamescom, New Skins & Lucian in Store, Scruffy explains Skarner changes & the latest Sale!

Pool Party Graves, Leona, Lee Sin and Renekton on the PBE, IronStylus tells the story of Leona’s skin, Lucian Spotlight & Making Video, No more stealth for Rengar, State of Taric and Massive changes to Skarner!

Massive PBE Update – Changes to Yi, Zac and Phage, New Teamfight and Dragon & Baron UI, Improvements to Champions Tab, Update on Skarner, Skins in development, More amazing Diana Art, Results from the Freljord Tribe Event and the latest Sale!

 

 

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tribunal banner

 

RiotRadioBlur shares the process of creating the new item icons and the story behind each one, Lyte goes into a deep discussion about dealing with toxic players without banning them, rewarding positivity, resolving issues with AFK-ers in Ranked and the report system as a whole, word from GrumpyMonkey on Champion redesigns, WCC ticket pre-order announced and the latest Sale and Rotation!


Designing New Icons

World Championship tickets available on August 15th!

Lyte on Shaping a Community

The magic behind Visual Updates

Champion Rotation – Week 27

Champion/Skin Sale: August 6th – 9th

 

Gamasutra (Shaping the Community): GDC: Riot Experimentally Investigates Online Toxicity

 

Designing New Icons

 

RiotRadioBlur shares the story of how the new item icons came to be, the design and time-frame aspect, as well as future projects.

 

 

RiotRadioblur Button Rioter RiotRadioblur: Hey there!

I’m sure you’ve noticed some of the items have had their art updated and replaced. As the aesthetic of League becomes more cohesive and solidifies in quality, we’re working hard to update all of our old art. In particular, the Visual Design team is working hard to innovate and improve on our user interface and visual identity. We have already been raising the icon quality bar on our champions and summoner icons, and it’s about time items got some love. Because these icons are so important to our players, I thought I’d walk through some of the decision-making process involved in developing the new aesthetic.

The primary goal of the reworks was to improve clarity, and then to build thematic connections between the item visuals and the other aspects of their design. Familiarity was a big concern as we began working on these—how far can we push the designs until they become too hard to adapt to?—but a few icons had very little in their visuals that could be held onto. When we were looking into which icons to re-design first, we wanted to seek out the ones that presented some of the biggest challenges to redesign, the ones whose themes seemed seriously out of line with their visuals, or whose current art didn’t localize well. From there, we wanted to find ways to build them into the rest of our game’s world in a way that felt consistent and logical.

Let’s look at how each one was chosen and how we developed them:

 

 

Abyssal Scepter

 

Old_AbyssalScepter

Old Icon

 

Abyssal’s older art was a bone on a stick. It was pretty lacking in terms of design, and nobody really felt that the whole “abyss” theme was captured by it. The first explorations toyed with keeping the skull, but it just wasn’t exciting enough. Somebody on the team suggested pushing more in the direction of something extremely warped, exaggerated, and unusual, but retaining the feeling that this was the skull of some terrifying creature. The more we pushed, the more we realized a hybridization of the two would provide the most unsettling result. A vaguely human skull at the end of a staff made out of its own spinal column, wrapped in worn strips of leather. The bone went from bleached white to dark, decayed brown, which also brought out the silhouette and distanced the design even further from appearing too human. The final touch came from one of our splash artists, Alex Flores, who really pushed the S shape in the staff to where it is now. In the end, we had this:

 

abyssal scepter

New Icon

 

 

Catalyst

 

Old_CatalysttheProtector

Old Icon

 

Catalyst’s upgrade had a few very specific goals going in. The first was to change the rune to match the kind of shape language we would see in our game today. The shape we used was designed by one of our other Visual Designers, Zach Roberson, and it definitely feels like it belongs with the world we’re building. The second consideration we had was to make it purple to match the idea of blue and red crystals combining into one new item. The result was something with a really unique color palette and silhouette, brought up to the quality we want to see out of every new icon:

