Explaining Karma work-in-progress

Posted on at 8:52 PM by Moobeat
If you've been following the PBE news, you already know that a work-in-progress set of Karma changes were briefly pushed to the PBE. They have since been pulled but there is still a lot of commotion on the forums about the direction of the changes.

Volty has stepped in to clear the air, offering an explanation of the removed changes and providing an updated draft of Karma changes for players to leave feedback on.
Continue reading for more information.

Here's Volty with the details:
"A number of Karma changes recently briefly appeared on PBE. They appeared because I've been working on some updates to Karma. They appeared briefly because they were originally intended for the 3.10 patch, but that is no longer the case, so I pulled them. 
Why were these changes so broad when they first appeared on PBE?
At first it seemed that Karma needed more changes in order to be a successful champion with a valid place in the game. In the last few weeks, we've seen and heard a lot of evidence that Karma is already finding a successful niche as a mage playing out of the top lane. Players seem happy with this and so am I, so I don't need to make as many changes as I originally anticipated. (Karma is a flexible champion though, and I'm not forgetting Karma employed in mid or bot lane either.) 
What am I trying to do with these changes now?
I'd still like to take the opportunity to touch up a couple of things with Karma. First and foremost, that is reinforcing the Gathering Fire mechanic visually and mechanically. Some similar (and purely visual changes) are slated for Focused Resolve / Renewal. I'd also like to add a little bit of power to a few key mechanics. 
With those things out of the way, here is the changelist as I'm currently looking at things. Of course, this is highly subject to discussion and iteration. Your feedback is welcome. 
---Draft of Upcoming Changes-------------------- 
Make Mantra/Gathering Fire interaction more clear and satisfying
- Gathering Fire effect made more readable and clear.
- Visual/audio reinforcement that Mantra has come off cooldown and is off cooldown. 
Make Focused Resolve more distinct from Renewal, and clarify the effect of Renewal.
- The heal VFX are presently appropriate for a heal-over-time, but Karma gets one big heal upfront and another big heal at the end. Update VFX to fit the current mechanics.
- The beam isn’t distinguishably different between Focused Resolve and Renewal, it should be easier to tell these apart. 
Gathering Fire
- Provides full 2 second CD reduction for basic attacks on champions, like spells do, up from 1 second. 
Inner Flame
- Slow to 25/27.5/30/32.5/35% from 25%

Now these changes below are no longer slated for Karma, given feedback and recent observations and data about how she's being used. But for clarity's sake, here's what was also on PBE earlier this week, in addition to the changes above. 
Inner Flame (Q)
- Base slow to 20/25/30/35/40% from 25%

Soulflare (Q with Mantra)
- Slow to 60% from 50%
- Mantra bonus does not improve initial damage. Was 25/75/125/175 (+0.3 AP)
- Explosion damage increased to 80/230/380/530 (+1.1 AP) from 50/150/250/350 (+0.6 AP)
Focused Resolve (W)
- Cooldown to 12 from 16/15/14/13/12
Renewal (W with Mantra)
- Mantra bonus does not improve damage.
- Heals for 30/70/110/150 (+0.3 AP) + 20% of missing health instead of 20% (+1% per 100 AP) missing health
Defiance (E with Mantra)
- Damage ratio lowered to (+0.25 AP) from (+0.6 AP)

- Shield numbers changed to 40/85/130/175 (+0.25 AP), up from 30/70/110/150 (+0.3 AP)"
He followed up by expressing his opinion on Karma's role as some players feel the changes are a slight against her different playstyles.
"I consider Karma to best as a top lane mage, and is secondary as mid lane mage and bot lane support.

These changes (The Q slow and the passive 2 seconds on autoattack) don't particularly favor one role or position over another though. We have some room to add power but I don't believe Karma needs a total rework at this time to be a successful champion in top lane or to be viable in other positions."

When asked by the community hasn't really embraced post-rework Karma, Volty commented:
"Some things take time. I'm not sure that is an indication of failure either. Karma has a good bit of nuance and feel to her.

I personally believe that the Gathering Fire mechanic is undersold on live Karma, and I'm excited about making this more transparent. Things like that could help a lot with the learnability of the champion."

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