Red Post Collection: Update on Skarner Changes, More on Rengar, Condemn bug fix explanation, SR Visual Feedback

Posted on at 10:00 PM by Moobeat
Today's red post collection features another batch of posts discussing the Rengar changes we've been chatting about lately, more updates to RiotScrappy's tentative Skarner changes, Gypsylord explaining the 3.10 bugfix for Vayne's condemn, and RiotForScience chatting about the aesthetics of Summoner's Rift.
Continue reading for the full scoop!

More on Rengar
( Note: This is an on-going discussion on future Rengar changes. Be sure to read up on the previous comments here: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)

If you read yesterdays posts, you've already heard that BTN is being moved towards a utility item that grants assorted movement bonuses rather than just a stat stick. One of these bonuses includes moving faster while in brush, which has raised the eyebrows of a few summoners.

Here's Scarizard sharing his thoughts on it:
Dude, he JUMPS when he is in the bush, move speed while fighting in the bush is USELESS lol, he has infinite gapclosers when fighting inside bushes. So its basically a mobility boots, does nothing when in bushes. Stop wording things, when they have no practical effect.
The intent here, is that if i engage in combat and lose my buff, running into brushes 'reactivates' the MS boost so i can move along them quickly to get my leap off - since fighting then moving into brush would flag you as in-combat, and cut the mobility boots bonus. I admit it's a little tinkery and maybe not the best solution, but so far feedback from testing has been the more stalking/set up that we put into Rengar the better it feels. As i mentioned before, just gonna try it.
 He also explained his reasoning for the scaling on empowered abilities:
"The only intended change to the empowered ability scaling is their damage - as i've explained before, the intent is to remove the double-cast paradigm that exists on Live, where you empower whichever ability you've previously leveled. By giving them all similar damages that are based on Rengar's level, you make the decision 'Do i want Damage/Ferocity, Heal, or CC?' instead of 'let me cast Bola twice for ~500 dmg + a 1.4 ratio'"
As far as a time frame on when we will be able to see or test these changes ourselves, Scarizard noted:
"No time frame as of right now. Based on our playtests this week, the team feels like going deeper and taking more time on Rengar to ensure the predator we release back into the wild is one that makes our game better as a whole, and a more engaging experience for both sides. I'm not trying to rush anything out, which is why none of these changes have been to PBE yet - i just made the thread to give you guys insights into what we're testing and understand a lot of what you guys value/would like to see changed."
More Updates on Skarner
( Note: This is an on-going discussion on future Skarner changes. Read up on the previous posts here: 1 )

Following up on his intial set of posts from yesterday, Riot Scruffy is back with more ideas for Skarner!
"Hey guys and girls, I'm back. Been working hard today on some updates. I learned a bunch of stuff testing the version I posted on here yesterday. (you all totally called some of the outcomes) 
1. Having the Q slow in bursts but not permaslow worked out great. Skarner felt powerful when he slows people, but there are opportunities for them to dash away or stun him. 
2. On the other hand, having his Q slow turning on and off in an alternating fashion was very hard to keep track of and just felt a bit unnecessarily complex. 
3. The W speed buff is really great and skarner isn't quite as kiteable as much as before. 
4. The E changes made it feel more useful, but the entire pattern of a ranged projectile with a cast time still feels very out of place in skarner's melee focused kit. I think the E may need to be redone entirely.

Based on those observations, and some of the feedback you all are giving me on here I'm working on 3 new changes to test today.