 

catalyst

New Icon

 

 

Deathfire Grasp

 

Old_DeathfireGrasp

Old Icon

 

More than any other icon so far, Deathfire Grasp’s redesign pushed the limits of what we could do with changes. The original icon felt like such a missed opportunity, and had too much overlap with Abyssal Scepter’s visuals. We wanted to separate the two, and make each feel more unique. And then there was this great theme, right there in the name “Death Fire Grasp.” It sort of stuck out in our earliest discussions as the obvious thematic tie, but being obvious isn’t always the best way to design. So we tried a few iterations and different ideas, but in the end we kept coming back to a staff with some sort of hand or claw shape on the end of it holding a spirit flame. Once we decided where we were taking it, we felt like the next step was to bring it into the world. Where would you find a staff holding a captured soul? The Shadow Isles. Looking at champs like Hecarim and Thresh, we tried to give the staff some of the same flair, all the way down to the color pallette, blue-green effects and lighting, with warm iron for the metals. The new design was a huge departure from the original, and we had a lot of internal discussions about whether we were pushing too far. In the end we agreed the added clarity and visual theming made the icon more distinct and easier to associate with its thematic. And here we have all of that process in its final form:

 

deathfire grasp

New Icon

 

 

Glacial Shroud

 

Old_GlacialShroud

Old Icon

 

Glacial shroud also really missed its thematic. We started looking at this around the time we were developing the Freljord event, and with all this lovely new art for our wintery domain, it made sense to make Glacial Shroud more “glacial.” The first step was to remove the lion. After abstracting the details of the face, we saw some shapes that reminded us of the knot shapes on Howling Abyss, so we adjusted them all to fit in. The blue ring matched the True Ice of Freljord, so we inlaid a ring of it onto the medallion. Next was taking the gold and toning it down to the kind of muted color palettes we see on Trundle, Sejuani, and the other Freljord champs. Finally we took those wispy shapes and hinted at a frost-magic fabric the pendant holds together as a brooch, giving us a very literal shroud to play with. The new icon went from being something a bit out of place, to something that could really fit in to our world:

 

glacial shroud

New Icon

 

 

Haunting Guise

 

Old_HauntingGuise

Old Icon

 

For Haunting Guise we set out to actually make something a bit spooky. A clown face was a specific nightmare, but we wanted something that would feel appropriately haunting to anybody. The shape of the mask we ended up with had a lifeless, cold feel. The red and white hinted at something Ionian, and the green magic matched some of what we were seeing out of champs like Karma and Master Yi. We drew on lots of our Ionian champs for reference, but the biggest help on this icon came from the Visual Development department, where they really helped us nail down that Ionian style. The result:

 

Haunting Guise New Icon

New Icon

 

 

Hextech Revolver

 

Old_HextechRevolver

Old Icon

 

Hextech isn’t extremely well-defined to our players right now, but there’s plenty in the various champions to suggest at what it could be. Again, Visual Development played a big role in helping us achieve a look the felt appropriately “hextech,” and helped steer the direction to something more specifically Piltovian, which felt like a natural fit for the item’s origins. The gun replicates a lot of the aesthetics seen in Jayce, Vi, and Graves, where magic and technology play off one another to form unique implements with an unusual design principal. The gun doesn’t function without the magic, and the magic is useless without the gun to harness it. It’s a symbiotic relationship:

 

hextech revolver

New Icon

 

 

Thornmail

 

thornmail

Old Icon

 

Right out the gate, Thornmail felt like Noxus. Bearhug your enemies with spiked mail? Totally Noxus. Again Visual Development helped us find that perfect mix of utilitarian design and aggressive, militaristic aesthetics that makes it fit so well into our world. Darius, Draven, and other Noxian champs heavily influenced the design, right down to the spiked shoulders, dark grey metals, and the red background (shying away from the pinker hue we were seeing before). The process on Thornmail really seemed to flow as soon as we knew it was Noxian, and I think the result really shows for it:

