Red Post Collection: System Changes & Small Updates in Assassin update, Ivern podcast, Doom Bots on PBE, and more!

Posted on at 6:40 AM by Moobeat
[NEWS: Ivern now available!]

This morning's red post collection includes details on the system change and smaller scale updates coming in the pre-season assassin class update, a new podcast on Ivern's development, details the upcoming return of Doom Bots in the RGMQ, context on recent PBE changes, Zyra price reduction, and much more!
Continue reading for more information!

Table of Contents

Assassins Pre-Season Class Update - Systems Tweaks and Smaller Scale Updates 

Statikk recently hit the dev corner boards to talk more on the system tweaks and smaller scale champion updates that will be headed our way in the assassin class update this preseason:
"Hey all, 
Here to keep you guys in the loop on how things are progressing for the Assassins update as we get closer towards the next Pre-Season. In particular, we’ll be talking today about some of the other changes that will accompany the 4 large updates (Talon, Rengar, Katarina, LeBlanc). Here’s where we’re at: 
Stealth and Vision Adjustments
We are doing a minor pass on the Stealth and Vision system this Pre-Season. Our first goal is to clarify and unify the different types of Stealth in our game. We will be making a clearer delineation between the 2 types of Stealth in League: 
  1. Invisibility - shorter-term in-combat Stealths that make champions completely unseen such as Kha’zix’s Void Assault.
  2. Camouflage - longer-term pre-combat Stealths that can be detected through proximity such as Evelynn’s Shadow Walk. 
This is part of an overall effort for us to make the game’s mechanics clearer, more flexible, and more consistent using such Keywords. 
In addition to this, we want to clarify how Vision detection items like Vision Wards interact with each other as well as with Stealthed champions. All of the details are not sorted out just yet, but 1 big change that will significantly impact Stealth champions is that “Pink Wards” will no longer detect Invisibility next Pre-Season. Simply put, Invisibility being trivially countered by the use of a relatively cheap single consumable item rendered several champions non-functional especially at high levels of play. This will allow us to better balance these champions since they will now be able to more readily utilize their Invisibilities in fights such that they no longer have to solely rely on instantly bursting their target or dying to enemy focus fire. To support this change, we are adding in other baseline ways to interact with Stealthed units; one example we’re exploring is a shimmer that opponents can see when they hit Stealthed enemies (i.e. with a skillshot). This should give enemies a good sense of where the Stealthed target is so they can follow up and chase them down. 
We are still currently exploring how we want Camouflage to interact with Vision detection items - this may remain unchanged going into the next season. Either way, expect some tweaks to champions who leverage Stealth as they will now have to be re-balanced with these new rules in play. Twitch, for example, is a champion whose current Stealth tunings may not be as reasonable going into the next Season. 
Assassin Itemization
Finally we are doing a small pass on Assassin itemization and one of the most problematic stats in the game - Flat Armor Penetration. 
Flat Armor Penetration has always had a couple big issues that we’re finally looking to resolve. Firstly, the term Armor Penetration can be misleading as it suggests itself as a strong counter to heavily Armored opponents, despite the fact that it specializes in actually taking out low Armor targets. And secondly, the nature of Flat Penetration and how it competes with Champion base Armor growth has always made it particularly feast of famine mechanic in the game. Either you get ahead of the curve and outpace your opponent’s natural Armor scaling or you fall horribly behind and quickly find yourself useless. We still want Assassins to be focused on dominating the midgame and snowballing ahead to succeed, but having their primary stat so heavily reinforce this pattern made them far too one dimensional. Next Pre-Season, be on the lookout for a Flat Armor Penetration “rework” of sorts. 
