Preseason 2015 Q&A [Completed]

Ypherion (NA)
submitted in Gameplay
Hello! We've been sharing a lot of thoughts and goals around Preseason 2015 over the past week (you can find the Dev Blogs [here](http://na.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/game-updates/gameplay)). For the next few hours we'll be around to answer questions you have. We're going to leave some time for questions to be put into this thread and get voted up or down, so we'll start answering around 2pm PST. > If you have any more questions, feel free to head over to the [Patch Rundown discussion](http://boards.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/c/gameplay-balance/vigJkIk5-patch-rundown-preseason-discussion) where we're looking for your input on discussion topics! Looking forward to it! - Ypherion (and the Game Systems team)
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When tackling large changes like preseason, do you guys have an inkling as to which champions are going to be in the meta or FOTMs, or is this generally something that gets discovered over a period of time? Like, you don't have to reveal who, but do you have a suspicion that say, **Skarner** will be really strong with the new changes?
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seems like we have a skarner fan here
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DAT BATTLECAST SKIN AIN'T GON' PLAY ITSELF MAN
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We have our ideas - shout out to the live team on that, they've been working on that problem for a while now and I think they've got a pretty good grasp on it. That said, with this volume of change, there's always a huge element of uncertainty and I'm sure there'll be some fotm champs we didn't see coming or some champs who turn out to really need love. As for Skarner specifically, I think the new jungle *really* helps him. We'll have to see whether it helps him enough to make him really a strong pick, though.
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There have been discussions about the impact of these changes on relative champion power levels. We're obviously going to learn a ton from having a few million players hammering on things, but having some predictions helps us in two major ways: 1. Allows us to improve how effectively we can predict things in the future by seeing which predictions were accurate or inaccurate. 2. Helps us prepare for the sorts of changes that we might need to do on short notice.
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Thanks for the insight!
Ypherion (NA)
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The Live Gameplay team has been doing a lot of work on this. I'll dodge out of saying which champions we've identified but we're planning a number of champion balance changes to accompany the preseason patch and will have more on our watchlist. (Skarner did pretty well in some playtests >.>)
Morello (NA)
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(Assuming you're asking us!) :) Towards the end we tend to, unless we modeled out specific scenarios. For example, we expect junglers with more pronounced strengths and weaknesses to be better in preseason than before. After that, testing and implications of our changes will inform a new list - things that were unchanged via the systems (Hey, Lee Sin) or really flourished in a new world. The Live Gameplay team will be shipping some champion changes in 4.20 with preseason that are representative of that new world.
Xelnath (NA)
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> When tackling large changes like preseason, do you guys have an inkling as to which champions are going to be in the meta or FOTMs, or is this generally something that gets discovered over a period of time? Like, you don't have to reveal who, but do you have a suspicion that say, **Skarner** will be really strong with the new changes? The reality of developing preseason content is that you do your best to try as many combinations as you think you can - but not every single permutation of the champion pool will be explored. With millions of players, more games of preseason will be played in the first hour of live than were played in months of internal testing. So.... tl;dr - there's plenty yet to be discovered. (And if you think Skarner is broken good now, go play him and show the world.)
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With the new jungle items, are you expecting more diversity in terms of who jungles? If so, will you foster newly viable junglers or will you try to restrict non-traditional junglers to lanes?
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We certainly hope to see more diversity in the roster of junglers that are seen as competitively viable. That being said, it's a more dangerous place than it used to be, so there is certainly a risk of some of the more tenuous junglers having a harder time.
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But wouldn't this favor the characters already popular with fast clears and good sustain, and hurt characters like Nautilus, Shyvana, Skarner Jarvan, Mundo, and Eve who lack natural sustain and rely on either shields, armor increases or lack high dps but can't go to any other position? Shyvana and Mundo were already removed and moved to top since they could no longer play in the current jungle. Won't making the jungle even harder isolate characters who were originally jungle and struggle in other roles? Shyvana for example was a favorite jungler of a lot of Season 2 players and there have been not attempts to return her to the role of the queen of counter jungling. Are there any plans to help these junglers who will be hurt more then Lee Sin, Kha, Udyr, Ww and crew who are already rather popular and have notably higher dps to deal with a tougher jungle and built in sustain?
