Why League of Legends Isn't As Awesome As It Could Be - @Morello, @Meddler

TLDR: _Sorry, you won't be able to find one for this thread. If watching a video is more your thing (most fun and immersive experience), you can click the following link (full screen recommended!):_ **https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdbnxoxBTKg - ''Why League Of Legends Isn't As Awesome As It Could Be - Youtube video** _If reading is more your thing, feel free to stay here. Chances are this thread or the video are going to be well worth your time if you love League of Legends dearly, especially if you are currently a little confused or dissatisfied about the current state of the game. A lot of time and effort was put into all this work. Enjoy!_ **_@Morello, if you happen to stop by here, I would ask you to be so kind to actually watch the video instead of read, the video was mainly made for you, and there's a message near the end. Grab a coke, grab nacho's with some dip, and from there on I can only hope you'll enjoy yourself! :)_** Hi again, My name is Yaime Loveheart, although most of you would probably know me as Bestbilbo, which was my account I used to have to post here on the NA League forums (I lost it, hence I'm posting from a new account). I suppose most of you don't know me by now, or ''us'' for that matter, so please let me start off by reintroducing myself and telling you what we're all about as we go. _**Reintroducing myself**_ I’ve been playing League for 5 years now. I would like to thank Riot and all the people I’ve ever played with because it would be a horrifying thing to imagine if League of Legends hadn’t come into my life. Quite literally, it saved me. I was in a dark place for a pretty long while and so to speak, League was a little sunshine. However, as time dragged on League of Legends started to grow on me. Long term players know what it feels like to have their IP stacking up (either because they own all champions or because they don't care for the few that are left available for them to purchase), they know what it was like to see [Shushei](http://imgur.com/QlgWPgL) on Gragas at the first world championships, and they know what the good old days were like when there was no meta yet and nobody would give a sh*t if you were running something like nunu swain botlane. At some point I decided to show up at the forums, you know, the place where overenthusiastic nerds like me passionately share their love and ideas for the game. At certain times I seemed to be enjoying myself much more on the forums compared to when I was actually playing the game, and this felt wrong. This feeling dragged on and something kept nagging at me; I didn’t know why I felt it, what had to be done exactly, or how, but I could feel the game could be so much more. _**Where it all started**_ At the time I was researching older MOBA’s such as DOTA2 and I was fascinated with some of the abilities these games had. However, I wasn’t going to play a game such as DOTA2, many elements to the game are simply very unhealthy for a competitive game environment, the mechanic of being able to deny creeps is the first thing that comes to mind. And please, even though these are the League forums so most of you probably wouldn't even mind me bashing on DOTA, you should understand this isn’t just a matter of opinion. You see, many game developers seem to think that complexity for the sake of complexity, which is to say, overly complex and meaningless technical aspects you need to master before being able to play the game seriously, is the definitive factor of a ‘’good competitive game’’, but this is wrong! Because the greatest sense of competition isn’t achieved by simply outperforming an opponent in external matter (such as being able to mash a complicated chain of buttons faster and more accurate than your opponent), but by actually outplaying them in internal affairs. You don’t really feel like superman as much when you’ve managed to farm about 80 more creeps than anyone else in your game compared to the feeling you get when you outplay the entire enemy team by killing everyone and scoring a pentakill, do you? There’s a very clear difference between technical skill and playful skill. Take RTS games for example. Before you are even able to play a RTS on a competitive level, one must get the hang of the basics first, and this feels like a fricken chore because it’s an extremely hard and frustrating experience for the most of us. It all has to do with very difficult technical aspects rather than having to do with the talent and individual insight of the player to outplay the opponent, and so most of us stay away from these kinds of games because we understand that in order to actually get good we would either have to be Sonic the Hedgehog… or asi- sorry, can't actually say that here. So what you should know by now is that technical aspects in a competitive game limit the sense of competitiveness, overcomplicating this shifts the focus from engaging competitiveness that revolves around the players armwrestling with each other to players individually trying to beat the game on a technical level. This is also why denying your opponent creeps in League of Legends is way more engaging, you actually have to interact with your opponent (using your positioning and abilities to prevent them from farming) instead of right-clicking an NPC before your opponent does. Anyway, at some point during my time on the forums I made a [thread](http://forums.na.leagueoflegends.com/board/showthread.php?t=2562226) about how I wanted champions to be more interesting. I thought the complexity for the sake of complexity argument was a lame excuse to not design champions that can do very cool stuff, but this was a false train of thought. This is where I bumped into a man called [Ryan Melley](http://imgur.com/pUO0OiX), or, ''Itemsguy''. In a way he became my mentor and provided me with all this knowledge, revealing to me what was actually nagging at me about the game in the process. This ItemsGuy had come up with a logical, concrete theory about MOBA game design, he had found out what was incredibly wrong about League of Legends and had even started working on solving these problems already. **_''Are Champions As Awesome As They Could Be?''