Red Post Collection: Quick Gameplay Thoughts: 11/17, The Math and Art of Champion Popularity, Championship Ashe Charity Results, & more

Posted on at 12:46 PM by Aznbeat
Today's red post collection includes Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for November 17th, a new Clairvoyance blog on champion popularity, the amount raised for charity through sales of Championship Ashe, and more!
Continue reading for more information!

Table of Contents

Quick Gameplay Thoughts: November 17 

Here's Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for November 17th, including thoughts on 7.24 balance on runes and champions:
"Morning all, 
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: 
Possible 7.24 balance changes 
We're looking at potential changes for 7.24 (final patch of the year) at the moment. For 7.23, which goes out early next week, we wanted to just hit major outliers and give things time to settle down. We're now at the point where we'll want to do a fair bit more tuning of things around the new state of the game however. That work will involve looking at both Runes and Champions, so in some cases we'll need to either account for changes to one when changing the other or may need to circle back and do a follow up round of changes early next year, depending on how things go. That will be particularly true if we do end up adding any new runes to fill unserved champs, though we won't be doing that in 7.24 at least. 
Sections below covering possible buff/nerf/investigate targets (none of this is final). It's also almost certain some of these things won't get changed and some other stuff will get added to the list instead as work on the patch goes on. These are also generally notes about things we'll be looking at, not as you'll note a list of what we'll actually be changing. That's because we haven't yet done the work to figure that out in most cases.  
Possible Rune Buffs
  • Fleet Footwork
    • Underperforming even on its best users.
  • Lethal Tempo
    • Though need to make sure this is weak, that it's not just Press the Attack being strong. 
Possible Rune Nerfs
  • Press the Attack
    • Generally too strong on a fairly wide range of champs.
  • Aftershock
    • Armor/MR granted is currently inappropriately multiplicative with temp Armor from stuff like Leona W or Rammus W, fixing that at least, might also be too strong in other respects. 
Possible Champ Buffs
  • Galio
    • Got smacked too hard when we over corrected his AP build just before pre-season.
  • Jhin
    • Has been weak for a while, Runes have amplified that a bit.
  • Aurelion Sol
    • Particularly hard hit by the change from Stormraider's to Phase Rush. Other champs also affected, many of them have better alternatives to swap to though, even if they haven't done so much yet.
  • Bard
    • Struggling noticeably, need to investigate why.
  • Riven, Darius, Camille
    • All are bruisers struggling in the new ecosystem, in particular because attack speed's not so valuable on them so Precision keystones are less applicable. Possible other candidates should also be considered here, also possible there's a missing rune needed to support some of these champs. Or that buffing them in general and letting them pick from a wider range of runes is the better call.  
Possible Champ Nerfs
  • Taric, Leona
    • Both are performing extremely well. Need to assess how much of that is Aftershock though.
  • Twitch, Trist
    • Were strong before pre-season and have continued to be so.
  • Yorick
    • Wanted to let him sit a while, rather than nerfing him immediately in 7.23. Fairly confident now he'll be too strong long term so we should be working on him.  
Need to be assessed more at time of writing
  • Ezreal
    • How much did that bug fix help bring his power down? If he's still too strong how much is Klepto?
  • Corki
    • Some of the team think he's sleeper OP, lot of debate over that though.
  • Kleptomancy
    • Definitely isn't weak. Its power is all very visible however, which can make it feel stronger than it is. Might be a good candidate for some tuning up for champions with less ability to proc it, tuning down for best case users. Some degree of champs being synergistic with particular things leads to really interesting play and trade offs though, so wouldn't want to normalize that too much."

On potential Sona changes, Meddler commented:
As long as we are not looking at Sona anymore ;-)
Apologies, but, we're considering a second pass on Sona as well (not listed here since we just started talking about). She's still potentially out of line."

As for TaliyahMeddler replied:
Any additional work on Taliyah if her current changes prove to be too small?
It's possible of course, want to see where the upcoming 7.23 buffs put her first though."

