Red Post Collection: 2/22 Balance Hotfix, Quick Gameplay Thoughts, 9.4 Lore Notes, & More!

Posted on at 4:33 PM by Aznbeat
Today's red post collection includes a balance hotfix for Conqueror, Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts from throughout this week, 9.4 Lore Notes, details on an update to RP prices and refunds, and more!
Continue reading for more information!


Table of Contents


2/22 Balance Hotfix

A balance hotfix for Conqueror was pushed to live this evening:
"2/22/2019 Balance Update 
Existing Conqueror users are stronger than they should be with 9.4's updated version of the rune, and it's starting to gain traction among a bunch of new marksman users who are faring far better with it than planned. Let's avoid League of Conqueror. 
Conqueror
  • ADAPTIVE FORCE 3-15 adaptive force per stack (max 15-75) ⇒ 2-10 adaptive force per stack (max 10-50)
  • RANGED STACK DURATION 3 seconds ⇒ 2 seconds (melee stack duration still 8 seconds)"

Quick Gameplay Thoughts: February 20 

Here's Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for February 20th:
"Hi folks, 
Usual Disclaimers 
These posts will often contain talk about future work we're doing, or planning to do, that isn't yet guaranteed to ship. The nature of the work could change or, depending on what we discover, projects mentioned may get delayed or even stopped. If you'd like to see a Tweet whenever a new one of these posts goes up: https://twitter.com/RiotMeddler 
Working on CS Bounties 
We've got some work underway on CS bounties at the moment. Thoughts going into that:
  • CS bounties have been quite helpful in offering comeback chances, which has put early and midgame snowball into a significantly more appropriate state than before their introduction.
  • The prior bounty system that only accounted for kills unduly penalized takedowns and rewarded farming.
  • CS bounties aren't always functioning as they're meant to at present. While we fixed some bugs recently others are still happening resulting in CS bounties on champions who aren't clearly and meaningfully ahead of the enemy team.
  • The way the CS bounty system functions isn't clear enough. That makes it hard to identify bugs from intended behavior and hard to understand how to play around the bounty system in general. Kill bounties by contrast benefit from being a more straight forward system.
  • CS bounties are meant to reduce if the enemy team catches up on farm. Looks like that's functioning as intended at least some of the time though. 
Based off the above we'll be looking to fix bugs, make the system as a whole clearer and where needed change how the system functions so it’s never putting bounties on champs when they don’t have a significant advantage (e.g. when CSing well from behind, which happens at present sometimes but isn’t intended). 
Ranked Post Next Week 
The revisions to the Ranked system have been out for around a month now and we've been working our way through a lot of player sentiment and other data. We’ll have a significant update on where things are at and our plans coming next week."

Quick Gameplay Thoughts: February 22 

Here's Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for February 22nd:
"Hi folks, 
Usual Disclaimers 
These posts will often contain talk about future work we're doing, or planning to do, that isn't yet guaranteed to ship. The nature of the work could change or, depending on what we discover, projects mentioned may get delayed or even stopped. If you'd like to see a Tweet whenever a new one of these posts goes up: https://twitter.com/RiotMeddler 
9.5 a simpler patch 
9.5 is likely to be a fairly straightforward, and probably comparatively small patch. It'll have a range of champion balance changes in it, current expectation is it won't have any larger changes to game systems though (things like the crit item changes recently for example). We've got work on bounty system improvements underway, those will likely be in 9.6 though. 
Some early observations on 9.4 
Note, these are being written just hours after the patch went out, so possible a few things have become clearer in the day or so since.
  • Azir and Rek'Sai - both have comparatively small play rates, so it's harder to get a quick read on how they're doing post changes. Looking like both got noteworthy power increases, too early to say much beyond that though.
  • Kai'Sa - Is performing noticeably better post patch even though the only change for her was an update to her recommended items. Good reminder for us when we're assessing balance that a character's potential performance and how they're on average being played can be pretty different. Important to account for what effective playstyles/builds can yield and/or help players intuitively identify such builds as a result.
  • Urgot - Lost a meaningful amount of power as expected. We're still planning on letting him settle for a patch. Likely result after that is we put some power back into him in 9.6 in different places than where it was taken out. Depends on how he performs between now and then though of course.
  • Conqueror - Again, hard to assess off just part of a day of play on the new patch. Some of its users are almost certainly performing quite a bit better with it than before (e.g. Riven, Olaf and Irelia). Early indications suggest others are potentially neutral or a bit worse (e.g. Trynd, Darius and Yi). We're expecting we'll have a much clearer read on its power later today and should then be able to make calls on what sort of follow up is or isn't needed. Most likely target if it's too strong is reducing the amount of Adaptive Force each stack gives, though it would of course depend on in what ways its users were out of line. Not clear yet if any AP champs are effective, or even overpowered, users of it, given not enough people have tried it out yet on champs who weren't good users of the old version. Similarly not yet clear whether there are marksmen for whom it's a great choice, though expect we'll get a clear read on that too soon."

