4/18 PBE Update: Midseason 2017, Maokai/Sejuani/Zac Updates, Dark Star Kha’Zix and Orianna, New Chroma, and Much More!

[ This is a WORK IPROGRESS POST. Tonight’s update is HUGE and will take longer than usual! ]

Status: The PBE is currently still down for extended maintenance. The last estimate at 6:30pm PT is that PBE will be back up by ~7:30pm PT after a fix that should be deployed shortly. In the mean time, we are working on what we can! ]

The PBE has been updated! Midseason is here as we kick off the 7.9 PBE cycle. Tonight’s update includes new Kha’Zix and Orianna skins, updates for Maokai, Sejuani, and Zac, new items, new Chroma for Sandstorm Ekko, Warlord Shen, and Officer Vi, and much more!

Continue reading for more information!

(Warning: PBE Content is tentative and subject to change – what you see below may not reflect what eventually gets pushed to live servers at the end of the cycle! Manage your expectations accordingly.)

Table of Contents

New Champion Skins

Two new out of this world champion skins are debuting this cycle – Dark Star Kha’Zix and Dark Star Orianna!

Dark Star Kha’Zix

1350 RP

[ Video preview & screenshots soon ]

Here’s Riot LoveStrut with a bugs & feedback thread for Dark Star Kha’Zix:

“Endless hunger.” 

The vast reaches of space are Dark Star Kha’Zix’s jungle. How many devoured planets will it take to sate his hunger?  

The Darkest Details  

  • All-new model and textures (Terror has evolved.)
  • All-new VFX (Slashing and leaping with the force of a collapsing galaxy.)
  • All-new SFX (The usual chilling space-bug sound.)
  • All-new animations (The predator slashes open a wormhole to hunt new prey.)
  • Set to be 1350 RP (prices are subject to change)  

We always love hearing your feedback and feelings! All bug reports and thoughts help us make these skins even more awesome, so please keep ’em coming! 

Thanks, cuties! <3″


Dark Star Orianna

1350 RP
[ More screenshots soon ] 

Here’s Riot LoveStrut with a bugs & feedback thread for Dark Star Orianna:

“So strange, they scream.” 

Carefully examining and disassembling any planets she comes across is all part of Dark Star Orianna’s haunting performance. The galaxies are her stage, and we are the unfortunate actors in her final scene.  

The Darkest Details 

  • All-new model and textures (A galaxy swirls around the ominous ballerina.)
  • All-new VFX (The black hole within her ball harnesses the power of a supernova.)
  • All-new SFX (A symphony of space and screams.)
  • All-new animations (Dark Star Orianna gracefully selects which planet has reached its finale.)
  • Set to be 1350 RP (prices are subject to change.)  

We always love hearing your feedback and feelings! All bug reports and thoughts help us make these skins even more awesome, so please keep ’em coming! 

Thanks, cuties! <3″

New Ward Skin

We also have a new Dark Star themed ward skin.

Corruptant Ward

X RP

New Skin Chroma

Three new chroma sets in this PBE cycle – Sandstorm Ekko, Warlord Shen, and Officer Vi!

Sandstorm Ekko

290 RP Each or Discounted in Bundles
      
[Video preview & screenshots soon]

Warlord Shen

290 RP Each or Discounted in Bundles
       
[Video preview & screenshots soon]

Officer Vi

290 RP Each or Discounted in Bundles
    
[Video preview & screenshots soon]

Midseason Update on the PBE 

A very large set of changes are hitting the PBE this cycle as part of the Midseason 2017 update, including tank updates for Maokai, Sejuani, and Zac, item and utility contribution changes, and more!

Summary Page: [Midseason 2017– Tank Updates, Durability items, team contributions, Rift Herald, preview videos, and more.

Context & Discussion:

Maokai

Maokai is one of three tank updates in Midseason 2017.

[Filling in this info as we can! Hold tight.]

Abilities & Stats

Sap Magic [Passive]:

Bramble Smash [Q]:

X mana
X sec Cooldown 

Maokai smashes his fist into the ground, releasing a shockwave. Nearby enemies are knocked away from him and all affected enemies take x (+x) magic damage and are slowed briefly. 

Twisted Advance [W]:

x mana
x sec Cooldown 

Maokai transforms into a moving mass of roots, becoming untargetable and dashing to the target. 

Upon arrival, he deals x (+x) magic damage and roots the target for x second(s). 

