Red Post Collection: Early Game Changes Update, LCU Alpha changelog & update, SKT skins back on PBE, Kled talk, & more!

Posted on at 3:37 AM by Moobeat
Tonight's red post collection includes Meddler with an update on the previously discussed early game changes for turrets and cannon minions, a big roundup of Kled discussion, live LCU alpha updates, context on the SKT skins returning to the PBE, and more!
Continue reading for more information!

Table of Contents 

Early Game Changes Update 

With 6.15 out on live, here's Meddler with an update on the previously discussed Early Game Changes - including mention that the cannon minion changes did NOT go out in 6.15 and that they may be postponing the proposed turret AI changes for a bit.
"Hi folks, 
Quick update on the early game changes we talked about last week (link below for anyone unfamiliar with them).  
Over the last few days we've been gathering feedback from a number of pro players, coaches and analysts from multiple regions. One of the big reoccurring comments was that the collateral damage from the cannon minion change was much higher than we were accounting for. General feeling was that while it would make it more costly to lane swap (desired), it would also disrupt a lot of other play, strategic movement especially, later on in the game in the 5 to 20 minute period (undesired). Based off that concern, some follow up playtesting and some strong arguments that the other changes would already add significant cost to lane swapping, we've decided to remove the cannon minion change. We believe that we need to make changes to encourage more early game interaction, the cannon minion change looks like a case of too high a price for that though, at least at this time of year. 
Some good questions were also raised about the tower AI changes currently scheduled for a later patch. We haven't got those into playtesting yet, but will be investigating those issues as soon as we can, particularly around their effects on early risk taking. It's possible we might end up delaying some of those AI changes to Pre-Season. We believe they'll be good for the game once tuned appropriately, might or might not be the right time for them though. We'll assess whether or not they make sense once we've seen what the impact of 6.15 is like and once we've been able to get some feedback on them direct in game, PBE included. 
We also particularly want to get feedback from a number of pro teams that we haven't spoken with, especially given there are some regions we haven't yet been able to get more organized feedback from. While we aren't planning any other major systemic changes before pre-season we will tweak existing numbers if appropriate in patches 6.16-6.18 (thinks like Fortification duration, amount of gold for first tower kill etc). Ongoing feedback's going to be especially valuable there. 
No cannon minion changes
Might delay some of the tower AI changes"
Following the initial post, Meddler hung around the thread answering various questions:

Meddler confirmed the cannon changes aren't going out in 6.15 despite initially being mentioned in the notes:
Does this mean cannon minion changes are not making it live tomorrow?
They are still listed in the official 6.15 patch notes.
That's correct, the cannon changes won't go live tomorrow. We'll update the patch notes soon."

When asked about the previously mentioned turret AI changes, Meddler  noted:
I still do believe the extra call for help for the turret AI should be added. This is a mechanic that should have a existed a long time ago. The way turrets fuction right now it's very counter-intuitive. I'm sitting right next to my turret, an enemy right under it is attacking me, but my turret isn't protecting me because I'm just a few steps outside it's range. How does that even make sense...
We'll almost certainly add that change. The only question is whether we do so pre Worlds or just post Worlds."

When asked why they consider the cannon minion changes disruptive, Meddler explained:
Just because I'm curious I'd like to hear specifically what makes the cannon change disruptive
High expected impact on map rotations, including risk of forcing specific rotation patterns versus allowing more adaptive play. Possible the changes might work out fine after a number of months of play, so maybe we'll explore them again for a pre-season or something. Wrong time for them though at present at least."
Meddler continued:
What in particular was it about the cannon minion change that would affect pro play? Were pros rotating their primary carries lane to lane just to pick up cannon minions?
Pushing power was the bigger concern than gold income. Cannons make an enormous difference in ability to take down towers, given they both take hits before other squishier minions and take reduced damage from towers."