_** I became obsessed with ItemsGuy’s work, and I was so impressed that in 2013, he allowed me to make a forum post about it which was called: [‘’Are Champions As Awesome As They Could Be?’’](http://forums.na.leagueoflegends.com/board/showthread.php?t=3013310) It took some time, but eventually it blew up. Morello even stickyied the thread and we ended up getting over 250,000 views. It’s a long thread, so here’s the post in a nutshell. These are very important things in a competitive MOBA game: * Counterplay * Readability * Theming In terms of counterplay at that time we had already observed how Riot had transitioned from targeted abilities to favoring skillshots (Ryze old Q, Ryze new Q, Pantheon Q compared to Kalista Q), meaning you can somehow avoid getting damaged. In terms of readability they were already working on making it easier for the player to understand what was happening through improved HUD and champion animations. In terms of theming we noticed how more often than not they treated the theme of a champion as some sort of cherry on top of the cake rather than the thing that holds the entire champion together. Take Leblanc the Deceiver, her passive and W enables her to juke and confuse enemies, but is her kit mainly about deceiving? No, because you don't really pick Leblanc to confuse the sh*t out of your enemies, the main reason you’d want to pick her is she does insane burst damage. Take Zyra. She saw competitive play very quickly and became one of the first popular AP-based supports, but did players pick her for the fact that she was the mage that could do crazy stuff with her plants? Sadly, no, [she was mainly picked because she's great at teamfights.](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b1GB3mRHOo8&t=1m30s) So, yes, Leblanc can do a little deceiving, as Zyra is able to grow plants, which allows her to zone a little bit, but without wanting to offend anyone I'd like to say that these things are very watered down. But before I get into this further and before I mention Itemsguy and his work again we must acknowledge the fact that I've been talking about a thread we made three years ago. We can't deny the fact that the MOBA genre has developed in this time and that Riot has learned and done a lot. _**What about other MOBA'S?**_ For starters, games have been developed that seem to do quite well. But harshly put, this doesn’t really matter, because games such as Smite, Heroes of the Storm or DOTA2 don’t have the same potential that League has to become the best MOBA game ever, and here’s why: **1.** Due to the nature of the game, the camera and it's engine, Smite has way less potential to be a very popular E-sport. [It's just way less watchable. ](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kT3oDqqaMsk&t=2m33s) But the worst thing isn’t even that, but their God design. Some of these gods are closely tied to ancient stories and beliefs about these gods, so that their abilities make sense when you read their lore. But this isn't a good thing. You don't want to burden the player with homework before they can understand something about a character. Take Mordekaiser for example, a new player would probably expect to get smashed in the head with his giant mace when he's up against him, instead he does some weird magical stuff and nabs your ghost. To completely understand why he does the things that he does [one must read his lore](http://imgur.com/3JYHfi6) and this is what you would want to avoid. Lore should be an addition to the universe of a competitive game, made for those who are interested to delve into these worlds, but especially for a game that wants to become a sport, it shouldn't by any means be pivotal to read. Take soccer, you don't need to know the history of soccer in order to kick a ball around, do you? It's even worse that most of the Gods in Smite are in fact completely random. A lot of Gods just ''do stuff'' and it's all up the player to get to know dozens of these seemingly random abilities and memorize them. The fact that Smite's playable characters are based on ancients stories and beliefs is a basic principle that limits the game's potential. **2.** Heroes of the storm is a brilliant concept. People are able to play characters from all of the games Blizzard have made. As a game it ties all of their games together and lets players immerse in the universes created by Blizzard Entertainment. And you know what’s so genius about this? Imagine a player who has never played anything from Blizzard in a heroes of the storm match and he or she is having a blast wrecking balls with a specific character, well you bet there is a high chance he might actually try the game where the character came from! Heroes of the storm is a game that is able to suck in new players and get them acquainted with more than just one of their games as well as a game that is able to tighten the grasp many ''loyal Blizzard veterans'' find themselves in. By itself this is a genius concept, however when taking into account the potential the MOBA genre has, therein also lies it's flaw. All the characters in Heroes of the Storm are based off the characters they are in their other games. And thus, similar to the problem Smite has, in many ways the player has to deal with seemingly random, abstract concepts and mechanics just because they are based off characters that were not intended to be MOBA designs from the start. And even though this harms the readability of the game and limits the game’s potential, Blizzard is kind of right to design their heroes like this, because that’s what the players want! Fans of those characters are still going to expect them to do the same obscure-a$$ sh*t they did in the universe of World of Warcraft or whatever. **3.** I've been told DOTA2 is almost quite literally an exact copy of the old DOTA. The game has numerous problems; very steep learning curve (low accessibility), characters with a lot of random stuff (tied to little to no theme at all, thus resulting in very low readability, which only adds salt to the wound of the game already being quite hard to play), and poor counterplay (devastating abilities that offer little to no counterplay apart from just ‘’staying away from someone’’, which isn’t engaging). Having said all this, in a twisted way I think it's very funny that whenever you bump into people talking about the MOBA genre or some ''LoL vs DOTA'' argument you will always find reasonable people who are able to admit the following: _''Yes. League of Legends is easier, Dota is harder, they're different games and both have their pros and cons, whether one game is better or more enjoyable is a matter of personal preference.''_ Well, yes, sure, there are two sides to every story, and in case of the comparison of League of Legends and DOTA2, one game definitely doesn't rule out the other. But in terms of the best MOBA game, or the perfect MOBA game ever developed, it goes a little further than that, and neither of these games come even close. Okay, so now I hope the following is something we can all universally agree upon: **1.