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May 4, 2013

Xypherous Chats About Upcoming Changes on PBE

A few hours ago Xypherous took to the field and described some of the changes on the PBE that should be hitting the live servers soon and Riot's logic behind the moves:
Hey guys, I'm going to be talking a little bit about some of the more subtle things that are in Patch 3.07 that we've been tentatively working on - as well as hopefully stir some conversation up over the changes that should be in the PBE patch, depending on when that gets deployed.

Note that this isn't a full list of changes, only ones I have sufficient context to talk to you about or are things that are hard to notice, and they reflect the content in the next PBE build, so certain things like the minion damage reduction isn't currently on this version of the PBE patch - but will be in a few days.

Minion Damage Reduction?

Minion Damage Reduction* Ranged Minion Damage goes from starting at 23 --> 22.

Spell dominated top-laners are currently problematic right now in top lane, forcing a wide variety of heavy sustain starts in order for proper play to exist against them on anyone but other spell dominated top-laners.

Rumble and Renekton, for example - are both problematic spell based top-laners. They both benefit from having a harassment pattern that frequently doesn't draw minion aggression, leaving more traditional auto-attack centric harassers behind.

We're well aware of the dominance of certain traditional AP or AD ability based bruisers but the disparity of performance between melee basic attack centric top-laners and spell based top-laners was becoming increasingly obvious that if we balanced around the current damage disparity, we'd have to significantly overshoot or undershoot the power level of the top-laners involved.

Akali* Twilight Shroud now grants vision around the area of effect.
* Essence of Shadow charge time reduced to 30/22.5/15 seconds from 35/25/15

We hit Akali's lane dominance in the last patch - but we're still unhappy with how Akali feels like her defensive options are limited to basically overpowering her opponents.

With the following two changes in concert - this gives Akali the ability to perform some interesting jungle and lane jukes by first casting twilight shroud to gain vision of a jungle monster, and then using shadow dash as an escape tool. While we don't think this will dramatically increase her power - it should be a new cool neat little trick that Akali can do.

Nunu* Consume now heals for less (roughly 75%) - both base and AP ratio.
* Consume now deals more damage with a slightly longer cooldown
* Consume now gives bonuses depending on if he used Consume on a Monster for 2-4 minutes
* Lizard Type monsters (Red Lizard / Dragons / Nashor / Mini Lizard) grant Nunu's attacks and spells bonus magic damage equal to 1% of his max health
* Golem Type monsters (Blue Golem / Golem / Mini Golem) grants Nunu increased size and 10% maximum Health
* Wolf and Wraith type monsters grant Nunu "After he kills a unit, he gains a 15% MS buff for 3 seconds"

This is undoubtedly a nerf to lane Nunu, whose effectiveness is questionable for the majority of our playerbase - in many ways Lane Nunu simply won his lane and lost the game, while being annoying and frustrating along the way. This wasn't the greatest of patterns - especially while Jungle Nunu sits there on the sidelines where the cool objective control and gank patterns are being unused.

Above all, we want Consume to be a cool spell. Consume has traditionally languished as being kind of useless late game, for everything besides objective control and making Consume an attractive spell by adding this level, I feel, better fulfills the fun part of the spell (big Yeti running around eating tasty things) and gives Consume a strong rank-up incentive. 

This is also a test to see if players would like to see more of these Jungle monster type interactions - if people find them cool, it opens up space for us in two ways: We've introduced this mechanic as a precedent and it allows us to play around in this design space. 

Warwick* Infinite Duress channel time reduced to 1.5 from 2.1 (total Suppression duration unchanged at 1.8)
* Infinite Duress now places Warwick in front of the target, rather than at a random spot around him
Just QoL stuff for Warwick. It's a little silly given the current speed of the game for Warwick to be channeling longer than his opponent is suppressed. The positional change is mostly such that if Warwick is trying to stop a fleeing opponent, he directly bodyblocks his opponent but is in a riskier position - but if Warwick is trying to stop a charging opponent, he remains closer and out of risk of being interrupted by the enemy team.

Caitlyn / TF / Varus / Zed / Zac / RumbleI'm not really qualified to talk about nerfs or buffs, other than - we're kind of iterating on what we'd like these nerfs to be overall - but regardless these characters need to be tuned down as they are all slightly too dominant at the moment.

Diana / Lux 

Shield values generally nerfed across the board
Shields stack now instead of refreshWe've been unhappy with the power level of these shields, mostly because their maximum effectiveness case is both swingy and out of the control of the user a large portion of the time.