9.4: Lore Notes 

Check out this patch's Lore Notes from Riot Ashekandi:
"Sejuani and Udyr: Silence for the Damned, by Odin Austin Shafer 
Sejuani, Udyr, Freljord 
“Udyr had no desire for that unhappy reunion either. Sejuani’s face transformed, softening before she gave a cunning smile. “No,” she grinned. “That’s exactly why I need you with me, old friend.”
Kayle: Updated Bio 
Kayle, Morgana, Demacia, Mount Targon 
“In times of strife and chaos, there are many who cling to the hope that Kayle might eventually return… and others who pray that such a day will never come.”
Updates to Kayle’s bio align her closer to the events of her birth, as well as better intertwine the relationship between her and her sister, Morgana. Kayle would eventually become an ardent protector of justice in Demacia, and, through that, would fracture her relationship with her sister. Though she has now been absent from Demacia for centuries, icons and statues of her still inspire much of Demacia’s culture and law. 
Morgana: Updated Bio 
Morgana, Kayle, Demacia, Mount Targon 
“As magic begins to rise again, Morgana sees that dawn is nearly upon them.”
With Morgana’s new bio, we have focused her backstory on the consequences of the gifts she and her sister would receive from their mother, which would lead to their troubled relationship. The death of Morgana’s father would cement a deep fracture between the two sisters, and Morgana now bides her time in the shadows of Demacia, waiting for her sister’s return."

RP update: Cost and refunds 

Here's ActionJackson26 with details on upcoming RP cost changes and changes to refunds:
TL;DR: We’re updating our global pricing and refund policies on March 5th.
  • Several regions will see increased RP prices to account for new tax laws, currency shifts, inflation, and consistency across regions.
  • The new refund policy will return one refund token every year if you are below the cap of three. Additionally, you can now refund most unused content in the client within a week of purchase without using a token.
  • From now until March 5th you’ll receive extra “bonus RP” on all RP purchases. 
Hey Everyone, 
Starting on March 5th, RP prices will be increasing in many regions. Each year we review global pricing and make adjustments to account for changes in currency inflation, taxation, and regional fairness. This year, we’ve seen more changes than usual, from the introduction of new taxes in several countries, to the continued weakness of global currencies relative to the US dollar, and inflation. 
Each impacted region has different reasons for their specific change, but all impacted players will see their RP prices increase. We're also going to give extra bonus RP on purchases from now until March 5th and take this opportunity to update our refund policy. 
You can find the detailed changes for each impacted region below. 
Price and Purchasing changes: 
  • United States, OCE, EU, and KR
    • Historically, we’ve paid sales tax (VAT or GST) in a number of countries on the money we receive from RP purchases. In the past, we handled these in different ways, either absorbing the cost or including it in the original pricing. Recently, more countries have added VAT/GST or similar taxes on digital goods (Australia, New Zealand, several in LATAM, USA digital sales tax). There’s also been a lot of currency fluctuation and inflation that has led to sizeable differences in the value of RP between currencies. The following price increases will help create a sustainable and consistent policy to ensure fairness between and within regions:
    • United States: In the US, these taxes are collected at the state level, so you may see 8–10% additional sales tax on RP purchases depending on your location. Details can be found here. Base RP prices will not be changing.
    • EU: 9-15% increase. Please note that the price changes impact players checking out with the local currencies of the country listed:
      • United Kingdom: 9%
      • Euro Zone: 15%
      • Poland: 11%
      • Romania: 11%
      • Hungary: 11%
      • Switzerland: 10%
      • Czech Republic: 11%
    • Korea: 15%
    • Australia: 10%
    • New Zealand: 15%
  • LATAM, Turkey, and Brazil
    • Recently we've seen wild swings in a few global currency values and increased inflation in these regions. These changes will level prices with other currencies within their respective servers, as well as the rest of the world.
    • Mexico: 12%
    • Chile: 10%
    • Peru: 10%
    • Turkey: 20%
    • Brazil: 7%
    • Uruguay: 40% Uruguay’s change is due to new taxes in addition to the inflation mentioned above. 
Refunds 
We want to create a consistent worldwide refund policy and expand your opportunities to return stuff you accidentally bought, or didn’t like, or whatever really.
  • Current System: Each League of Legends account gets three refund tokens to use over the course of its life. If you don't have refund tokens, you're unable to refund any purchase.
  • New System: Each League of Legends account starts with three refund tokens. Each year, you'll be granted one additional token so long as you've used at least one (at any point in time, you can't have more than three tokens). Additionally, you'll be able to return certain unused items directly in the client within a week of purchase without using a refund token. 
As a result of this change, anyone who's used at least one refund token before today will get one back. These tokens will start rolling out with this week’s patch. 
For a list of what items can’t be refunded and other details, please check out the support page
Extra Bonus RP 
With so many regions impacted by the price increases, we’re giving extra “bonus RP” on all RP purchases to every region from now until March 5th."