Sapling Toss [E]:

X Mana
X sec Cooldown 

Maokai flings a sapling, which stands watch for x seconds. Saplings will chase nearby enemies, detonating on proximity, dealing x + x% [+x%] Target Max Health magic damage and slowing enemies struck by x for x seconds. 

Saplings placed in brush last for x seconds and deal double damage over x seconds to all enemies hit. 

Maximum x Damage to non-Champions, doubled for brush.

Nature’s Grasp [R]:

X Mana
X sec Cooldown 

Maokai summons a colossal wall of brambles and thorns that slowly advances forwards, dealing X (+AP)  magic damage and rooting any enemies struck for X toY seconds, increasing with distance travelled.

Updated VO

To go along with his update, Maokai also has an updated voiceover:

NOTE: Asyrite noted this video missing processing! You’ll need to try him out in game for the full experience. ]

Updated Pick Quote:

“The Isles will bloom again!”

Updated Ban Quote:

“Your reckoning will come either way.”

Sejuani

Sejuani is one of three tank updates in Midseason 2017.

[Filling in this info as we can! Hold tight.]

Abilities & Stats

Frost Armor [Passive]:

Frost Armor: After not taking damage for x seconds Sejuani becomes immune to slows and gains x Armor and x Magic Resist. Frost Armor persists for x second(s) after taking damage. Frost Armor refreshes faster as Sejuani moves. 

Icebreaker: Enemies stunned by Sejuani are frozen, causing Sejuani’s first attack or spell against them to deal x% of their maximum Health as magic damage (max x vs monsters).


Arctic Assault [Q]:

x mana
x sec Cooldown 

Sejuani charges, dealing x (+x) magic damage to enemies and knocking them up for x seconds. The charge ends after hitting an enemy champion. 


Winter’s Wrath [W]:

x mana
x sec Cooldown 

Sejuani swings her flail, dealing x (+x) physical damage and applying Frost to enemies hit. 

She then lashes out with her flail, dealing x (+x) physical damage and applying Frost. 

Winter’s Wrath deals x% bonus damage to monsters. 


Permafrost [E]:

x mana
x sec Cooldown 

Passive: Nearby melee allied champions’ basic attacks apply Frost to enemy champions and large monsters. 

Active: Target enemy with 4 stacks of Frost takes x (+x) magic damage and is stunned for x second(s). 

An enemy that has been stunned by Sejuani cannot gain Frost stacks for x seconds. 


Glacial Prison [R]:

x mana 

x sec Cooldown 

Sejuani throws her True Ice bola that deals x (+x) magic damage to the first enemy champion hit and stuns them for x second. 

The bola becomes more powerful as it travels, doubling the damage and stun duration and creating a storm that slows other enemies by x%. After x seconds, the storm deals x (+x) magic damage and slows by x% for x seconds. 

Zac

Zac is one of three tank updates in Midseason 2017.

[Filling in this info as we can! Hold tight.]

Abilities & Stats

Cell Division [Passive]:

Each time Zac hits an enemy with an ability, he sheds a chunk of Goo that can be reabsorbed to restore x health [4% of his maximum health]. 

Upon taking fatal damage, Zac splits into 4 bloblets that attempt to recombine. 

If any bloblets remain after x seconds, he will revive with 10-50% health depending on the health of the surviving bloblets. Each bloblet has 12% of Zac’s maximum health, and 50% of his Armor and Magic Resistance. This ability has a x second cooldown.


Stretching Strikes [Q]:

x% of current Health
x sec Cooldown 

Zac’s arm stretches and grabs the first enemy it hits, dealing x (+x) magic damage and briefly slowing them. Zac’s next basic attack is replaced with a long range smack that repeats the initial magic damage and slow effect. 

If Zac grabs a different enemy with each attack he’ll throw them towards each other, dealing x


Unstable Matter [W]:

x% of current Health
x sec Cooldown 

Zac’s body erupts, dealing x magic damage + x (+x)% of the enemy’s maximum health as magic damage to all nearby enemies. 

Absorbing Goo reduces Unstable Matter’s cooldown by x second. 

Maximum health damage is capped at X versus minions and monsters. 


Elastic Slingshot [E]:

x % of current Health
x sec Cooldown 

First cast: Zac faces the cursor and charges up over x seconds. 