 

thornmail

New Icon

 

 

Vampiric Scepter

 

Old_VampiricScepter

Old Icon

 

Vampiric Scepter is another Noxian artifact, this time drawing from Vlad’s aesthetics to really drive home the vampire aspect inherent to the item. It took a few tries to get here—some of the early iterations involved a bat with scythe even—but the result is something a lot more mature than the older, goofier icon. We managed to preserve and abstract the face and scythe shapes, and give the metal a really unique gold treatment to match the rendering we see in Vlad’s splash. The final touch was making the magic feel like is was reaching out and sucking in energy from the space around it, drawing on the strength of others. The final icon is a lot more menacing than before:

 

vampiric scepter

New Icon

 

And that’s them! The Visual Designers here at Riot worked really hard to bring out the best in these icons, and I think it shows. Lots of thought, time, and energy were poured into these to make them the best icons we can make, and all the other teams who dog-piled them really helped us go that extra mile. A huge shout out to everybody involved!

I’ll be in this thread to address any comments or questions, so if you have anything to say just let me know and I’ll do my best to respond. It’s great to have these out, and we hope you all enjoy!

 

 

Isn’t the new Abyssal Scepter icon just a skull on a spine?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: Fair point. I guess it’s mostly that the old one lacked any real design and wasn’t super interesting. The base was there, it just needed to be pushed. 😛

 

 

 

 

Why is the new Vampiric Scepter lacking the skull face?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: I tried to keep the implied face in there with the fangs and eyes, but keeping the skull ended up making the whole item feel super clunky. Kind of a shame, because in theory it’s pretty cool, I just found it really difficult to execute on and still make look like the Vampiric stuff we see with Vlad. Thanks very much for the feedback though!

 

 

Will you be updating other item icons as well?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: I assure you, no icon will go untouched (unless it released more recently–Orb of Winter, Spectral Cowl, and Seeker’s Armguard are already in-style, as are all the newer champs since Annie’s rework). Look forward to them soon!

 

 

 

How much time does it take to design an icon?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: It varies from icon to icon. Ability icons usually take about two days to bring to final polish, since we paint them at a much higher resolution than seen in game. Item icons can take a bit longer, because a big part of the icon is doing actual redesigns and running the concept by people to make sure the shape language and colors are working. The average time for these item icons was about 4 days apiece, though they were staggered a bit. The overall work time on these was about a month in between other icon projects, and lots of testing and reviews were done before we decided to put them in.

Also, keep your eyes peeled for more coming up in the future!

 

 

Follow-up: Isn’t a whole month too much time for a single icon?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: As I said, “The overall work time on these was about a month in between other icon projects,” which means we had a lot of things going on simultaneously. Keep in mind we’re trying to hit all the new content too, guys. 😛

 

 

 

Why is the new DFG icon so drastically different from the old one?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: This was one of the icons we were most worried about changing, but the old one had very little to work with. I tried a few variations keeping the pink and grey, and even had several iterations with the skull, but they were all mostly as confusing as the original was (which isn’t terribly clear, though I know it’s been around a while so it has become hugely familiar). In the end this one provided the clearest read, and we wanted to introduce the more dramatic changes slowly so that the overall transition would be less jarring. We have a few others planned to be reworked to about this level, but the number isn’t very high and we hope to slot them in gradually over time. 

 

 

Are you in charge of the team making these icons?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: I’m doing most of our icons internally right now, but the whole Visual Design department shares a lot of that responsibility so it doesn’t really fall to any one of us in particular.

 

 

 

 

Will you be updating champion icons as well?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: I can say that updating relaunched champion ability icons was a movement I started when I got here, which was just before Annie was relaunched. We’re looking at ways to get back and update all the old stuff, but there’s a lot of new content rolling out all the time that eats up a significant amount of bandwidth. I don’t want to promise anything, but I assure you it’s not off our radar.

