Red Post Collection: Yasuo tidbits, Support Scaling Discussion, Skarner Rework back to PBE, 3.14 Bugs

Posted on at 9:33 PM by Moobeat
[ Update 2] Added even more on Yasuo!

[ Update] Added a TON of additional Yasuo info from CertainlyT - including more details on his passive, a ball park at his cooldown, and additional information on his mechanics.

Tonight's red post collection features a few tidbits on Yasuo and his Wind Wall ability, a smorgasbord of discussion on the new preseason support scaling, a note on Skarner's rework heading back to the PBE, a heads up on a few bugs currently floating around, the launch of the Tribunal for LAN and LAS, One for All being enabled on OCE, and more!
Continue reading for more information, straight from Riot's forums!

Recent News

Yasuo Tidbits

[ UPDATE ] CertainlyT has posted a lot more information about Yasuo's kit!
How do you pronounce Yasuo?
Does Yasuo use Mana or is 'Flow' considered his resource system?
Yasuo is manaless. Flow is tracked on his resource bar but is not required for him to cast his other abilities.
Passive - Way of the Wanderer[*]Resolve - Does the shield scale with any stats (AD, AP, Health) or is it a flat, based on champion level type deal?
The shield scales only with champion level. Movement speed causes it to occur more frequently and so is an indirect scalar. 
Q - Steal Tempest[*]While obviously not a dash, the ability does say 'thrusts forward' does this mean it moves him forward slightly like Trundle's Q and Udyr's E, or is it just a straight up line nuke like J4's Q?
Yasuo's Q does not move him. It is similar in nature to a very short and narrow Jarvan Q -- damage in a narrow line.
When I reach three stacks of Gathering Storm is the cooldown on Q reset, or do I have to wait for it to come back up again? If it is reset, does holding on to it allow my regular Q's cooldown to tick down, like a 5 fury Rengar, basically acting as a separate spell on a separate cooldown, or will it be more like Lee Sin's spells, where the cooldown will not activate until my second cast?
The cooldown does not reset. You have to wait for your Q to be naturally available again, at which point you can try to knock the opponent(s) up.
[*]Does casting Steel Tempest while being in the animation of Sweeping Blade allow Yasuo to build multiple stacks of Gathering Storm, if he hits multiple enemies?
No, only one stack of Gathering Storm can be gained per time you cast Q.
[*]While at Full Stacks of Gathering Storm can Yasuo use his EQ combo for an AoE knock up?
Yes. Note that the regular Q itself is also AOE however (in a line rather than a circle around him.
W - Windwall[*]What is the incentive for leveling this ability past level 1, only the cooldown of the active, or will there be other levers as well?
The wall grows wider, the cooldown is reduced, and the associated passive (increased Flow gain while dashing) becomes more pronounced. This is the skill that grants you more defenses when leveled."

He continued, answering a question on the cooldown of his Q ability:
"The Q is intended to be moderate reliability. It is slightly narrower than Corki R (the little ones). Combined with the need to land two in order to get the big pay off spell, low cooldown felt appropriate. I think of it as a skill shot basic attack."
He also tossed out some tentative numbers for Wind Wall
"At present, we are testing the Wind Wall at a 26/24/22/20/18 cooldown. The Wall currently lasts 3.75 seconds. Also note that Yasuo has poor offensive scaling with CDR."
As for Yasuo's E, he noted:
"The cooldown on his E is almost zero (0.5-0.1). Functionally, this is a dash whose cooldown is calculated per target (10 to 6 seconds, non-reducible by CDR). As a result, Yasuo has high mobility through a fight, but is below average at training a single fleeing champion (The dash's cast range is 475; Irelia's Q is 650 for comparison).

Also, yes, Yasuo is not very interested in AP itemization. Basic attacks are central to his play pattern."
He continued, clearly explaining how E functions:
" if Yasuo dashes through Annie, he cannot dash through Annie for 10 more seconds, but he can almost immediately dash through anyone else. Think about it literally as an ability that has a cooldown per target, kind of like Udyr's Bear Stance stun."

To wrap things up, he covered a typical build and a pointed out a few other things about Yasuo's abilities:
 "Yasuo is a melee AD carry. He is closer in build path to Riven than Garen (a typical build might be Vamp Scepter/Statikk Shiv/Merc Treads/IE/Guardian Angel/Randuins), whereas I often build defensive items earlier on Garen and then start building offense as my base damage becomes insufficient. His power curve is designed to be less focused on the early game than Riven and more on the mid and late game. 
Yasuo can only cast Last Breath on champions knocked up by negative status effects. It does not work on champions that are leaping, dashing or jumping. 
EQ is not instant. You can miss because Yasuo's dash is a fixed distance move, similar to Fizz's Q. 
Wind Wall blocks all projectiles that hit it, from any direction. Yasuo can indeed move or dash through it as needed. The wall is very thin so standing inside of it is not a particularly effective strategy in most cases. 
Wind Wall is an instant ability, so you can make sick reaction plays. Tried to get the feel of slashing a bullet out of the air."