Second cast: Launches Zac towards the target location, knocking up nearby enemies and dealing x (+x) magic damage. Zac spawns extra chunks of Goo for each enemy champion hit. 

Can be cancelled by moving, refunding half of the ability’s cooldown and cost.

Let’s Bounce! [R]:

No Cost
x sec Cooldown 

First cast: Zac squishes himself down, making him immune to Crowd Control for up to x seconds. Any enemies standing on top of him are slowed by x%. 

Second cast: Charging for at least 1 second before recasting causes Zac to scoop up enemies on top of him, carrying them towards the target location. While flying through the air Zac is Unstoppable. Upon landing nearby enemies take x (+x) magic damage and are briefly slowed. 

Reactivating before Zac charges up knocks back nearby enemies instead.

[Dark Star Mode]

[ The upcoming Dark Star game mode has assets on the PBE but is not enabled for testing yet. ]

In the new Dark Star themed game mode everyone plays as Dark Star Thresh is all about throwing hooks – looks like you need to push or pull enemies into the Dark Star in middle of map. This will be played on the Cosmic Ruins map. Summoner spells are disabled in this game mode.

Art Assets from LCU:

Strings:

  • “Welcome to the Cosmic Ruins!”
  • “Your opponents are cowards – have patience, they will be forced to enter the arena soon.”

Tips:

  • “Pull or Push enemies into the Dark Star”
  • “Lower health targets fly much farther”
  • “Abilities and Items are different – details in tooltips!”

Buffs:

  • “Stellar Spirit – You have returned to Spirit form momentarily. You are untargetable, but cannot cast spells. 
    • Source: The Unfaltering Power of the Dark Star”
  • “Stellar Spirit – You are traveling through the cosmos – invulnerable and fast, but unable to cast spells. Stepping onto stable ground will remove this effect.
    • Source: The Unfaltering Power of the Dark Star”
Announcer

A Thresh Announcer voiceover is also included for the game mode:

Music

Look for more information and PBE testing later in the 7.9 cycle!

Miscellaneous 

  • !

Balance Changes

Remember *: The PBE is a testing grounds for new, tentative, and sometimes radical or experimental changes. Be aware that what you see below may be lacking context or other changes that didn’t make it in or were implemented in an earlier patch this cycle! These are not official notes.

Champions

General

  • Every champion (~65) who has no MR/level now has 0.5 per level. [context]

Maokai

  • [Has a large update on PBE as part of midseason 2017 / tank update]

Sejuani

  • [Has a large update on PBE as part of midseason 2017 / tank update]

Zac

  • [Has a large update on PBE as part of midseason 2017 / tank update]

Cho’Gath
  • Vorpal Spikes (E) spikes now apply spell effects. (possibly just a tooltip update)

Kayle
  • Righteous Fury (E) active now applies spell effects. (possibly just a tooltip update)

Renekton
  • X
Items

[ This change list is WIP and incomplete. We need to confirm these once the PBE is up – any build path / recipe changes particularly! ]

!

  • ! (  ! ) !
 Abyssal Scepter 

  • Total Cost: 2800g
  • Build Path: Spectre’s Cowl + Negatron Cloak + 880g
    • +300 Health
    • +65 Magic Resist
    • +100% Base Health Regeneration
    • +10% Cooldown Reduction
    • Unique Passive: Nearby enemy champions take 10% more magic damage.

Ancient Coin

  • No longer gives +25% base mana regen
  • Now gives +2 gold per 10 seconds
  • [Changed EffectUNIQUE Passive – Favor
    • Enemy minions killed by your allies sometimes drop coins that give either 32 gold or 8% missing mana (minimum 15).


 Banshee’s Veil

  • Total Cost: 2700g
  • Build Path: Fiendish Codex + Negatron Cloak + Amplifying Tome + 645g
    • +70 Ability Power
    • +45 Magic Resist
    • +10% Cooldown Reduction
    • Unique Passive: Grants a spell shield that blocks the next enemy ability. This shield refreshes after no damage is taken from enemy champions for 40 seconds.

Cinderhulk (all versions)

  • Unique Passive –  Immolate 
    • Damage changed from [7 (+2 per level)] to [11 (+1 per level)]
    • Bonus damage to monsters and minions increased from 100% to 200%


Dead Man’s Plate

  • Health reduced from 500 to 425
  • Armor increased from 50 to 60
  • Now only deal bonus damage on basic attacks when at full stacks 
  • When not at full stacks, basic attacks now reduce stack count by 15 (rather than clearing them)
  • Maximum stack generation per second increased from 12.5 to 20

Death’s Dance
  • Attack damage increased from 75 to 80
  • Unique Passive – changed from 15% to 30% of damage taken is dealt as a Bleed over 3 seconds instead. 


