Red Post Collection: 1/16 Mid-Patch Updates, Quick LoL Thoughts: 1/17, & More

Posted on at 10:46 AM by Aznbeat
Today's red post collection includes 1/16 Mid-Patch updates, Meddler's quick LoL thoughts, more info on LoL Esports watch missions, and more!
Continue reading for more information!


Table of Contents


1/16 Mid-Patch Updates

A few mid patch updates went out overnight, with some balance changes for ARURF, as well as a Sett bugfix:
1/16/2020 ARURF Balance Changes 
Buffs 
  • APHELIOS Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • MORDEKAISER Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • NIDALEE Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • NUNU AND WILLUMP -5% damage taken ⇒ -10% damage taken
  • PANTHEON Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • POPPY Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • PYKE Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • RYZE -5% damage taken ⇒ -10% damage taken
  • SETT Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • TALIYAH Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
  • ZILEAN Normal ⇒ -5% damage taken
Nerfs
  • FIZZ -5% damage dealt ⇒ -10% damage dealt
  • IVERN -15% damage taken ⇒ -10% damage taken
  • JAX Normal ⇒ -5% damage dealt
  • MAOKAI Normal ⇒ -5% healing
  • NAMI Normal ⇒ -5% healing
  • ORIANNA Normal ⇒ +5% damage taken
  • SYNDRA -5% damage dealt ⇒ -10% damage dealt
  • VI Normal ⇒ -5% damage dealt
  • VIKTOR Normal ⇒ -5% damage dealt
  • VLADIMIR Normal ⇒ -5% healing
  • YUUMI Normal ⇒ -15% healing 
1/16/2020 Sett Bugfix 
Sett 
  • R - THE SHOW STOPPER Champions targeted by two Sett ultimates at the same time (i.e. from Sett and Sylas), no longer get stuck to the champions that cast it first"

Quick LoL Thoughts: January 17 

Here's Meddler with his quick LoL thoughts for January 17:
"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 delayed or even stopped. If you'd like to see a Tweet whenever a new one of these posts goes up: https://twitter.com/RiotMeddler
Format change for posts this year 
Hope 2020 is treating you folks well so far! As part of this first post of the year I wanted to start by talking about a format change we're doing. From today onwards instead of a weekly post from me we'll instead be doing alternating weeks of posts from myself and RiotScruffy. My day to day at work doesn't involve as much interaction with the SR and Champion teams as it used to when I started these posts. A lot of the topics you folks want more context on are from the work of those teams though. As a result Scruffy's going to cover the work of those teams more than I will, talking about things like state of the current patch on SR, balance plans, how new champions have landed etc. My posts will be taking a broader look at topics across LoL as a whole. with some overlap on SR topics but less focus on things like recent/upcoming balance changes. 
Blue versus Red win rates post preseason 
One of the metrics we keep an eye on when making large changes to LoL is how win rates for the two sides of the map are affected. Different queues (blind pick, flex, solo/duo etc) have different trends, as do different regions. For today I wanted to share some data on Ranked Solo/Duo primarily post preseason. Historically Blue side has had a slight advantage in ranked on SR, preseason changes however have removed most or all of that edge though, depending on which region you look at. Increased importance of dragons is what we believe has driven this change, given Red side has better dragon access than blue. Overall it's a result we're quite happy with for ranked.



Blind pick also shows red side performing stronger post preseason. In that queue however red was already favored.
While it's tempting to assume that's due to draft champ select favoring blue over red Flex queue shows the same trend as blind pick, suggesting other factors are significant as well or instead. We're going to dig into non Solo/Duo win rates by map side a bit more to figure out what's going on there.
 
