An Exhaustive list of Sona's problems and how Riot can potentially fixe them Before begining a long road to clear sona's problems, i have few things to say. I'm making the premise that Sona isn't expected to build 600 ap but rather build utility items just like any enchenters this is important because i want to avoid pointless arguing with people about artificial scaling, AP ratios on heals/shields and other shit like that. i don't know if this thread has some real objectives. I mean it's clear that riot doesn't want Sona to be more than a "braindead support" when Fearless says that she wouldn't be Sona anymore if gets skillshots on her Q/W/E. Let's just say that thread was made to kill time and maybe a desperate attempt to attract Riot's attention I made previously multiple threads talking about sona's problems but i never really suggested changes, when people asked me how i would fixe sona's problems i had 0 idea on how to make a music based enchenter fun to play, with counterplay, skill expression, and overall balanced around all elo (instead of plat+) What are the problems? currently Sona has problems on different lvls First problem: the most annoying one, She's balanced around plat+. Sona's kit makes her a nightmare to balance around all elo (from bronze to challenger) Her spells are the epitom of no-counterplay spells (powerchord, and W mostly) and non-interactive spells, this makes riot forced to balance her around other "area" like her range, her base movement speed+base stats, AND her numbers (Q=trash damage, W= trash healing, E= trash movement speed buff until late game) making unexperienced enemies unable to know truely what to do against Sona. While in high elo, Players will abuse her low movement speed (325) and her range to out-trade her (sona is forced to land an auto-attack to poke since her Q damage will be sustained back if she doesn't hit) if they extend the trade, she's mostly done for because she has no way to answer once Q is on cd unlike Nami who has her E, or lulu who has her passive. Additionally it's even better if they force her to use her W because it costs ~23% of her mana in lane for 35 hp heal and 30 hp shield. This is the reason why some high elo sona players are griefed if they pick Sona, the adc just don't want to lane with a Sona because it all depends on if the enemies know how to And Honestly if everyone knew how to play against Sona i wouldn't give her win rate that much time before it drops, but thing is you can't know how to play against Sona by looking at her kit one or two time. And since they can't, Sona is able to cheese low elo, then with an AP build combined with {{item:3100}} (which is impossible to build in high elo unless you snowballed the game very roughly) destroys them without counterplay. This problem is double, because Sona's current kit was made a long time ago where riot didn't care about niche of champions(which is why most of old champions got reworked) Current Sona is a generalist that does not have any strategy behind the pick Thresh can be picked to counter j4/juggernauts (due to the lantern) Sona is picked if she is numerically superior to Lulu/Nami/karma ect.. AND THIS IS A PROBLEM i remind you that they are reworking maokai because his kit makes the competition between him and other tanks impossible if maokai is viable Second problem: Very unpleasing gameplay, and here you have to listen to the explination because it isn't related with the fact Sona's kit is too simple. **Supports's gameplay is generally tied with the power of life and death**, If you play a support you control the life of your allies as well as the death of enemies. Best examples of well-designed supports are {{champion:223}} who can save allies and kill enemies with his ult/Q/W, {{champion:432}} who can both save allies and kill enemies with Q/W/E/R, {{champion:412}} of course with his lantern and his hook, {{champion:201}} {{champion:43}} {{champion:40}} {{champion:117}} {{champion:12}} All of those supports fall in this category This makes them able to carry their team hard while being thanked by their mates, even {{champion:40}} who's too simple can carry by cancelling many dashes with her Q/R and in high elo those janna players are always praised by their teammates With {{champion:37}} IT'S TOTALLY THE OPPOSITE ON EVERYTHING. You don't save allies, you don't help to kill enemies (unless you burst them) "she has cresendo" How many time did you see a Sona saving someone than a thresh saving someone with lantern? cresendo has a VERY long cd, it's like saying you can escape from j4 ult with flash you can but it is just not reliable. The thing is you don't save allies with Sona, you spam Q/W/E to help your allies to win a teamfight, for real THIS IS ALL I DO beside using ult once a while. I know i'm helping, but i can't see , it's impossible to see the impact of +80 on-hit magical damage and 130 hp shield. i know i'm helping because it's on low cd but i just can't see the impact that i have with thresh when i save someone with the lantern And this is why power chord is only used for damage by all Sona players, you can't see anything changed with diminuendo, i know -25% damage is a lot but it's literally invisible you still have the impression that the enemies are doing damage which is why no one will tell you "Thanks Sona!!!! if you didn't hit with diminuendo right there i would have been dead!" it's the same with offense, have you ever saw Sona allowing her team to have more kills than a thresh or any other support? Song of Celerity is weak until late game, cresendo has a low range (900 but due to the travel time and cast time it can't be used to reach this range since enemies can run out of the range in the meantime) Remember the power of life and death? i dare you to play Sona and see if you have this power All you have by playing Sona is a massive amount of invisible power that helps to win a teamfight Third problem: no skill expression. Have you ever realised that beside the player base of Sona no one is going to play her? you have to wonder if a support main will ever first time Sona in ranked (unless she's very broken). what players search in champions is :-fun gameplay, we have seen that invisible power is very frustrating in having fun, i suspect that Sona players only have fun by bursting people -skillfloor, players want to feel different from players that play the same champion. They want to do things **that make them feel that not everyone could do it** i'm honestly frustrated by playing Sona just by knowing that me and Colazor do the exact same thing. Our gameplay cannot be different, as Darius i can stop dashes with E, as janna i can stop dashes with Q/R, as Sona... Sona's kit doesn't allow any skilled move AND any skilled