[Updated] Red Post Collection: October Sales Schedule, Your Shop BACK UP, Tough Decisions on Azir in 7.19, Runes Corner & More

Posted on at 7:47 AM by Aznbeat
[Update: Added in October Sales Schedule, Ability Update: Azir, and Runes Corner: The One About the UI!]

This morning's red post collection includes info on Your Shop 's return, context on the Azir changes in the 7.19 PBE cycle, a deeper look into the Azir changes with Gentleman Gustaf, October Sales schedule, a new Runes Corner, and more!
Continue reading for more info!

Table of Contents

Your Shop is open through October 3rd

Your Shop is back! After being disabled for a bug, you can now get your special deals in the client! For those that received discounts that they were planning on purchasing before the reset, Riot Pabro verified that you can contact player support and get the discounted price:
"If you write it in to Player Support, we will honor the deal. They have a record of the first set of offers we displayed to everyone."
Here is the announcement article first posted for Your Shop:
"Welcome (back) to Your Shop! 
Discountbot has been back in the lab, hard at work hand-picking your custom deals and is excited for you to see what you got. For those not familiar with Your Shop:
  • The thoughtful and sensitive Discountbot selects six skins that it thinks you’ll like and offers them at varying discounts 
  • These discounts may include Legacy skins not currently available in the store 
  • If you receive a skin discount on a champion you don’t own, Discountbot will also apply the same discount to the champ 
  • Ultimate, Legendary, Limited, Loot-exclusive, and relatively new skins (released in the last 3 months) will not be included in Your Shop 
Your Shop is open for business until 10/3/17 at 11:59 PM PT."

October Sales Schedule 

Here's Riot Evaelin with the October sales schedule:
"Check out all the champs and skins on sale this October! Like previous sales schedules, we’re not posting the exact dates for each champ and skin, but they’ll all be on sale sometime next month. 
Just a heads up – since we’re publishing these in advance, we won’t offer partial refunds on champs and skins purchased before they go on sale."

Tough Design Decisions made for Azir in 7.19

Here is Wav3Break with full context on Azir's upcoming 7.19 changes:
Hi everyone! 
We’ll be doing a larger context piece for Azir’s 7.19 changes in the near future but I just wanted to touch on some of our major design decisions ahead of that post. 
Recap of our goals with this Azir project:
  • Increase Azir’s live performance (buff his win rate)
  • Preserve his core play pattern of summoning Sand Soldiers and using them as his auto-attacks
  • Increase opponents’ options playing against Azir 
Highlighted buffs: 
Base Stats
  • Base Movement Speed :: Increased from 325 >>> 335
Arise! (W)
  • When Azir has 3 soldiers out, he doubles his passive attack speed from Arise for 5 seconds.
  • Command Soldier Attack Cast Time :: Reduced from 0.5s >>> 0.35s
Emperor’s Divide (R)
  • Cooldown :: Reduced from 140/120/100 >>> 120/105/90 per rank
  • Wall Size :: Increased from 4/5/6 >>> 5/6/7 Soldiers per rank
Highlighted nerfs: 
Arise! (W)
  • Soldier command range :: Reduced from 800 >>> 660
Emperor’s Divide (R)
  • No longer continues to knock back dashes over it after the initial movement of the Shield Soldiers.
Overall, we expect Azir to be buffed from the full suite of changes in 7.19 and still fulfill the same fantasy and epic gameplay. These highlighted nerfs are likely to be more contentious and so I wanted to dive in a little bit more on our reasoning for them: 
Why did we choose to nerf Azir’s range? 
It goes without saying, but this decision was very tough to make. Many aspects of a champion make up their identity and ranges are definitely very influential in that equation. We used some survey tools to get a better image of what aspects of Azir that his current players attached to. It turns out that when a champion has so many powerful and unique aspects, players will attach to all of them pretty equally. It was apparent that removing any one of his unique interactions would come at a huge cost for Azir players. 
Ultimately, the results helped us realize that the core parts we needed to preserve were his signature Shurima Shuffle and his fine control over Sand Soldiers to do his bidding. Given these requirements, reducing his ranges felt like the most reasonable way to deliver a middle ground that kept the core skill tests of Azir intact. Azir’s theme and mechanics definitely don’t support a short-range champion, but the notion to challenge here was: Is artillery-tier range the crux of the Shuriman emperor’s gameplay fantasy? 
The answers to this question range with personal taste, but throughout internal testing with a shorter ranged Azir, it didn’t feel like we were losing too much of what made him special. Furthermore, challenging the perception that Azir had to out-range 90% of the cast of League of Legends was getting us a lot of immediate benefits in terms of counter-play and agency for the opponent. 
Updated Azir is by no means a short-range champion. His functional max auto-attack range is still around 900+ units (that’s a lot of Teemos) and though he can’t out-range his nemesis Xerath as easily, his range is still worthy of an emperor commanding a battlefield. The benefits we gained from this direction also meant that we could keep room for the Shurima Shuffle. 
The key goal that range nerfs benefitted was increasing opponent options against Azir. By nerfing ranges, we found that a significantly larger set of champions in League could actually reasonably interact with him both in and out of lane. If there are more potential answers to Azir in the wider game, the likelihood of him becoming a meta-warping presence diminishes and the pressure to keep him generically under-tuned lessens a lot. 
Why did we remove Emperor’s Divide’s unique bounce house interaction? 
This was also done to help us succeed at increasing opponent options against Azir. We nerfed Azir’s ranges, but we felt it wasn’t enough to ensure he would not conquer the meta-game. I think this distinction sums it up nicely: the range nerfs tackle the oppressive nature of old Azir’s general gameplay, while the removal of bounce house creates an exploitable weakness in Azir’s gameplay when the meta-game calls for it. We can now rely on champions like Kha’Zix, Kayn, or Ahri to be clearer counter-picks into Azir that make it hard for him to dominate all levels of play. Of course, removing this mechanic also gave us much more room to buff other things about Azir that help his general performance in the hands of an average player. Things like higher base health, higher base movement speed and a lower cooldown ultimate were all afforded in part by the removal of this mechanic. 
Wrap up 
Hopefully our design reasoning resonates a bit with you and Azir can now find a healthier home on the Rift. We’re committed to making him feel like a champion you can feel good about mastering, so you can expect us to keep an eye on him and respond accordingly in the patches following 7.19."