Continuing with no mid-season this year 
In 2019 we decided not to do a large midseason patch, keeping the game more stable mid ranked season and putting dev time instead into other work like preseason. Looking back at 2019 as a whole and player response to that decision we think that was the correct call so will be doing the same this year. We realize for some players with a preference for more frequent large changes that will be a bit disappointing. Overall consensus from feedback we gathered was very strongly in favor of a more stable mid year period though hence the decision. 
Clarity focus this year 
By contrast something we'll be looking to do differently this year is focusing more on clarity, both in and out of game. Upon reflection it's something we don't feel we've done as well at as we should have recently so we'll be making it more of a priority over the course of the year. Examples of issues we'll be looking to improve include things like clarity of spell visual effects for new champions, ease of understanding how event passes work, ability to follow combat in TFT, removing unnecessary complexity from abilities/items etc. 
That will be a focus across the year as a whole, rather than a single set of changes, so will be a gradual process. Wanted to call it out though since I know it's something on a number of your minds as well and feedback on how we're doing throughout the year would be much appreciated. 
Event Improvements 
Another focus for us right now is improving our event experience, with our hope being that each large event we do this year has some clear improvements in it. Current thinking involves things like:
  • Making sure we've got a temporary game mode for each event as per the recent Gameplay and Ranked Dev Video
  • Improvements to Event passes and missions. Reduction in grind needed and more missions completion flexibility for the recent Night and Dawn event seemed to go really well for example and we think there are some other ways to improve those elements further.
  • Story and theme having a stronger presence throughout event experiences. Still figuring out approach here but want to take a shot at this goal throughout the year. 
TFT Pass 
Finally for anyone wondering which TFT rewards they'll still be able to unlock this Set - there are about 8000 points still to come. If you're chasing that final egg as a result for example it should still doable provided you're at or above the 8000 mark right now."

On Karma changes, Meddler commented:
"Karma changes are intended to be a small buff to her early power specifically (hence rank 1 damage up). We're avoiding ratio buffs at least at present to avoid heavy AP builds late game being as effective as we've seen in the past given the problems that's created."

On Itemization work, Meddler noted:
"Major itemization work, whether AP bruiser items or others, would be a preseason project yeah. It's possible some smaller stuff is appropriate to release during the year but I wouldn't want to promise anything. AP bruisers certainly have to be balanced around the current item system, that's true of all champs as well of course. I expect items that feel more tied to their needs would feel better and improve gameplay in some respects though also require some power be removed from their kits."

Meddler commented on Aphelios' clarity:
"For Aphelios we're working on a few things: 
  • Improved VFX clarity for some spells
  • Better visualization of secondary weapon he has ready for enemies
  • Adjustments to some gameplay edge cases (e.g. multi target ults, mini chakram interactions etc) 
A lot of our clarity focus will be on making sure future content hits the mark, or that systems as a whole are clearer. We will be doing some clean up for cases like Aphelios as well too though."

On Akali, Meddler replied:
"We'd like Akali to be a reasonable pick for the average player. The current shape of her kit though means she skews towards really high MMR and pro play and if balanced for them will be pretty weak elsewhere on average. We're making some functionality changes to make her weaker there, goal being to then put power back in in ways that don't bias her balance towards such a small group of players."

Learn More: LoL Esports Watch Missions 

Here's details on the Watch Missions from LoLEsports:
Watch Missions are back! On January 10 @ 11:00AM PT, the first watch mission in the mission chain became available. These missions are completed by watching any professional live match or VOD from this split on watch.lolesports.com while logged in. When you complete a mission, you’ll immediately receive the next mission. You can track your progress by logging in to watch.lolesports.com/rewards or by checking your mission log in the LoL client. The rewards below are exclusive to these watch missions and can’t be earned anywhere else!  
Mission: 
New Season, New Rivals (1 of 5)
Watch 2 regular season games on watch.lolesports.com/rewards
2 games total 
Reward: Surf n’ Urf Summoner Icon
Mission: 
Familiar Foes (2 of 5)
Watch 4 regular season games on watch.lolesports.com/rewards
6 games total 
Reward: 1000 Blue Essence 
Mission: 
Don’t Stop Watching (3 of 5)
Watch 12 regular season games on watch.lolesports.com/rewards
18 games total 
Reward: NOT AGAIN Emote
Mission: 
I Watched All These Games… (4 of 5)
Watch 12 regular season games on watch.lolesports.com/rewards
30 games total 
Reward: Hextech Chest & Key

Mission: 
…And All I Got Was This Lousy Icon (5 of 5)
Watch 60 regular season games on watch.lolesports.com/rewards
90 games total 
Reward: Blown Away Summoner Icon 
These missions will be available until May 9 @ 11:00AM PT. Rebroadcasts will not count toward mission completion and you must watch at least 10 minutes of a match to count. 
Last summer, you got the chance to directly support your favorite teams with the Team Pass for Watch Missions. We’ve decided to head back to the lab on the product and are working on what we hope is a more fun, less “grindy” experience that lets you drop some love to your favorite teams while watching games and show off your love along the way. We’re hoping to bring it back as soon as it feels right, so stay tuned! 
Are you ready to watch 90 games this split to earn that sweet, sweet Teemo icon?"