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I know this doesn't answer all of your questions, but it might help give a little insight into how we're thinking about the big picture: Shyvana fell out of favor not because she got worse at counterjungling, but because the focus of jungle strategy became centered on early game duels and ganks. She can still clear the jungle really fast and steal camps effectively, she just isn't competitive on the limited set of axes that Season 4 junglers are evaluated on. One of our goals with the jungle changes is to make it so that you don't evaluate a jungler solely based upon their clear speed and gank effectiveness, so there's room for different styles of play and junglers with different strengths.
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I expect more diversity in terms of which jungle strengths matter - so Nunu and maybe Shyvana/Mundo get to be better because counterjungling matters more, Xin Zhao and Udyr get to be better because dueling matters more, for example. The ideal here would be a rich metagame where you see that your opponent really wants to, say, invade you a lot, and you feel like you have options to deal with that which are specific to the game you're in, even if you're playing the same jungler as always. As for newly viable junglers, that'd have to be a case by case thing. We'd default to allowing it, but we'd keep an eye on the effect the jungler is actually having on the game. An example here would be Pantheon, who emerged as a strong jungler who was super oppressive, but once we got his kit in line with the new role, it actually worked out pretty well and is something we're ok with going forward.
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So there are not intentional plans to make sure Shyvana is once again the Queen of Counter Jungling and there is the possibility she will remain in this limbo where she got nerfed out of top lane which made her jungle too weak to really be picked over other options?
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I think that would come down to whether one of the champion-focused teams wanted to push Shyvana into that kind of niche. The goal for preseason jungle changes isn't specifically to make Shyvana the 'queen of counterjungling'. The goal is to make being the 'queen of counterjungling' a thing that can actually exist in the game alongside gank power, duel power, etc.
Moobeat (NA)
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Can we get another set of "rough notes" on the PBE boards :) ?
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We're trying to make them a little less rough and then will make them available!
Eotw (NA)
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Is the intention of the new baron buff (buffing minions) to encourage split pushing after acquiring it?
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One of the frequent discussions I've heard and been a part of is how a team that is strong in one particular strategy can get a temporary source of a different strength to finish off the game. The baron buff in a broad sense is shifting to be more focused on sieging, whether that be split pushing or together. This is intentional, since taking Baron is typically a sign of strong teamfighting. That being said, the health and mana regen on previous Baron buffs were very strong for sieging; we just wanted to make the strength much more focused and obvious.
Eotw (NA)
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It seems with the buff applying to nearby minions requires the team to split between the lanes to actually make use of it.
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I don't disagree with you in principle. I'm mostly saying that it's going to help whatever type of sieging you want to do. 1-3-1 is potentially the most "efficient" use of the buff as you point out, but if you don't have a 1-3-1 team, it's still going to help you barrel down mid lane and take an inhib.
Sozan5 (EUNE)
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Aren't you worried that in S5 jungle objectives will completely outshine turrets and even inhibs? Also, I am afraid that 2-3x smite might become a thing too. And with the new baron buff I presume that splitpushing will be extremely effective (imagine a Tryndamere with those buffed minions pushing top, while the rest of his team is applying pressure elsewhere).
Fearless (NA)
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Just to be clear here, do you mean Dragon and Baron, or are you worried about other jungle camps? Dragon and Baron are definitely going to be important this season, but they've been very powerful every season. A lot of the changes this season are to make these objectives give more clear, directed power that players can appreciate. Split pushing can be effective with the current Baron Buff, but does have more risk associated with it. Having each team figure out how to use Baron buff best is an interesting optimization for teams to make.
Shíny (NA)
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A lot of these changes have effects on late game and ending games.What are some strategies you envision teams using to end games in the preseason and next season?