We're trying out a stacking system rather than a refreshing system to see whether or not these shields can still fulfill the multi-hit scenario without necessarily being randomly excessively powerful based on what/when they refreshed.

Cassieopeia* Twin Fang is now classified as a single-target spell for the purposes of item effectsAnd I am terrified - but it should give Cassieopeia builds more flexibility, something that she has traditionally found hard to access and made worse by the fact that Cassieopeia play tends to be demanding and damage-focused.

What this allows her access to is Rylai's Crystal Scepter, Muramana and Furor Boots - all of which actually kind of make sense in her arsenal.

* Changes reverted

First, let me get this out of the way, Galio is not intended to be an AP mage that simply destroys other AP mages because he scales off Magic Resistance.

As for the changes, we were experimenting with Galio to give him lower cooldowns for the later game - allowing him to more freely use his Resolute Smite ability as a consistent peeling / initiating ability for later game team fights. However, the net results of this change seemed weird in isolation - as the rest of his kit doesn't feel quite right in the support tank role. While Bulwark and Wind Tunnel seem to work currently, they both seem to be lacking somewhat in the support tank role. We're going to continue looking at Galio so that we can bring him more in line with his role / intent.


Mana Manipualtor
* Recipe is now: Faerie Charm + 120 Gold = 300 Total Gold
* MP/5 Aura reduced to 5 from 6

* Shard of True Ice total cost reduced by 100 gold due to this change.
Third time's the charm - Let's see if Mana Manipulator can feel good as a starting item before we work on upgrades for it.

As an aside, I really wanted to improve Shard of True Ice - before realizing that no matter how good I make Shard of True Ice, getting Mana Manipulator always feels narrow and constraining at the moment.

Mikael's Crucible* Recipe is now: Philosopher's Stone + Chalice of Harmony + 920 Gold = 2500 Total Gold300 Mana --> 0 Mana
* 0 HP/5 --> 7 HP/5
* 9 MP/5 --> 18 MP/5

* Active now changed to heal 10% of the target's maximum health instead of 15% of their missing health.
* Missile speed is now fixed at 0.2 seconds, from variable depending on distance to target.
Internally, Mikael's Crucible was a very different item until the very last moment, when it got changed from healing the target based on your current mana to a combination heal and cleanse effect.

We've seen some players use it well - and it generally hasn't been too toxic to the game to allow supports access to it, so we're going to adjust it to be slightly more usable with more synergistic statistics (high MP/5 + Chalice passive) and slightly less target constrained (Not caring about missing health). We don't want Mikael's Crucible to be a mainstay to any build - but it should be a valid tool in the support arsenal. Source

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  1. KillstickMay 05, 2013

    Hmm more dmg is not really what cass needs. She used to be OP. But with all these mobile or longs range mids and new junglers that can gank her easy (vi, voli, heca, seju,...) her performance did drop.

    The E thing i feel is good. But still i don't like it going on cooldown for so long when you don't hit a poisoned targer. If you even miss 1 you are out of the game for a few seconds... I would be ok with it doing less dmg or so. But a 5 second CD when you accidently hit a non poisoned target.... kinda hard hitting it as it is on a zed or so.

    2nd the ult. As a more straight forwards mage, her ult lacks i feel. I think using your ult doesn't reflect your skill. Rather it just comes down to luck. Really they dive you, you ult, omg they just decided to go back and i only slowed them.... So its more luck or having your oppentents make mistakes. Without flash you can't make plays with it. But then again you need flash for escaping on cass... So if yo uflash ult you really are depending on your team for the next few minutes
    An increase in range and/or making it a snare instead of a slow when you they don't face you would smoothen up her playstyle and kit.

    Tbh i love chars lke these. Casting alot of spells. And she has a great ideasbehind her kit. But its just outdated

  2. Gangplank StyleMay 05, 2013

    Crescendo stuns regardless of how the opponent is facing. Why not Cass' ult? To differentiate it from Crescendo, it can deal more damage and stun less, perhaps?

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  4. KillstickMay 06, 2013

    More damage is hardly what cass needs....
    She needs a reliable ult since she has no easy escape. Making it a snare vs people that face her. Making it also stun people that are poisoned.. many ways to fix it tbh

  5. Gangplank StyleMay 07, 2013

    Was comparing the ult to Crescendo in terms of damage, and I don't think Crescendo is a pretty damaging ult out there.

    Isn't a stun already better than a snare? That'd make your suggestion face her or poison = stun, face away = snare?

  6. KillstickMay 07, 2013

    No keep the stun when the target faces you. Make it a snare when they arn't turned towards you.

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