Red Post Collection: Quick Gameplay Thoughts: February 2nd & More

Posted on at 3:47 PM by Aznbeat
Today's red post collection includes Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for February 2nd, red comments from around the web, & more!
Continue reading for more information!

Table of Contents

Riot August on Rengar

Here's Riot August with an update on the Rengar changes that tested in the 8.3 PBE cycle:
"Update, Friday 2/2: 
Now that that is out of the way, going to give a quick update on what we're currently looking at internally. You won't see any of this until 8.4 PBE. As always, it's experimental and may not all ship. 
-AP Rengar buffs are out. No more AP on boonetooth, no more AP ratio on R. We overall feel like AP Rengar, is a less healthy version of AD Rengar when allowed to be strong. They're trying to do the same thing (jump on you and burst you), but AP (when strong) does it faster and with less time to react. As mentioned before, we aren't going to be deliberately making AP Rengar worse than what's on live. Overall, the Q revert's Lich Bane synergy and some changes we're trying with the W are going to make AP Rengar better regardless. 
-Triple Q, This pattern is bonkers. Especially in top lane. Likely going to make the empowered Q buff only last as long as the Ferocity combat timer (with a slight buffer added to make it feel good if you use it right at the end) and give the ferocity MS upfront on cast (if it isn't doing that already). Thoughts? 
Numbers stuff - 
-Q AD ratio up. We felt that the Q output wasn't scaling sufficiently into late game after we nerfed the upfront damage on the ult, so experimenting with higer Q AD ratios since his damage is no longer as frontloaded. 
-W base damage up, cooldown down. Feels like he's a bit low on AoE after the Q revert, so trying to help his early clear/laning a bit here. Also hopefully opens up more flexibility to max E second. Some worries about this making top-lane bruiser Rango too good. May need to revert. 
-Bug fixes 
Doing a QA sweep and attempting to fix LOTS OF BUGS. 
-Other stuff 
-Still trying to figure out how to replicate the old Tiamat thing you guys seemed to enjoy so much.
-Should he get more ferocity after ult? Should Q generate ferocity on cast? Answer is likely no. Uncertain. Still figuring it out.
-Mecha Rengar Animation got some mixed feedback. Testing with VFX, may need to continue to iterate.
-DOES ANYONE HAVE THE OLD BOONETOOTH ICONS IN A DRIVE SOMEWHERE? They looked pretty cool, kind of want to try hooking them up to see how they work, but I can't find them. They may have been lost to time...Will continue to search through the old files. Hrmmmm while typing this I thought of somewhere they might be... 
FAQ - 
Why not remove the cast time from Rengar's Bola while he's in the air?
We will not be removing the E cast time. I know a lot of you would like that, and it would feel pretty slick, but I don't think it's a good idea D: This is because cast times in League make the game flow better. They create a natural spacing between spells that ensures everything doesn't come out in a single instant. This allows for mental parsing of what is happening to you and then time to react to it (or at least understand it better after it kills you). Historically, a primary issue Rengar has had is that he is a stealthy champ who attempts to one-shot from said stealth. Giving opponents even SLIGHT increases in the amount of time they have to adapt to a Rengar jumping on them likely creates huge returns for the feeling of playing against him, resulting in lower ban rates and happier players on both sides (opponents can react and Rengar players can play him more often at a higher resting winrate). 
Keep the feedback coming" 