 Doran’s Shield

  • Total Cost: 400G
    • +80 Health
    • Passive: Restores 6 Health every 5 seconds.
    • Passive: Basic attacks deal an additional 5 physical damage to minions on hit.
    • Unique Passive: Regain an additional 20 Health over 10 seconds after taking damage from an enemy champion.


    Eye of the Equinox
    !

    Eye of the Oasis
    • Now gives +2 gold per 10 secs
    • [Changed Effect] Passive – Favor
      • Enemy minions killed by your allies sometimes drop coins that give either 32 gold or 8% missing mana (minimum 15).


    Eye of the Watchers

    • Base mana regen lowered from 100% to 50%
    • Ability power increased from 25 to 35


    Face of the Mountain
    !

    Frostfang
    • AP increased from 15 to 20
    • Base mana regen decreased from 75% to 50%
    • Unique Passive – Tribute
      • [Removed Effect]Killing a minion disables this passive for 12 seconds.
      • [New Effect] Killing a minion stops you from triggering for 8 seconds per minion slain.


    Frost Queen’s Claim

    • AP increased from 50 to 60
    • Base mana regen decreased from 75% to 50%

     Guardian Angel

    • Total Cost: 2400g
    • Build Path: Pickaxe + Long Sword + Cloth Armor + 875g
      • +40 Attack Damage
      • +30 Armor
      • Unique Passive: Upon taking lethal damage, restores 50% of base Health and 30% of maximum Mana after 4 seconds of stasis (300 second cooldown).

      Kircheis Shard
      • Total price increased from 750g to 800g. 
      • Energized strike damage increased from 40 to 50 bonus magic damage.
      Last Whisper
      • Armor Penetration changed from 45% to 35%


        Lord Dominik’s Regards
        • Total cost lowered from 2700 to 2600. 
        • Giant Slayer – effect increased from [up to 15%] to [up to  20%]
        • Armor Penetration changed from 45% to 35%

          Mortal Reminder
          • Total cost lowered from 2700g to 2600g. 
          • Armor Penetration changed from 45% to 35%


            Nomad’s Medallion

            • No longer gives +75% base mana regen
            • Now gives +2 gold per 10 seconds
            • [Changed EffectUNIQUE Passive – Favor
              • Enemy minions killed by your allies sometimes drop coins that give either 32 gold or 8% missing mana (minimum 15).


            Poacher’s Dirk
            • AD lowered from 15 to 10
            • Unique passive cooldown lowered from 60 seconds to 50 seconds

            Randuin’s Omen

            • Total Cost: 2900
            • Recipe = [Ruby Crystal + Warden’s Mail + Ruby Crystal + 1100g]
            • +350 HP
            • +60 Armor
            • – 20% damage taken from Critical Strikes
            • Unique Passive – Cold Steel: When hit by basic attacks, reduces the attacker’s attack speed by 15%  for 1 second.
            • Unique Active:  Slows the Movement Speed of nearby enemy units by 55% for 2 seconds (60 second cooldown)

            Rapid Firecannon
            • Damage on energized attack changed from [50-160] to [50-120]
            • [new effect] Attacks become Energized 25% faster. 
              • “Energized is a single effect, so anything that modifies it modifies it for all sources. So Rapid Firecannon + Statikk Shiv gives you 25% faster energized procs which hit extra hard, can crit, deals bonus damage to minions, can damage structures, have extra range, and chain lightning.” –src
            Ravenous Hydra

            • Attack damage increased from 75 to 80
            Relic Shield
            !


            Runaan’s Hurricane

            • Build path changed from [Recurve Bow + Zeal + 300g] to  [Dagger + Zeal + Dagger + 800g]
            • Bolt damage increased from 25% attack damage to 40% attack damage.
            • [removed] UNIQUE Passive: Basic attacks deal an additional 15 physical damage on hit.


            Spectre’s Cowl

            • Magic resist lowered from 30 to 25


            Spellthief’s Edge
            • Unique Passive – Tribute
              • [Removed Effect]Killing a minion disables this passive for 12 seconds.
              • [New Effect] Killing a minion stops you from triggering for 8 seconds per minion slain.