 

 

Are these icons designed by Vigil Rioters? (makers of Darksiders)

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: Actually all of these items were primarily spearheaded by me with some seriously huge assists from all the other departments. There are quite a few Vigil folks around the office, but none of them had much of a hand in this rework pass to my knowledge. That said, we might be seeing some down the road with some of them jumping in for support, just as long as the end result continues to feel distinctly “Riot.”

 

 

Will you change the oddity that is Moonflair spellBLADE being a ranged-only item?

 

RiotRadioblurButton Rioter RiotRadioblur: That’s actually a great point. Definitely something to think about going forward. Thanks for the feedback!

 

 

 

World Championship tickets available on August 15th!

 


world championship tickets

Anxious to see the finals live? Reserve your ticket a full month before they start!

 

 

Following our recent announcement about the Season 3 World Championship, which included unveiling the Staples Center as the venue for the finals, we now have more to share on how you can watch all of the action live.

The World Championship will consist of 14 teams from North America, Europe, Korea, Southeast Asia, China, and a qualifying International Wildcard, competing to forever etch their name onto the coveted Summoner’s Cup. The entire Championship tournament takes place over three weeks from September 15 to October 4. Individual tickets will be available for all Championship game days and every match is played in front of a live audience at a Los Angeles studio. The semifinals move to the Galen Center and then the final best of five match plays out at Staples.

Tickets go on sale on August 15 at 12PM PDT / 21:00 CEST. When tickets become available, use the purchase links in the schedule below to directly buy the days you want to attend.

 

CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE

Date Stage # of Games Location Purchase Link
Sun, Sep 15 Group Stage 7 Games Studio Not yet available
Mon, Sep 16 Group Stage 6 Games Studio Not yet available
Tue, Sep 17 Group Stage 7 Games Studio Not yet available
Thu, Sep 19 Group Stage 7 Games Studio Not yet available
Fri, Sep 20 Group Stage 6 Games Studio Not yet available
Sat, Sep 21 Group Stage 7 Games Studio Not yet available
Mon, Sep 23 Quarterfinal 2 Matches (Bo3) Studio Not yet available
Tue, Sep 24 Quarterfinal 2 Matches (Bo3) Studio Not yet available
Fri, Sep 27 Semifinal 1 Match (Bo5) Galen Not yet available
Sat, Sep 28 Semifinal 1 Match (Bo5) Galen Not yet available
Fri, Oct 4 Final 1 Match (Bo5) Staples Not yet available

Look for more details shortly, appearing here first on lolesports.com. And make sure to follow us on Twitter at @lolesports as another way to get info the instant it’s available.

 

Lyte on Shaping a Community

 


player behavior banner

Lyte continues his discussion on dealing with negative players, awarding positive ones and how beneficial the recently-implemented Behavioral Alert and Restricted Chat Mode systems are.


Studying Player Behavior
Positive Players
Honor System
Reports & Bans
Dealing with Toxic Players
Resolving issues in Ranked

 

Studying Player Behavior

 


 

Does/did your team ever disagree on the direction of player behavior?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: There was a time we made Player Behavior face off in a Normal Summoner’s Rift match, and my team won in a landslide. 

Even though the above did happen, we have a smart team that knows it’s about give and take. We generally have long discussions and meetings where we pour over the research and determine the best course of action for the team–surprisingly, we haven’t had many disagreements on what the team should do.

 

 

What’s your stance on smurfing?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: Smurfing isn’t officially endorsed by Rioters.

It’s something we are actively doing research on and trying to address. We agree with some reasons to smurf–such as to make a new account to play with a brand new friend; however, we’d like to make it easier to do that instead of encourage players to smurf.

 

 

Is the Optimus experiment still on-going? 

“Optimus” refers to Lyte’s continuing study on Online toxicity.