Quick Gameplay Thoughts: February 2 

Here's Meddler's quick gameplay thoughts for February 2nd, covering tentative 8.4 balance, rune pages, Zoe, and more:
"Hey 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: 
Patch 8.4 
Number of things going into patch 8.4 below. There'll likely be a bit more to follow too, and as usual some of this stuff might not ship or will likely change. 
Runes Changes:
  • Fleetwork Footwork/Press the Attack - We'll likely be buffing PTA and/or nerfing FF. Recent changes to FF make it too dominant a choice in Precision at this point, still debating though whether that means we should bring PTA up and/or FF down though. Lethal Tempo by contrast needs bigger work (thoughts on that once we're starting on it, not as urgent as other Runes work though).
  • Resolve non keystones - Likely replacing a rune or two and moving some runes around to make the second slot especially more interesting and appealing.
  • Precision Stat Bonus - Splitting with other trees like Resolve does (e.g. Precision+Domination = AS and AD).  
Item Changes: 
  • Tracker's Knife - Investigating (might not change) whether this is just too dominant a choice at this point, which also leads to excessive vision especially in organized play.
  • Hunter's Talisman versus Hunter's Machete - Tweaking stats a bit to make Talisman a better choice on champs it should be strong on.
  • Jungle items generally - Potentially increasing mana regen to open up the jungle more (mana gating keeps quite a few champs from clearing effectively early relative to less mana hungry junglers)
  • Ancient Coin - Looks too weak, even on champions it fits best on (Janna, Soraka, Rakan). Smallish, simple buffs likely as a result.
  • Wit's End - Buffing slightly in general and a bit more for melee champs (they'll steal MR faster than ranged). 
Edit: AP item changes will also be in 8.4, forgot to include those somehow when writing this originally despite the fact we've been looking at them a lot this week. 
  • We'll be taking a look at Baron Buff and Elder Dragon buff. At present their impact in really long games seems to fall off too much, which means you don't pay enough of a penalty for playing safe and not trying to contest them. That can lead to drawn out, unresolved games without much happening. In Elder Dragon's case it also means the value of contesting early dragons, regardless of element, isn't as high as it should be either. 
Champ Nerfs:
  • Ornn - Looking at what enemies should be able to do to respond to him in lane. Details to be determined.
  • Gnar - Needs clearer weaknesses enemies can play around, particularly in lane. Details also TBD.
  • Kalista - We're still working on pulling power out of Kalista for pro play without hitting her hard in regular play. 
Champ Buffs:
  • Evelynn - Previous nerfs were harder than intended. Looking to give a bit of power back in a straightforward way.
  • Volibear - Fingers crossed will finally get changes in 8.4. We've been testing a range of things in addition to the previously mentioned brief displacement on champs on E. That knockback's still testing well so that's almost certainly happening. Probably a secondary buff as well (e.g. might have Q MS not fall off so aggressively when briefly facing away from enemy champs to move around skillshots or whatever).
  • Fiddlesticks - Is struggling quite a bit in the jungle. Buffing as a result, not sure exactly how yet.
  • Talon - Struggling in both mid and top. We'd previously been avoiding giving him power because he was doing well in top lane, he's just weak all round at this point though. Likely fairly straight forward numbers buffs. 
Other Champion Changes: 
  • Rengar - Reversion of Q to an on next hit ability will happen in 8.4, along with some smaller changes to other parts of the kit. 
Saved Rune Pages 
For cases like 8.4 where we're changing non keystone Runes (replacing some or swapping positions of others) we'll be automatically updating saved Rune pages so that they're still valid. First goal is to avoid forcing people to remake entire rune pages when the system has only changed slightly. Sonc goal is to make sure everyone still loads into game with a full set of at least ok Runes even if they haven't yet edited their pages since the changes. We'll be doing some call outs in the game client as well when stuff changes for people who want to update their pages themselves, getting some defaults in as a fallback too though. 
Thoughts on Zoe next week. Was going to get some thoughts on how we see her and what our plans are for this post, would like to take a bit more time to talk through issues and approach with the team first though. 
After Rengar ships in 8.4 we'll be looking at LeBlanc. Current plan is for a similar level of change to Rengar's, likely including some degree of moving back to things about old LeBlanc that worked well (both for LeBlanc players and for game health). Not certain on timing of when that work would ship, goal would be to get it onto PBE fairly quickly and, as with Rengar, work on it for multiple patches while getting feedback on it."

When asked for more details on the new keystone that is being internally tested, Meddler replied:
"The new keystone we're working on (which should be a good choice on a lot of fighters, but isn't a fighter specific keystone) won't be ready for 8.4 unfortunately. We'd hoped it would, but it hasn't been working as hoped. Aiming for 8.6 as a result, hopefully PBEing during the 8.5 cycle to get additional feedback."

