Discussing the Sejuani Relaunch & Trundle Speedsculpt

Posted on at 4:20 AM by Moobeat
Both the Sejuani and Trundle relaunches were announced and tossed up on the PBE earlier today so it's no surprise Rioters have taken to the forums to discuss them. 
Continue reading for a batch of red posts concerning Sejuani's new kit and her new look, as well as a nice Trundle related treat from Grumpy Monkey.

Sejuani's updated kit
As you may have seen, Sejuani's kit has been updated and Meddler, one of the champion designers behind these updates, has been on the forums discussing the changes.
"There were a number of things we wanted to add to Sejuani as part of her gameplay rework such as the Q knockup, some tankiness to match thematic and role expecatations, application of frost by all icy looking effects etc. Doing that without compensating in other areas however resulted in an incredibly overpowered Sejuani and as a result we chose to shift some power from base damage on the W to other parts of the kit. Changing from max HP to bonus HP was a big part of this, which kept her base damages in line while still allowing HP items bought to add about the same amount of damage as previous, so that buying into the HP scaling still felt like a valid, satisfying choice.

In terms of overall effect the goal was not to reduce Sejuani's power, but to shift some of it to other parts of the kit. If it turns out we've cut too much damage from W, relative to the power added elsewhere, we'll look at restoring some of it. Or, if it turns out we've added too much power overall we'll look into the best way to bring her back in line."

Meddler also talked a bit about Sejuani's kit in general, talking specifically about her abilities' power distribution and her new damage happy Q.
"We wanted to preserve Sejuani being rewarded for building HP items and instead shift power from W base damage to other skills. Changing from max health to bonus health doesn't change the amount of benefit Sejuani gets from buying health items e.g. Warmog's will offer 160 bonus damage at 16% max health or at 16% bonus health. 
Regarding the Q and enemy health we want tanks to have some degree of damage based threat that remains relevant throughout the game. In the case of some tanks this means scaling that doesn't require offensive itemizaiton. Scaling with health items is one way of doing this, and something we did indeed try on the Q, putting it in two places on the kit however resulted in increased snowballing effects. If Sejuani was doing well she became really hard to kill and was getting a significant amount of added burst. If she did poorly she died early and was having trouble contributing sufficient damage based threat (something every tank does to some degree). Percentage damage by contrast gives a consistent level of threat, since it's based off the enemy's stats.

A secondary reason was we wanted the feel of a giant boar crashing into you to matter even to hard to kill high health targets. Bristle's really big and the new charge animations look really solid/bone crunching, so having that occur followed by poor damage numbers was a noticeable disconnect between thematics/visuals and gameplay."

Meddler also commented on the visual of her ultimate's stun and talked briefly about why there isn't they decided against being able to reactivate her new W to start swinging if you don't get an auto attack off.
"We should have a revised version of the ult stun effect in either the next PBE patch or the one after that. Please let me know what you guys think of it once you've seen it and how you feel it compares to what was there today and how it compares to the old ult stun effect.
We took out the the reactivation on the W simply because it was causing more accidental cancellations than it was being used for deliberate early cancellations - people would be mashing the button in busy team fights and unintentionally cost themselves damage. That was a late change however, made after the announcement text had been written hence the discrepancy. What we've done instead, probably to hit the PBE in the same patch as the ult particle change above, is reduced the duration between pressing W and the second part starting automatically and changed it so the damage pulses from the second part start slightly quicker. "

Regarding her ult, he also explained why it was changed to only slow if it fails to hit a champion.
"We wanted a bigger risk/reward trade off on the ult, to give more moments for good Sejuani players to distinguish themselves and create possible windows for enemy counterplay. As a result if you miss, the auto detonation at the end only slows, rather than giving a short stun. If you hit however you now get the full longer stun on all enemies in the area."

Speaking of Flail of the Northern Winds ( W ), he also commented on it's new damage.
"The ratio has been cut granted, it's also dealing that damage over a shorter period on a shorter CD (if you can land the enhanced auto attack quickly) however, so it's not necessarily a nerf at all to the amount of damage output Sejuani gains from health items."