Ask Riot: Game Modes and Metals

Here's this week's Ask Riot - "An update on rotating game modes, metal alloys in Runeterra, and creating Awaken."
"Hello gamers. This week, it’s rotating game modes, metal alloys, and developing Awaken
Are you ever going to bring back old game modes, like Dark Star Singularity or Definitely Not Crystal Scar or Ascension?

Someday? It’s possible. Any time soon? Unfortunately not likely. 
What we found with many of the RGMs like Dark Star Singularity and Ascension is that they were really exciting and novel for the first release. However with the second release of these game modes, players didn’t really engage. This was especially true of modes with limited champion pools, like Dark Star. 
We often get asked, “Why don’t you just turn it back on or allow it in custom games?” Which would be nice, but there’s a surprisingly large cost in getting the modes back to a high enough quality to release. Often since the last time the mode has been on, there’s been a large amount of changes to the core game that affect these modes (champ changes, items, runes, bugs, etc.) that would need to be fixed, since we don’t think it’s right to give players a broken mode. 
Right now, we’re focused on exploring modes that do remain engaging long after the initial release—Nexus Blitz and ARURF+ are examples of modes that we think you could want to play for a long time over and over. This means we’re putting a pause on the other RGMs for now, but we’ve got some new stuff in the works that we think (and hope!) you will love. 
Senior Game Designer  
What kind of metal alloys exist in Runeterra? Is Garen’s sword made with petricite? What about Darius’s axe?

There are many, many different metals and metalworking traditions across Runeterra. Certainly we know of gold, silver, iron, lead, copper, and many more besides—perhaps even some that do not exist in the real world, as well. 
Adding powdered rock to the finest steel would likely result in… well, weaker steel. However, the weaponsmiths of the Great City are certainly using petricite for something, and it has been claimed that Demacian steel can offer some resistance to magic. Maybe one day, we’ll find out the truth? 
The axe carried by Darius is a wonderfully brutal Noxian weapon, and one that he has carried in battle for some time. In fact, he insists that the Trifarian Legion be armed and armored using ore from the Delverhold in the Ironspike Mountains, which he considers the best in the empire. I’m going to assume he’s speaking from experience, there. 
Lead Narrative Editor, LoL 
In the video Awaken, Camille’s eye changes colors from yellow to blue—what is the meaning of this? Also, is the video canon?

Camille’s changing eye color is an allusion to her in-game passive, where she gains a shield based on the damage type of the champion she’s attacking. That shot in the cinematic is her realizing that Jhin has set a trap, and since it’s Camille, her reaction is to first analyze the threat before jumping into action. 
In general, our approach to representing a champion’s abilities in cinematics is usually to start with, “What’s the fantasy behind it?” The Champion team does an amazing job with expressing these characters through their abilities in game, and one of the most fun parts for us is finding ways to build on those fantasies by exploring ways for the characters to manifest those abilities in the world of Runeterra. Sometimes that means a one-to-one representation of the in-game abilities, but a lot of time it’s about speaking to that fantasy while using it in a slightly different way that makes sense for the character and story we are telling. 
In terms of it being canon—these are definitely scenes and events that take place in the world of Runeterra, in the present time. Have we reached those moments in those characters’ arcs yet? No, but we’ve got lots of stories still to come this year, and next… 

Thanks for reading this week’s Ask Riot. Have a question? 
Head over to Ask Riot and sign into your League account. Check out the Pro Tips, then ask away. 
We promise to read every question, but we can’t guarantee they’ll all get answers. Some questions may already be answered elsewhere, and some won’t be right for Ask Riot. This isn’t the best place to announce new features, for example, and we might skip conversations on issues we’ve talked about in depth before (though we can clarify individual points). 
We are listening, though, so keep asking. We’ll make sure your questions are heard by the Rioters working on the stuff you’re curious about."