Meddler continued:
Why can't you just put it on PBE on 8.4 and continue iterating, while also combining feedback from players? 
The mentality of "we don't want to put something on PBE until it's completely ready" doesn't work at this point, it's been 3 months since runes came out and we keep getting the excuse that "oh it isn't ready yet so we won't even talk specifics about it" which is extremely frustrating. Runes came out in November, and we'll be getting our keystone in March? Still 1 month from now?
Once we've got a direction we've got confidence in putting stuff on the PBE can be pretty helpful sometimes to get feedback and work through the rest of the implementation. Things like going back to an on next hit for Rengar Q (even if we still need to figure out exact details for the ult) or a keystone that lets you channel out of combat for movement speed via a boots active (even if weren't sure about things like use during stealth, refund model, whether it should do damage etc). 
Putting things on the PBE when they're still more likely to be cancelled or completely changed within a few days by contrast builds up a lot of expectations it's more likely than not will never get delivered on. It also adds a lot of discussion cost to making changes. Spending a couple of hours giving context on what we're trying to do, reading feedback, answer questions etc that would be enough time to instead test the current version and start implementing the next one."

Meddler noted a context post would be out next week on the AP item changes coming in the 8.4 PBE cycle:
Can you give us some specifics about the changes to AP-Items?
How big are the changes, is there maybe a new item/changes Passives or is it just tweaking numbers (AP, Gold Cost etc.)
We should have a big context post on them early next week. What we're currently testing (could still change) is meaningful modifications to around half a dozen items (different effects and/or build paths), probably completely one new item, number tweaks to another half a dozen or so. Something around that ballpark anyway should be what hits PBE on Tuesday."

On Twin Shadows possibly returning, Meddler noted:
Is the new item Spooky Ghosts or is it Spooky Ghosts and a new item?
Oh, yeah, I was thinking a completely new item (likely, not guaranteed) when I wrote that. Likely Spooky Ghosts makes a return in some form in 8.4, or at least hits PBE for testing with the other AP stuff too."

On MalzaharMeddler commented:
How did the Malzahar nerfs impact him? Is there plan for more?
Nothing immediately planned. For AP users in general we're also going to wait until after the 8.4 changes generally and then reassess where they've landed."

As for LeBlancMeddler replied:
Hey Meddler, will the LeBlanc changes hit PBE in 8.4 or in 8.5 just like the Bruiser Keystone? Also, I'd like to ask: what are your thoughts on Zed as of now? Do you think there's a reason behind him not being picked in pro play anymore or is it just because he's too weak? Have a good day :D
Possible the LB stuff is on PBE during the 8.5 cycle, though wouldn't ship until after that. Don't want to make any promises though, until Rengar ships we won't have started actually implementing anything in game (still at the planning stage before that right now)."

On Precision's stat split, Meddler noted:
Hey meddler, regarding precision stats being split, won't it make taking precision as a splash unattractive for many champs? I feel as though the coup de grace and triumph nerfs might not need to have happened if people determined they wanted more ad/ap over taking those two runes.
It will make Precision secondary less attractive to some, yeah. We'll probably be going with a 70% AP or AD/30% attack speed split for Precision secondary from Domination/Sorcery as a result, reduce that exclusion somewhat. At some point we should also look at stats from Rune trees in general, particularly whether the current tree based system is doing more harm or more good. That's a larger task, and other Runes work (keystones generally) is higher priority right now though, hence this split change which we believe is better, even if it doesn't fix everything."

He continued:
Are the bonus stats going to be split between the two trees only when Precision is the primary one or also when it's the secondary one
Both. 50/50 with Precision primary/Resolve Primary, 70/30 if Sorcery or Domination Primary."

On a possible direction for GnarMeddler noted:
"Not sure yet, though Q and mini Gnar AA power are the things that have come up in discussion the most so far."

Meddler continued:
Thank you for answering! Would AA power be hit through nerfs to something like base AD? Is Aery being brought up in discussion at all either?
Early AA range is one we'll look at at least, given at present he's often able to farm/harass just slightly out of threat range of a number of abilities which makes him pretty safe. 
Not currently looking at Aery."

As for CaitlynMeddler commented:
Is Caitlyn still going to be buffed?
Let me check on that one. Didn't happen for 8.3 at least, not sure if conclusion was we shouldn't or that we didn't land on anything for 8.3. 
Edit: We pulled back on buffing her in 8.3 because we wanted to give it a bit of time to see how Relic Shield changes especially impacted her. Caitlyn struggles when lanes are higher sustain/safe (can't bully effectively enough to justify her other weaknesses). Will take another look at her shortly, see if that didn't matter enough or if she's able to succeed again in a bot lane where more damage sticks."