-Reverting the pattern back to the old way where once you have crystal energy you keep it up as long as you keep hitting Qs 
-Removing the slow from the crystal energy all together (its moving to E!) 
-Hitting enemies with Q now gives skarner an attack speed buff that stacks up to 3 times (this is beast) 
-Ability reworked from a line projectile to an on next hit attack 
-On skarner's next hit he deals bonus magic damage to the target and all enemies behind the target in a line (similar to Vi's E) 
-Targets hit are marked with crystal energy 
-When damage is dealt to targets with crystal energy they are slowed significantly for a few seconds 
-No longer grants attack speed (moved to Q) 
-Moving the slow from the Q to the E creates a much more reliable and on demand slow. This is super cool for skarner because he can now make smart decisions when to hit the slow. 
-Changing the E to an on next hit attack much better fits the purpose of the ability. It was never a useful ranged poke/nuke and that didnt fit into skarners effective range (melee). I also am hoping that the attack reset can have some cool synergy with his passive if you use it skillfully. 
-Moving the attack speed buff to Q just seemed like a better fit as Q is his sustaned damage/brawling ability. It builds up over time so that when skarner players can stick around in a fight, they really beef up and get cooldown reduction from their passive. 
-I'm still feeling out if the removal of the heal (and putting its power into the shield) is a good change. I am liking it so far, but I hear the complaints loud and clear. 
I'll be testing these new changes today and bringing back the good news when I have more to update. Definitely tell me your thoughts on the changes, you guys were pretty much spot on with some of the weaknesses of the last design.

He continued, reiterating on of the newly planned changes to Skarner's E:
"The new E does damage to enemies behind the initial target (like Vi E) so it can still be useful as a poke in lane."

He also added in:
"Some additional details about the current changes:
-Cooldown is lowered back to 14s from 18s
-Speed amount is increased from 15/17/19/21/23 to 30/35/40/45/50
-Shield values are buffed up to compensate for the loss of heal
-Speed ramps up for the first 3s and then stays maxed for 3s
-Cooldown is still 10s (with auto attacks its effectively ~5s)
-Slow starts 80% for 3s that decays
With the current changes, he definitely feels more powerful as a pre 6 ganker. He also is much more reliable getting into fights in the late game.

Removing the heal from E allowed us to do a few really great things for skarner. One, it allowed us to lower the E mana cost significantly because it would be problematic if he was able to sustain without large mana costs. Also, it allowed us to buff up the W shield, which keeps him moving faster for longer. If he ends up being completely unviable top lane, we can always put the heal back on E."

Condemn Bugfix
If you read over the 3.10 patch notes or happened to catch it in our PBE coverage, you may have noticed Vayne has had her condemn reduced 100 range as the result of a bug fix.

Here's Gypsylord with more details:
"Condemn is intended to match Vayne's AA range which is why the range is being lowered to 550. 
In a past patch we modified the spell to use bounding boxes when determining ranges, just like an AA, but we didn't adjust the spell's range to compensate. Live Vayne's Condemn currently has the range of a 650 range AA, not a 650 range targeted spell. 
(For those who don't understand what I'm talking about, spells and AA's in LoL determine range in different ways. Most targeted spells check the range between the center of the caster and its target. AA's check the range between the edge of the attacker and its target.

In simpler terms: You have to get a lot closer to a fully stacked Cho'Gath to hit him with a 600 range targeted spell than you do to hit him with a 600 range AA.)"
Summoner's Rift Aesthetics discussion
With the advent of the flashy new Howling Abyss map, many summoner's have been taking to the forums to inquire if Summoner's Rift will ever get a graphic overhaul and sharing their own ideas on how to improve the League's most popular map.

RiotForSciene, one of the Senior Environmental Artists, has been grouping all these posts into one singular thread and heading up his own discussion on Summoner's Rift's aesthetics.

( Note: He's been pulling questions from other threads and putting them into one thread so it looks a little wonky. The names on the end are the summoners who made/asked the comments and I've formatted them so it's a bit easier to read. )

[ Source ]
""I'd flip the golem camp so that the two golems face the other direction" -Weegee7
As a Nunu player I love the idea because I think it would make it really easy to steal blue. What were the advantages that you were seeing to this change.
"Do something with that random statue near the blue side Ancient Golem camp. It's there for no reason."-Weegee7
There are actually a lot of details like that in the current SR. I agree we could do a better job of making those elements feel intentional.