            Spirit Visage

            • Health lowered from 500 to 425
            • Magic Resist increased from 55 to 60
            • Unique passive healing increased from 25% to 30%

            Statikk Shiv

            • Total cost unchanged.
              • Recipe cost adjusted due to Zeal/Shard price changes.
            • Energized Attacks damage changed from 50-120 to 60-160
            • Bonus damage to minions lowered from 120% to 65%


            Sunfire Cape

            • Health reduced from 500 to 425
            • Armor increased from 50 to 60
            • Burn Damage reduced from [25 + 1 per level] to [11 + 1 per level]
            • Bonus damage to minions and monsters increased from 50% to 200%

            Sterak’s Gage

            • Attack damage increased from 25% to 30%
            • Shield value increased from [30% of max health] to [75% of bonus health
            • Sterak’s Fury passive attack damage increased from 25% to 30% 


            Talisman of Ascension
            • No longers gives +75% base mana regen
            • Unique passive movement speed increased from 20% to 200%
            • [Changed EffectUNIQUE Passive – Favor
              • Enemy minions killed by your allies sometimes drop coins that give either 32 gold or 8% missing mana (minimum 15).


            Targon’s Brace
            !


            The Black Cleaver

            • Unique Passive’s armor reduction per stack lowed from 5% to 4%
            The Blood Thirster

            • AD increased from 75 to 80.


            Warmog’s Armor

            • Now grants Warmog’s Heart if you have at least 2750 health, down from 3000 health
            • Warmog’s Heart Regneration increased from 3% per second to 5% per second
            • Now only goes on a 2 sec cooldown when damaged by minions and monsters (still 8 from champions/turrets) 
            New Items

                [New] Adaptive Helm

                • Total Cost: 2800g
                • Sells for: 1960g
                • Recipe: Spectre’s Cowl + Negatron Cloak + 880g
                  • +300 Health
                  • +55 Magic Resist
                  • +100% Base Health Regeneration
                  • +10% Cooldown Reduction
                  • UNIQUE Passive: Taking magic damage from a spell or effect reduces all subsequent magic damage taken from that spell or effect by 15% for 4 seconds.


                [New] Gargoyle Stoneplate

                • Total Cost: 2500g
                • Sells for: 1750g
                • Recipe: Chain Vest + Negatron Cloak + 980g
                  • +40 Armor
                  • +40 Magic Resist
                  • UNIQUE Passive – Stone Skin: If 3+ enemy champions are nearby, grants 40 bonus Armor and Magic Resist.
                  • UNIQUE Active – Metallicize: Increases Health by 40% and increases champion size, but reduces damage dealt by 60% for 4 seconds (90 second cooldown). If Stone Skin is active, the Health increase becomes 100% instead.

                Context & Notes

                the most contextrifying wip in pbe entertainement

                1) Meddler is back with his gameplay thoughts for April 18th, covering the start of the 7.9 PBE cycle today:

                “Hey all, 

                Mid-season stuff should hit PBE today! Really looking forward to seeing everyone’s thoughts after it does. Some bits and pieces below in the meantime. 

                Support Basic Attacks 

                As part of our ongoing work on the support position we’ve got a mixture of both large and small changes planned. We’ve talked about the revised support starting items already, which is the largest support focused piece in mid-season. As a smaller change though we’ve also got some feel improvements to the basic attacks of various champions often played as support too. Those are generally champs who aren’t very auto attack based. On one hand that means having a good feeling auto attack isn’t as critical as it is on say a marksmen. On the other hand it’s also tended to mean their attacks haven’t received the same attention in past, so there’s a lot of room for improvement. We’ve got some tweaks coming to Sona, Morg, Annie, Janna, Nami and Soraka in 7.9. 

                Ancient Coin 

                The ancient coin line changes will hopefully be one of the more interesting things hitting PBE today, at least for bot lane players. For anyone wanting to do a bit of early theorycrafting the stats we’re currently testing on Coin at 22g at Tier 1 and 32g at Tiers 2 and 3 on gold coins, with 8% missing mana restored on mana coins. More details on our goals with those items to follow later today, we’re hoping amongst other things to make Coin a more interesting and appealing choice on a wider range of champions. 

