Red Post Collection: Quick Gameplay Thoughts: 9/20, Runes Paths Overview, & More

Posted on at 4:20 PM by Aznbeat
Tonight's red post collection includes a look at Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for September 20th, including thoughts on jungle Ezreal, Ornn, and more, and a new Runes Corner, covering how the paths will be laid out.
Continue reading for more information!

Table of Contents

Quick Gameplay Thoughts: September 20 

Here's Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for September 20th, including conversation on starting items in preseason, jungle EzrealOrnn, and more:
"Hi folks, 
Usual Disclaimers 
These posts will often contain talk about future work we're doing, or planning to do, that isn't yet guaranteed to ship. The nature of the work could change or, depending on what we discover, projects mentioned may get put delayed or even stopped. 
If you'd like to see a Tweet whenever a new one of these posts goes up: 
Not doing starting items in pre-season 
We'd previously mentioned that we'd taking a look at starting items (changes and new ones) during pre-season. After some investigation into options there we've decided not to do so, instead putting more time into runes, base stat changes and some other systemic changes. Starting items still looks like a good space to work on later, with things like an item for bot lane mages as an alternative to marksmen particularly promising. We'll give it another look next year as a result. 
Jungle Ezreal 
Been seeing a few questions about our thoughts on Ez getting jungle play crop up. Looks really cool so far to us is the short version. Nice to see a champ getting play in a different way. Early days yet, but counterplay seems fine, the lack of which is what's lead us to nerfing/changing champs out of certain positions in the past (e.g. Malz bot lane or Janna mid). If it ever starts to look too strong we'd tone it down, but wouldn't want to squash it if we could avoid it. If Ez did end up as a jungle only champ we'd want to do some work to let him lane again without pushing him out of the jungle if possible too. Similar situation to Ziggs as both bot laner and mid laner. 
Ornn Balance 
Ornn's been out a while and received a fair few buffs after a weak release. We're still seeing a lot of people struggle with him, at the same time though a lot of Ornn play is still coming from people getting their first few games on him in. We won't be buffing him further in 7.19 at the least, want to avoid overbuffing him and we think there's still some learning curve going on. Planning to check in on him in each of the next couple of patches though, see how things are going and if we should throw a bit of power his way or not. 
Bramble Vest 
We're testing some Bramble Vest stuff at the moment, with two possible directions. Main issue is that Bramble Vest is too powerful for its cost as a general item, rather than a more specific niche buy. We're considering either increasing its cost significantly (around 300g) with a slight stats increase, both nerfing its gold efficiency and delaying its lane impact. Or reducing its stats a bit and pushing its cost up slightly, nerfing its gold efficiency but still leaving it fairly accessible in lane as a counter item if desired (rather than by default). At time of writing one of those versions should be on PBE, possible we test the other as well shortly, though might still go back to the first one depending on how things go."

Meddler commented more on Ezreal's adaptability:
Ezreal has been for a very long time a poster child for champs who can healthily support various different builds. AD Ez vs AP Ez exists for ages, even AD Ez itself is somewhat diverse, with Blue vs Triforce builds. And now we get that Jungle build. 
What do you think make Ezreal so adaptable? Can you learn something from Ezreal to apply it to more champs?
A few things I'd argue contribute to that, in particular in combination with each other: 
  • His Q breaks a usually strongly established rule (you can't apply on AA effects at long ranges). That allows for some creative use of effects in different ways than other champs usually get to use them. 
  • That's counter balanced by a lack of a lot of other things on his kit (no CC, no sustained mobility, no protective effects beyond his blink/range, no target agnosticism etc). Getting powerful effects from different builds doesn't leave him overloaded. 
  • A lot of his output's unreliable (skillshots in his case), meaning even if something removes counterplay in other ways there's always some degree of inherent response available to all opponents. 
  • There's a strong enough core to his gameplay identity that it doesn't get drowned out under his items (he's still Ezreal, rather than just a bunch of different stats/unique effects)."

Meddler continued:
What do you mean by "target agnosticism"?
Oh, sorry, bit jargony. A champ can be described as target agnostic if they don't care so much about who they're hitting, generally because there are effects on their kit that let them be good against tanky targets as well as squishies (% health damage, true damage, % pen/shred etc)."