Last but not least, Meddler shared a cool little factoid about her new kit:
"Sejuani's reworked kit does actually allow her to use her ult and/or E mid charge if desired. That's a more detailed level of ability functionality than we mention in kit summaries though, which are just intended as a general overview."

Sejuani's Aesthetics
IronStylus has also been flapping around the forums talking about Sejuani's new look!

When asked about Sejuani's new found flail usage, something that was nearly nonexistent before, IronStylus remarked:
"Short answer is one of the goals of the new Sejuani was to fulfill the flail aspect of her more. She should have more impact. There's still a lot of magic though.

Also, we did something neat where during one of her spells Kevin Tuggles takes over the auto-attack while she creates the spell effect with the flail. Another goal was to make them feel more interconnected, in a weird dominating sort of role for Sejuani, but Kevin also needed to feel more vicious."

Another summoner inquired about the new look for Sejuani's boar, commenting that it now looks like a wolf or a lion. IronStylus responded:
"I'm sort of the opinion that even "normal" animals in Valoran need some oomph, not just size. They should have some cross species influence. He is indeed somewhere between a wolf and a boar. When we were re-concepting we considered strictly moving to a wolf, however I insisted on the boar. I gave him enough wiggle room to where we can re-skin him as a myriad of other animals in the future. This rig will work for many more options than before."
When asked why Sejuani's helmet is now mirrored, meaning the broken horn has switched sides, he commented:
"We decided that in her original base that it seems very awkward that she wasn't actually grasping Kevin Tuggles. Odd how no one really felt this was a thing, then we all went.. "Uh.. she doesn't actually hold onto the boar. That's odd.." 
Ok, so maybe not that dumbfounded, but we did decided the La-Z-Boy sitting postion wasn't appropriate. We had to get rid of the shield in order to have her riding the pig properlike. So, we compensated by basically sticking a larger buckler-size mass on her left gauntlet and pauldron, (the gauntlet eventually became the Seekers Armguard).

We wanted to put a bit of asymmetry in there as was there with the shield, minor as this compensation was. With that mass added, we knew that the added bulk, and the eventual position of the pauldron, would clip against the horn when she was posed, so we reversed it. Also, since there was a lot going on on that side of her body, we wanted to put the horn on her right side as a point of interest to balance."

Trundle Speedsculpt

Grumpy Monkey has a surprise for us! He's posted a speedsculpt of himself creating the new Trundle model from scratch.
"Hey guys, We don't do the art spotlight speed painting stuff much anymore, so I decided to record the sculpting session for Trundle's vu to give you a bit of insight into the process. This was made in a program called Zbrush, it's like sculpting with digital clay. I usually start with one of the many blank models I have in my library, and then tend to push and pull shapes until I get the look I want. "

One curious summoner asked why even bother making a model high res if it just needs to be downgraded to be used in the game. Grumpy Monkey responded:
"Great question! It may seem like extra work, but It's actually the same amount of work. It is much easier to Iterate on the Sculpt and push the shapes, also when we make the game rez version, we are basically tracing the high rez version, no guesswork. We also use that high poly sculpt to make something called an "Ambient Occlusion Map". It is basically a texture that has all the shadows and lighting of the High polygon sculpt, then we apply it to the low polygon model to make the texture painting step go faster."

When asked how long this thing took in real time, he replied:
"It all took approx 3 days. Yeah, the music makes it feel more epic hahahaha."

In this thread, he also addressed a few Trundle related questions.

Responding to a few complaints about how different Trundle looks, he commented:
"Yeah, we changed Trundle, some people are upset, and that's totally valid, the forums are a place for you to be heard. But we gave people a free skin that looks like the old one trying our best to keep the aesthetic while holding on to the new things that we really liked. For the traditional skin, We are working on putting the poop tower back in, and there will be a few more surprises for junkyard and baseball trundle as well."

When someone started begging for him to bring back Junkyard Trundle's Pink Shoe was, he responded:
"I will! There are some things that arent on pbe yet!"

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