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The strategy that has become more prevalent has been complete dragon control into team fight power with the Aspect of the Dragon buff. Historically, teams have not owned Dragon to the extent that it was clearly the contributing factor to game ending. Teams that took five dragons would win, but it would just be another advantage displayed through their gold and inventory. It definitely feels like something more to work towards, now. Outside of that, I'm excited to see how people engage in splitpushing and seeing if it feels healthier.
The new jungle seems like it's going to be great for lots of kinds of junglers ... except for tank junglers, who struggled a bit compared to more damage/gank junglers until Quill Coat evened the playing field a bit. With the removal of Quill Coat combined with the relatively slow clear ability of pure tank junglers, are we not just back to square one for those of us who play these kinds of characters? (Yes, I played a ton of Maokai and Sejuani in S4, and would love to be able to keep doing that in S5...)
Fearless (NA)
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We've been very aware of the tank jungler struggle. Some of the rewards are directly aimed at being optimal for tanks and less powerful for other classes of junglers, and a goal of the jungle items was to build their anti-jungle stats in a way that were equal between tanks, fighters and mages. It's always possible we won't have the numbers perfect when we initially ship, but we do have fairly direct ways to buff tanks that hopefully won't make fighters crazy.
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The new Hunter's Machete is actually really close to Quill Coat, not to old Machete or Spirit Stone. It gives you 40 health per 5 while you're fighting monsters, 15 mana per 5 (that number could change, and there are more mana sources in the jungle than before), and damage that doesn't scale with any of your combat power, just with how long you're in combat with monsters. We are concerned about keeping tanks relevant, as long as they're relevant for the right reasons and aren't just overtuned chain-gankers. I will say that I don't think they're markedly worse off than before - even Nautilus can clear pretty reasonably! and Amumu/Nunu/Skarner/Maokai all seem quite good - but I could be wrong about that and if I am, we'll be following up on them.
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As another example, from my limited experience Volibear is also in a really interesting place with the new jungle. He likes a lot of the items and a lot of the enchantments, and his sustain lets him stay out for a reasonably long time on his first clear. I feel like I have a lot of useful and interesting choices to make in itemization with the Thunder's Roar. For me, he's really fun at the moment. (Disclaimer: not a designer, but I have played some internal playtests.)
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1- With the dragon stacks . Those that mean dragon will be more valuable to kill then baron ? That fifth stack is pretty strong compared to baron minions and recall . 2- The third tower laser beam (IMA FIRA MA LAZAAA) Will you be able to solo that tower with only one wave of minion ? (Like most split pushers can ATM).
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> 1- With the dragon stacks . Those that mean dragon will be more valuable to kill then baron ? That fifth stack is pretty strong compared to baron minions and recall . We have seen teams opt into taking a 5th dragon instead of Baron. It grants a different type of power that you'd undoubtedly want if you plan on team fighting as opposed to sieging. > 2- The third tower laser beam (IMA FIRA MA LAZAAA) Will you be able to solo that tower with only one wave of minion ? (Like most split pushers can ATM). Every situation is a bit different! The laser beam is strong, but its main strength is in preventing dives via more deft aggro swapping. It's wave clearing potential is slightly stronger, but pretty similar to Live. If people don't react to a strong split pusher, the tower is still going to go down.
Ypherion (NA)
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1 - Aspect of the Dragon (tier 5 buff) is indeed stronger than Baron. This is on purpose because 5 Dragons is a full game investment, whereas Baron could have been a coin-flip Smite war. 2 - Right now tower durability is still being tuned (they seem a bit too squishy) so hard to say for sure. My guess is that a fed AD split pusher could probably still take them if uncontested. However contesting the tower should be more palatable as a defending duelist.
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Laser turrets generally speaking are faster at killing minions than slower high damage shots. This ultimately is because less attacks are wasted since shooing a minion with 1 health with a 200 damage shot is a lot of overkill damage. As a result of less wasted damage undefended towers should be slightly harder to take down since they clear waves faster but defended towers with laser beams should be more noticeably more difficult since the lasers also respond much faster to help defending players.