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: The Optimus experiment was to identify the most effective tips to shape player behavior positively; however, there’s still room for ‘flavor’ in a video game, especially if the effects of the flavor are neutral in the behavioral space.

However, we’re working on sharing more research from Optimus in the future and do have some interesting insights about the ‘flavor’ tips.

 

 

Are long-time players less likely to encounter toxic behavior than newcomers?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: This is a really cool insight, and is partially true. Very, very veteran players should see fewer extremely toxic players, which is the demographic that the Tribunal targets; however, our research suggests that the majority of toxicity comes from the neutral and sportsmanlike population potentially having outbursts due to bad days or other RL incidents. Veteran players will probably still see the same amount of toxicity from these ‘types’ of incidences.

 

Positive Players

 


 

Are any other systems (apart from Honor) in the works for positive reinforcement?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: To us, positive reinforcement is more of a philosophy that guides our system design. You’ll definitely see more systems use concepts of positive reinforcement in the future.

 

 

 

 

Do positive players win more games?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: Because the stats average across the entire playerbase, usually factors like # of games played are normalized. So in the stat I mentioned, the positive players win more games (but play about the same number of games as the other two populations).

 

 

 

Follow-up: Does sportsmanship lead to a higher win-to-loss ratio?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: The first few times we ran these stats, they were just correlations. So you are right, we couldn’t decipher the causal direction of the relationship and it could just be that players become toxic when they are in losing situations.

However, in the more recent versions of the analyses, we’ve attempted to control for these factors. For example, how does a positive player respond in a losing situation? How many reports do they receive on average? We then compare these baselines to the toxic players and see if we can figure out the exact direction of the relationship between winning and sportsmanlike behavior. With some of our more recent work, we’re getting confident that being more sportsmanlike does win games. Teamwork OP right? 

 

 

Isn’t focusing on positive reinforcement more beneficial than focusing on negative such?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: We definitely would like to focus on positive reinforcement of sportsmanlike behavior; after all, if you make it easy for players to be sportsmanlike, they tend to be sportsmanlike.

However, negative reinforcement hasn’t been shown to always be ineffective or detrimental. We’ve seen success with negative reinforcement in many areas–we just prefer to shift to positive reinforcement instead.

 

Honor System

 


 

Are different game modes affecting the rate at which Honor votes are sent?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: We’ve definitely noticed that Honor distributions vary greatly across different game modes and skill levels. We have a few ideas in mind that we want to research and try for Honor, after we’re done with Champion Select.

 

 

 

Do you feel like Honor is accurate enough to use as the basis for other incentives?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: Depending on which Crest you observe, there’s a correlation between Crest holders and games that have 0 reports–that was interesting to us.

 

 

 

 

Is Honor accomplishing what it was originally set out to?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: Honor needs some work, and we’ve already done some research into the space and how we want to polish and upgrade the system. However, it’s currently being used a healthy amount on all servers and had a very positive effect on player behavior in League (while also allowing us more resolution to analyze player behavior because we only had the ‘negative’ spectrum with reports before). We’d like to improve the correlation between Crest holders and sportsmanlike personalities, and also implement a few features into Honor to encourage players to aspire and strive for Crests.

 

 

Suggestion: Give free runes to players who earn an Honor ribbon

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: It’s an interesting idea, and I do want to hear more about what sportsmanlike players would find valuable to their game experiences or their accounts (beyond the obvious like “just give us free skins everyday!”)

 

 

 

Why is there so little information on the forums about the Honor system?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: We’ve been trying to put more FAQs on the forums such as the Tribunal FAQ and “Understanding Tribunal” thread, and we’re trying to do the same for Matchmaking and Honor. If only I invented a machine that gave me infinite time…

 

 

Reports & Bans

 


 

Are multiple reports over a single game more punishing than spread reports over several games?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: Behavioral Alerts do take into account both the # of reports per game, and the # of reports across games. We might not have optimized the tuning of the numbers yet though.