Additionally, the current Assassin Itemization options are, simply put, not always best serving the needs of Assassins relative to those of other classes. In that light, we’re retuning items that are intended for Assassins to better suit their own needs. We want to reinforce their ability to roam the map and survive tricky situations as well as add some new avenues to provide benefits to their team as a whole. Although this won’t be an overhaul anywhere near as large as we did for the Marksmen, look forward to tinkering around with the item shop a bit with the next Pre-Season. 
Smaller Scale Champion Updates
As with previous Class updates, many other Assassins will be receiving minor updates. The overarching goals here are to firstly address any champions that will overshadow the rest of the cast (whether it be through being overly generalist or just lacking sufficient counterplay) and secondly to push differentiation and uniqueness within the class itself. 
The range of change here varies quite a bit from entirely new kit additions to just simple tuning changes. Here’s a quick runthrough on the current list of champions we’re currently considering and why. Note that these are all still tentative and we may choose to remove some or add more as we inch closer to the finish line. 
Akali is another champion we believe needs a full Visual Gameplay Update to realize her full potential. Despite that, we’re exploring some small scale changes that will give her more ways to outplay her opponents, but are also looking to resolve some of the gameplay health issues that stem from her split identity as both a bursty Assassin and a sustained Fighter. On top of this, Akali will be one of the major beneficiaries of the Pink Ward no longer detecting Invisibility change as it was one of the primary ways to shut her down previously - moving forward Akali and her target should both have a bit more time to breathe in the midst of combat. 
Although not strictly an Assassin, we felt this was an opportunity once again to better align Ekko with his intended gameplay and fantasy; we are continuing to push Ekko away from being a pure Tank and instead more towards being an AP damage threat. Even though we’ve been inching him in that direction for a while, we think some minor shifts here will go a long way into solidifying his identity. 
We’re looking to retain Fizz’s unique arsenal of evasive tricks but force him to make hard decisions about when and where to use them by giving Fizz more incentive to play with his food before he ultimately feeds them to his Shark. We also want to give Fizz a bit more flexibility in the lane especially when he’s on the back foot and forced to just last hit minions. To top it all off, we’re exploring cool ways of further pushing Fizz’s unique identity as the Assassin with strong initiation potential. 
One of Kha’Zix’s core tenets is to evolve and adapt - we want Kha’Zix players to feel like they are constantly re-considering which evolutions to take based on the context of the current game as well as their own playstyle. And although we want to continue to keep Isolation as the way Kha’Zix primarily succeeds, we are taking this opportunity to limit his instant burst damage and empower him to utilize the tools he has to follow-up and finish his victims. 
Although we think Shaco is ultimately in need a full VGU-esque update, we wanted to take some time to give him a quick tune up. We want to give him back some of the cool tricks he used to have (as well as some new ones), but at the same time address some of the long-term game health issues he has always presented (overbearing early ganks and relentless split pushing). 
Although an already solid part of the roster, Zed can be an overly generalist choice in the Assassin space due to his relatively safe early game and his effective Assassination tools. Outside of some tuning adjustments, we’re looking for some interesting ways to make Zed think more carefully about the opposing team composition and in particular who he chooses to Death Mark throughout the game."
Following the post, Meddler and a few others hung around to discuss and answer questions:

As for changes to the larger four assassins, Meddler reminded:
Talon? :(
Talon, Rengar, Le Blanc and Katarina have separate posts talking about their likely directions from a little while back: 
[Talon]  [Rengar]  [LeBlanc]  [Katarina]
When asked how these stealth and vision changes  will interact with traps such as Teemo's R mushrooms, Meddler  commented:
How will this affect Teemo shrooms? I feel like either way they will need changes since if they are invisible, that's a major buff, but if they are camouflage, that is a major nerf.
Traps will be using slightly different rules to champions (tried to find a set of rules that made sense for both together, concluded was better off treating them differently despite the clarity cost). Teemo Shrooms, Shaco Boxes and Jhin traps will still be revealed by the revised pink ward equivalent item, towers, trinkets etc. They won't be revealed by proximity like Camouflage is though."
Meddler continued:
Will pinks still detect enemy wards and other invisible non champion things, i.e. Teemo shrooms?

Meddler also commented on Teemo's passive invisibility:
What does this mean for Teemo? Will his passive be changed to function in the same way?
Teemo passive will still grant invisibility. It is a longer duration, strategic effect, but it would generally just fail to function if proximity revealed Teemo. It's an exception to the usual guidelines as a result."

When asked if there will be changes to Evelynn's passive with the stealth system changes, Meddler noted:
So, wait. You're making game-changing alterations to Evelynn's Shadow Walk with this new Camouflage mechanic, but you're not touching her kit otherwise? 
Or is Invisibility the only one that will be changed, and Camouflage is just normal stealth?
Evelynn's passive isn't being changed. It, and other proximity stealths (referred to above as 'Camouflage) still get revealed by nearby champions and towers. They'll probably still get revealed by the revised equivalent of pink wards too, though that's something we're still testing. 
The main change here is Invisibility (what most of the current stealth champs have and will still have) which will only be fully revealed by towers. Pink wards won't reveal invisible champs (no more pink warding Akali's shroud), though some effects will partially reveal them (e.g. red trinket)."
Reav3 Permalink
Are there no intended changes for Evelynn during the Pre-Season?
Currently no, though she is very high on our list for a larger scope VGU"
Meddler added
"Not at present. We think Eve's a great candidate for a full update (VGU) sometime instead, given her age (original 40 champ) and thematic potential."
As for plans for Fizz, Meddler commented:
Are there going to be relatively large changes to make Fizz's power budget less stacke don his E since its his primary waveclear tool, escape/gapcloser, primary burst tool, only form of cc in his basic abiltiies and what plans are for his W since its the primary reason Tank Fizz keeps popping up
Current plan is to take some damage out of Fizz's E and put it elsewhere on his kit. Details of those sort of changes get sorted out pretty late in the process though (a lot of balance work comes at the end)."
Meddler also commented briefly on the Zed changes, explaining:
i feel as if when they say "make zed think more carefully about the opposing team composition" is just a way of telling us he is getting another nerf.
Current plan (specifics still going through testing) is to shift some of his power to an effect that's more dependent on being used against the correct enemy team comp. That should mean he's as strong, or possibly slightly stronger, when picked in his ideal circumstances, but weaker if picked without regard for the enemy team."

When asked about changes for Maw of MalmortiusMeddler noted:
Please tell me you guys are doing something to curtail Maw's effectiveness against ap mids. The variety of stats and the shield it gives makes it an absolutely perfect first item rush against mages.
We'll be pushing Maw back to being more of a fighter item than an assassin one (almost certainly involves removing the flat armor pen and replacing it with something else amongst other things)."
 To the tune of Ghostblade changes, Meddler commented:
Agreed, glad to hear his stealth functionality will remain the same then.
Another question, albeit unrelated to Teemo: are pseudo-Assassins/Assassin hybrids (i.e. Quinn and Twitch) being taken into account in regards to the class item changes? Youmuu's is a particularly important item for both of them; Duskblade as well, in Quinn's case (though less so).
They're being considered. A lot of champions from other classes that dip into assassin itemization have really solid alternatives though, so for many of them it'll be more a 'change the items and then help the champs out if they're hit unexpectedly hard' rather than 'give them compensation buffs beforehand in case they get too nerfed as worked so well with Ahri and DFG back in the day'."
On keeping Shaco AP relative after the update, 20thCenturyFaux noted:
Can you add AP Scaling to Shaco's Q? I personally enjoy AP shaco But not AD shaco. AP Shaco feels like he got not enough DMG
When thinking about how to handle AP Shaco, this is one of the first things we looked at. It rewards AP Shaco for putting himself in danger, while taking pressure off the E since it's no longer the only game in town for him. No guarantees, but I'd say it's pretty likely we'll end up with some kind of AP ratio on Q."

Inside the development of Ivern

With Ivern's release in 6.20, we have a new LEAGUE PODCAST discussing Ivern's development including designer Squad5, writer FauxSchizzle, and artist Chris Campbell!
"Welcome to the latest League Podcast, a series in which we take you behind-the-scenes with the people who help make League possible. Expect new guests and new stories every couple of weeks or so, and make sure to hit us with those comments and ratings so we can keep striving toward a Challenger-tier podcast. 
This week, designer Blake “Squad5” Smith, artist Chris Campbell, and writer Matthew “FauxSchizzle” Dunn drop in to share the inside scoop on the Friend of the Forest’s development."