League Director - replay camera tool 

The League director tool is now available! Check out the landing page for all the details:
"League Director is a downloadable content creation tool that hooks up to the Replay API on League. Play a replay from your match history, boot up League Director, and you’ll have access to a timeline, camera tools, video exporting, and a lot more. 
Download here.
Freely move the camera around the map to capture cinematic gameplay angles with keyframe support. Slow down playback and zoom into that game-winning Baron steal.
Show or hide elements on the map. Get rid of the announcer popups, healthbars, particles, UI, or… Teemo? Change the skybox to one of the landscapes provided, or chroma key your own.
Export your creation to .webm or .png sequence, throw it into your preferred editing suite, and share it with the world.
League Director is open source, meaning community developers can create their own copies with new features and modify and release them as they wish. Download and fork your own version from the Riot Games Github, or check out the Replay API on the Developer Portal. If you want to get more for making content, apply for the League Partner Program
League Director is currently only available in English, and compatible with PC."

Miscellaneous

"Your weekly dose of server problem-os, NA League news, and other! 
Morgana (the best sister) and Kayle (the worst sister) are getting updated!!!!!!
Oh yeah, other stuff. Uh… the undefeated teams in LCS and LEK each lost a game, there’s a lot of cool 3D printing going on, and time to press F for all the poor people soon to be bound by a Morgana Q for a few dozen decades. 
Follow-Ups:
  • None
Server Stuff:
  • Account Service down, preventing players from modifying or creating accounts (2/14, ~58 minutes) A component of the account service went down. After verifying where and to which database, the service was triaged to get writing data back to a proper speed needed for stable operation.
  • Issue with Payment System caused Payon store purchases to fail (2/15, ~88 minutes)An automated alert activated, showcasing a large blip in errors over a set time period. The investigation showed payments processing delayed on vendor side, but purchases were disabled until error rate returned to normal. A full restart of an application instance and waiting out the error rate led to a stable return to service.
  • Game Start Failures too High/Ping Loss for a rack of servers (2/16, ~2 hours) Game failures spike, and an automated alert points to an entire rack of servers. NOC verifies and restarts the affected cluster, verifies stability, and then reconnects the rack of servers into our game management system. We’re always glad the NOC doesn’t like keeping us in the dark unlike Nocturne...
  • Platform Disconnects impact Game Starts (2/18, ~9 minutes) An automated alert notifies the NOC that ISP disconnects are unacceptably high. Compensation mode is activated, but before teams need to triage, the spike disappears and service returns to normal. Where there’s a Teemo, there’s a way?
  • Friend List speed impacted (2/18, ~10 minutes) Automated alert notified the NOC that the league chat system is performing slower than expected. The system returned to normal function without outside influence after a few minutes.
  • Account Service replication delays (2/19, ~35 minutes) Automated backup began having replication errors, causing delays on account modifications on LIVE. Engineers monitored the system as it caught back up to speed and returned to normal service.
Game Stuff:
Everything this week was server related. Oops. 
New Patch:
With 9.4 out, I would like to direct people to this support article in case anyone is having any issues with patching. If you are experiencing issues then please let us know, check out the article, and reach out to Player Support if you are still experiencing issues. 
Morgageddon & Couch Commando"
"New to League of Legends? Let us help you out with some of the frequently used vocabulary. This time, we explore facechecking. Watch where you wander, folks."
"Earlier this year, we announced that we’ll be partnering with We Are Nations to be the merchandising sponsor for the LCS and open our own LCS merch store. 
That time is finally here. LCSmerch.com is live now. At LCS Merch, you’ll be able to buy official onstage jerseys from each of the 10 LCS teams and other LCS apparel."

Reminders

To round out this red post collection, here are a few reminders on current promotions or limited time events!

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