"1. i would love to see sr on night
2. interactive object, destroying boxes, barrels, caves, etc.
3. make it look like the new beta site backgrouds" -Lax Is Back
The readability of the playspace is more important to us than even the Aesthetic of the map. Night scenes are inheirantly tricky because of more limited visability. Perhaps a map with a lot of artificail lighting could work for a night scene. 
We added a lot of destructable elements into HA. I expect that to be a continuing trend, that being said they are also really expensive from a performance standpoint. We are very careful about how additions like that will impact our min spec players. 
Concerning the Beta Site background.... this is a point that I will probably need to make more than once because it is somewhat hard to wrap my head around. That specific piece of artwork is not concept art, but is rather a promotional illustration. It is intended to give an idea of what current SR would look like in real life. It is not "forward looking" and should not be interpretted in that way. That being said, I am so happy that you like that image. I hope that you can trust us that if we can make one great image we can probably make another great, but different image."
[ source ]
""The jungle camps' creeps are plain ugly.... The trees are all the same in some way. I wish there were more variety of trees instead of just 1 kind" -MasterForce
Good points on both counts. TT uses a couple different trees but orients them in such a way that they never feel repeated. A combination of very unique art and clever reuse of art is our construction method."
[ source ]
""I'd love for there to be map skins, if that's possible.... I find that giant Rule 63 statue of Pantheon/Sheeva in both bases somewhat odd. The perfectly lined up houses, and houses in general seem to "unnatural" for a forest, all lined up perfectly. Also, why are their houses in the middle of a forest in the first place"
I love map skins too! I loved the winter map that we launched with. However, at the moment, the Environment team's priority is getting all of our artwork up to the level of our most recent maps (HA, TT) Rather than providing visual variants on existing maps.

Concerning houses and Statues, The way we see quality is a balance between Aesthetics, Design and Narrative. In the future our map props will have a much stronger narrative connection."
[ source ]
""Since League's indestructible terrain is kind of a big deal, it would make sense that it needs a clean boundary between the terrain and the paths, but it wouldn't hurt to make the edges a bit less clean. Cosmetic saplings, short patches of grass near the tall stuff, etc. Hence the theme "nature vs. Summoners," as the forest attempts to reclaim the Summoner's battleground. 
- Have the lanes be dirt/gravel logging roads. Minion travel routes would be marked by especially packed earth/gravel, or a rut in the landscape.
- Have the river flow underneath mid lane through grates or a culvert so that it actually feels more like a river.
- All minions need complete overhaul
- Different themes for each section of jungle/lane? One side is a pine forest, the other is deciduous? Possibly different seasons
- Might be a bit much, but SFX for walking through grass/water would be awesome. Might be difficult for champs like Zac or Cassio but it would still sound pretty neato"
Good call. I love the idea of telling little stories in our environments. Signs of wear and tear on the roads, or overgrowth or signs of flowing water all contribute to the overall story of an area."
[ source ]
""You could make the battle happening inside a village/city, since you can't juke between trees, they could be houses" -IS17f8587dd251c04bf0cdb
I like this idea a lot, our collision areas really could be anything. As a chunk of random trivia, a portion of Crystal Scar is actually set in a village. I think we could push that concept further.
"I personally feel "Summoners Rift" Needs a new makeover, not a visual update D: . Rift:Typical rift features are a central linear downfaulted depression, called a graben, or more commonly a half-graben with normal faulting and rift-flank uplifts mainly on one side. Where rifts remain above sea level they form a rift valley, which may be filled by water forming a rift lake. The axis of the rift area may contain volcanic rocks, and active volcanism is a part of many, but not all active rift systems. I feel there is so much more than just paved roads inside a forest landscape" -Brzink
I have to agree with you, I don't think that the map shows much evidence of either summoners or their rifts. Something to think about."
[ Source ]
"I want to take a second to talk about this image. I have heard it described as "Concept Art" implying that at some point we would reconstruct SR using that image as a template. This is not the case. This image is promotion illustration to give you the feeling of what our current map would look like in real life. It is not forward looking. It is not, and will not be the basis for any future development. That being said I am so glad that you like the art! Trust us that we have the team to produce work that is even better than what you see in this image. While we will not ever make this exact image. We will make something awesome."
[ source ]
""I'd love it if SR was more asymertrical, I feel like blue and purple/red sides should have some sort of noticeable thematic difference (and if making a red and purple version is too much work, I don't think anyone would mind getting rid of purple and making colorblind the default.)"
I really like what we did with Howling Abyss. One side has a distinctive Freljord style, and the other side has the silhouette of the Watches. To me this is much more distinct and readable than just a color shift. Great Point!"

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