Meddler Grab Bag

Next up we have several boards posts from Meddler, discussing Zac, Rift Herald changes, and more!
When asked if they have plans for Zac, Meddler noted:
"We'll be investigating Zac in the next patch cycle, not yet sure if we'll be nerfing though. He's a popular pick and ban in some regions, but not in others, and his performance also varies quite a bit. Possible that's just a bit of local meta going on and he'll subside naturally, possible some regions have got on the Zac train earlier than others. Going to be looking into that. 
We'll probably do a bit of work to make it clearer where his E's going to land for other players if nothing else, that's more a clarity improvement with some balance impact than a balance change though."

As for plans for Kassadin in general or in the assassin update, Meddler  commented:
"No current plans for Kassadin, his balance is still a bit fragile, but he's in one of the best states he's ever been. 
In terms of which assassins will be getting smaller updates we'll have a post up about that, plus a few other associated details, sometime this week." 
When asked about thoughts on Rift Herald, Meddler noted:
"Agreed on Rift Herald not hitting the mark. We'll be making some tweaks to it in pre-season, starting with its damage output rather than its reward. Feeling is that it's just too risky to do in many circumstances where it should be a good choice (odds of giving an enemy champ a double kill are too high)."
Meddler continued:
Honestly, it's less the damage(risk), but more how long it takes(effort). 
If you do herald with jungler+top, iyou easily loose 1-2 waves of minions, you just both fall behind in cs and xp and you then need the buff to make up for that instead of actually getting much of an advantage. 
If you just lower the damage, then add some more local gold/xp to make up for all the cs you are missing because of how much effort it is to kill it even as two. 
But as it is now, i only ever go for it if nothing else is to take on the map and we have two people close to it.
I could see a reduction in its health happening as well, agree the opportunity cost is pretty high at present. We'll probably start with the damage reduction and then reassess though."
Meddler added:
Problem is, losing DRG for it is never worth it. Its reward never feels like it is helpful. Also taking it by time laning phase is ending also makes it awkward. It would be nice if it was something cooler than a stat stick with a shiv attached to it. Map control, vision or something.
We don't want Rift Herald to be of comparable value to dragon. Teams being able to trade objectives and come up both in equal spots often results in low interaction games (why contest one objective when you can just take another and neutralize the play?). 
A cooler reward's a possibility certainly, though not something for pre-season at least (Rift Herald isn't one of our main focuses). We'll put some more subtantial time into it at some point next year I expect."

Last up, Meddler also shared that they would have a dev blog up later this month with a bunch of  in dev, concept, or scrap champion bits:
Are you going to recreate it? I havent heard anything about it in the last month or did you release it already?
Yeah, ended up writing a dev blog and putting all the videos in that. That's going through editing and translation at the moment, so should be out sometime later in October."

Context on Recent Graves PBE Changes

In the reddit thread discussion for the 10/4 PBE updatephroxz0n dashed in to share the current tentative changes he's testing and why:
"Graves changes in testing:
  • Attacking a champion after E gives the MR/Armour, instead of on cast.
  • Hitting all your bullets on a champion grants 2 stacks. 
This means that E resists don't factor into jungle clear for now (subject to change) and is not meant to be a "Graves shouldn't jungle", just adding some more danger to his clear. 
We're still testing whether the resists values should be changed/still validating the concept, I just figured it'd be good to get some visibility on the planned changes earlier in the cycle than usual."

phroxz0n permalink
"One of the intentions of the list is to make him worse at using E to escape and mitigate damage, so yeah if he fights and gets up close he still builds up a lot of stacks and gets pretty tanky. 
Gleeb got a pretty disgusting penta kill yesterday kiting around the outside at the start, then taking opportunities to E in and build up stacks quickly later in the fight."

phroxz0n permalink
If that change goes through it will restrict Graves to top lane mostly, one of the major reasons for picking a cc-less marksman jungler right now are his clears, if you take that away from him I doubt he will be played into jungle anymore, Kindred will just be a better version.
We're finding the jungle knockback to be sufficient for relatively high health clears, just razorbeaks and gromp give him a little more trouble."
phroxz0n continued:
Wouldn't that basically make crit an undesirable stat since it increases the spread and therefore makes it harder to hit all bullets?
Probably not. Maintaining the grit buff only requires you to hit a champion.
Getting the 2 stacks is tied in with the E cast. So if you E in and don't manage to point blank someone, then something's gone wrong. If you E away, you are taking a less aggressive action and probably will only get 1 stack (sometimes can get 2).
The point of the E double stack is to reward aggressive action."
As for Kalista, phroxz0n added:
"Kalista changes are just a bug fix to try and fix a rend resetting bug, sorry guys. I only added a damage value to the rend tooltip so it was easier to test whether the fix was working correctly. 
We are still ideating on Kalista changes for the future. Can't tell you when or if they're gonna happen anytime soon, but I can say we've got some ideas. They'll likely be pretty big changes and we're unlikely to do anything small to Kalista until we've sorted out a long term direction for her."