decision this is really sad. "what about using the right powerchord"? again ask yourself if anyone is realising that you played very well by choosing a good power chord? the answer is simply no one because (while diminuendo is also invisible power) most of Sona's power relies in Q/W/E, her passive is just some single target power but nothing major. Choosing the right power chord will occure once a while for little changes, even her slow doesn't change something (2 sec 40% slow compared to Lulu Braum Karma or whatever you want) If you play Sona, outplaying enemies is hard. And enemies outplaying you is also hard What fixes can we bring to Sona? A full scale rework, a Sona lvl of rework. I honestly have no idea how to fixe the 3 problems above while keeping sona's current kit, creating a kit revolving around aura while balancing it around all elo giving it skillfloor, and making it fun to play is beyond my imagination. Can someone do it? this is unknown to me, but 7 years of league have proven that Sona cannot be balanced around all elo even if she would get a rework that tries to keep her old kit (4.13) What should this rework do? like i said, fixe the 3 problems above. And the next question is how, well let's start with skillfloor: what supports all have that increases their skillfloor? the answer is spells that work in a lot of situations, ie: **spells that work on allies AND enemies** {{champion:432}} ult {{champion:117}} W+E {{champion:223}} W {{champion:26}} E but also spells that have more than one way to use: {{champion:412}} Q and E {{champion:201}} E a great way to make a support or any other champion having a high skillfloor is to not give them one-dimensional spells This comes along with an interesting gameplay, Instead of invisible power Sona should have unique abilities, not a generic kit don't bring me the "enchenters can't be unique" {{champion:427}} {{champion:432}} have both unique spells that give them a niche (right now ivern has no niche because he's busted, but normally he would be picked to help melees),those new abilities should be tied with counterplay, and make her feeling that she's useful. Remember the power of life and death? i still didn't talk about it, but **of course her theme should remain the same** So here is what an ideal kit looks like: passive: forgive me for this but i literally have no idea for her passive, the kit i have in my mind would revolve around her E. As for her passive maybe something that makes her as hard to kill as lulu or janna. would be kinda cool if it was related with the number 4, just for the {{champion:202}} {{champion:37}} interaction (lulz) E: power chord range: 550---->point and click---->same visual effect----->low cooldown (5 or 4 seconds) Sona throws an enchented attack to a target (ally or enemies) dealing true damage then heals over a duration (i don't know what the duration would be) damage and healing numbers depend on if the target is an ally or an enemy (damage is higher if it's an enemy something like 260 damage 130 healing, healing is higher if it's an ally) multiple instances of healing can be stacked "wowow rubick what's going on, Sona would be able to damage an ally and heal an enemy?" First she wouldn't be allowed to execute allies. Second Theorically no she can't, since the total damage or total healing are made to make it so sona will always deal damage/heal (since it's true damage she can't heal a target that has a lot of magic resistance). And the healing is over a duration so an enemy can die before being healed "then why give it damage+heal on both enemies and allies?" well to create a kit that doesn't work like the other, and to understand this we have to look at Q and W Q: hymn of valor: range: long range----->skillshot------->same visual effect(maybe improved) long cooldown channels for up to 1.5 second to play music and charge power(think of vladimir's E) during that time sona can move but is slowed after channeling for 1 second. When released, Sona unleashes a bolt of sound dealing damage in a small area around the target (think of karma's Q) if the spell was channeled for at least one second, enemies are slowed If enemies were affected by power chord healing , hymn of valor puts an end to the healing instances W: Area of preservence (maybe needs a rename): short range (something like 400)------>point and click---->same visual effect can be cast on both enemies and allies for the same effect: -gives magic damage reduction (a high number) **and immunity to power chord true damage** for a short duration (1.5 sec maybe?) while losing the ability to auto-attack you would ask me why both gain the same effect, because it needs this to be balanced Magical damage reduction would be balanced by the fact that an ally can't attack. Enemy not being able to hit is balanced by the fact that they have magical immunity "is magical damage reduction balanced?" we have tahm kench giving a mobile zhonya, we have braum shield why wouldn't magical damage reduction be fine? "but why is the target immune to power chord true damage?" that way Sona has more interesting combo she can W+E an ally to heal more She can E+Q to deal more damage to an enemy while removing the heal this is IMO what would make her gameplay interesting What about her R? well i had to think about something unique again, something that enchenters don't have yet R: Harmonic Symphony---->short range (something like 400)----> point and click---->new visual Sona plays a protective symphony for X seconds, instantly removing the crowd control effects affecting an ally (alistar ult on allies). During the next X seconds, Sona redirects X% of the damage done to the target to the end of the symphony At the end of Harmonic Symphony, the ally is healed for the amount of healing he received during the effect by power chord (healing done before damage) If the ally and Sona end up more than 400 units away from each other, the effect ends prematurely The idea is to allow Sona to counter CC based champions "why does she redirects damage at the end of the spell?" so her ult would be more than a QSS. But damage reduction has become generic since it's galio's thing Sona would try to compensate the damage that the target received by power chord healing This kit is an ideal kit IMO, has counterplay, clear strength and weaknesses Sona would be picked against skarner ult or ashe ult, would be weak against gragas ult and other displacement like alistar Her new kit offers her to be a support like the others by that i mean having the power of life and death instead of invisible teamfight power, saving people with W/R, killing enemies with Q slow. She would finally have a skillfloor, while still doing enchenters things.
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