Kled Discussion

With Kled revealed and up on the PBE for testing, a few reds hopped on the boards, social media, and reddit to chat about our latest duo!
When asked about what lane and builds they expect Kled to go, Riot Scruffy noted:
"He's best top. Mid/jungle are decent but definitely secondary. Builds very similar items to Fiora."
As for subclass, he noted:
"Diver (like Jax ish)"
Harrow added in:
"Jungle is hard but some people might make it work - top lane is most natural fit, he likes a long lane to fight in"
Riot Scruffy also reiterated that Kled can not use his E or R while unmounted:
"Yes, they're grayed out."
Harrow also added:
" He doesn't have E or R when he's not on mount, no - gotta fight to get him back!"

When asked if Skaarl is male or female, Scruffy replied:
"Skaarl is female. Kled starts the game (and every time he Bs) with skaarl so you get to fight together 70% of the time."
He also mentioned that there is a brief period after mounting in which Kled can't remount again:
"Theres a short 'cooldown' (~30s) if he remounts so that he cant just remount over and over."
When asked if % health damage accounts for both Kled and Skaarl's HP, Harrow noted:
"For all %max health effects it takes into account the total of Kled health and Skaarl health"

When asked if healing reduction or increases work with Skaarl coming back, Harrow noted:
"No, it's not considered "healing" by the game"
Harrow also mentioned it is intentional that Kled drops turret aggro when dismounting:
"Yeah - Kled is briefly untargetable, and any untargetability drops tower aggro"
As for if there is a way to stop or interrupt Kled's R charge once it starts, he noted:
"Only if you somehow do enough damage from range to dismount him - CC doesn't affect him while charging"

As for if courage (which resummons Skaarl) decays, Harrow confirmed:
"Courage doesn't decay, no"
He continued, replying to a question on making Kled able to gain courage on jungle camps:
"It's possible we might change how he gets courage in the future, but for now I don't want him to feel like he should leave-" "fights to go farm jungle to remount. fights to go farm jungle to remount."

Harrow also tweeted out that Kled went into development late in 2015:
" We started developing him late last year"
Over on the boards, RiotScruffy  commented on Kled's %HP damage:
"It's pretty standard practice these days to mix in a bit of %hp damage with most fighter champs. This helps them to have a slightly more similar TTK on tanks, fighters, and other squishies. If we gave them all flat damage, they would often end up just blowing up squishies at unreasonable speeds (see rengar)."
RiotScruffy continued:
But does it have to be so high? Like seriously his ult can easily do 45% and his W and 20%, for such a low cd it surely doesn't have to be such a high amount.
They scale very heavily on bonus AD to avoid the "build tank and do crazy damage" problem (see fizz, ekko). If he was not building damage, it would be much less."
gypsylord added:
Could you explain why it has become standard practice? Is there a reason tanks have to die equally regardless of how well or poorly an enemy is doing?
Not speaking to Kled here, but as an overall comment on "% health damage on fighters." 
In the past I have tended to use % health damage as less of a "I kill tanks" stat and more of "I don't one-shot sqiushies" stat. 
That probably sounds weird, but hear me out here: 
Say your champion, Talon, is only good at killing Ashe and nothing else. That guy better bereally good at killing Ashe, else he's going to be useless. Given how safe Ashe tends to be (especially when she has a Janna on her team) it's likely Talon is going to need some mechanics that result in him one-shotting her before she can respond. 
Talon is viable, but Ashe has a bad time. 
Now imagine that Talon had mechanics in his kit that allowed him to have some degree of success vs. champions who aren't Ashe. In this case Talon can be less good at killing Ashe because he can contribute to the team in other ways. Wooo, Joe's success case is now less binary and Ashe doesn't get one-shot as much. 
% health damage is one such mechanic. It can allow a character who might normally be very focused on murdering squishies to have success cases against tanks, which means we can make their overall effectiveness against said squishies lower and possibly less frustrating. 
Of course there's tradeoffs here. % health damage isn't always a good idea or the right thing to do, given the champion we're putting it on. Gains in one area often come with costs in another. Tank Ekko and Fizz showed us the dark side of more target agnostic assassins for example. 
Side note: Tanks can still respond to % health damage by buliding Armor/MR. That means a tank doing well is still going to outpace a %health char doing poorly (assuming the right tuning). This is why %health true damage has always been so contentious."