[VOD] Certainly T Time Livestream

Scarizard and designer CertainlyT teamed up to host a casual Q&A livestream, discussing champions CertainlyT has worked on in the past, the upcoming assassin update, Mordekaiser, & nore!

Doom Bots of Doom on PBE soon for RGMQ testing!

As covered on the 10/4 PBE post, Doom Bots of Doom heading the PBE soon for RGMQ testing!

Here's L4T3NCY with more info on the upcoming addition of of Doom Bots of Doom to the RGMQ, including several changes such as increasing difficulty, upgraded bots, and a new evil overlord:

"It's been a long time coming.. they've been lurking... waiting... to be summoned... comes the Doom Bots of Doom
We'll be enabling them on the PBE soon(tm), and eventually they'll go into the RGM rotation. A LOT has changed from last time though, so I'll get straight to it. 
Game flow: 
  • Battle against the Doom Bots of Doom on an extra spooky Summoner's Rift in this survival style game mode.
  • Doom Bots will rush your lanes relentlessly. Survive!
  • Try to survive for 15 minutes until the Evil Overlord of the Doom Bots is summoned.
  • Defeat him to win the game!
  • Lose your nexus and be doomed forever... 
Other gameplay notes: 
  • Doom bots don't go back to shop or heal, but when they do die they'll be back in lane before you know it.
  • The map has been cut in half so we could double down on the doom.
  • Enemy towers are invulnerable. Don't bother trying to push.
  • In the event you manage to suicide some minions into an enemy tower, you'll receive burst of HP/mana for some sustain.
  • Upon breaking certain kill 'quest' thresholds, your team will receive a boost in power. Work together to get kills and power up in time. 
The Doom Bots roster: 
Our bot roster has dramatically increased from last time! We have: 
  • Amumu
  • Annie
  • Blitzcrank
  • Brand
  • Chogath
  • Ezreal
  • Fiddlesticks
  • Galio
  • Heimerdinger
  • Leona
  • Lulu
  • Lux
  • Malzahar
  • Morgana
  • Tristana
  • Udyr
  • Veigar
  • Wukong
  • Yasuo
  • Yorick
  • Ziggs 
Curses are global buffs that effect every Doom Bot (or the map itself). They rotate in randomly every few minutes and give the bots a variety of familiar (but scary) powers: 
  • Celestial Expansion
  • Tempered Fate
  • Giga Blinding Dart
  • Brush Fire :)
  • Death Defied
  • Realm Warp
  • Electrified Turrets :)
  • Windwall
  • Twilight Shroud
  • Devilish Duplicates :)
  • Aegis Protection
  • Hallucination
  • Poison Trail
  • Blood Scent 
the Doom Bots' Evil Overlord: 
He who shall not be named.. 
Custom difficulty in "The Gauntlet" mode: 
  • In "The Gauntlet", we're letting YOU set the difficulty and choose how hard you want the Doom Bots to be when challenging them.
  • Set a custom Doom Bots difficult from 1 - 100 at the start of the game to modify your Doom Bots.
  • Use the chat command "/votelevel ##" and have 3 or more players vote for the same difficulty level to lock it in. (EG: /votelevel 65)
  • If a difficulty is not agreed on and voted for within 90sec, the mode will randomise a difficulty level.
  • On completion, your match history will show what level you completed as PROOF of your accomplishment (or demise).
  • We're interested to see what the highest level that any players in the WORLD can complete.
  • There will be an icon after the event for players that complete some of the highest possible levels compared to anyone else in the world. Get your squad together and see how far you can go. :) 
Known bugs: 
  • Mode not yet fully optimised. Might be some particle slow down on lower end machines.
  • Summoning ceremony still missing SFX. 
Given the amount of content in Doom Bots, we expect there's probably quite a few bugs still lurking in there. Any help from you PBE peeps is always appreciated to catch those hard to find bugs. Thanks as always everyone. 
Now go get doomed. :) 
-- L4T3NCY"