On ZyraMeddler commented:
Are Zyra buffs canceled?
We've got some Zyra stuff underway aimed at helping her solo lane out. Goal would be around power neutral for support Zyra. Possible those changes make it in for 7.24, we thought the same thing about 7.23 though and then other stuff emerged that was more urgent so we'll see."

As for KarmaMeddler noted:
Hey Meddler, you've mentioned the possibility of small mechanical changes to Karma early next year - if you go through the update, will you take the opportunity to add her missing animations/particles? (Haste, shield, twin dragons etc...)
Karma work sometime next year's likely to be very gameplay focused. We'll be able to make changes to animations/spell effects/audio as needed for kit changes, but won't have that much scope for other work."

On Mordekaiser, Meddler replied:
Thoughts on Mordekaiser? Would u consider him in a "balanced" spot or too weak?
Seems to be in a reasonable spot off what we've seen so far."

On Corki, Meddler commented:
Why do you think Corki is sleeper op? Can you expand on that?
Also what do the numbers say about Viktor's state right now?
We've seen a lot of champs who didn't make MPEN all the time or at all benefit from lower magic resist values now (Shyvana and Leona are particularly clear examples of that). Belief is that Corki's potentially the same."

Clairvoyance Blog: The Math and Art of Champ Popularity

Here's a new clairvoyance blog on champion popularity from NovaAsterix:
Hi everyone, NovaAsterix here to reveal some secret tools we use to measure champion popularity at Riot. Hint: There’s more to it than doing a quick search, and it involves a lot of data. 
When we measure a champion’s popularity, we break it down into two dimensions known as breadth and depth. Each of these measures a different (but equally valuable) type of popularity, and together they create a comprehensive representation of how popular a champion really is. 
Warning: Math ahead. 
The basic champ popularity equation is pretty simple: 
In this equation, breadth is the number of unique players who played a champion during any given time period (such as a patch). If you, your friend, and your feeding top laner all played Riven, you’re collectively adding to Riven’s breadth score for that time period. 
Depth is the average number of games played on a champion per player during any given time period. If you’re the only Yorick player in your crew, but you play the shit out of him, you’re single-handedly contributing to that champion’s depth score. 
Breadth and depth can be used as two axes of a graph, and each of the four quadrants created represent a different type of champion popularity… or unpopularity. 
It looks like this:
Popular and unpopular champs are pretty straightforward. We see popular champs in many games (and even in recent Clairvoyance Blogs); they have high breadth and depth scores. 
Unpopular champions are the ones most players rarely think about, except maybe if they’re strong or getting reworked, like Evelynn. Unpopular champions score low in both breadth and depth (no surprises here). 
Niche champions show up in games occasionally, and when they do, it’s likely a one-trick who’ll be a pain to deal with, like an Illaoi main. Niche champions score high in depth but low in breadth. 
A broad champion is often relatively simple to play and understand, so more players might occasionally play them on a whim, like Annie. These champs rank high in breadth but low in depth. 
It’s worth nothing that broad and niche champions can be similarly popular, but howthey’re popular differs greatly—one is through the number of unique players and the other is number of games per player. 
Here’s what all of the champions’ popularity looked like as of Patch 7.16.
Click here for interactive graph
It’s important not to jump to conclusions off of a single patch. A champion could be strong, or just picked up in pro play, or maybe gotten a fancy new skin, like the Star Guardians. All these things can impact popularity in a single patch. 
When we extend the timeline back, way back to Patch 5.24, we get the following, self-explanatory graph.
Click here for interactive graph
The beautiful art can be found at your local museum in the Jackson Pollock collection. But in all seriousness, there’s a lot of information tangled in this mess of colorful noodles. Let’s dig in. 
(Note that each inflection point represents a patch, and the line connecting the points becomes thicker as the patches become more recent—so thickest part of the line = most recent patch.) 
Going back to the four quadrants, here are a few examples of champions who’ve stayed within their boxes. Illaoi has been niche for a while, whereas Annie continues to be an easily-accessible broad champion. There’s the always-popular Lee Sin, and the unpopular-as-ever Karthus. This graph shows what it looks like when we talk about a popular, unpopular, broad, or niche champion.