As for Kled's unique voiceoverRiotUtora  shared a few details:
"Been waiting for this for awhile ;) The problem with how these lines are presented to you on youtube is that all files are just lined up in alphabetical order and then rendered out - doing this doesn't always give you the best representation of what Kled sounds like in game. 
Kled has VO kits for being On Skaarl and Off Skaarl. Skaarl also will speak to Kled and Kled to Skaarl while mounted. When Kled is off Skaarl he's much more aggressive and yells...alot. We really wanted a shift in character when he becomes dismounted - but that's tough to get across when the voice files are presented like this. 
Kled also has a bunch of Kill Champion lines - he has call outs for maybe 15 or so individual champs and then a large bucket for killing any champ. We started doing this with Jhin and we're starting to think that Kill Champ lines have more value then Interactive Taunts or Buy Item lines. Curious to hear what you guys think. 
I can't wait for everyone to hear it in game! 
edit: This voice actor also voiced another champion years ago - extra bonus points if you can guess who it is"

[LCU Alpha] Prepare to Test: Twisted Treeline 

The latest live League Client Update Alpha patch is headed our way after PBE testing, including Twisted Treeline as the new testing focus!
"In the last round of testing, we reviewed the changes we've been making based on your feedback and unveiled the new Collection section and our rework of Profiles. We're still in the process of shipping key components of those sections, but our main focus is shifting to the next playable game queue: Twisted Treeline. 
As you're grabbing Ghost Relics and gettin' wiggly with a Witchcap, be sure to keep some questions in mind: 
  • How does the reworked TT champ select compare to the older one?
  • What parts are better? What parts are worse?
  • Is on-screen information in TT champ select clearly presented and easily understood?
  • What could we improve? 
Don't forget: alpha testers can use the tools found at the bottom of the alpha homepage in the client to give feedback, report bugs, and more. 
Also check out more client update news here: 
More information on the live LCU Alpha and signups can be found here.

[LCU Alpha] Alpha client patch .06 changelog

The  live LCU Alpha changelog has also been updated to reflect patch .06!

Below a short introduction by Cactopus - full notes can be found here.

It's time for Twisted Treeline. We’ve given you a sneak peek of the changes heading your way with this patch, so now we need you to give it a go and leave your feedback.

As you battle it out 3v3, please take any surveys that pop up, and submit your feedback and bug reports anytime via the alpha homepage in the client. If you're in the mood, drop by the alpha discussion board to chat with your fellow testers and the client dev team. Your feedback will help inform where we iterate before we launch the updated client!

We’ll be back in a bit to talk about normal draft and ranked. If you haven’t yet signed up for the alpha, sign up now to get in on the action as soon as possible—we’ll be sending another wave of invites in the upcoming weeks. "