When asked if DOOM BOTS will award mastery points while up in the RGMQ, RiotTerra commented:
"You don't get champion mastery points in any Co-op vs AI mode, so unfortunately you won't get any points for Doom Bots of Doom."
As for the player voted difficulty system, Riot Stephiroth  added:
I would definitely reconsider the method the players use to choose the difficulty. At least average the votes if there isn't a majority so the 5 people who can't decide between 11, 15 and 13 aren't handed 82.
We are planning to have upper/lower bounding to the votes (when there's a large disagreement on votes), so that you don't get stuck with some super duper insane :) Because there will likely be some insane things in the uppermost levels.
We're thinking about this! But thanks for bringing it up! :)"
When asked for more information on how the curses work, Riot Stephiroth commented:
How are the Curses going to work? I know that they affect the Bots. But how? Are they debuffs or buffs? Or just random stuff they get?
It varies between the types of curse :) Some go on the bot and help them out, some effect various areas on the map, etc. 
They are all assigned to a bot, though, so you can see it once it's assigned (and also there's a chat call-out!)"

Riot Stephiroth also commented on the removal of Karthus bot:
What happened to Karthus bot?
Karthus bot was in a weird state; so we've instead converted his most doomy-ability, his passive, to a curse. So bots will randomly become Karthus Passivey-ghosties while Death Defied curse is active. :3"
As for when Doom Bots will be enabled on the PBE, Riot Stephiroth noted:
Do we have an estimation on when this will hit PBE at all?
But really, we're hoping for tomorrow or Thursday but we're still fixing up some major issues so it may vary!"

/ALL Chat | Pixel Piltover

Monday premiered a new episode of /ALL CHAT, focusing out on several community LoL creations:

"On this episode of Summoner Showcase, Josh and Sam get freaked out by an insanely creepy pixel Piltover, Trinimmortal Beats League, amazing Zed art, and more! If you’ve got a favorite piece of fanart you’d like to see featured on the show, send it to the hosts on Twitter or leave a comment below!"

Quick Hits

[Trying out a new format for some of the shorter, easy to digest news bits or things that have been mentioned briefly in other relative posts! Let us know what you think!]
  • Reav3 jumped on reddit to comment briefly that Nunu is on the list for a Yorick/Sion level of champion update but that nothing has started production yet. 
"He's definitely on our radar for a full Yorick/Sion level VGU at some point. We haven't starters anything yet though so not sure when we will get to him"
"We're getting it added to the 6.20 patch notes, but Yorick also received a much better health bar for his W! #LeagueOfLegends"

  • The Scoreboard ordering section of the patch 6.20 notes has been removed as it is not in 6.20. Gentleman Gustaf commented that it will continue to test on the PBE soon and they hope to ship it to live in 6.21.

  • During the Worlds Group Stage match between TSM vs RNG on day one, an Aurelion Sol passive bug caused a game remake and left Aurelion Sol disabled for 3 days of the group stages. Check [this post] by Riot Penrif for a detailed post on what caused the issue and why it warranted a game remake.
  • Vonderhamz commented that the current plan is to leave the Star Guardian music in on each Star Guardian skin once the Star Guardian patch concludes.
"The plan is to leave it in with the skins once the SG patch is over!"

  • For those who may be having issues, here is Digital Ram with FPS Drops and Crashes after the Windows 10 Anniversary Update - [thread].

Zyra Price Reduction

With Ivern's release, Zyra's price has been reduced to 4800 IP / 880 RP (from 6300 IP/975 RP)!


To round out tonight's red post collection, here are a few reminders on current promotions or limited time events!
  • The 2016 World Championship group stages continue with week 2 starting October 6th - 9th! Results from week one can be found [here].
  • Championship Zed, Worlds 2016 summoner icons, legacy content, and more is available through November 6th! Don't forget to head to the shop to buy your championship jewels for IP to upgrade your 2016 WC summoner icons  during broad cast days!

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