He went on:
He IS a jungle only champ at the moment. Havnt seen him adc in ages
Jungle Ezreal's still quite a new thing, he hasn't been getting meaningful play there for that long. It's also getting more play than bot, but hasn't effectively removed bot play entirely. We'll look at him again after all the pre-season disruption's settled/been somewhat balanced, but aren't going to jump onto changes when it's still a new thing and hasn't become the only way he's played either."

On KennenMeddler commented:
This question is kinda selfish but I'm curious, what do you guys think about kennen?
Seems fine, will reassess of course after pre-season hits."

Meddler verified that base champ stat changes may also be on the PBE when the new rune system is added:
Will we see the stat changes for every champion when rune rework hits? (please dont forget to give reksai some attack speed stats, everyone runs either AS quints or Reds and its a needed part of her core stats. Thanks for all you do Meddler <3)
For the Live launch at least yeah. Probably on PBE at the same time too, though possible the base stat changes follow slightly later (and they'll probably get adjusted further while on PBE too regardless).

On EvelynnMeddler commented:
Any News on Evelynn?
VGUs are like new champs, we won't mention as many details about them pre-release as smaller updates, especially around exact release timing. 
Should still expect to see her before pre-season though."

As for Aurelion SolMeddler replied:
I remember that there was a shyvanascope rework planned for Aurelion Sol. Any news on that?
Got cancelled back around March. Short version is we didn't feel the direction involved would address enough, but would likely be fairly off putting to a lot of existing ASol players."

Meddler continued:
I'm really sad about that, but at least it's only postponed, not completely canceled. ;/ 
Any detail you can tease about the whole project? Did you try something for meleecarries bot lane?
We've talked about stuff like that yeah. Melee carries bot lane's a pretty big challenge though given all the difficulties they face. More likely to have changes to things that are closer to effective already, hence the call out on a mage carry bot lane item as something we'll want to look at again."

Meddler gave his opinion on why it seemed like Rioters were not commenting on the boards as much:
meddler,irrelevant to this post,why has riot stopped visiting and commenting on posts in the gameplay boards?
I can't speak for all of Riot. For me personally it's a combination of time and echo chamber effect though. Time wise there's only so much time in most weeks I can put into communication on Boards and I've felt I can offer better visibility into stuff through preparing these posts a couple of times a week and then responding to stuff here. 
In terms of echo chamber it feels like an awful lot of the time Boards is dominated by a lot of threads by a small proportion of users saying the exact same thing, with pretty negative treatment of people trying to discuss alternate viewpoints. People looking to shout more than talk. There's still a bunch of good stuff out there, but it's a lot harder to have those discussions than it should be IMO."

On magic pen, Meddler commented:
How are you guys handling magic pen? I keep asking this because buffing MR across the board is going to be very detrimental to pen-reliant champs. 
Most of my matchups in mid lane are against opponents who run 0-4 MR in runes while I run 13-20 mpen in runes. Removing early mpen options while buffing base stats (MR) is going to crush my laning, and an early pen advantage is honestly the only thing keeping my preferred mid laner remotely viable in that role.
We'll likely be reducing starting MR across the board, not buffing it, so while champs won't start with flat magic pen like they used to they'll be facing lower MR values, both from champ starts and generally from pre-game."

Meddler gave more of his thoughts on Ornn:
"Ornn will be disabled during Worlds. 
Also, based off ongoing conversation today, it's possible we might pull possible 7.20 Ornn buffs forwards into 7.19 after all."

He continued:
"Mana costs in particular are something we're also talking about. More thoughts, and/or changes cropping up on PBE, likely to follow about those soon."

As for the Doran's Dagger item that was testing on the PBE, Meddler replied:
Does that mean you'll scrap Doran's Dagger (for now) or will you guys continue working on it?
Scapped for now, possible something like it returns next year though definitely wouldn't make any promises."

