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Jan 15, 2013

Morello Chats About Patch Cycle and Upcoming Champion Changes

Lead Content Designer Morello doused the community with a flurry of red posts in the past 10 hours, including some juicy content about upcoming balance changes to some of our favorite (or least favorite) items and champions!

Buffs:  Diana, Rengar, Trundle, Rammus, Nami, Hunter's Machete
Nerfs: Patch Cycles, Flask, Armor Penetration, Warmogs,

Patch Cycle Too Long
Q: Why has it been soooo long since the last official patch?
A: This cycle, particularly, is longer due to holidays. We're back to normal now though! I prefer ~3 week (usual) frequency, and more accurate, targeted changes. One advantage of this longer cycle is the additional certainty we can have with changes. We can avoid over-reaction (Diana!) when we do it this way, which is nice.

Basically, patching every 3 weeks is a very rapid cycle - and going off three weeks for now has made it seem like an eternity. Some good is gained in being more certain about what's wrong (AP Trash-tier is still overstated and hyperbolic, even though an issue exists) so we don't just layer on new levels of disruption to the game.
Source 1, Source 2, Source 3
Luckily there's been a ton of changes on the PBE to keep us interested!
Chinese Classic Zilean
I know my eternities, and you're pushing one right now!

Armor Penetration is Ruining My Day
Q: The new formular for Armor penetration is kinda OP right now, is that going to stick?
A: For now, I believe that's the plan (my first day back, though the guys have been here the last couple weeks). I think we agree tuning of either the formula, costs, defenses, etc needs to happen. Source

Nerf Warmogs Please
Q: BTW, about the hawkeye on Warmog's: Has Xypherous figured out a way to keep it a heavy health item that can give late-game ridiculous regen without becoming a rushed mid-game monster; but avoiding the "Tear of the Goddess" conundrum where you have to make it terribly cost-efficient and rushed early to have a late-game effect?
A: Warmog's is a nasty problem - I totally agree. Your diagnosis of this is fairly accurate too - the timing is the biggest issue here, something that's core to the item in a few ways.
"Warmogs is stupidly cheap and allows any bruiser to become an unkillable brick." - Doublelift
Q: Is Diana getting rebuffed next patch?
A: Yes, though I don't have line-item details. We'll not be fully reverting (we did want to nerf her from there), but finding the middle ground - we did overnerf her.
Originally Stated HereSource

Q: How will Rengar be rebuffed?
A: Different approach, but same idea - we overnerfed, though what we buff might be NEW buffs as opposed to rebuffing some of the nerfs. Source

Q: Will Trundle be buffed in the future along with some new art? What do you think of Trundle as a whole?
A: We ARE working on Trundle's art, and will be doing some gameplay tweaks - scope on that is still a bit up in the air. Not soon, but soon(tm). Trundle's power is impossible to read and has lots of invisible power. I'd like to at least pump up the visibility of it. Source 1Source 2

Under-powered Release Champs
Q: Please sarcastically state which champions you feel were under-powered on release as a response to my inconsiderate comment on the forums:
A: Yeah, we should have nerfed Syndra, Hecarim, Varus, Ziggs, Sejuani and Fiora a lot sooner...Source

Flask Nerfs
Q: How do you feel about the common trend of 9pot 2ward /flask ward 5pot on laners? I feel as though It makes the early levels of top laning a little bit silly- It becomes much more difficult to earn a kill via out-trading the enemy at level 1 or two. 
A: Agreed - we're hitting Flask this patch to help with this, I'm not certain it's enough, but it will definitely at least help.

Junglers and Flasks
Q: Isn't there another way? You hurt junglers with that, too. I was excited to have the option to go down the Utility tree with some of my junglers (Greed allows you to start Machete + Flask), but this is going to be impossible now with the higher price tag of the Flask
A: I'd like to do this and lower the cost of Butcher's - win-win. Source

Q: Is their anything in the works for Rammus?
A: I thought we are doing/just did something to help - will check on exact status. Sorry, lots happening and I'm trying to get a bit more caught up Source

Q: Any Nami buffs in the works?
A: I'm very against making Nami's Q faster - if anything, I like more slow skillshots in League as they have some of the most gameplay. If it needs more reward, then I'd consider that, but not easier to hit. Source

Classic Nami Skin
I thought you liked me for who I am :(

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  1. Really curious about how's the flask nerf gonna change the game.

  2. Oddone turned me on to the 'magic of Trundle" as he put it. I'm on a 6 game win streak with him, and find him able to 1v1 just about any of the 'op top bruisers' regardless of 'fed' status. Like Morello posted, he has 'invisible power' and I'm very surprised that he isn't played more, and that they would think about buffing him. I'll be stoked if they do though haha, I can say that much!

    Overall, I think they are working some pretty solid stuff in the labs, but I guess my biggest concern (as I've stated before) is the ability to build 'tank' items on certain characters, and do INSANE damage. You build nothing but dmg on an ADC and can be 2 shot by someone with a warmogs, randuins, and mallet...while shooting them feels like a peashooter. There needs to be some balance there imo. League has turned into League of Top characters.

  3. League has been League of Bruisers since Jarvan was released. although more accurately, since Xin Zhao/Garen Release.

    On the other hand Trundle was being used a lot until he could no longer lower Drg/Baron resistances with his ult :3

  4. Cory MartinJanuary 15, 2013

    I've wanted to try trundle, but would rather try him first on a free week. After just reading his skill set I couldn't help but kind of wince at the idea of a fed trundle running around.

    Looking forward to bruisers get put down a peg or two.Even Bamfs like Vayne have to take cover when one set his/her sight on that tasty carry kill.

  5. SSJSuntasticJanuary 15, 2013

    Hi Ashe, that's going to be interesting as well. I think it will be similar to the original HP Potion nerf in that it simply made it more difficult to sustain heavily in lane. It will definitely indirectly help junglers make a bigger impact on the game when they gank, even if it's unsuccessful.

  6. SSJSuntasticJanuary 15, 2013

    Hey Cory! That's a good point. I think Vayne's starting to do a little better indirectly as a result of the oracle nerf, but I definitely agree that a fed Trundle is super scary!

  7. SSJSuntasticJanuary 15, 2013

    I actually didn't know you could lower their resistances via his ult (I don't play Trundle much). Good to know for historical reference though!

    I've actually been building tank Zyra lately with great success. I think characters with low mobility might want to build some more mitigation items so that they can fight for longer before going down, especially heroes with low cooldowns and skillshots.


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