When asked how he can come up with such sick champion kits, CertainlyT responded:
"Working here fosters creativity:
  • We have a ton of concept art and story that came together prior to beginning work on a champion's abilities.
  • We have an awesome team of champion designers to bounce ideas off of (and in some cases borrow ideas from ;-), and seasoned leaders to keep us on the right track. 
  • We have an amazing team of QA and Live designers who help with not just ideation but with establishing good kit flow and healthy gameplay.
  • We have ingenious engineers who push the limits of what is possible in an ability.
  • We have insanely creative and passionate modelers, animators, particle artists, and sound designers who bring the champion to life, tying abilities to theme."

[Bonus Yasuo Tidbit]: Riven's champion page lists Yasuo as a rival.
[Update 2]

When asked about the limitation of enemies needing to be knocked up to use Yasuo's ult, CertainlyT commented:
"Good question. Not being to ult can indeed be a drag. Setting up a perfect ult across the entire enemy team, or moving from one side of a spread out team fight to another can be very fun. I'm a big believer in limitations combined with heightened rewards for success.

We have a lot of champions on our roster. If Yasuo isn't for you, I'm sure you can find a few you like."
He also commented:
"1. Wind Wall is designed to allow Yasuo to create spaces in which he is invulnerable (to certain abilities at least). I felt this was a healthier direction than Tryndamere's temporal invulnerability (time based). Personally, I don't think this ability would be healthy on a support since they can be flexibly assigned to the place on the map where it will be most powerful with lower consequences. A melee AD carry felt like the perfect spot for the ability in our game since they are fragile and rely on active defenses. 
2. Much blood so slash 
3.Yasuo's Q and EQ AOEs are on the smaller side and he tends to focus on damaging individuals within fights (compared to Ziggs for example). One of the reason why his abilities are AOE is so that they can be dodged. Think about LeBlanc's Distortion. It's used as an AOE for farming, but in champion combat, she is generally concerned with hitting a single individual.

One of our goals with Yasuo is to integrate melee carries (I call them "light fighters") into the group fight phase of the game. As Tryndamere, I tend to feel more at home split pushing. As Yasuo, I want to be with my team most of the time." 

As for Yasuo's E, he commented that it does work on mininions:
"Yasuo's E works on minions."
 He continued, explaining the "cap " on his dash:
"The only cap on dashing is having a neutral or enemy unit in range that you haven't dashed to within the last 10-6 seconds. So in a team fight with 5 enemy champions, 6 minions, Tibbers and a Shaco Clone, you could dash 13 times per 6 seconds if you could somehow manage to chain it all together properly. Now, I'm not going to promise those fixed distance dashes will get you anywhere you want to be. That's up to the player."
As for how this is communicated to the player, he noted:
"Yes, Yasuo has a self-only circle timer around units he dashes to. It counts down the remaining cooldown like a hand circling a clock"


Following the Yasuo reveal, CertainlyT popped up on the forum to answer a few questions about our upcoming champion.

He started off by confirming Yasuo doesn't use mana:
"Yasuo is manaless."
He continued on, discussing Yasuo's Wind Wall ( W ) ability:
"It does not block turret shots. Does eat Nidalee spears though."
When pressed for more details on what it does and does not block, he commented:
"A projectile for the purposes of Wind Wall is a game object that lives in the world for some time moving along a pre-defined path. This all sounds complicated, but it tends to be much simpler in practice than in theory. 
Enchanted Crystal Arrow is a missile. Fin... er... Lux Ult is not a missile. 
Varus basic attack is a missile. Kayle basic attack, not a missile. 
Ryze Q and E are missiles. Ryze W is not a missile. 
Maokai Sapling in flight is a missile. Maokai sapling while running at someone is not a missile. 
Note that missiles with extreme arcs which take them off the screen, like Kog'Maw ult or Ziggs ult are unblockable, because they travel well over the wall."
When asked if it could knock away a Tristana mid rocket jump, he replied:
"Nope. It doesn't block champions. As for Orianna, her ball comes to a stop when it hits the wall."

Looking Yasuo's kit, one summoner questioned about the viability of tanks with new champions having abilities such as Yasuo's R's extra penetration.