Kakwane (NA)
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Will there be new Masteries and some changes to Runes?
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We will not be making any largescale changes to Rune or Masteries this pre-season. These are both systems we'd like to approach at a later date though because we agree there is a lot of room for improvement there.
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This might be a stupid question but how far will the crab camp run away? And will fiddle fear affect it? Somehow I feel like fiddlesticks is going to be a lot better at jg now...
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Crab runs as long as you're chasing it and haven't killed it, though it won't leave the river. If you corner it, it'll try to dart past you. And yes, crowd control affects it. Fiddlesticks fear works... but so do things like Nautilus hook/slows/roots, Maokai root, Skarner stuns, etc.
Ypherion (NA)
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The crab is pretty much bound to the river and is susceptible to CC
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1) Back at the start of Preseason 4, mention was made of plans to do something with Runes/the Rune system. As far as I'm aware, nothing really came from that. Have those plans, whatever they were, been scrapped or moved to sometime Season 5? 2) With the game moving to Enchantments for Jungle items, any plans to add enchantments for other roles to augment and diversify builds? Things like Supports getting enchants for Sightstone instead of the kind of lackluster Ruby Sightstone, certain ADC items being able to enchant based on the type playstyle/type of ADC you want to play (auto-attacker vs caster and so on), and such. 3) Certain unique items seem cool in concept, but get almost no play and just aren't viable in most cases. can anything be done about this? I'm talking about like items like Ohmwrecker and Banner of Command. Items with novel abilities and actives, but lacking focus and usefulness in most builds.
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I can speak to number 2 as an engineer on the team that did the preseason work. The designers, RiotAxes in particular, have been excitedly asking for an actual enchantment system to make what you're talking about much more doable. The current setup is actually quite horrifying, and has led to a lot of wasted time and bugs. To be clear, the solution is very clever, it's just messy. Currently there are 6 items called Berserker's Greaves, 6 called Sorcerer's Shoes, etc. One for unenchanted, and one for each enchantment. I really hope I have time to make a fancy shmancy enchantment system to end this abomination.
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That seems like hell and horribly inefficient. Was there just never a need or an opportunity to fix this previously? Or did it just not come up?
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As a one-off system it was decided that making 25 extra items to implement boot enchantments was more efficient than engineering and debugging a new system. The decision looks different if we decide that we need to make 150 extra items to implement 10 different enchantable categories. There's always tradeoffs, and always a bunch of different ways to do things. There's always some beautiful solution that makes all the engineers jump up and down with glee over its elegance. There's always 10 other things we want to fix at the same time that we might want to make that beautiful solution.
Amateur programmer here! Just an idea, but could you not have the game read each enchantment as its own individual "buff" that is purchased separately from the item that enchantment attaches to? Then you could simply make the prerequisite for buying that enchantment (again, its own buff, and NOT attached to the item you buy it with) having one of the items in a list? For example, to buy the boot enchantment Alacrity, you have the item "Enchantment: Alacrity" as a sort of permanent elixir buff (that part is a bit rough but this is just a general idea) that can only be active while Sorc Shoes, Boots of Swiftness, Boots of Mobility, etc. is in your inventory. This could also create an interesting system where you can buy the enchantment on one pair of boots, sell those boots, and then buy another pair without losing the enchantment, allowing players to react more effectively to changes of pace in the game. If you want me to elaborate on that more, I can, but I figure this comment is long enough as is.
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Interesting thought. I personally think that keeping the boots and swapping the enchantment makes more lore-sense with my own mental model, but it's worth considering the other construct...
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+1 As for using Enchantments more broadly, I'd say there are places where it's appropriate, places where it's pretty much mandatory (the jungle items are one of these), and places where it's inappropriate. I could see doing a set of Sightstone enchants if we decide to expand on the vision game centered on that item - it feels thematically appropriate. We could do them as separate items, but enchantments sounds right to me. I doubt I'd ever want to do e.g. an Infinity Edge enchantment adapting it to Caster ADCs; if we're adding a Caster ADC item, that should really just be its own item, no reason to try to carry the baggage of Infinity Edge over.