Universe Updates

The Universe was updated! Champion bios for Alistar, Draven, and Jax were changed:

Alistar, the Minotaur

"Many civilizations have resisted Noxus, but none as long as the clans of the Great Barrier mountains. Though these fierce minotaurs had protected the overland trade routes to the ancient city of Zaun for centuries, they preferred to avoid Valoran’s wider conflicts. 
The noble warrior Alistar was respected among all the clans. Out on the mountain peaks, his roar could scatter even the bravest trespassers, leaving only the foolhardy to face him in combat. Even so, in the moot halls he would always urge his kin to forge greater bonds with other mortal races. Many saw minotaurs as little more than beasts, which soured any interaction and kept them firmly as outsiders. 
Then Noxus came, promising something better. Their emissary, the matriarch of House Tewain, proclaimed that the empire was poised to take Basilich, a coastal city to the east. However, she pledged that they would not do this without the support of the great clans of the mountains, and called for parley on neutral ground. 
Many of the minotaurs were eager to accept her offer. This was a way to gain the power and recognition they sought, by joining with Noxus. 
But Alistar remained skeptical—he had encountered many Noxian scouts in recent years, and knew them to be a duplicitous and cunning people. For this reason, his clan sent him to meet Tewain, along with fifty of their mightiest warriors, to reject any alliance. The other clans could do as they wished, but Alistar would not accept the rule of some distant “Grand General”. 
Under the banners of truce, he and his kin were betrayed. 
The larger clans had already pledged themselves to Noxus, and their representatives turned against him as soon as he made his position known. The battle was swift and bloody, and Alistar himself crushed Lady Tewain’s skull with his bare hands—but soon enough he and his surviving warriors found themselves bound in chains, headed for the distant Noxian capital, accused of inciting rebellion. 
These unfortunate minotaurs found themselves cast into the Reckoning arenas of the capital, as part of a grim gladiatorial festival known as the Fleshing. 
Alistar was appalled by the chanting of the bloodthirsty spectators. He implored his clanfolk not to fight back, not to give these Noxians the monstrous display they so craved… 
When the festival ended twenty-one days later, Alistar was the only member of his tribe left. Pelted with pebbles and rotten fruit from the crowd, dragged out to face Reckoner after Reckoner, he was driven to fight like a beast—and think like one. He killed and killed until even his memories of home became stained with blood. 
Alistar had fallen far by the time he met Ayelia, a servant girl in the arenas. At first he bellowed and charged the bars of his cage, expecting her to fear or goad him like the others, but Ayelia did neither. 
She returned every day, and spoke to him with gentle respect, until eventually Alistar answered in kind. Ayelia’s homeland had also been claimed by Noxus, and seeing his suffering had convinced her they should leave this hateful city together. She whispered her plans through the bars, and for the first time in years Alistar found he could think of home without dwelling on the way it had been taken from him. 
One night, Ayelia brought Alistar the key to his cell. She had sacrificed much to arrange this escape, and he swore he would repay her tenfold. 
They hurried to the river, where a cargo barge awaited them. However, as they boarded, Noxian agents burst from the shadows. Alistar hurled himself into battle, his vision tunneled with rage, and although Ayelia called out to him again and again, he did not hear. 
By the time Alistar had slain their attackers, the boat was gone—and Ayelia with it—so he fled south on foot instead. He searched everywhere for the servant girl, but found nothing. Had she been captured? Killed? It seemed there were no clues left to find.
Weeks later, a political coup shook the empire to its dark foundations, and the arena minotaur’s escape was quite forgotten. 
Alistar now travels alone, as quietly and anonymously as he can, encouraging resistance in Noxian-held territories and fighting on behalf of the downtrodden and the abused. Only when he has cleared the shame from his heart, repaying every cruelty and every kindness, will Alistar return to the mountains and leave his rage behind. 
And in every city he passes through, he asks after Ayelia."