CertainlyT responded:
"A fair question. Tanks have always played an important role in teams built to group fight (that is to say, most compositions). We aren't concerned that they will be going the way of the dinosaur any time soon. As long as there are fragile high DPS champions to be protected, tanks will have a place in the game, both to protect their own carries and to lock down the enemy's. 
Yasuo deals a ton of damage to tanks, just as does any AD carry, ranged or otherwise -- after all, sustained damage is required to take out high duratibility targets. That doesn't mean he steamrolls them, just that his interactions with tanks are higher stakes than, say, Renekton's. Being fragile, he can easily die to focus fire in a Curse of the Sad Mummy or during a single proc from Nautilus' passive.

Additionally, the portion of Yasuo's reveal you quoted is discussing Yasuo's ultimate. He gains a distinct advantage in fighting highly armored target after he casts his conditional ultimate, which requires him or an ally to knock a target airborne. Often he is only presented with an opportunity to do so well after the fight has begun. At this point, he should rightly have a target over his head and it is incumbent upon the enemy team to deal with him through CC or damage."

Support Scaling and Duo Lanes Discussion

Following his initial descent into discussing the new preseason support scaling last night, Morello continued to discuss the intended goals of new utility scaling and why some supports needed their AP ratios reduced:
"Hey all, 
While there's a lot of discussion on the support topic, I want to consolidate some of it here. 
First I'd like to share our thinking on this, directionally and strategically. I posted this in response to a post in the other thread as it's a good starting point for a reasoned discussion on this:


I swear, you live to troll supports. Your messaging on supports has never not been "we love to nerf supports", even when that's not really what you're doing. 
I think this is a good design direction, but you're going to have to find more impactful utility scaling knobs to turn than Lulu Q, Leona W, and Nami E. 
I'm not really sold on the idea that supports need damage nerfs to acquire utility buffs. Supports already generally had weak scaling, and adding gold to the support role means that the gap between supports and better scaling classes is automatically widening.
The irony about this is that this is all intended to help support characters, specifically. The concerns and thoughts we have; 
1) We want to avoid a world where mages invalidate supports. Again, we'll be aggressive here. Maybe some other characters have too much (I tend to think so), maybe some mages go bottom too. Remember support gold is not equal to solo lane/farm gold, it's just quite a bit more than "none." 
2) Support players have felt like their impact matters less, they have an imbalance of responsibility/rewards/success metrics. We think giving them access to the power growth tools (and not making them do "kill you" things to get it) is a big win for this. 
3) We want to define supports as helpers and team-players first. This is pretty tough when you have 4 years of them being defined as ward bots with no gold. Tanks differ than fighters and have lower damage - edge cases like J4 do exist here too. Sona might just be a mage labelled as a support (as her power contribution is lane damage/late game CC) - if so, we'll have to modify her to a damage-oriented scaling model or something. That is tunable, and this is not the last patch ever ever ever. 
4) To make big changes like this is disruptive by its nature. Balance will be temporarily off. Expectations that we've had for characters will change. What will almost never result from fixing game problems is "we just gave you free power/buffs!" Those aren't good solutions to what are systemic problems, but I feel that the expectation is that somehow (that applies to reworks and stuff, too).

This will be rough on launch - please go find abuse cases! Go try to do traditional support. Report your experience. We've cleared out our days to marathon a bit for less useful anecdotal evidence from our experiences. See what snaps that internal tests and a limited player pool can't catch. 
I think this disruption and uncertainty of the correctness of the details is more than worth the ability to bring supports into being first-class citizens with a unique identity. It's long overdue and is a pain that's existed for a long time. Just because something being in a bad state is known and comfortable doesn't mean it shouldn't be taken somewhere better that is a bit frightening and unknown to people. 
Important edit:


you keep saying its a tuning problem on the mage side.
that i understand. so why is their 0 mage utility addressed in such a patch would be my question?
Because in our tests, they performed too poorly due to their utility being a little too low and their gold being a bit too low for real damage. That has to be proven true based on exact amounts, items that you need to get to access it, level disparity (This is important! Getting to 6 and 11 significantly later is a big cost for a mage) and other factors. It's a very multi-threaded issue.
When asked why pick a support utility champion instead of just an AP mage to put in the support role, Morello replied:
"My point to this is that it's a tuning problem. We see characters who have utility and low damage (tanks) picked over characters who have some utility and more damage (Fighters) in the jungle when both are available. There's likely balance things to fix here (the Orianna and Anivia callouts are an example) where this runs risk, or that the new support scaling get significantly more utility."
He also commented on why supports where changed to begin with:
"It's because that role is interesting to very competitive players because it shows skill, but that's a narrow focus. This isn't to fix balance - it's to fix the problem that supports have to be everyone's ***** to be successful. 
How can Sona have a 56% win rate and feel bad? Or Janna a 55% and nerfs are met with religious fervor saved for weak characters? How can we see pro games where the best support player has a pair of boots and expect that to be satisfying?