                10 Bans in Ranked and Draft 

                We haven’t talked about ban changes for a bit, they’re certainly not forgotten though. Should be able to get back to some details about that after mid-season, with work on the new client coming along well getting some needed pre-requisites out of the way. 

                Poacher’s Dirk 

                We’re also testing out some small tweaks to Poacher’s Dirk in 7.9. It’s an item that’s under performed since its introduction that we’ve hesitated to buff because some of its likely potential users have been challenging to balance. We’re at the point though where we think we can make at least some changes to make it a bit more attractive versus just buying a couple of long swords to upgrade later. We’re looking at a lower cost and CD, paired with a bit less AD, as a result.”

                2) Riot Sotere hit the boards with an update on the Rift Herald Changes we will be seeing in the 7.9 PBE cycle:

                “Hi all, 

                In the SUPER near future we’ll be releasing an updated version of the Rift Herald to PBE. For the last year and a half she has been relegated to an afterthought in terms of objective importance. Her reward, while powerful and purposefully niche, didn’t encourage many teams to opt into the high risk of combating her. 

                In revisiting the Rift Herald, we reaffirmed that there is value in having an objective on the top side of the map that is worth pursuing for players. We want the individuals and teams who devote their resources to capture her to feel well rewarded and empowered to take further action. In short, we want the Rift Herald to be an objective worth considering in the average game, and we want the slaying of this epic monster to have an epic feeling reward. 

                I’ll get more tactical as to what we’re actually doing but will first throw out the usual caveat that much of this is subject to change and we’ll be closely monitoring PBE and player feedback. We’re treading in somewhat unknown waters, so we expect that even after launch, there will be substantial tuning and potentially large transitions to make. Now, to what’s changing: 

                Art! 

                It’s long been a goal to update Rift Herald’s visuals and polish her sounds so she feels like a natural inhabitant of the Summoner’s Rift (void corruption notwithstanding). The most immediately noticeable and probably most important change to the Rift Herald this midseason is her substantial makeover. New fancy lady: 

                Still photographs hardly do the new version justice. She also has a set of brand new animations, particles, and sound effects as well. Check her out on the Rift to see her full new ensemble. 

                The Encounter 

                The Rift Herald on Live we’ve grown to know and love had some challenges with the encounter: 

                • It’s super punishing. If you opt into the fight at a bad time, or alone, you’re probably going to die.
                • There are significant restrictions: outside very rare exceptions, you needed two people to beat the encounter.
                • Learnability of some of the mechanics wasn’t incredibly high. Eye-hitting was only discoverable with multiple people, and though we encouraged swapping aggro her leashing was pretty punishing. 

                We approached these issues with some hesitance. Can we support a Herald who doesn’t chunk you down really fast? Can she be soloable? To increase the potential she’ll be viewed as a real objective, we’re answering in the affirmative to both of those questions. 

                While duoing her should still be the best plan of action for ease and speed, lone champions will now have the opportunity to kill her. Her attacks are more plodding, giving a solo artist the capability to sneak around her and land attacks on her achilles heel (or eye). She doesn’t punish players quite as much if they start opportunistic attempts at her. Generally, if you die from the encounter now it will be due to the enemy team swooping in. We’ve also made her quite a bit more patient with enemy aggro swapping, so she won’t leash outside exceptionally gamey circumstances. 

                We also wanted to play up her epicness: Dragons, Baron, and even Scuttle Crab have some variation to their combat pattern outside of throwing autoattacks and running away. We wanted to infuse her with a little more spirit and life. She’ll now charge at the first enemy who angers her, significantly damaging and knocking away anyone who dares get in her way. At certain health thresholds she’ll also get enraged and launch a larger conal swipe attack. Both additional attacks are threatening, avoidable, and should help opponents discover the effectiveness of bopping her in the eye. 

                The Reward 

                Anyone on the team who slays the Herald can collect the Eye of the Herald when she is captured. This item will allow the champion to summon her within a short timeframe to have the Herald do their team’s bidding. While the summoning ceremony takes time, the results of a good use are devastating. 

                She hates turrets. No one knows why. There are stories (that I just made up) that the turrets on the Rift memorialize the visage of the Herald’s enemies from the Void. Perhaps they just look like tasty treats, a nice fit for her high sodium diet. Regardless of why, once she’s set to do a team’s bidding, she’ll barrel down a lane, knocking aside enemy minions and charging at turrets as soon as she gets in range. That’s where the real fun and destruction begins. 