 

 

 

 

Do certain champions cause more reports in a game?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: It depends how you normalize the data. In fact, champions like Ashe get the most reports and the most honors but it’s mainly because Ashe is one of the most-played champions in the game.

A long, long time ago, pre-stealth rework Eve received the most reports in the game; however, the interesting twist was that Eve champions were not punished more often in the Tribunal than any other champion. It was interesting to us because players were acknowledging the context of Eve, and pardoning players a bit more frequently to off-set the increased number of reports that Eve got back then.

 

 

Who decides what type of punishment a player on the Tribunal receives?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: Punishments are usually based on frequency of toxic behavior; for example, someone who is toxic in a majority of their games and has visited the Tribunal multiple times is more likely to be up for a longer timeban.

However, because there is a review process with Riot Player Support, sometimes cases get escalated to higher punishments based on the severity of the toxic behavior as well.

 

 

Any chance of perma-banned accounts receiving a permanent chat instead?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: Our policy is that permanent bans are permanent. We will not go back retroactively and apply different punishments or unban accounts.

 

 

 

 

Follow-up: What’s your reason for leaving players perma-banned?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: When we permanently ban players, we don’t want their time or their money. We want them to spend their time elsewhere. I can’t be more clear than that.

 

 

 

 

Why aren’t IP bans being issued?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: IP Bans aren’t effective for a variety of reasons. For example, there was a story a few years back of an IP Ban that was handed out and it turns out it was at a college dorm–we received something like 200 tickets from players that were affected but didn’t deserve it.

 

 

 

Will perma-banned accounts be unbanned if your policy on the subject changes?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte:  No, we will not retroactively unban permanently banned accounts, even if new features or account restrictions are launched.

 

 

 

Dealing with Toxic Players

 


 

Isn’t it wrong to claim that pre/post-game chat logs affect only the most toxic players?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: There’s a slight nuance in our thinking.

The Tribunal is a harsh punishment system, aimed to reform (and if that fails, remove) players from the game. To us, this is a last resort system. Because the system was designed as a last resort, we only want to utilize it against the worst of the worst players because it really sucks to tell players they can’t play a game they love. If at all possible, we’d like to reform these players, or shield their behaviors from other players while still allowing them to play the game.

A lot of players might not report pre- and post-game chat because they know it isn’t included in the Tribunal; so, it’s true that if we included pre- and post-game chat that reports would increase. However, reports increasing doesn’t necessarily mean that we would tune the Tribunal to punish more players. We’ve been recording pre- and post-game chat logs for awhile and have run numerous analyses on them. In many cases, players that are toxic in pre- and post-game chat are also toxic in-game and are always punished by the Tribunal–it just takes a bit longer than the average toxic player. We’ve also observed that the number of players who are solely toxic in pre- and post-game chat is so low, that the incremental value of adding the chat logs just isn’t worth it for now.

The key here is asking how many players are getting away with toxic behavior, by just being toxic in pre- and post-game chat? For now, the answer is too low for us to justify resources. To get back to your original question, we do consider “effort to solve” though. Effort to solve Champion Select is much greater, but the eventual value is much greater as well.

 

 

Is Restricted Chat Mode helping toxic players reform their behavior?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: We’ve heard a lot of feedback that with Restricted Chat Mode on, players are winning more games simply because they are focused on the game and not on negative chat.

 

 

 

 

Will we be able to see which players are put on Restricted Chat Mode?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: We were very careful not to give indicators or badges that a player is in Restricted Chat Mode; this is because we don’t want to brand players as ‘toxic’ and set them up for failure before the match has even started.

Some players still choose to use their messages to inform their teammates that they are in Restricted Chat Mode; however, many players simply choose to hide their status and be sportsmanlike members of the team and we’re OK with that. If we labeled these players or otherwise branded them, they might be harassed even if they were going to be sportsmanlike in that particular game.