Ability Update: Azir 

 Along with the boards post from Wav3Break, a new article from Gentleman Gustaf is now available, going in for a deeper look at the upcoming Azir changes in 7.19:
"To say Azir has been a balance minefield would be an understatement. Shurima’s Emperor has been caught in a game of tug-of-war between his difficulty for new players and how overbearing he can be in the hands of experienced players. We’ve tried to find a middle ground for Azir where he’s playable at all skill levels, but ultimately we ended up needing to settle for “pretty weak unless you’ve mastered him” to keep him from disrupting the mid lane landscape. 
With this update, we didn’t want to fundamentally change the core of Azir’s abilities, because we already thought his kit was pretty cool! Our biggest priority was making it more clear where he should be strong and where he should be punishable. As a result, this is more of a large tuning pass than a traditional update, but that tuning is significant enough to deserve more explanation than a patch note. 
The Emperor’s New Weakness 
The old Azir lacked exploitable vulnerabilities. Most long-ranged champions get bopped if an enemy champion gets up close and personal, whether because they’re immobile or because they have low durability. Azir, however - in addition to his long range - had the mobility to escape and a shield to keep him alive. On top of that, Emperor’s Divide gave him a ton of zone control to keep opponents at bay. 
When it came down to it, he didn’t just do a little bit of everything, he did a lot. We don’t want to take away those capabilities which make him uniquely “Azir”. However, we do need to make him less effective in some situations, so that - when Azir is balanced - the best Azir players are punishable. 
A Boy and His Armies 
So who should Azir be? He’s a commander of a bunch of dudes with spears who he can command around the screen to do his bidding. If you’re fighting where his soldiers can hit you, he’ll poke you to death and then Shurima Shuffle you into his team. 
If his soldiers can’t hit you, he shouldn’t be a significant threat. If you keep your distance from his soldiers and chunk him down from range, he won’t have the reach to fight back. If you get in his face and force him to run away from his soldiers, he won’t have the damage to kill you. 
They Can’t Hear You, Azir 
To realize that fantasy, we need to bring Azir’s threat range under control, so we’re dialing back slightly on the range at which soldiers remain active. In exchange, we’re upping the overall damage on his soldiers, as well as giving him an extra power spike if he managed to summon three soldiers to the field. 
We’re also bringing down the range at which Azir can dash around the map. He can still use his soldiers to escape pressure or close onto a vulnerable target, just not quite as far. 
Divide and Conquer 
As well, his persistent teamfight control is too high for how much consistent teamfight damage he has. Using his ultimate creatively to start a fight, or knock somebody back as they dive in is awesome. Putting it up and leaving it there so nobody can get on him for 3 seconds? Not so much. We’re trimming some of the static zoning power in his ultimate to make sure it’s more of a sharp high moment. 