                While Herald can do decently pushing on her own, she is even more susceptible than she was in the pit. Hits to her eye do more damage, she can be stunned, and she’s generally not as tanky. If she is not protected by a squad of champions, the enemy will likely make quick work of her. But a team that picks their timing carefully and is dedicated to protecting the Herald could siege down multiple turrets. Importantly, the Herald mercenary does damage based on her current health. The more damage enemies do to her, the less she’ll do in return to enemy turrets. 

                In Closing 

                The version that first hits PBE will not be set in stone. We’ll be polishing her up over the course of the next few weeks and paying attention to any negative fallout that might happen. We do believe that this new reward will generate interesting gameplay and we are devoted to making sure it feels like an appropriate and epic reward. Let us know what you think!”

                3) Here’s Limely and Riot Colin on the changes to the starting support items we will be seeing later today on the PBE:

                “Hey, Guys! 

                Limely and Riot Colin here to talk about the recent changes we’ve made to the Support starting items: adding Quests and Rewards, and reworking the Ancient Coin line. 

                TL;DR – We want the Support player’s laning actions to be more interactive, meaningful, and drive towards a feeling of progressing through the game without simply piling on more gold, as it’s very easy to do more harm than good that way. There is still a lot more to do for Supports to catch them up to the other positions; adding quests and their rewards is just one of several steps towards improving the Support experience. 

                Problem Statement / Solution Space 

                Supports tend to lack meaningful points of comparison – they can’t compare scores like CS, and let’s be honest – “Wards Placed” is not necessarily indicative of good vision play. 😛 It’s even harder to compare performance when a subset of Support champions are played with an item that allows them to opt out of interacting with the lane if they so choose. 

                To combat this we have added milestone quests to the starting gold items to allow the player to measure their success during the laning phase, with an impactful reward on hitting a goal – if you can get your reward before your opponent, how will you use that advantage? 

                We’ve also made changes to the Ancient Coin passive in order to enable meaningful quest progression and encourage lane interaction. Our goal here is to add a pattern that allows opportunities for a higher payout, at a higher risk. 

                Quest Details 

                Once you have earned a certain amount of gold with your choice of starting item, the item’s quest is replaced with a unique passive.  

                • Ancient Coin line: Gain an elixir that instantly grants a skill point when consumed. Takedowns on enemy champions spawn gold and mana coins. 
                  • You still have a max of 18 skill points per game – you’ll finish leveling your abilities at level 17 
                  • If your inventory is full, the elixir is automatically consumed (and you can choose a skill) 
                  • Relic Shield line: Gain a shield that regenerates out of combat. Executing minions accelerates the regeneration. 
                  • Spellthief’s Edge line: Tribute procs grant a short burst of movement speed. 

                  Ancient Coin Line Rework 

                  The old Ancient Coin passive created very stagnant gameplay, and limited our ability to tune its primary users as well as the player’s ability to excel in lane. Whether you were losing or winning lane, there was very little to no impact on your gold income. Here’s how we’re changing that: 

                  • When minions die near the player (but not due to the player), they sometimes drop a gold or mana coin for the player to pick up 
                    • Not Yet Implemented for PBE: Cannon minions always drop coins for a little more reliability 
                    • Mana coins restore % missing mana with a flat floor of mana restored 
                    • Ancient Coin items now have base ambient gold in line with the other two starting items 

                    There are still some clarity issues around having two Coin players in the game, as well as balance on the risk vs. reward of grabbing those coins, so if you have a chance to play around with it on PBE we would love your feedback to help us fine tune the experience. 

                    Anti-Poaching 

                    We understand that giving the Support starting items special power upon quest completion has the risk of making them more appealing to non-support players. We want to avoid poaching on these items – we want the rewards to be impactful, but if it becomes ideal to buy an item whose mini-game you don’t actually plan on actively participating in just to get the reward late game at minimal investment, it cheapens the experience for those who are opting into the gameplay. To limit the item to those who are interested in investing in the item for the item’s sake, the quest cannot be completed unless you have at least the second tier of the item (Nomad’s Medallion, Targon’s Brace, or Frostfang). 