Marksmen are a unique group of champs—of the ~20 marksmen, few are found in the unpopular category. In fact, about half of all marksmen fall into the popular category at any given time. One theory about marksmen’s consistent overall popularity is due to the fact that 1/5 of the champs in any Summoner’s Rift game is going to be a marksman, assuming each team has an ADC (unless you’re a meta-defying bonobo… or genius). Since only 1/7 of League’s champions are marksmen, there’s a smaller pool to choose from, and this could result in marksmen’s popularity as a class. 
Another thing that may contribute to their overall popularity is that the skills needed to be successful on one marksman apply to the whole roster: Positioning is key, and it’s all about maximizing damage output through right-click mechanics. This means if you’ve mastered one, it’s likely that skill set will help you to easily pick up another. 
Perhaps we need to make more marksman to differentiate them further, but there is still one other theory that explains their popularity: Many marksmen are humanoid, and people apparently like playing people-y champions.
Monsters have a tough life as it is, being monsters and all, but it also seems like players don’t pick them as much as humanoids. Of the eight monsters, none are currently popular, with only one having been popular at all since we started collecting this data (excluding Aurelion Sol’s debut patch). One theory for their unpopularity is that maybe it’s just easier to identify with—or aspire to be—a badass demon hunter over a lonely crystal scorpion. But it’s also possible we, as designers, haven’t really hit on a fantasy or a kit that resonates across these creature types.

Breaking down popularity into breadth and depth also allows us to better measure the impact of champion reworks on their popularity. We don’t ever aim to arbitrarily make a champion more popular. Instead, we try to set a design target and push the champion’s visuals, thematic, and kit in that direction until it comes together. 
For example, we never expected Urgot to become the most popular champion (or even a champion who falls into the “popular” quadrant), so we tried to embrace his unique qualities and make him the best, most Urgot-y Urgot he could be. In this case, one of our goals was also to move Urgot outta the unpopular category and into the niche one. It seems he’s heading that way but he’s still new, so time will tell. 
Our goal is to make champions players enjoy, whether that means everyone wants to play them or a select few want to main them. We’re happy with either, but the only thing we don’t want to do is make a champion who ends up being unpopular. We always want our time and effort to result in characters that players think are awesome and are excited to play. 
This data isn’t the end-all be-all of how we view champions. Rather, it prompts us to ask questions to learn more about what players like: Why does Lee Sin stay popular for over a year and a half? Why do players like and play certain champs? Why are some groups less popular than others? Answering these questions isn’t easy, and we might combine this data with other work like the Champ Friendship Compatibility Device to try and find some answers. Even after all this time, we’re still learning more about players, and data like this helps us to create and update champs in a way that feels good. 
That’s it for us! Let us know what other stories you plucked from the noodles in the comments below."