** Dota2 is a harder game, it's harder to get into (higher skill floor) and more hardcore (higher skill cap) **2. **League of Legends is an easier game (lower skill floor), it's easier to get into and less hardcore, which is to say, the game has a lower skill cap than DOTA; you are able to pull off less skillful plays because there are less tools at your disposal. For instance, there's not a whole lot a Garen can do more to shine in a game than to just walk up to the backline of the enemy team, spin to win, and use his ultimate as an execute. That's kind of as far his current design allows him to go. [Compare that to this.](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yE9ecc0eQC0&t=0m12s) [To clarify, read this quote by a Riot champion designer.](http://imgur.com/Gsz4fSS) The quote says the designer wouldn't mind reworking Garen into a design that would allow you to do more cool stuff while holding true to what we already know and love about Garen. The trick is not to simply overcomplicate his design and making him harder to play, but keeping him as easy as he is to get into, yet making it more rewarding for the player when he masters the champion by allowing them to do more cool stuff the better you get. **3.** You could say Heroes of the Storm is quite the opposite of DotA2. League got rid of creep denying, Heroes got rid of gold, farming and an item shop altogether. Not to mention the removal of external factors that affect gameplay such as rune pages and masteries. And while this does make the game more accessible and easier for new players, various other factors contribute to making the game even easier which dumbs the game down. For example: dying early game isn't as much of a problem because you don't give gold to the enemy, death timers are still low and the maps are relatively small so you can quickly get back into the action when you respawn. Also taking damage isn't as punishing due to the fact that you can frequently click on healing fountains or can rely on teammates that can heal you up in little to no time at all. Whereas in League, most of the time [when you're this low](http://imgur.com/TqjEQUQ) you'd probably want to hit your ''B'' button. This makes Heroes of the Storm the easiest game to get into, which is good, but at the same time it's the most casual and lacks depth the most, which is mweh for a lot of people. Including me. There's another thing about Heroes that's brilliant though, but that'll be a surprise for later. I hope you understand now why I think it's funny to see people having an ''LoL VS DOTA'' argument, because as a matter of fact, the truth lies in the middle. Have you ever heard people say that the guitar is both the easiest as well as the hardest instrument? You could pick up the guitar and learn to play fricken wonderwall in a day while if you'd play the guitar for the entire duration of your life, at the end you would be able to play extremely hard things and would still be able to find out and discover new things. And there you have it, that's what a competitive game should be like, too. [And here's a quote that backs me up only from a person you do trust.](http://imgur.com/Eladm1e) Okay, so maybe that quote isn't a very good example because the quote implied that the game was too hard for people sometimes, while the point I'm trying to make is that it's too easy and lacks depth. But before you stab me with a blunt knife, please note how this quote from Zileas is from six years ago and goes [all the way back to 2010](http://imgur.com/WzCpsYw). It would take another three years for me to bump into Itemsguy and realize where the game could be drastically improved upon. In 2013 we suggested many changes to a lot of problematic champions in our thread, and as the prospect of change is scary for everybody, people were outraged. We already had conclusive evidence Riot agreed with us on so many points, however back then even a few designers showed a little resistance. But could it be that I can prove what I'm trying to say by using the work Riot has put out in the meantime, over the course of these past three years? **What has Riot been doing these past three years?** [Take a look at this quote.](http://imgur.com/IJnc3AA) Morello states it's important to pay attention to what people love about a character, but if a champion is simply unhealthy for the game or just one big mess you should do something about it no matter how much the community demands to leave things unchanged. This is the exact reason why Sion's former bullsh*t Q, which was basically just some magical particle that would stun you for some reason, is now replaced by an ability which makes much more sense, offers healthier counterplay, and fits with his character. This feels better when playing Sion, as does it help improve the over-all readability of the game, lowering the burden of the knowledge put upon players. Also, considering it's already quite some time ago since Sion's rework was put out, it's even arguable whether the designers at Riot would still keep his W the same if they'd rework Sion another time. Because why should an undead warrior that carries around a big battleaxe be able to put a magical shield around him and allowing him to detonate it to make the magical shield explode? It doesn't make sense with his character and this is also why the ability feels much more random and flavorless compared to how fitting and fulfilling it feels to fire a big fireball as Brand or hooking someone as a big man in a diver suit with your anchor. Since I've started talking about abilities now, let's immediately boil down to the bare bones of mechanics in League. Animations for abilities are added to complete the visual design of a champion and to visually support what the champion is able to do. A bad animation or an ability that's shoehorned on to the wrong champion makes no sense and results in low readability. Remember how the cloud of filth, the old animation of Trundle's ultimate, was supposed to tell us he was stealing our stats, making you weaker and making him stronger? The new animation does a much better job at translating the mechanic into a visual experience. Trundle gets bigger, you get smaller. [Are you familiar with some sort of game where people are blindfolded and they have to stick their arm into a box to touch an object and guess what they're dealing