                    Additionally, we changed the timing of spending charges on the Spellthief’s Edge line:  

                    • The cooldown on spending charges after a minion kill has been decreased from 12 seconds to 8 seconds, but this is now per minion kill. This means if you are Sona and your Q accidentally takes a minion you are punished less, but if you clear a whole wave, don’t expect to be using any of your charges any time soon. 😛 
                      • Frost Queen’s Claim and Eye of the Watcher are unchanged as the restriction is lifted. 
                      • There is now a delay after a Tribute charge is spent before the same spell can spend another. This means that abilities such as Morgana’s W and Miss Fortune’s E don’t 100% guarantee three stacks of damage/gold if your opponent moves out of the spell area. 

                      We know there are still a lot of improvements we could make to the Support position to make it more compelling and balanced with the other positions. There are some pain points that haven’t been addressed with these changes, but we plan to continue working on ways to give Supports more control over their own destinies. :3 

                      Please let us know what you think! We’ll be around to answer questions for a bit. 

                      Supporting Supports,
                      Limely & Riot Colin”

                      4) Here’s Ququroon with a post on the Midseason Update – Utility Contribution:

                      “Hey all! 

                      In the Intro to Midseason we talked about highlighting the contribution of non-carry roles in League. This is the first step of many towards this goal, and it’s aimed at making supports and tankier champions feel more rewarded and recognized for their actions. It also comes with the added benefit of improving tactical clarity for both players and viewers. 

                      In this thread, we are looking for your feedback (as well as any bugs you may find) on these features and your thoughts on future additions, especially with regards to tracking additional stats. 

                      Crowd Control Name Display:

                      By giving CC states a more in-your-face treatment, we hope that players and viewers will be better able to track the flow of a fight and help teammates figure out when to follow up or turn tail. While CC is already appreciated when noticed, this new display works to improve that feedback loop so everyone can bask in the light of a 5 man Leona ult. 

                      The system follows a strict prioritization to deal with situations where multiple CC types are applied to a champion – after all, if you’re airborne or suppressed, being blinded as well is the least of your problems. 

                      As with many features of this kind, we found some inconsistencies as we worked on this, and while we hit most of them, there may be a few that still look a little off. Please keep an eye out for them, and let us know any you encounter. 

                      End of Game Stats: 

                      We’re getting more relevant stats onto the End of Game screen! Again, this is only our first offering – expect more in the future.

                      • Crowd Control Score, a sum of all the CC effects applied to champions during the game – hard cc is weighted higher than soft cc.
                      • Vision Score, a calculation of contributed vision over the course of the game – further details to come.
                      • Damage Dealt to Structures, the amount of damage dealt to towers/inhibitors/nexus.
                      • Damage Mitigated on Self, the amount of damage a champion reduced or blocked, through abilities or shields 

                      Please note that these stats are still in process of being implemented, as will have more updates as the PBE cycle continues. 

                      Better Item Feedback: 

                      Have you ever found yourself wishing how much damage you’ve blocked with your Locket? This change will add more of these stats onto active items, so you can better evaluate how well you’re using them. 

                      Please note this feature will not be showing on PBE for a couple of days, as we put in the remaining work to get it ready. 

                      Spell Attribution:

                      Have you ever been drive-by ignited, or you think you heard your lane opponent pop heal, but you’re not sure? We’re adding a new VFX trail from caster to target on most summoner spells and active items to make those moments clearer. There’s a visual for both enemies and allies, so it should be easier to discern who cast what in a skirmish. 

                      Death VFX: 

                      Our old death VFX (for those who noticed it), was slow and subtle. We are updating the effect for both enemies and allies to be snappy and more noticeable so the flow of a fight is more clearly communicated. 

                      Active Item HUD: 

                      Active items often contain a lot of power and gold-efficiency of an item, which is great when you remember to cast it, and awful when you don’t. This change adds a thicker and more prominent border to our major activatables, separate from consumables and trinkets.”

                      5) Here’s mstronati on Maokai’s new voiceover & the wood sounds processing:

                      “Hi all, it’s Matteo Stronati, sound designer for Maokai! Like someone else explained already, in order to get the full VO experience with him, you are going to have to play him in game. Listening to a youtube video with his voice won’t do it. That is because his voice signal modulates the volume of wood sounds in real time in game, so that voice and wood really feel like one. This approach, also means that his lines never sound the same, because every time a line plays, a different wood sound is picked to go with it, making the whole experience feel more organic. Hopefully you guys enjoy his new voice in game!”

                      6) Asyrite mentioned smaller scope changes for Rammus are being looked into for the future.

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