Quick Gameplay Thoughts: January 5

Hi 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: https://twitter.com/RiotMeddler ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- **Patch 8.1** Happy 2018! We've been back at work this week and have been looking at what should be in the upcoming patches. Our focus is particularly on what should now be a priority based off how the game played out over the break. Because of the way patch development works (patches need a lot of testing) patch 8.1 got locked last year just before we went on holiday. That means that, with a few possible exceptions as below, 8.1 will be the same as what was on PBE over the break. Adding stuff this late in the process has the same risk of serious bugs and balance issues as a micropatch/hotfix. We need to be really conservative with both how much we change and the type of things we change as a result. That means we're mainly working on a bunch of stuff for 8.2. Things that might get added to 8.1 that aren't on PBE: A few high impact bug fixes (e.g. Galio W shield, a bug with Revitalize making people untargetable) Possible Zoe nerfs Possible Sona buff Reducing the amount some of the Kleptomancy gained items sell for ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- **Patch 8.2** Patch 8.2 by contrast has a full development cycle and there's plenty to be worked on. Some of things we're looking at below. This isn't a complete or final list. Some things will get added and some will get removed as we work on the patch. Runes: * Further Klepto work, likely reducing the differences between best and worst case users (nerf the strongest/buff the weakest). * Manaflow Band nerf (still reducing need to manage mana too much) Items * Runic Echoes Buff (help AP junglers overall) * Assessment of Relic Shield line on non supports (appropriate or abusive?) Champion Nerfs: * Vayne * Ezreal (if Klepto changes don't look like enough) * Ornn * Kha'Zix * Malz * Zoe (if not nerfing in 8.1 as above, follow up assessment if 8.1 nerfs happen) * Blitzcrank Champion Buffs: * Nunu * Viktor We've also got a range of champs we'd like to get to soon but who didn't make the initial cut for our 8.2 planning. They're probable candidates for 8.3 or 8.4, though it's possible some slip into 8.2 still. Trynd and Yi buffs are in that category, as is a Fiddle buff unless the Runic Echoes change helps him enough. We talked about Syndra as well as a possible buff candidate for 8.2, she's got a lot of bug fixes in 8.1 though, some of which are likely to add some power to her, so we'll see where she's at after those. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- **Game Pacing, Snowball etc** Additionally we'll be taking a look at a range of aspects of game pacing during the 8.2 development cycle (game length, snowball, time to kill etc). Uncertain yet if we'll ship changes during 8.2 aimed at that in particular at time of writing. Identifying balance targets is a quicker process, hence the list above, for a topic like this we need to spend more a bit more time however. More on this next week, well aware it's a topic on a lot of people's minds that's not addressed in much detail here. The thing we'll be looking at first is laning phase and whether that's ending too quickly, with corresponding spread of snowballing across lanes. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- **Rengar Q changes** As we mentioned in December we're planning on changing Rengar's Q back to an empowered auto attack. Timing on that's not certain yet, it's not fully implemented or tested. There are also a few new assets that will need to be made for his Mecha skin, since that didn't exist back before his Q got changed. Should be early this year, though won't in 8.2 at least. Details on which patch it'll be in and whether there are other accompanying changes to come as soon as we've got them. http://ddragon.leagueoflegends.com/cdn/6.24.1/img/champion/Ziggs.png Edit: Couple of updates worth mentioning since time of writing. We're going to move both the Sona buff and the Klepto item sell amount changes to 8.2, given both are intertwined with the state of Klepto overall. Sona buff currently in testing is a partial revert of the Q mana cost increase from 7.24 (50-70, versus live 60-80 and prior 45-65).
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