Shifting Power 
Finally, we’re doing a pass on some Azir’s more egregious strengths. Largely, that meant making Azir’s shield more consistent to use (granting it on cast, not after hitting an enemy champion), but also last way less long. Instead, if Azir hits an opponent with E - Shifting Sands, he gets a new Sand Soldier for deploy. 
So where does that leave Azir? Overall, Azir should end up having to stand a bit closer to enemies to be a threat, which will expose him to more ambient or poke damage. Unlike Ryze or Cassiopeia, he doesn’t have the consistent heals or shields to shrug off that damage, which will make good positioning and clutch jukes critical to retaining his dueling power. Compared to those champions, however, he brings a good deal more initiation power, mobility, and poke. A well-played Azir will have to close the gap on artillery champions, or kite champions who dive him but if he does keep his opponent amidst his soldiers - and away from him - he’ll be pretty hard to fight."

Runes Corner: The One About the UI 

Here's Riot Sparkle with a new Runes Corner, covering the UI changes being worked on for the new system:
"Hi hi! I’m Riot Sparkle, Experience Designer on Runes and welcome back to another Runes Corner! 
We’re going to mix it up today. Instead of talking about any one particular rune, we’re going to talk about some of the UI that will accompany runes. 
WIP DISCLAIMER: Runes (and their UI) are in active development. This means that names, numbers, icons, game rules, or pretty much anything you can see can change before release. Of course, if there’s anything that you really like in particular make sure to call it out. 
So a lot of you have been asking - how am I going to keep track of all my new runes while I’m in a game? 
A dramatic re-enactment of me, juggling all these new runes
Sure, there are only 6 runes in your page, but all of them are more complex than a simple +1.0 Armor. If you don’t even know what you took on your “JUNGLE LUX BEST LUX” page, how are you supposed to judge how well they worked for you? 
So, without further ado, let’s answer that question with the introduction of what some of you eagle eyed players have already spotted - the in game runes panel. 
No, the button won’t be a teardrop for launch. That’s WIP.
The runes panel is a new part of the HUD UI that you can use to remind yourself what runes you brought with you into game and track your performance with them. It shares space with the advanced stats panel, but savvy power users can use the already existing “C” hotkey to view both panels at once if desired. 
All the info at once
The panel is small, so we have a pretty strict limit on how much text can be in there per rune. We choose only one stat per rune to surface in the panel, but we recognize that some runes have more than 1 stat that’s important (ex: Perxie affects shielding AND damage). 
Additional stats and info about the Sorcery keystone Arcane Comet. I cheated this screenshot for the example so you may notice some weirdness here ;)
That’s why you can also hover the runes in the panel to access more info to help you evaluate how something like Arcane Comet (formerly known as Meteor) is doing for you. You can see above that “290” is actually the damage done to champions with this keystone, but you can also see a host of other information that might be relevant to changing/ improving your picks for next time or your performance at the moment with a particular rune. 
This aspect of personal evaluation is important for a concept we internally call “the feedback loop” in runes. Basically, this boils down to the following value: players should have enough information to learn about runes and decide if they want to change their runes or tactics for next time. 
The in game panel is one place where surfacing this kind of info but the other natural place for this kind of self evaluation is the end of game screen. Now, spoiler alert, we’re currently working on the end of game screen for runes so it’s not as far along as the runes panel in game. We probably won’t have end of game stats ready for our PBE launch, but they should be along shortly after. 
However, I can share an image of what some of it will look like, once we’ve put in all the work. 
This is a mockup, so all the names, numbers and icons are totally fake here
While this design only shows one stat per rune, just like the in game panel, we are hoping to eventually surface multiple stats per rune much in the same way that the runes panel does (hence the little expand arrow in the image above). 
So, that’s it for now. Hopefully this gives you a better picture of how you’ll be able to track your runes and decide what’s working and what’s not. This is just a preview of the UI that's relevant to the feedback loop, but there's definitely more to see. See you in the comments! 
You can check the previous Runes Corner posts here:

Quick Hits

  • As we wait for the Play-In Stage to get the full list of qualified teams, LoLEsports has released an article to Meet the Teams:
  • Here is a full list of Worlds Qualified teams:
    • Play-In Stage Qualified teams
    • Group Stage Qualified Teams
"Resilience is the ability to experience defeat, and evolve in its wake. It is one of many attributes of a champion."
"Strength is pushing far beyond expectations, and one of many attributes of a champion."
"Ambition is a relentless drive to succeed, and one of many attributes of a champion."


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 Rift! Championship 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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