with? ](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ag6HtGlPhL4) Imagine you're the one whose blindfolded and you feel that you're touching a spherical object. You can't see the object, but you're getting a gist of it. In this case, chances are you'd rather say you're dealing with a tennis ball or a man's swollen testicle. You couldn't possibly say you think you are touching a rubik's cube right? That would be illogical. The same should apply to mechanics in a MOBA. Similar how lore should be an addition to a MOBA rather than depending on it, so you [shouldn't use Graves's old lore to justify the fact that he's able to shoot a smoke screen](http://imgur.com/RwUvngh) (and even worse, his new lore no longer explains it and leaves us in the dark), animations should merely support the mechanics of an ability. Which is to say, without any added particles the mechanics of an ability should already make some sense on their own and be fitting to the theme of the champion. Lets say we take the following mechanic: an ability where once you've casted the spell you quickly travel toward your target and snare it when you've reached it. Now would you rather expect [this guy](http://imgur.com/ACu7Kno) to do that, or [this guy](http://imgur.com/Na13BRd)? If it doesn't make a lot of sense for an old man to do such a thing, then why does an old tree have that ability in the actual game? Just looking at Maokai suggests he's going to offer somewhat slow game play and using nature itself to devastate his enemies. Before his visual update we would justify the fact that he was able to teleport to you and snare you because we could see him turning into a magical bunch of leaves. During this time the animation didn't just support the mechanics of the ability, the ability depended on the animation, as we have already concluded that the mechanic itself doesn't make a whole lot of sense on a character like Maokai on its own. As of right now it's even worse, where the animation of his W no longer has anything to do with nature and Maokai just kind of travels beneath the earth as if he is somehow trying to compete with Rek'Sai's niche. Maokai's current W makes no sense thematically, harms the accessibility and readability of the game, and I haven't even mentioned yet how the ability is unhealthy for the game because it offers poor counterplay to begin with. But what if you'd replace his W with a skillshot that summons a wall of trees one by one, where the last tree would take the longest time to pop up. This new ability would fit his theme because now he'd actually use nature to devastate his enemies instead of randomly teleporting to you. Also it would still do good for him as a tank because his W would still be able to make sure you ain't going nowhere. And because it makes more sense you'd improve upon the readability of the game, as well does this ability offer more counterplay. As Maokai: ability wouldn't be targeted, so it would be more of a challenge to use (also will make the ability feel more fun and rewarding when used well). Against Maokai: you'd be able to play around the ability/juke instead of not really being able to do anything to his current W but stay away from him, which doesn't encourage engaging gameplay. In our thread from 2013 we also mentioned how we thought there wasn't enough variety among ADC's, whenever a new marksman would come out it would just feel as if they added another character that right clicks most of the time but ends up doing it just slightly different. When Quinn was about to be released I was hoping for something really unique, a falconer champion that would be the first champion with an individual, controllable pet. Similar to Rexxar in Heroes of the Storm, whom works very well by the way. But what we got is a champion that--if you looked closely enough at the bare bones of the mechanics--didn't play like a falconer at all. Imagine Quinn wasn't released like this, but as[ this guy.](http://imgur.com/i9fTFvS) For now, let’s call him ‘’Bob, the generic marksman assasin’’. Her Q ability would make just as much sense if Bob's Q would be that he throws sand in the eyes of the target hit. Her W ability would make just as much sense if you'd animate Bob temporarily heightening his senses, revealing an area around him for a short while. Her E would do just fine on this Bob because he's an agile mofo capable of doing back flips. And her ultimate could be replaced by Bob suddenly running faster for a short while and drawing daggers to engage in melee combat. If Quinn was really about playing as a falconer, then how could you remove her bird Valor from her kit entirely and still make things work? For the sake of making my point, imagine my dream would have come true and Valor would've been a pet you could control individually, would you still be able to replace her with a pile of sand? No, you would not, because it makes no sense to be able to control a pile of sand or even watching it move on its own. So I'll say it once more, animations should be there to support the ability, but the mechanic should already be thematically fitting on its own. _''But wait, Yaime!'' you might think, ''you said it has been three years and Riot has learned and done a lot!''_ And yes, yes they have. I just told you we have always thought that ADC's have always been way too similar, can you imagine how happy and proud I was to see them making changes to a lot of ADC's to create more diversity, because they too figured out they could emphasize more on all giving them their own niche? Quinn gets to fly around with her bird now, Corki gets to fly more because he's in a plane after all, Graves feels more like a dude wielding a shotgun, and so on! Another thing to note is that not only is it boring when champions are very similar, it also becomes a problem that they end up fighting to be the best at their role. Creating more diversity fixes this, and if you want proof of this take a look at what a great job they have done with supports. Because there is a wide variety of designs there isn't such a thing as the best support champion of all time. Take Braum, Soraka and Blitzcrank. They all do their own thing, they are not arm wrestling with each other to be the best at same thing. One isn't simply better than the other, they're just different. Braum provides damage mitigation and disengage, you pick Soraka for healing, and Blitzcrank is able to pick off enemies one by one by pulling someone into his team. Whether someone is better is situational and revolves entirely around the enemy team and your own team composition. _**You seem to hint that Riot has stepped up their game, so what's wrong?