That's the problem we're looking to solve here."
He continued:
"Exactly. I think this expectation from supports being unsatisfying for so long has a lot to do with this, and that the fear of the AP mage coming in and invalidating this class of character. The latter is not an OK result - there's nothing I can shout from the rooftop more."
He continued, reiterating the point of preseason:
"With preseason, we focus a lot on making really disruptive changes - the conversation here is that we've just irrevocably ruined the support class, which I don't think out history has shown at all. It's important to us that all six classes of characters have valid places in League, and our preseason traction has historically been good (there's no League of X in the real season, right?)"

When questioned why nothing was done to address some of the out standing "AP mag as a support" claims, Morello commented:
"Because in our tests, they performed too poorly due to their utility being a little too low and their gold being a bit too low for real damage. That has to be proven true based on exact amounts, items that you need to get to access it, level disparity (This is important! Getting to 6 and 11 significantly later is a big cost for a mage) and other factors. It's a very multi-threaded issue."

He also briefly commented on the 3.14 Soraka changes, saying:
"The passive adds a lot of in-fight power if you use it well, though could have been overzealous from testing results. Soraka is a unique snowflake of weird stuff overall, so this one being off wouldn't surprise me (how to fix dedicated healer...)"
He continued, commenting his desire to give her a proper rework ( compared to the multiple small changes pushed out every few months ):
"For what it's worth, she's next on my priority list (non-art list - it's a pretty complex matrix).

I actually feel really bad about Soraka's history; I've been a giant weiner with pulling the trigger on this, and Soraka players, as mad as I KNOW a reowork will make them, deserve a good kit."

Skarner Rework Headed back to the PBE

Skarner's kit rework is heading back to the PBE! Here's RiotScruffy with a tentative change list:
"Now that patch 3.14 is out, Skarner is coming back to the PBE for some real in game testing! 
Crystal Slash
-Mana cost reduced from 20/22/24/26/28 to 16/18/20/22/24
-When target is hit, applies an attack speed buff for 5s that stacks up to 3 times 4/5/6/7/8
-Slow removed from Crystal Slash (moved to Fracture) 
-Attack speed component removed
-Cooldown lowered from 18s to 14s
-Max movepseed increased from 15/17/19/21/23 to 24/28/32/36/40 and ramps up over 3s
-Duration remains at 6s
-Shield value increased from 70/115/160/205/250 to 80/135/190/245/300
-Shield AP ratio increased from 0.6 to 0.8 
-Mana cost reduced from 50/55/60/65/70 to 30/35/40/45/50
-Heal removed
-Targets hit are slowed by 30/35/40/45/50 for 2.5s
-Missile range increased 800->1000
-Missile width reduced 120->90 
-Impale now roots targeted champion during the windup animation
-VO for “feel my sting” etc will happen on successful grab instead of cast start

Once the next PBE update hits, let's get some real testing and see how this kit plays."

Cho's Q Slow Problems

In response to a summoner pointing out that Cho'Gath's Q slow doesn't seem to last the full 3 seconds, Meddler commented:
"Hmm, you're right, that does feel short. Let me check the actual values on that."
He later responded:
"Ok, nice catch, turns out the tooltip and the actual slow applied have different values. The slow actually lasts for 1.5s and has been that duration at least since the Fizz patch two years ago (oldest patch I could easily check). Bare minimum we'll fix the tooltip here, will take the opportunity to talk to a few folks tomorrow and get a read on how the live balance team feel about Cho's current state too."

3.14 Bug - Gragas Disabled

Here's the Riot NOC announcement about a new bug that has caused Gragas to be temporarily disabled:
We have disabled Gragas due to a Bug introduced with the 3.14 Patch. 
The Bug was triggered by launching your Q (Barrel Roll) right as you are about to die. This then would prevent you from using your Q for the entirety of the match. 
We will be doing out best to hotfix this Bug as soon as possible.

We're sorry for any inconveniences this may cause."

Syndra E Bug 

Here's another Riot NOC announcement regarding a bug with Syndra's Scatter the Weak ability:
We are currently aware that Syndra's E skill (Scatter the Weak) is not working as intended. We are working to resolve this as soon as we can.

Thank you for your understanding."

Latin America Tribunal Launch

The Tribunal has officially launched for the LAN and LAS players - check out this "La Regeneracion de Singed" comic Riot whipped up to go long with the launch!

One for All mode available on OCE

One for All mode, the first of many featured gameplay modes, is now live on OCE only . No word yet on the other servers but it should be safe to say they will get the mode - which will run from November 22nd to December 2nd - enabled soon

Here's Brackhar with the scoop:
"If you've ever dreamed of nuking an enemy team with five Final Sparks, chaining together a series of Unstoppable Forces or living forever with back-to-back Chronoshifts, now's your chance. 
One for All will be available from 22/11/2013 to 2/12/2013 so cover the battlefield with Cannon Barrage and have some fun!"

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