 

 

Will anything be done to stop AFK-ing in-game?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: LeaverBuster is the system that handles Leavers/AFKs, and yes, reporting them is effective even if only 1-2 players do it.

The player behavior team hasn’t done a pass on the LeaverBuster system in awhile, it’s something I’ll look into after Champion Select.

 

 

What is Riot’s current alternative to perma-banning toxic players?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: We’ve always said that we prefer reforming toxic players first, and will only remove them on a last resort basis.

We are currently handing out massive chat bans before permanent bans these days though, and are trying to research new ways to reduce the motivation for toxic players to simply make new accounts. One way would be to add more ‘account restrictions’ and just let these players stay on their main accounts.

 

Resolving issues in Ranked

 


 

Suggestion for Ranked: Reduce LP loss for the team with leaver/AFK || Increase LP loss for the Leaver/AFK

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: These are interesting ideas that we’ve discussed in the past. The problem with reduced LP loss for the team is that it encourages the team to bully or harass someone to leave the game if they believe there’s no longer a chance to win. In many ways, a feature like this would encourage some number of neutral players to ‘go toxic’ in frustrating games and vent on a player, hoping that they would leave.

Increased LP loss for Leavers/AFKs is less of a problem; however, in Ranked Modes, we don’t see many intentional leavers or AFKs–most of the leavers in Ranked Modes are likely due to legitimate reasons such as emergencies or outages. Everyone in League of Legends has disconnected at least one game in their career–should we really be punishing these players even harsher?

It might be worthwhile to punish these players harsher if we reduce intentional leavers/AFKs by a certain percentage; but, it’s something we’d have to model and calculate out and see if the change is worth it.

 

 

Follow-up: Why are you hesitant to implement a reduced LP loss system?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: What was the original goal of reduced LP loss for teammates? Was it to reduce Leavers/AFKs in games, or reduce the impact on teammates when there was a leaver or AFK player?

In both cases, reducing LP losses for teammates doesn’t actually solve the problem. It creates more. Regardless of whether the Tribunal will handle the new abuse that the feature would introduce, the feature doesn’t actually reduce Leavers/AFKs (and you could argue it would increase the number of them if teams start harassing each other to get someone to leave) and the feature doesn’t actually reduce the impact on teammates because now teammates are not dealing with Leavers/AFKs–they are creating them through toxic behavior.

 

 

How does Matchmaking Rating work?

 

LyteButton Rioter Lyte: The system is pretty sophisticated because it’s continuously evolving as we collect new data. Over time, we’ve added custom features to the algorithm based on unique situations in League of Legends such as how do we handle duo queues? Premade 5s? How do we handle situations where players are queued with a friend who has a large skill differential?

In many of these cases we are taking into account a lot more variables than simply Wins/Losses.

 

The magic behind Visual Updates

 


Sivir Decoration

GrumpyMonkey details in on future visual updates of champions, the time it takes to rework one and how the team prioritize their projects.

 

 

Any news on Sivir’s VU?

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: She looks cool. She will be out soon. The skins are still being worked on but Sivr Pax is looking legit not much changed, just streamlined the design a bit for readability.

 

 

 

 

Follow-up

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: But I will say this much, She’s not the next VU.

 

 

 

 

 

What makes some visual reworks harder than others?

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: So a while back one of the Relaunch guys (can’t remember who, might have been Qqroon or Ironstylus) explained about high risk reworks vs low risk reworks. Master yi is an example of a low risk rework. We knew what he was going to be, is original look and concept was cool, the execution just needed a bit of polish to get to the current standard. It was mostly just visual work.

Reworks get more risky as more aspects like gameplay design and lore have to be involved. So we wanted to do a few low risk characters before we hit the really work intensive Relaunches (like Sion). Sivir was mostly visual work, but there are some story elements that the writing team have been working on to make her tie into the world a bit better, and make her a major player in the Leagueaverse. That being said, the reason she’s not the next one out is simply because we started another one before her.