**_ Well, what remains a very big problem to this day is that even though they tweak champions for the better, most of them remain a lackluster version of the gaming experience they could deliver. Champions consist out of four abilities and a passive. Let's say that one ability roughly makes up for 20% of the champion. This means that more abilities a champion has that doesn't fit very well thematically, the more you basically steal from and confuse the champion’s identity. They become watered down versions of what they could be. What would Mike Tyson be without his tattoo or boxing gloves, Neil Harbisson without his antenna or colorful clothes, or Jimi Hendrix without his afro and electric guitar? Remember when I said Sion's current W still doesn't make sense. To this day that ability still makes up for roughly 20% of his character, while instead the ability could be replaced by an ability that actually fits with an undead warrior that carries around a big battle axe. This is also why Quinn shouldn't have a Q ability which animations make just as much sense if you'd replace them by having her throw sand in her enemies eyes, or why her E shouldn't be her doing a backflip. Because why would a falconer do backflips? Nothing about doing a backflip is characteristic to falconers, and have I told you [Itemsguy has done a bit of falconing?](http://imgur.com/moCvK8J) He knows. I could go on and on, such as Alistar being [able to do this](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utf6x70S6Fw&t=1m8s) doesn't make a whole lot of sense and takes up 20% of his space that could instead have been dedicated to him doing something [like this. ](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8TSEW5R0Ro&t=0m10s) Which is about the most iconic thing a bull could possibly do! _''But wait, Yaime, aren't you over exaggerating right now? We get that theming and readability is important but aren't you stretching it too far? Is a game not allowed to throw a little illogical things in the mix such as a bull healing people or a falconer doing backflips?'' _ I'm sorry but, no. Here's a quote of the game designer and acclaimed author Jesse Schell: > _''We can create games with powerful themes right now. But why should we do this? We aren't artists, we're designers. Artistic expression is not our goal. Our goal is to create powerful experiences. > It is possible to create a game without a theme, however, if games have unifying, resonant themes, the experiences we create will be much, much stronger.''_ Illogical things such as a falconer doing a backflip makes no sense, it unnecessarily harms the accessibility and readability of the game, as well as it creates a less powerful experience Quinn could possibly deliver as a champion. And I'm also not stretching it too far because this game is trying to be a sport after all. A person who has never seen a soccer match will probably understand very quickly what the point of the game is. This manner of quickly being able to understand the game does not apply when you let that same person [watch this video](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMec5aE5Gm0) for the first time. It's a funny video, but about 99% of people would probably have no clue what the F is happening. And sure, due to the nature of videogames League of Legends might never be able to be as easy to read as a game of soccer, but this by itself shouldn't be an excuse to not make the game as readable as it could possibly be! Not to mention the fact that certain champions or existing abilities may rule out the existence of other possible cool archetypes. For example, the fact that Quinn is able to do a backflip kind of prevents an [acrobat](http://imgur.com/A2gQgpl) champion being added to the game, which could be a quite cool concept, right? So an acrobat champion doing a backflip would be quite a cool and fitting ability, but it would be a problem that Quinn has this ability already! In this case there are two possible scenarios: * A). They will never release an acrobat champion because Quinn's abilities have a messed up thematic identity. (On screen: an acrobat champion would simply feel to similar.) * Or B). They decide to add an acrobat champion to the roster anyway. Which will end up with champions feeling very much alike. No offense Riot, but what drastically new does Jhin bring to the table compared to Caitlyn? Why didn't I realize earlier that probably the only reason League of Legends knows of the champion Zed is because Shen just didn't fill in the ''deadly ninja'' archetype yet, because instead of being as deadly as he looks, he actually doesn't play like this at all and ends up being one of the most protective and tankiest mofo's in the game. It's the same reason why Braum was added to the game while we already had Leona. What's a Vel'Koz compared to Xerath compared to Lux? They're all long range poking mages with some crowd control. And we've already learned about how fun and healthy it is for the game to let champions have their own niche to create a wide variety of champions, instead of letting them arm wrestle to be the best at the same thing. Speaking of seeing and experiencing the same thing over and over and over again, listen to this: ‘’[Let me be serious here… League of legends doesn’t work as a competitive game or a fun party game to play with your friends, as of today I have more than 8000 matches played on this game, so I have some legitimate grounds to review the game on. Laning phase, the other guy sits under his turret and farms creeps for 20 minutes, then the rest of the game is both teams walking around the map, accomplishing nothing, until some dumbass gets caught. That's every match in a nutshell.](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VjzgbZL12VI&t=1m31s)'' - videogamedunkey in ''I'm Done With League of Legends'' You see, the main, first and foremost reason why League of Legends won't become a better game even though in these three years they have become better at designing champions is that through their design, they are still forcing the game to stay the same as it has always been. Which ends up making the game feel generic, stale, boring and repetitive. I'm truly sorry, Sky, but to answer [your question](http://imgur.com/PabCyCK): Fiora's old kit was loaded with powerful targeted effects with very poor, limited counterplay. Additionally, an ult that was more powerful in teamfights wasn't very fitting for ''the Grand Duelist.'' These were very good reasons for Riot to rework her, they could have taken this opportunity to rework the Grand Duelist of League of Legends and finally give League of Legends the Duelist champion League of Legends had never seen before, but instead they failed to deliver once more and screwed up by giving her some huge AoE heal that can also heal teammates, which encourages her to get into teamfights like so many other champions. Why would a duelist want to charge towards multiple teammates--or worse, enemies? Why the heck should a duelist with a sword be able to heal herself and her allies in the first place? If you do the research you will come to realize that Riot seems to be obsessed with teamfights, and how they almost neurotically feel the need to give every champion this cool big teamfighting ability or niche because they think a champion wouldn’t be able to function otherwise. [*Surprise!