Quick Gameplay Thoughts: May 25

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 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- **Icon Updates and Items** One question that cropped up a bit after previous discussion on icon updates was whether we'd also be updating older item icons as well. Wanted to touch on that here. We do plan on gradually updating item icons, that's somewhere we need to be a bit more careful than with champion icons though. Being able to quickly identify items on the Tab screen's pretty important and whenever we've changed too many at once we've seen some very understandable frustration and confusion as a result. We gradually update item icons as a result, often though not always paired with some change in functionality (e.g. the recent Abyssal and GA changes). Wouldn't want to do a mass item icon change all at once. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- **Updated Subclass List** For anyone that missed it and is interested we posted an updated subclass list yesterday. Link to that below, along with a couple of threads where Statikk, myself and a few others were talking about a thinking with the changes a bit. http://na.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/game-updates/gameplay/taking-another-look-subclasses https://boards.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/c/gameplay-balance/AIEmHs8v-new-classessubclasses-list https://www.reddit.com/r/leagueoflegends/comments/6d3unl/taking_another_look_at_subclasses/ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- **LeBlanc** We got a bunch of people together this week to talk LeBlanc. She's been a problematic character historically, both in terms of balance and counterplay. Recently she's also been consuming a lot of designer time without significant improvement that could have been put into other champs. We concluded that there were some core problems that would need to be addressed to put LB in a spot where she's appropriately powerful, fair enough to play against, not universally a great or poor pick etc. Estimation as to what those are below: * Her risk profile (she gets a lot of assassin traits without the degree of commitment other similar champs take on when going for a kill, both in terms of personal risk and use of long CDs) * Insufficient counterplay when played well, in particular her safety/slipperiness (combination of W, mimicked W, clones) * A strong laning early game that, when combined with the above, makes her extra dominant in high Elo and pro play. We believe we need to do at least a small update to her as a result, not just balance work. Without some meaningful changes we expect she'll otherwise get stuck in a state where she's still dominant in certain circumstances and feels pretty bad outside of those (as a point of reference Azir has similar, though not identical, challenges). An update doesn't feel great, given we put work into her just late last year, but we do think it's necessary. It's also possible the above analysis may change once we start looking at LB in depth. In terms of timing, not sure yet, the above's the summary of a conversation we've literally just had. It's possible, though not guaranteed, that we may have to make some balance adjustments to her before we can get an update in. Also not clear yet what scope of update we're looking at, whether something on the smaller side (adjustments like those to Kindred or Heimer recently) or somewhat larger (Rek'Sai scope, with more significant ability changes). ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ **AFK a little while** I'm going to be away from work for a few days starting pretty much now (visiting New York for the first time!). Won't be able to reply much in this thread as a result, also won't be another one of these posts from me until the later half of next week.
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