GG: Over $2 million raised for charity

With Worlds 2017 complete, the results of the charity event for the sales of Championship Ashe and ward, the amount raised has been announced:
"League players answered the call this Worlds, raising over 2.35 million dollars for charity through purchases of Championship Ashe and the 2017 Championship ward. While we’re calculating the final dollar amounts (there’s legal and tax stuff), the numbers shown below are the minimum each organization will receive from your efforts. We’re blown away by how many of you voted and contributed -- here’s what happens next. 
(In case you forgot: In September we announced we’d match the total player contribution to the 2017 Worlds prize pool in a donation to three charities: BasicNeeds, Learning Equality, and The Raspberry Pi Foundation.) 
  1. The final donation pool is at least $2.35 million USD, equal to the player contribution to the 2017 Worlds Prize Pool
  2. 4,039,022 of you voted for one of the three charitable orgs. Your votes were multiplied based on your Honor level. The winning org will receive 50% of the donation, with the remainder split between the other two.
  3. BasicNeeds won the vote. 
You’re not just a global player community, but a group of people who will impact lives through your contribution. The organizations each shared a personal message to thank you. 
BasicNeeds - $1,175,000.00 USD (50% of the donation pool). 
BasicNeeds want to say thank you to all gamers who have supported us through their purchases or votes in the recent Riot Games fundraiser. 80% of people facing mental health problems live in developing countries and fewer than one in five have access to treatment. Many endure prejudice and abuse and are unable to access education or employment. Your contribution enables us to reach out to many more people in places where better mental health services are desperately needed. It will also help us develop the tools to share our knowledge and experience with others who want to do the same. Thank you very much for your support. 
Learning Equality - $587,500.00 USD (25% of the donation pool). 
We at Learning Equality would like to wholeheartedly thank each and every one of you who participated in this event. We are humbled and honored to have received your votes. For the past four years we have worked hard on our mission of bridging digital and educational gaps around the world. Through your support, Learning Equality will now be able to distribute Kolibri, our second-generation ed-tech platform, to provide learning games and resources that build confidence and develop digital literacy for disadvantaged students living in some of the most disconnected communities across the globe. It's a new phase for Learning Equality and for all of those we will be able to reach because you chose to embark on this adventure with us. Please don't be a stranger, and continue to follow our journey on Twitter and Facebook, and through our website and newsletter. Thank you once again, Riot family! You're a true league of legends! 
The Raspberry Pi Foundation - $587,500.00 USD (25% of the donation pool). 
By the end of 2020 our goal is to see 5,000 active CoderDojos across the world. With the generous support of the League of Legends community, we will be able to work towards this ambitious goal regularly engaging over 200,000 young people in learning how to create with digital technologies. To achieve this, we will work with partners and regional groups to recruit, support, and train more of the brilliant champions and volunteers that run Dojos. We’ll work across the Raspberry Pi organization to make developing world-class multi-lingual learning resources for use by young people a top priority, while also expanding our Coolest Projects initiative which inspires them to be creative with technology. We will also make sure that Dojos engage young people from all backgrounds, including girls, and will support more youth mentoring. 
Well done, summoners."

Quick Hits

"Hey Daniel, 
I am probably not the best person to ask but I'm an artist on Worldbuilding /Foundations team, AMA :) 
Also here are some links about behind the scenes on lore updates :
( There was also two podcast with the writers about Shurima and Shadow Isles, but unfortunately the links seems broken, I've reached out to ask what's up with that ) 
There should be another video (very similar to the Demacia one) about Targon coming out this weekend. 
Hope this helps,
For anything else, AMA !"
"We found the fix and are QAing it. May be delayed until Monday :("
"Hey all! 
Our promise is that sales are announced at least two weeks before they happen so y'all have the opportunity to decide if you want to wait for the sale. 
However, this time, Pulsefire Caitlyn was left off of the November sales announcement, and that was an oversight on our part - so we are currently in the process of refunding everyone who purchased Pulsefire Caitlyn from November 3rd up until the sale started the difference of her regular price and her early sale price. 
Please give a day for all the refunds to go through, and thank you for your patience!"
"Join us at 12 PST (8 PM UTC) today to get an early look at the latest rotating game mode, PROJECT: Overcharge, and have your questions answered by designer Beluga Whale and artist Riot Vitzkrieg on Twitch!"
  • The League Twitter account tweeted a series of Zoe art images in advance of her release next week with Patch 7.23:


To round out this red post collection, here are a few reminders on current promotions or limited time events!
  • With preseason comes a handful of missions to complete matchmade games and earn rewards based on things you've previously owned, time played, etc. Be sure to check your missions in-game!

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