*](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bSEfx6D8mA) This, to some extent, is what Heroes of the Storm does well. Even though it's still quite dumbed down due to the mechanics of certain maps encouraging you to pile up and because the overwhelming majority of heroes is still encouraged to be as braindead aggressive like 99% of the champions in League of Legends, some sort of triangle of available strategies--or different branches of strategic playstyles does exist through their hero design. You can just charge in and kill everything as the Butcher (Aggressive), you can play defensive and zone out an area as Gazlowe (Territorial), or you can heavily influence and control things in a match as Abathur (Control) without directly engaging in combat. As of now Riot designs champions in such a way that we're all encouraged to pile up and have a big 5 vs 5 party. This type of champion design results in every game starting to feel very much the same where two teams just dance with each other for 30 minutes after laning phase until, like Dunkey said, some dumbass gets caught. **Doesn't this get incredibly boring? Where's the impressive strategy here? How is this supposed to feel engaging if every game it's the same old story all over again? ** It's like the MOBA genre was derived from rock, paper, scissors, where they took the luck factor out of the game and made it so that the team with the most skill would win, except for whatever reason they have taken out the option to choose paper or scissors as well, so right now every game it's fist against fist over and over again, where the fist that has Master Yi or Doctor Mundo wins. Two teams always using the same method to destroy each other's nexus isn't by any means engaging. The perfect MOBA game would offer way more strategic diversity, playable characters would be able to be categorized into three different brackets; aggressive, control, and territorial (defensive). In theory it would work like a triangle of playstyles where territorial champions would be able to stonewall aggressive team compositions, aggressive champions would be able to catch out control champions, and control champions could run around territorial team compositions. But in an actual game it wouldn't be as black and white as that, you'd have to take into account player skill and so it would turn out to be execution based, which means that no matter how your champion plays like you will do better than your opponent if you are more skilled than they are, so an aggressive team composition would actually be able to break apart a territorial one if they make the right decisions and execute them well. _**Why should I care?**_ So one thing you might wonder is, why should I care? What if you are still enjoying the game in its current condition, you haven't given a d@mn about all of what I've said so far and you still think that League of Legends is the best game ever. Let's say you don't mind that a champion called The Monkey King is better at deceiving people than the actual Deceiver of League of legends, let's say you don't see how some champions are a complete mess and make no sense whatsoever, and lets say [you don't feel cheated](http://imgur.com/CbU90ed) when you are ulted by Vi when you're playing some zero mobility character such as Ashe, or when you get hopelessly rolled over by some Tryndamere or Master Yi. If all of this doesn't apply to you, chances are it's going to somewhere in the future, and if not, you will probably get sick of every game boiling down to two teams dancing around each other for 30 minutes after laning phase until someone gets caught. It never ends! Riot, you as a company, the playerbase of League of Legends and the game itself has matured and learned too much to approach all the problems in League of Legends with band-aid solutions. In many ways the game is one big mess where one or more of the following problems apply to an overwhelming majority across the entire champion roster: * **Niche From Single Abilities** - Rather than bringing unique strategic value to a team through their entire kit and playstyle, many champions’ proclaimed niches tend to stem from a single ability (Fiora’s ult, Twitch’s stealth) * ** Mechanical Dissonance** - Numerous champions suffer from kits with conflicting internal goals, whether through mechanical details (Brand’s DoT has less uptime when his abilities are combo’d) or divergent purposes (Kindred relies on killing champions but % current health damage and the no-death ult makes it more difficult) * **Thematic Dissonance** - Many champions, especially earlier ones, possess mechanics that are at odds with their theming (Annie and Brand will stun you with fire, Quinn does backflips) * **Homogeneous Kits** - Within roles, there is generally a strong amount of overlap between certain champions (Cait, Jhin, and Jinx have long-range poke, immobilizing traps, and long-range executes), to the point where some are almost identical (Akali and Diana being the most obvious instance) * **Mechanical Overload** - A few very popular champions suffer from mechanical overload, possessing more tools than they need to fulfill a niche or role (Yasuo’s double-passive and wind wall, Lee Sin’s, well, everything) * ** Strategic Staleness** - The vast majority of champions are geared towards the same strategy of “lane for 15 minutes and then run around and teamfight when somebody messes up” to the point where anything outside of that is seen as a singular niche (Bard is The Roaming Support, Quinn is The Roaming Marksman) * ** Generalist Gameplay** - A few champions don’t specialize in any particular role or niche, and have kits that don’t give them any real strategic strengths