Draven, the Glorious Executioner 

"Even as an orphan on the streets of Basilich, Draven was headstrong and full of bravado, frequently getting into vicious brawls with older street children and shady underworld thugs. While supremely confident in his own ability—some would say overconfident—it is unlikely he would have survived childhood had it not been for his older brother, Darius, who invariably finished the fights Draven started. 
When Basilich fell to the warhosts of Noxus, the brothers came to the attention of a captain named Cyrus, after Draven made an ill-considered attempt on his life. Impressed with their fighting spirit, Cyrus allowed them to join the Noxian ranks. 
For years, the brothers fought as part of Cyrus’ warhost—yet while Darius took to this life easily, Draven grew steadily more bored. His martial skill was beyond question, but the daily drudgery of soldiering felt like too much effort for too little reward… and not enough personal glory. 
Darius inevitably rose to command his own warband, and Draven joined him. However, if he thought that would be easier, or a way to achieve greater individual recognition, he was sorely disappointed. 
Some say Draven chose to leave Darius’ command. Some say he was forced out. Either way, his skills were highly sought after as a champion and duelist, and he was enticed to join a succession of warbands during the occupation of Ionia, before ending up with a fairly respectable contract in the Reckoning pits. 
For centuries, the gladiatorial Reckoners had performed a vital role in Noxus—punishing criminals and settling disputes between the noble houses—and Draven was determined to receive the riches, adoration, and renown he felt he deserved. However, with long, protracted wars on many fronts, the spectacle was beginning to lose its appeal for the common citizen. As the attention of the crowds drifted, Draven fell into a slump, spending more and more time in the seedier drinking halls and gambling dens of the capital. 
He was washed-up and broke when the former general Jericho Swain found him.
Swain had a plan to reclaim Noxus’ lost glory, and needed Draven’s help to achieve it. Perhaps Swain only enlisted him as a way to ensure his brother Darius’ support after the fact. Regardless, Draven proved integral to Swain’s plan—to depose the Grand General himself, Boram Darkwill. 
Standing triumphant with Swain, Draven smiled for the first time in months as the cheers of the Noxian people washed over him. 
But duty called. In the days and weeks following this unprecedented coup, many among the noble elite refused to honor Swain’s succession, so they were sentenced to death in the arena. 
One condemned man escaped his handlers ahead of his execution. Operating on pure instinct—as was ever his wont—Draven leapt from the high balcony and hurled a pair of axes at the fleeing man, cutting him down in a heartbeat. After a moment of stunned silence, the crowd roared their approval. Draven retrieved his axes, spinning them high in the air, playing to his new fans, and savoring their rapturous applause. 
Thus Draven became the Glorious Executioner, turning routine bouts into grand spectacles that drew ever larger crowds. 
Soon enough, an enterprising (and diminutive) promoter, tired of paying to house, feed, and train Reckoners only for them to die in front of dwindling audiences, approached Draven with an idea. What if the drama of the classic pit fights could be combined with Draven’s natural showmanship? 
The Reckoners quickly became entertainers as much as combatants, each with their own carefully constructed backstory, fighting style, and flamboyant personality. The fights were often bloody—this was still Noxus after all—but far less often ended in death. The rivalries, trash-talking, and intrigue between the best-known Reckoners became the stuff of legend throughout the empire, but none were talked about more than Draven. 
For a time he lived the high life, receiving invitations to a never-ending stream of parties and banquets, mixing with the wealthy and influential of Swain’s new Noxus. He even reconciled with Darius, and would occasionally still march out with the warhosts, defeating enemy champions and generals in single combat. 
Nevertheless, Draven has started to grow restless once again. He has all that he could have ever imagined, and more, but now dreams of the day when the whole world knows his name."