 

 

Is Twitch the next champion to get a visual rework?

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: It’s not twitch, but Twitch is coming along nicely. I am really digging him. I have the sculpt done and the team has approved moving him forward.

 

 

 

 

Follow-up: What is a champion model’s sculpt?

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: The sculpting phase is when I translate the 2d drawing into a 3d sculpture like I did for master yi and trundle.https://vimeo.com/68653110
It’s a phase where the design is getting locked down and streamlined for the actual game.
After sculpting it gets dropped down in resolution and we take the shadow info from the high res sculpture and use it as the starting point for the low res game model’s texture.

 

 

Will the next VU be teased early?

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: The team likes to announce these types of things very formally with lots of great support from all the different facets of Riot, from the web team, community,events, and marketing teams. If I were to leak images or teasers, that would be a waste of a lot of hard working peoples time.

 

 

 

What’s the timeline for releasing VUs?

 

grumpy monkeyButton Rioter GrumpyMonkey: Our goal is to have one rework done a month. Now having one done and having one released are two different things. Yi had been done for a few weeks, but SGU had priority, we didn’t want to steal any even a little bit of it’s thunder, also there were lots of platform techy stuff things that would have made the patch too big. So we held off until SGU was home free. So what I’m saying is, we try to be flexible.Just because a rework is done, doesn’t mean it’s time to release it. We try to time it with other stuff that can boost overall player engagement.

 

Champion Rotation – Week 27

 

Champion Rotation - Week 27

The following champions will be free-to-play until August 13th!

 

  • Anivia – 3150 IP / 790 RP
  • Caitlyn – 4800 IP / 880 RP
  • Cho’Gath – 1350 IP / 585 RP
  • Garen – 450 IP / 260 RP
  • Jax – 1350 IP / 585 RP
  • Lissandra – 6300 IP / 975 RP
  • Lulu – 6300 IP / 975 RP
  • Mordekaiser – 3150 IP / 790 RP
  • Taric – 1350 IP / 585 RP
  • Urgot – 3150 IP / 790 RP

 

Champion/Skin Sale: August 6th – 9th

 


Sale- Expires August 9th

Enjoy the following champions and skins at a discount until August 9th!

 

 

 Champions:

  • Graves - 487 RP
  • Kog’Maw - 440 RP
  • Morgana - 292 RP

 

 

 Battlecast Urgot - 675 RP

 

Battlecast Urgot

 

Bloodfury Renekton - 487 RP

 

Bloodfury Renekton
 

Lil’ Slugger Trundle - 260 RP

 

Lil' Slugger Trundle

 

 

Twitter is up!

twitter-icon-png-13 A lot of you like to express your opinion in-depth on the news posted here and while I do try to answer most of you, I think the comment section is rather lackluster for this sort of thing. So, as of today, you can find me on Twitter! I encourage anyone who wants to ask a question, tweet me and I’ll answer you in my own free time. Please remember that I’m not working for Riot, I’m a university student so base your expectations with that knowledge in mind. I do appreciate your interest in my articles and I hope this helps you get your answers quicker!

 

 

Missed any recent updates? Check here!

 

GrumpyMonkey on Evelynn and Poppy’s Visual Updates, IronStylus shares stunning Leona/Diana art, Soraka’s Jelly Time dance on Youtube and more!

Mercy Vote: Anti-AFK System, Update to Galio, Lyte on Positive features, Visual Overhaul for Summoner’s Rift and the latest Sale!

Patch 3.10 – Big Changes to Elise/Master Yi/Ryze/TF, New MR Items, Jungle Nerfs // Rioters discuss Skarner and Rengar!

Ask Lyte: Positive/Negative Players and State of Tribunal; Spellbreaker removed, Tristana’s E and Season 4 Changes!

PBE: Nerfs to Vayne and AP Lucian, Xypherous on Phage, Arcane Helix, LoL’s New Site, Update to Olaf’s Kit and the latest Sale!