or weaknesses (Lee Sin, Kayle, Nidalee) * **Shoehorned Kits** - Some champions are designed not simply with a certain goal kept in mind, but rather as a direct response to a need and only that (Irelia as a counter to a marksman-heavy meta, Lissandra as a vessel for Puck’s position-swapping projectile, Kindred as Totally The One And Only Jungling Marksman) * **Burden of Knowledge** - Some champions possess mechanics that are crucial to understanding their gameplay, but either unknown or unclear to players who haven’t gone on the Wiki and read the tooltips (alternate crit effects or other system-breaking mechanics among many of the recent marksmen changes, Yasuo’s/Azir’s/Kindred’s double passive) These past three years you've been taking a different, better approach to champion design than you have ever done before, and while this means that you are starting to put out better content more consistently since you are going to be hitting your mark more frequently, an overwhelming majority of the problems I just mentioned will continue to exist, as does your over-all approach and vision of the game limits the game's potential in terms of creating a game that offers the most powerful experiences through playable characters, and in terms of limiting the strategic diversity, where, if things will go on like this, the essentials of a League of Legends match will continue to boil down to nothing but non-strategic, dumbed down, flavorless 5 vs 5 clusterf*cks which we have already grown accustomed with over the past few years. And even though three years ago Itemsguy and I received a tremendous amount of love and support from players all over the globe, we were still scoffed at by a lot of people. But as of right now, [more](http://imgur.com/rIpZWop) and [more](http://imgur.com/K59zr0Q) people seem to be [waking up](http://imgur.com/3ulW2tk) and asking the same [questions](http://imgur.com/i56EPdl) we had already asked before. People are either getting bored or extremely frustrated with the game, and are slowly but surely done with it, and no matter what problem they bring up the root of the cause will most likely always be a lack of consistent theming, which results in a game with lower readability, accessibility, and poor counterplay. Which ends up robbing the game of awesome strategic playstyles and making the game feel boring and repetitive. It's hard to see a game that we all love fall apart, knowingly it could do so much better. Which, come to think of it, is probably how my parents felt about me when I was playing League all day and screwed up in highschool. Imagine a League of Legends where teams are truly able to fortify and zone areas through a consistent roster of territorial champions, a League of Legends where a lot of champions would have an accentuated aggressive playstyle compared to what we know today, and a new type of champion that sacrifices some of these specific powers so that their design allows them to create a new playstyle (control) where these characters are all about controlling the map, whilst being versatile and adaptive. It would be a game where a champion such as [Maokai would now be a territorial tank](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-maokai-twisted-treant.html) that truly delivers on giving you that angry forest playstyle. A game where [Malphite would have even more of that rolling stone playstyle going on.](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-malphite-shard-of.html) Or where [Galio would finally play as a gargoyle fulfilling the tank role with a control playstyle. ](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2013/01/champion-redesign-galio-sentinels-sorrow.html) [A game where Heimerdinger finally gets to invent stuff because he actually gets to build stuff and be an inventor.](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-heimerdinger-revered.html) A game where you would want to pick Zyra because she's the nature mage of League of Legends and not because she's just good at teamfighting, which would result in [her being a control champion that's all about growing and taking care of her plants,](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-zyra-rise-of-thorns.html)turning Summoner's Rift into her own garden. A game where toplaners like Yorick, instead of being an unhealthy and boring design, now [gets to be that Necromancer that can control a herd of zombies and as a gravedigger turns portions of the map into a graveyard.](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2013/01/champion-redesign-yorick-gravedigger.html) Doesn't all of that sound refreshingly exciting? I'm not trying to step on your balls here, Riot, but I want you to feel [this](http://imgur.com/ifoujoa) under all of your @sses. You used to share the numbers of the playerbase of League of Legends, but seeing as you don't do that anymore and taking into account the existence of other MOBA's and the amount of people complaining on the forums compared to the amount of complaining three years ago, one can only assume that the playerbase is slowly diminishing because people are done with your game, quit, and might even jump ship to other games. And chances are that because of the reasons I have been explaining throughout this entire thread, you won't actually be able to fix the game and can only try to slow down the rate at which people are leaving. Not to mention the fact that oversaturation is another problem the game has to face eventually, and my guess is that League of Legends would die in a heartbeat the moment you remove the carrot from the stick and people will no longer have any new playable content to look forward to. And I mean it when I say that it comes from the bottom of my heart when I tell you how grateful I am for what you have created to so far, but in order to develop the best moba game ever that is as accessible as it can be, as impressively deep and skillful and as fun as it can be, what ultimately would result in the game becoming truly the most viewed and most readable eSport where even people who don't even play the game can enjoy watching a match and understand what's happening, there's simply no room for these major thematic inconsistencies like this: Why does the Monkey King do more deceiving than [Leblanc the Deceiver? ](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-leblanc-deceiver.html) [Why does Kha'Zix have a passive that does more damage to isolated targets if it would be more fitting better on this guy who's supposed to be the embodiment of a nightmare that haunts