Runes Paths Overview

Fearless is back with an overview on Runes and the different paths you can choose when the system comes to test on the PBE:
"Runes are coming to PBE fairly soon, we're aiming to have Runes in development on PBE for quite a while. Real quick, we want to sum everything up, so you guys have a better grasp about what's to come. We’ll have a second article coming soon to talk about the future of Runes development, and what players can expect through PBE, at launch, and well into the future. For now, Runes! 
So let's talk about Paths in the new Runes system that's coming this preseason. These are our attempt to break the Runes system into larger, more differentiated, thematic bundles. The previous versions of runes and masteries had categories that were almost entirely functional. Glyphs and Seals ended up being fairly arbitrary groups, and the three mastery categories had too many different needs to cover. We want Paths to have clear strengths and strong gameplay, while also complementing them with exciting themes and fantasy. 
So what makes up the functional elements of a Path? First and foremost, we expect most players to pick their Path based on the Keystone Rune they want to take. You then select the three non-keystone Runes from that path, and also get a small stat bonus that we use to balance paths against each other and further differentiate the champions that take particular paths. As we’ve talked about before, you’ll also be able to pick a secondary Path with just two Runes to round out your primary Path. 
Pretend this is a Sidebar: What happened to Major Runes?
As we talked about the concept of “Major” runes with players and tested changes internally, it became clear that the distinction had a pretty high cost when it came to tensions on decision making and the UI, while providing minimal benefits for gameplay. We haven’t changed the Runes themselves, but we have removed the concept of “Major” from the selection experience. When Runes ship, there will just be keystone runes and standard runes. 
So what are the actual Paths when Runes ship? Let’s get to that… 
WIP Reminder: The names for Paths, and the details of their themes and functions are still works in progress, and we still have issues to solve. For example, we know some of the names feel a little exclusionary and thematically off for some of their core champions (looking at you, “Sorcery”). We’ll be addressing that later in the process, but still wanted to talk with you all now to get feedback. 
The Paths we currently have in development are as follows:
  • Theme - Harness wild magic to empower your abilities and discover limitless reserves of energy.
  • Function - Amp spellcasting and ability power, and find ways to cheat out a few extra casts.
  • Examples: Meteor Keystone Recap 
  • Theme - Become an unbreakable behemoth that controls the line of battle.
  • Function - Concentrated durability along with ways to leverage that durability into other forms of power.
  • Examples: RKT Keystone Recap 
  • Theme - Outclass your opponents with overwhelming barrages and deft strikes.
  • Function - Augment auto attacks and amplify consistent damage patterns.
  • Examples: Berserk Keystone Recap 
  • Theme - Hunt your prey and revel in the glory of the kill.
  • Function - Track, chase, and execute your targets with mobility and burst damage.
  • Examples: Blood Moon Keystone Recap 
  • Not like the others - Inspiration is a Path focused on providing unique options that map to player preferences, not class functionality.
    • Theme - Cheat the rules to outwit your enemies.
    • Function - Bend the rules of the game to your advantage and capitalize on new options, play patterns, or game knowledge.
    • Examples: Summoner Specialist and Hextech Freezray 
So, those are the Paths! What combinations are you excited to try out? I’ll be around in the comments to talk and answer your questions. Thanks!"

Fearless commented on the removal of major runes:
thank you for the summer up , but can you give more details why you remove the concept of major runes ? You also said that you are going to have 3 runes for each slot. Does it mean we have now 3 normal runes and 3 key stones for each path?
We only removed the title "Major" runes, not those actual runes. We're just not labeling them in a way that calls them out as different or better than other non-Keystones."

On whether all the runes will be revealed before they debuted on the PBE, Fearless replied:
Will the other missing runes be revealed before they all head to PBE or will you announce them as they launch onto PBE?
We won't be doing reveal articles for every Rune. Some stuff will be shown first on PBE or in promo stuff."

Riot Sparkle verified there would be a site where all the runes would be available to look through:
Is there going to be a convenient web page where we can view all of the runes?

Quick Hits

  • As Worlds 2017 creeps closer, the annual caster Worlds Top 20 article is out now, covering who Jatt, Deficio, and PapaSmithy think are the top 20 players in Worlds 2017.
"Follow PAX Sivir and Beat Down Boogie as they share all the amazing cosplay we saw at PAX West! 
PAX Sivir by Ladee Danger and Ben Bayouth: 
Filmed by Beat Down Boogie: 
Track 1 - Mountain Downhill 1 by Niklas Gustavsson 
Track 2 - The Bomb Trap 3 by Niklas Gustavsson 
**Created in collaboration with Riot Games**"


Last up, a few reminders on upcoming and ending soon promotions and sales!
  • With Worlds 2017 right around the corner, Summoner's Rift is starting the celebration early with new emotes, map accents, and much more as Worlds hits the RiftChampionship Ashe and her Golden Championship chroma, ward, and much more are now available! Check out the post for all the details!
  • The Star Guardian content is now available! Check out our coverage of the release, and make sure to get in a game of Invasion, the newest game mode released. It will be available through 9/25 at 11:59 PT!

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