Red Post Collection: March Sales Schedule, Feeney Art, Meddler Thoughts for 2/17, Aatrox work on PBE soon, & more!

Posted on at 6:03 PM by Moobeat
Today's red post collection includes a look at interesting in dev champion art by FeralPony, champion and skin schedule for March, Meddler with another round of gameplay thoughts including Aatrox work hitting the PBE next week and 7.5 visual changes, and more! Hunt of the Blood Moon also in RGMQ 2/17-2/21!
Continue reading for more information!


Table of Contents


March sales schedule 

March's champion and skin sale schedule is out! Check it for a look at next month's sales, including early sales on recently released skins and chroma!
"Check out all the champs and skins on sale this March! Like previous sales schedules, we’re not posting the exact dates for each champ and skin, but they’ll all be on sale sometime next month. 
Just a heads up – since we’re publishing these in advance, we won’t offer partial refunds on champs and skins purchased before they go on sale."

Quick gameplay thoughts: Feb 17 

Meddler returns with another set of quick gameplay thoughts for February 17th, including mention of Aatrox gameplay changes hitting PBE next week, 7.5 visual improvements, and more!
"Hi folks, 
Another set of current thoughts here. Previous set can be found at the link below. These should be pretty frequent, but certainly won't happen every day. Length is also likely to vary a lot too. Also important to mention that these aren't remotely comprehensive - they're quick notes on some things we're thinking about, not a full list of every gameplay change going on. 
http://boards.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/c/developer-corner/NxMaaYvf-quick-gameplay-thoughts-feb-16 
Aatrox 
We've got some Aatrox changes that should be hitting the PBE early next week. Those are balance/game health changes, aimed at putting Aatrox into a better place until we can get to a larger update for him at some point. 
Main changes there are:  
  • Shifting the passive to a windowed one (proc that grants AS/AD and revive if off CD for a duration, with some downtime). Goal is to offer periods of comparative strength and weakness (lot of the issues we've had with Aatrox's game health have been due to the nature of his revive passive) 
  • Removal of % health costs, probably a flat health cost on E. One of Aatrox's big issues is that he's pretty feast or famine, stat checking people hard with a drain tank pattern or just dying. Giving him the flexibility to build defense more (health) without getting as punished by his kit for it gives some good fallback options/alternate builds. 
  • Changing the W heal so it's not dependent on his AD, or as extremely different above/below 50% health. Ties in with the build path options above, with a % missing heal looking like a fairly likely mechanic. 
  • More details and context next week. 
Someday support possibility  
One idea we've been kicking around a lot recently is that we should potentially be giving support power in non gold means more. As a position support has some pretty different gameplay. At present it also earns noticeably less gold than other positions, resulting in reduced feelings of agency. Something we're interested in exploring at some point though is giving alternate forms of power, rather than increased gold (other ways to earn specific stats or unique items?). 
7.5 Visual Changes  
Along with other gameplay changes in 7.5 we're also aiming to ship a number of things that should improve the visual quality of LoL in small ways. Current list (more details coming next week) looks like:  
  • Better communication around the recall state for champions/skins without recall animations 
  • Adjusted tooltip color scheme in game, slight layout tweaks 
  • Corrections to make certain spell indicators always draw over the top of terrain regardless of height differences (should always see Panth R or Zyra R for example) 
  • Making more spell indicators not show in spectator or to allies (e.g. the ring around Varus E on the ground's meaningful to enemies and Varus, but allies and spectators don't need that level of precision) 
  • A quick sizing pass on a few champions and skins (adjusting outliers up/down to where they should be relative to other champions' height).  
Edge of Night  
We're going to see if we can pull a nerf for Edge of Night forwards into 7.4, or at least do a low risk hotfix the same day 7.4 hits. Urgency on that feels high enough at this point we don't think we should wait another patch. Most likely changes (still being discussed) are increasing the CD again and lowering the AD on it. Possible whatever changes are made will be temporary as well if the conclusion during 7.5 development is a different nerf is better long term."

When asked if they would return to more visual oriented updates instead of gameplay with it, Meddler noted:
"Quote:
Do you ever think you'll reach a point where champions have healthy kits but look severely outdated? Take ezreal for example, good kit, definitely room to improve, but also very reliable and flashy. Or do you believe every champion requires changes in the future in one way or another?
I'd imagine we could eventually get to a point where the focus is much more on visual and audio changes than gameplay. That's a fair way off though. Even then champs like Ezreal as you point out could do with some gameplay work (a more interesting W in particular, though what you cut from the rest of the kit to get the power needed for that's trickier)."
When asked if Aatrox would still get work in the diver update, Meddler noted:
"Quote:
Do you guys still want ChampUp to look at Aatrox some more during Diver update
Aatrox is still a very likely candidate if we do a Diver update."

When asked about alternate forms of power for supports, Meddler commented:
"Probably more something like Bard chimes - an alternate way to demonstrate skill leading to power that isn't necessarily funneled through the item system. Not necessarily something that external to the champion or that impactful, but that sort of alternate thing to do you can be good or bad at. 
I can't see removal of Soraka's W health cost happening without her being an extremely different champion. She's designed around being a premier healer and the health cost there's pretty important to making that more acceptable. Replacing the W then demands some pretty substantial work across the kit."