Jax, Grandmaster at Arms 

"Saijax Cail-Rynx Icath’un grew up in Icathia, a satrapy of the Shuriman empire. Ever since he was a boy, his father told him of when their home was a proud, independent nation, before it was ground under the heel of Shuriman oppression. He told him of the Kohari, heroes who protected Icathia and its Mage King. The Mage King had resisted Shurima’s conquest, but when he died in battle, his Kohari protectors followed him, committing ritual suicide. The Shuriman emperor displayed the Kohari’s decaying bodies for all to see, and the Mage King himself was impaled above the city gates, his bones left to molder. 
Saijax’s father had witnessed this cruel act, and over time he passed down to his son the burning resentment that was growing in every Icathian heart. Even so, Saijax committed himself to the study of arms, learning from Shurima’s weapons masters as well as his own clan’s elders. 
After many centuries of Shuriman rule, a massive earthquake struck the coastal province of Saabera. The destruction revealed something hidden deep beneath the earth, something dark and of great power—perhaps strong enough even to overcome Shurima’s god-like Ascended warriors. Saijax was entrusted with protecting the Icathian mages who encountered this discovery… which the guards just barely contained with brazier-staves that blazed with conjured elemental fire. Disturbed, he escorted the mages to the governing council so they could tell of what they’d learned. 
They called this power the Void. 
Immediately the council recognized its potential, but Saijax saw the doom the Void portended. As a master of weaponry, he knew the danger of using a weapon they could neither fully understand nor safely harness. He regretted that he didn’t kill the mages as they rode from Saabera. He would regret it even more in the days to come. 
Confident that the Void could defeat their Shuriman overlords, the council crowned a new Mage King. The Kohari were rebuilt, with Saijax among the first to join their ranks. They triumphed in early engagements, and Saijax even killed one of the vaunted Ascended in battle, watching with pride as its corpse was paraded around the liberated city of Bai-Zhek. 
When the Ascended Host approached Icathia, Saijax and his brethren assembled on the front lines. As the two armies churned the earth beneath them into crimson loam, Icathia’s mages and priests deemed the time had come to unleash the Void. 
Ruin swept over the land, as Icathians, Shurimans, and even Ascended were unraveled from existence. The city’s walls collapsed as the Void swallowed thousands into cold, silent oblivion. 
In moments, Icathia was lost. 
Saijax rode to the ruined crater where the Void had been summoned, determined to fall upon his sword like the Kohari of old. But before he could take his life, he saw among the devastation a discarded brazier-stave that he recognized from Saabera—it still blazed with elemental fire that harmed the Void. This flame kindled a spark in Saijax’s heart. He took up the stave and left behind the ruins of his homeland, tending to this “last light of Icathia”, and the hope it represented. 
Grieving and ashamed, Saijax Cail-Rynx Kohari Icath’un forsook his old name, and from that day was known only as Jax. 
He became a wanderer, traveling across the known world and to places beyond any map. As he bore the elemental fire, Jax’s life extended beyond even the expectations of his long-lived people. Yet the farther he went from Icathia, the lower the flame burned, until it threatened to gutter out once and for all. Jax understood with grim resolution that he couldn’t run from his past. He had a duty to return, and fight. The advance of the Void had been halted by the last surviving Ascended, but its singular threat endured. 
For centuries since, Jax has roamed, a vagabond warrior searching for those strong enough to rebuild the Kohari. Though he has fought countless times against beings of great skill, courage, and power, none have yet convinced him that they can march against the coming darkness. The fall of Icathia has plagued Jax with doubt, but one thing remains certain: when the final battle comes, Jax will stand against the Void. 
Even if he has to face it alone."

Miscellaneous

  • Riot Lutzburg noted more Wukong changes coming to the PBE next cycle for testing:
"Wukong PBE adjustments: 
-P shield CD scales with level (16/14/12 sec at levels 1/7/13)
-P shield now triggers even if enemies have brush vision
-Q cost up by 5
-E cost down by  
Team feels pretty good about both assassin and bruiser builds. VFX/anim work is underway."
  • Riot Scruffy provided an Akali changelist for the 10.3 PBE cycle:
"The team has some Akali changes coming to the PBE for 10.3 - rather than straight damage nerfs, we want to reduce the amount and reliability of her escapes. 
These will have a bit longer than normal on PBE so we can get feels feedback and extra testing." 

  •  Riot Xenogenic noted EUW Mecha Kingdoms pass owners would be receiving tokens due to issues:
"Our expected solution to use a mission will not work, so we are instead going to grant the tokens directly like we've done in the past. All players that purchased a pass on EUW between 8:00 PM CET and 12:30 AM CET will be granted 80 tokens directly."
Patch 10.2 hits next week! Here's a sneak peek of the changes!

Reminders

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

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