SKT skins return to PBE in 6.16 cycle

As you may have noticed, the previously delayed SKT 2015 World Champion skins are back in the PBE in the 6.16 cycle - complete with upgrades, unique recalls, and the addition of Azir and Kalista!
Here's SuperCakes with context thread on the new and improved SKT T1 Skins set!
"Hey everyone! 
As our SKT T1 World Championship skins hit PBE, I wanted to circle back and chat about the changes we’ve made. 
Before I get into the details, I want to thank you again for helping us see how much better these skins could be. We took a little extra time to really focus in on what would make these skins feel special, and we think it’s totally worth it. 
The teams combed through all of the player feedback, but also used this as an opportunity to work with SKT T1 to make the skins commemorate the pros themselves. Here’s what we ended up with: 
  • Outfit changes
  • VFX updates and recall animations added
  • Added Azir and replaced Sivir with Kalista 
2015 SKT T1 uniform colors
We changed the outfits on all of the skins to reflect SKT T1’s 2015 uniform. We considered using the color scheme from their World Championship uniforms, but since those were primarily black, we chose to go in a direction that would make for a visually compelling skin while also celebrating their 2015 colors. 
Added some bells and whistles 
It was hard to choose which skins to do VFX and Recall Animations for, so we didn’t choose! Each skin has some amount of particle updates to commemorate the team as well as a new recall animation. 
Speaking of recall animations… 
We love making recall animations for our skins and this time was extra special. We reached out to each of the pros and asked them to help us design a recall that would celebrate them! 
Azir… you weren’t so Easy…
See what I did there? Let’s be honest, Azir is a pretty complex champion. This one was never going to be as easy as an outfit, a few particles, and a recall. When you make a skin for Azir, you have to go all in. We’re really excited about how this one turned out. We hope you (and Easyhoon) are too! 
Oh, hey there Kalista! 
At the time we decided to re-work the skins, we weren’t sure if we’d be able to get Kalista done. She had a different skin in production at the time and this meant adding a completely new skin (in addition to Azir) at a time we hadn’t planned for one (let alone two). But after listening to all of you (and Bang) we knew we had an opportunity to really get this right. So, we added the Kalista skin and we hope you’re as happy as we are with it! 
Making a splash! 
A lot of players were disappointed they never got to see the splash for the original set. We were too! Using a combination of talent and wizardry, our splash artist was able to take the original splash and make it that much better! What do you think?
So, that’s pretty much it. Take the skins for a spin on PBE and let us know what you think. 
After this year’s Worlds, we’ll be bringing the winning team out to Riot HQ to work directly with the team on designing the next set. Who do you hope will get some Worlds skins next year? 
Play safe! 

Check out our 6.16 PBE cycle coverage for preview of these upcoming SKT skins!
Inspiration for the new recalls can be found here.

Patch 6.15 - The One Where The Towers Change

With patch 6.15 out on live, the playtest team is back on the boards to discuss the latest patch and changes!
"Welcome back to Patch Chat! 
I’m Gentleman Gustaf, and here with me is Riot’s Playtest Team, a group of high-ranking League players whose job it is to play the hell out of things and give actionable objective feedback to designers. Think of us as your high-Elo friends who happen to have played the new patch, rework, or champion long before it ever came out. 
Every two weeks (concurrent with the release of patch notes, we’re going to be hosting a discussion here on Dev Corner. Take this opportunity to ask us any questions about how we feel about the game or what it’s like to work as a Riot playtester. 
Several of our playtesters have competitive experience with lane swaps, so if you want to know how we think they will affect lane swaps - or just regular play - leave your questions below! 
In competitive play, we expect to see fewer fast-push lane swaps. Specifically, we expect that lane swaps will now at least be contested, thanks to the value of tower first blood and the weaker bot side towers. This may change after the first five minutes of the game, but by then champions have their full basic kits (no ultimates yet) and can take better advantage of the mechanical aspects of the game in additional to the tactical. 
In solo queue, we think that champions who can poke towers early on (Caitlyn?) might have the option of taking towers somewhat earlier, but that it probably won’t have much of an impact. 
We will be around for the next few hours and will try to answer as many questions as possible. 
Adam "Afic" Cohen
Preston “Hinder” Bunker
Ben “Cezium” Burkhardt
Shawn “I Am The IRS” Currie
Don “Aesah” Ding
Nicolas “Gleeb” Haddad
Dan “Penguin” Hardison
Miles “Daydreamin” Hoard
Bao “Bao” Lam
Robert “RobertxLee” Lee
Nicholas “Nickwu” Smith
Blake “S0be” Soberanis
Trevor “ThEntropist” Thernes"
Check out the boards post for more discussion!

[STREAM] Kled PBE Gameplay stream!

With KLED recently hitting the PBE for testingHarrow and friends jumped on the LoL twitch channel for a gameplay and Q&A session on our latest champion! 

Riot Games Engineering Blog

For the more tech savvy out there, Riot has published a new article on their Engineering blog - check out Fixing the Internet for real-time applications: Part III!


Last up for today's red post collection we have a few reminders on current promotions and events!

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