When asked about the Unsealed Spellbook changes that had been testing internally, Meddler replied:
How did the testing go with enabling removed summoner spells for unsealed spellbook?
Concept looks solid, expect we'll add at least one or two back in, along with some changes to Unsealed Spellbook so it's less about just getting CDR for the spells you're already using. Some form of giving lower CDs on the stuff you're swapping to or something like that."

Meddler noted they would be trying out more scaling on the Baron buff:
Hey Meddler! Sounds a little bland, but wouldn't making the Elder/Baron buffs scale over time make them more incentive to contest? Like the Baron buff @ 20 min is 75% as strong as the baron buff @ 40 min?
That's one of the things we'll be trying. Baron does currently scale, but only from minutes 20 to 27, after which it's constant. We're trying having it scale until minute 50 at present, with some adjustment to values as well (might not give equal AD and AP for example, given AD is the more valuable stat per point)."

Quick Hits

  • More new merch has been previewed, this time in the KR merch store, including new keychains, Sweetheart Tibbers plush, and new Valentine's Day cards! As usual, these are only available in Korea at the moment, but usually come to the other regional merch stores soon!
  • Riot Mort provided details on how the bad luck protection system works on Hextech chests: 
"So every time one of these threads pops up, we actually get worried our Bad Luck protection isn't working or something...but then we check, and it is, and it's usually the same misconception. 
There are currently 3 main "boxes": Hextech Chests, Leveling Capsules, and Honor Capsules/Orbs. 
Leveling Capsules and Honor Capsules/Orbs give Champ Shards 100% of the time. They do not drop Skin Shards. 
Hextech Chests (the only ones that require keys) can drop anything. Skins have the highest chance. Hextech Chests also have a Bad Luck protection built in so that if you open 2x Hextech Chests and do not get a skin shard, then the 3rd Hextech Chest will 100% be a skin shard. 
So when someone says they opened 6 boxes and got nothing but champ shards, that's only possible if they're including Leveling Capsules or Honor Capsules. It is impossible to open 6 Hextech Chests and get 6 Champion Shards. If you still feel this happened to you, submit a support ticket and we'll check it out. We don't want this happening to players, so if it did, this will help us fix it. But so far each time we've checked it seems to be working properly. 
Now with all that being said, we've heard you that things with the loot system aren't perfect. We're not ready to announce anything today, but we have some upcoming improvements planned. Our goal of this system is to always be fair, so please let us know if you feel we aren't doing our best."
  • Dyquill noted there would be no updates to Annie's splash or in-game look after the reveal of her Origins video and new bio: 
"There's a new bio on Universe, but no color story (we figure this animation works as that). 
Not planning any in-game updates because we feel her splash is high quality and well-liked, her gameplay is pretty solid, and she is still a very popular champion (especially for new players) so we didn't see a lot of value in changing any of that. 
Her current VO was actually a contributing factor to this origin story: the team asked what Annie would have had to go through to find burning other people fun and playful, and decided there was probably some real trauma there. Which means that ANNIE: Origins really is just that - the first spark that leads Annie to develop the personality we see and know in-game."
  • When asked why the next two planned champion updates were Ionian champions, Reav3 noted:
"We try to avoid it, but that doesn't mean we will never do it. Keep in mind that we generally have a few VGU's in early ideation at a time and that sometimes ones that start later can gain traction quickly and go into production faster. For example, the VGU after Akali started ideation earlier then Akali, it's just that we found a exciting direction for Akali faster, so it wasn't originally planned to have 2 back to back Ionian VGUs"
"In regards to Udyr, his ultimate is diffidently something we have to take into consideration. That being said his need of a VGU is getting to the point where it is outweighing the cost of remaking his ultimate skin"

"Love those sweet sweet community submissions? Us too! That’s why we’ve dedicated another entire episode to the awesome stuff you’ve sent our way! 
Want to see your art on the Showcase? Send it to us in the comments below, reach out to us on Twitter, or check out our Facebook page where you can submit content, share your favorite artists, and chat with the team: 
  • Riot Swimbananas - Riot Recruiter by day, Summoner Showcase host by night!
  • gomatgo – Producer, Show Runner
  • Riot Jynx - Producer, Creator Support, and cosplay mama"


To round out this red post collection, here are a few reminders on current promotions or limited time events!

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