you?](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-nocturne-eternal.html) And why does this same creature evolve himself when it'd be more appropriate for [this half-robot man to do that by engineering his own suit?](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-viktor-machine-herald.html) Viktor’s passive is called ‘’Glorious Evolution’’ after all. Wouldn't it be cool [to make Alistar play like a bull](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-alistar-minotaur.html), while this would make room for [this guy which is basically a placeholder for what we know of Alistar today so League of Legends can still have a colossal figure that heals and headbutts people?](http://lolchampdesigns.tumblr.com/post/34494405492/original-champion-edmund-the-abomination) And while I'm at it I might as well say it would be so much more readable and fitting that instead of this robot hooking people, [you let this guy do that.](http://lolchampdesigns.tumblr.com/post/36449434900/original-champion-ronan-the-fisherman) Fixing all of these problems would make room for a game with way more interesting stuff, and more diversity, where for example the support role could consist out various niches offered by champions that could be yet again divided into the three strategic playstyles of territorial, aggressive, and control. Like this [Lux could finally be the mage of light of League of Legends](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2013/02/champion-redesign-lux-lady-of-luminosity.html), that supports her team by defensively granting them vision, where [Vel'Koz the Eye of the Void could provide vision in a way more aggressive way](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2015/03/champion-redesign-velkoz-eye-of-void.html) and getting up in the team's face with [his cute, iconic, mini-sauron,](http://imgur.com/VZZe8dN) and [Teemo could grant his team vision in a more versatile way](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2012/12/champion-redesign-teemo-swift-scout.html) by being the swift scout that he is and dropping his mushrooms. _** @Morello**_ Morello, I wanted to deliver a specific message to you because I can't thank you enough for what you've done for us so far and I'm unable to express into words how I felt like when our thread from three years got over a quarter million views when at the time I was still in doubt of whether I was even worthy enough of this world. And I know that sounds cheesy but it's true. And we all know you're no longer even the Lead Champion Designer of League of Legends and that you're currently working in R & D to create some new game where we will probably be able to play as the character Phreak and slay hundreds and thousands of Teemo's with an unlimited supply of trinity forces to deal tons of DMG, but you must understand my cause and disappointment since there hasn't really changed much in these years and now the game seems to be slowly dying. Not to mention the mixed feelings of both pride and frustration when we saw you guys deciding on giving Quinn the niche of mobility as a marksman, while our thread and [this Redesign](http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/2013/02/champion-redesign-quinn-and-valor.html) has just been sitting here for three years already and while I'm fairly certain it would considered to be so much more fun, fitting and successful. And don’t get me wrong, I’m not suddenly trying to make the general message of this thread: ‘’We told you so’’ but I would rather want you to take this video an as invitation. I’m just hoping you can do something. And not for me, but perhaps you could take a moment and think about ItemsGuy. Because even though I know that you have already met the guy, I'm telling you, Itemsguy, or Ryan Melley, however the hell you wanna call him, is a fricken genius. And I know in my heart that there’s a bunch you guys at Riot could learn from him. Because, as a matter of fact, Morello, I'm kind of done [(and I think you'd understand why).](http://imgur.com/KPnHN10) To tell you the truth I was already quite done with the game as soon as ItemsGuy provided me with all this knowledge and kind of ruined the game for me [(and I think you know what that feels like).](http://imgur.com/yaTZ04G) And even though I managed to stay away from the game for about a year, I can't let it go, I keep coming back to the game because I read Ryan's redesigns from time to time. I'll hop into a game and select a champion I'd be excited for to be reworked properly, a champion Ryan/ItemsGuy has designed better on paper, and after a few minutes into the game I will be remembered of all the reasons why I quit and realize how boring things still are. And that the reason I keep coming back is that I have nostalgia for a game that doesn't even exist yet. [A game that League of Legends could be](http://imgur.com/oZVpf9k) [(and you've already kind of started this process of making the game feel almost entirely different from what we were used to).](http://imgur.com/p9SZbYY) So, a MOBA game where every champion offers the most fun and powerful gaming experience they could possibly deliver, which results in an extremely readable game with engaging counterplay and mind blowing strategic playstyles that could be broadcasted on national television and people who don't even play the game could understand what's happening and enjoy themselves watching a match? I, Yaime Loveheart, vote yes. Now who's with me? Let's start a riot! ------------------------------- Ryan Melley/ItemsGuy redesigns blog: http://lolredesigns.blogspot.nl/ Ryan Melley/ItemsGuy business related: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ryan-mell... http://www.ryanmelley.com/ -------------------------------- Help make a change. League is dying right now and it seems that the players nor Riot know why exactly. Ryan Melley/ItemsGuy's Redesigns are good examples of how the game can be fixed and saved from a slowly but surely dying playerbase. If you can, help us by spreading Ryan Melley's work and his name. Make sure Riot can't ignore this thread or the video on youtube. Support under this thread, as well as likes or even views on the youtube video are very much appreciated. Also, in this case, do shoot the messenger. Although approved by Ryan/ItemsGuy himself, making the video and this thread has been solely my decision and responsibility. That is because I can't let this go, the game simply means too much for me to just leave in silence without a Finales Funkeln. Thank you, and, I love you. -Yaime
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