|Colt 'Ezreal' Hallam has had a hand in creating over a third of the champions in League of Legends, as well as doing extensive work on Dominion.|
Let's start off with a bit about some of the champions that are coming down the pipeline...
|From the Yorick teaser, this is one of the only images showing the bleak and mysterious Shadow Isles.|
"We absolutely love the Void, and to a slightly lesser extent the Shadow Isles. So the likelihood that more Void and SI characters will come out in the future is high. In fact, I would say that the time of humans with 'no features' is pretty much over. The line up for the rest of the year blows away everything we have done so far =-D! I'll put my Ezreal seal of approval on that!"More Shadow Islands ( Mordekaiser, Yorick )and Void ( Cho'Gath, Kog'Maw ) champions? Don't mind if I do!
This, of course, begs the question about Kassadin's daughter, who is presently sealed in the void, as a potential champion. There was a lot of build up that she was going to be The Dark Sovereign but now that we know Syndra and Kassadin's daughter are not the same people, do we have something to look forward to? Luckily Ezreal fielded a question about this very subject...
"Well, we still haven't found the perfect champion to be Kassadin's Daughter (though I have a solid idea for the future). That being said, we will not release a 'lore' champion unless we believe they add to the game more than just a nice tie in from a bio."... and so the wait begins!
Speaking of waiting, Ezreal also answered a question about the champion that has been in development for the longest amount of time. I would have thought the notorious Lee Sin would hold this coveted title but it seems there is another! He says,
"One of our upcoming characters has been in development for years..."How intriguing! Just who could this be?! Maybe a previously cancelled champion like Spider Queen? Or even a long lost, lore based champion? Heck, it's probably something we haven't even thought up yet. Either way, I'm definitely interested to see who this turns out to be.
Keeping up with the future champions bit, someone mentioned it would be nice to see more assassin archetypes on the Fields of Justice. Ezreal responded with another tease of an answer, saying:
"Hopefully Rengar slated that thirst, and if not we have another...REALLY AWESOME...assassin coming out soon."Stepping away from specific champions, he also mentioned plan of attack the designers use when approaching the creation a new champion. He states,
"There are a number of goals we keep in mind from the inception of a character. For example, a ranged carry that requires 0 CS is simply a no no. After we get past those simple requirements we tend to let the designer go crazy for a long time. Then, as we start finalizing the kit we do a serious balance dive into the character to ensure that they are viable to some portion of the playerbase. That being said, new champions are not 'required' to be competitively viable, though we would like them to be."Switching gears from future champions to possible future mechanics, Ezreal mentioned a little something something about an previously concepted skill that had the ability to bounce off terrain, saying:
"We have also tried the 'ricochet off of terrain' ability, albeit only internally. It ran into a number of problems... First off, it was really difficult to make it understandable to the player (i.e. where the shot is going to go). It also had the problem requiring an extended range after bouncing off of terrain, lest it bounce off a piece of terrain, travel 200 units and putter out. We also found a cooler way to do an ability like this, we just haven't found a character that it would fit on well yet."
|You might recognize this as a map of Dominion, our last new map to enter the fray. Unfortunately Riot is not currently working on another map or game mode at this time.|
"No plans currently.
Also, just to give you a history lesson on LoL, we actually started out as a 6v6 map in pre alpha. It sounded like a cool idea, every lane could have 2 champions (no jungler at the time) so no one complained about getting the solo lane. Unfortunately we encountered a major problem...teamfights were FUBAR. There were too many particles going on, too many moving characters, and most of all...too much damage. Players simply died before being able to do anything. Imagine adding one more AoE ultimate to that AoE Ult meta, it was the straw that broke the camel's back."
|An example of NA Artwork that has recently been replaced by Chinese artwork.|
"We always want to improve the overall artwork of league of legends. Put yourself in our shoes. We don't have enough time to go back and improve the splashes of all of our old characters, and skins. And we have these amazing pieces of art that we are basically sitting on for those characters (calling them generic anime pics is just silly, imo they are superior to a lot of our own work from over the years). So we can either sit on a free improvement and keep the old janky artwork, or we can make our game look better. Perhaps the better question is whether we should go back and make new splashes when we do have the time."
Ezreal spoke a little bit more about the upcoming Heimerdinger remake, saying:
"I can tell you that Heimer will become one of my mains once we get enough resources to update his particles! I can also say that the number of rockets that he shoots now will be put to shame...TO SHAME!!!"Hrm, a lot of rockets you say? I've heard about that one before...
Anywho, he also mentioned Sejuani was slated for a little bit a love.
"She is getting looked at currently, though no idea on when that will come out."He mentioned Sejuani again in a response to a question regarding champions who may have deviated from their original designs or "failed to launch successfully", saying:
"Absolutely, we want to go back and improve all of the champions that we feel have not hit their full potential. Yorick and Sejuani in particular require a good once over."
Some pretty cool stuff hidden in this massive wall of text! Good thing Ezreal always treats us right.