As for if Blood Moon Jhin will get a size reduction, Meddler noted:
"Quote:
Make Blood Moon Jhin smaller 
its a Final Boss Veigar situation ATM
Planning to."
Meddler also noted more details on the recalls for those without would come next week:
"Quote:
Better communication around the recall state for champions/skins without recall animations. Can you elaborate on this? I don't understand that change 
A quick sizing pass on a few champions and skins. Thank god, there are still some skins/champions with size issues.
More details on recall stuff next week from the Rioter driving on that stuff!"
and when asked on details regarding Rek'Sai's "mini rework", Meddler shared:
"Quote:
@Meddler any news on the Rek'sai mini rework?
Few thoughts on that sometime next week."
As for timing of Galio update, Meddler commented:
"Quote:
I was actually expecting galio rework this coming patch. So I got the patch coming up and the patch after to still enjoy my baby and pray to the riot gods that his W stays intact.
It'll be a bit still till Galio. He's closer than any other VGU or new champion, but won't be hitting the PBE in the immediate future."
Meddler also noted there will be a shorter gap than usual between the new champion AFTER the next new champion (which will be out after Galio's large scope update):
"Can't make any promises about total number of champions this year yet. For whatever it's worth the gap between the new champion after Galio and the new one after that should be a bit shorter than usual though at least."

When asked for ideas on the Edge of Night nerfs, Meddler noted:
"Quote:
Meddler, have you ever considered changing Edge of Night so the Spell Shield has a shorter duration? 10 seconds on it feels oppressive when you're the one being attacked, because you know one of your spells will fail and you simply CAN'T wait it out or you're dead. And there's no way you're going to be able to exploit that whole "channel cancel" bit because, unless your opponent is brainless, he'll never expose himself until after the channel is complete. 
It isn't the cooldown that's the problem; it's the duration. 10 seconds feels like forever in a fight.
Reducing the duration (7s? 5s?) is one of the possible nerfs we're looking at for 7.5. Possible we replace the hotfix nerf with something like that (changing CD or AD takes a simpler type of hotfix than changing buff duration so we're looking at those to minimize risk)."
Meddler continued:
"Quote:
Minimize risk for what? What risk is there other than the item being too weak.
Risk of bugs. Hotfixes, because they're done quickly, don't get as long a testing process, so we need to be extra careful around what sort of changes we put into them."



Before There's Splash Art, There's Feeney Art 

FeralPony is a talented artist.
League of Legends: Feeney Style
"When we release a new champ or update an old favorite, we try to capture their personality in a splash art—but Noxus wasn’t built in a day, and neither are those images.

Before there was this:
Ivern Splash Art
There was this:
Ivern
Senior game designer Brian “FeralPony” Feeney creates these masterpieces while the official splashes are still works-in-progress. The tradition began many eons ago, in the year 2012, after we accidentally released incomplete splash art—multiple times. FeralPony says, “I wanted to make something that was super shitty, so people would never accidentally ship it. There would be no question whether or not it’s finished artwork.” 
And thus, a tradition was born. 
Thanks to FeralPony’s indisputable skills, we now also have placeholder splash art to use during playtests, before the official splash is ready. FeralPony says, “I try to put a little bit of time into each to try to make them amusing and capture the vibe of the character.” Say goodbye to boring, gray boxes and hello to the beautiful, newest faces of the Rift. 
Bonus: Sometimes the official artists are so inspired by FeralPony’s art that they work with extra fervor, which actually may just be an attempt to replace the temporary art ASAP. 
THE TALE OF THE STONEWEAVER 
FeralPony made placeholder splashes on-and-off for the first few years, so many champions lacked this special treatment. 
This all changed one fateful afternoon, when FeralPony was struggling to draw League’s newest champion Taliyah in his signature style. He says, “I couldn’t figure out how to portray her, and I was feeling pretty uninspired.” 
Taliyah

At the same time, the champion development team was having trouble with Taliyah’s in-game read because it was too similar to some existing champions. Feeney’s struggles reflected this and served as a “gut check” to the champ team that her silhouette was still a bit unclear. To make Taliyah more unique, they made some changes to her silhouette, and when FeralPony once again picked up the (digital) paintbrush, he drew the Stoneweaver with ease. 
What began as a way to prevent unfinished art from being released (and give a little flavor to playtesting) became a quick-check to confirm that a champ’s personality and appearance is distinct enough to depict in a simple splash.
Camille

Today, FeralPony’s art is an official step in the champion development process. 
THE FUTURE OF FEENEY ART

These days, FeralPony says, “I’ve been debating on retiring to the winds and letting some new rapscallion take over.” His potential prodigy, senior QA analyst Kory “Ququroon” Dearborne, created Camille’s placeholder art—and it was FeralPony-approved.
Ququroon says he’d be happy to carry on the legacy in the future. 
Now, for your viewing pleasure, we present a collection of never-before-seen, super-official splash art. " 
FEENEY ART
Hecarim, Zed, Thresh, and Aatrox
Reworked Sona, Reworked Zilean, Reworked Veigar, and Tahm Kench
Illaoi, Jhin, Aurelion Sol, and Kled
For more in dev placeholder action, check out this previous /dev on Champion Prototypes!

FeralPony also shared:
"Sion sadly didn't make the cut (they wanted a 4x3 grid), but it's a personal fav of RiotAfic. You can see that one here."

Quick Hits - Challenger Skin Line

[Quick hits is our own collection within a red post collection, often including easy to digest stories, specialized information, and/or repeat info you may have missed in other posts!]


When asked about this the challenger skin and why we didn't see a new one at start of 2017, Riot Ve1vet commented:
"In it's current state Challenger was just 'Red Anti-thesis to Championship', so we wanted to hang onto Challenger and workshop it a bit more to dig into what makes this skin line cool."

REMINDERS

To round out this red post collection, here are a few reminders on current promotions or limited time events!
  • Hunt of the Blood Moon returns this weekend in the RGMQ from 2/17 - 2/21! Check out our Blood Moon content release post for more on this new mode, previews of new Blood Moon skins, and more!

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