Ypherion (NA)
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1) We still want to take a HARD look at Runes and Masteries overall. It's not going to be part of preseason, and I wouldn't even give it a SoonTM right now but it's definitely not dead. 2) All covered by Lt. Randolph 3) We'll see what we learn from this preseason's changes. We're trying to find the line that allows strategic niches but are still strong enough in terms of overall build that the items are appealing. We've got another attempt this preseason and we'll adjust as necessary :)
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1. What's the deal with the on and off {{champion:133}} changes on the PBE? Everytime you put up the preseason changes, they come up, but get taken away again when the changes are taken off. 2. Do you think that that the river camp's buff being uncounterable will make Dragon and Baron contests too risky for the team not controlling the speed shrine? 3. Is it just me, or do the the towers feel kind of squishy, especially when there are big minion waves? I played some solo games on the PBE to test the new jungle, and the minions always seemed to be much faster in taking the towers down.
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> 1. What's the deal with the on and off {{champion:133}} changes on the PBE? Unintended technical issues exposed changes that weren't quite ready for PBE. > 2. Do you think that that the river camp's buff being uncounterable will make Dragon and Baron contests too risky for the team not controlling the speed shrine? Possibly! It is always a very big risk to do an objective when there is any level of vision owned by the enemy team in the area. We are looking at tuning the vision reward of the crab, especially as we continue to receive feedback that the vision stalls out fights around those objectives. > 3. Is it just me, or do the the towers feel kind of squishy, especially when there are big minion waves? It's not just you, and we're looking into that! There're definitely a lot of mechanics that make minions stronger against turrets but that doesn't explain general turret squishiness.
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Hi! Can u tell us if there will be a Thread about Quinn and her possible Kit changes/tweaks/whatever? I think there are quite many Players out there (Mains/ or just normal Players who are interested in quinn but dont Play her cuz meta ...) I 'd love to share my opinion on her and have a great discussion with u red guys :) Never Forget {{champion:133}} 2Win :-D
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No immediate plans for a thread, I'm afraid. Once her changes get further along in ideation I suspect you'll hear from us! We have a lot of Rioters heavily invested in Quinn, primarily because as players we're big fans. She will not be forgotten.
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Mid Quinn OP, yo.
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Hm Fine, so I will be awaiting the changes with interest and kinda with fear :o and hope they will not ruin my Main Champ (Alone on this Acc, 200 rankeds quinn :P) That's nice to hear, but is there anything u can tell us Players already? Do u want her to be a better bot laner? Make her a "Top/Mid" only pick? what skills u wanna Keep/Change. Anything u can share already :)? best regards from Austria .. going to bed after ur answer :)
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Wish I could tell you more but I legitimately just don't know! It's not within our team's purview right now. We, uh... just caused the accidental release of one set of her experimental changes. Whoops. :(
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Yeah - there's at least 5 or so new mechanics that allow you to deal increased damage to towers. (Red Buff true damage to towers, Krug reward, Baron Nashor's empowered Minions, Ruin/Sorcery Elixirs, Ohmwrecker, Tower Defense Scaling) I'm going to be pulling / reducing the power of many of these, as many of them tend to be multiplicative with each other and generally increasing the durability of the tower - Additionally, it's likely that that we'll have to rebalance the inhibitor tower fight so the damage against squishy targets will probably drop to compensate for the increased durability.
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{{champion:133}} : I didn't (just) mean the crazy changes to her ult a while back. Sorry about not being more specific. Meant the range buff/MS nerf in particular. Like, what is the eventual aim of this? Does it intends to help Quinn out in a bot lane role, while not being overly strong in top? I don't mind the changes, but I always felt that her shorter range (compensated by high MS for a carry) was to limit her laning potential against auto-attackers, especially in combination with Blinding Assault. River crab (no, I don't write crap): I would think it to be interesting if the speed shrine and vision effect was tied to an incredibly durable ward (15-20 hit points). Destroyable with concentrated effort, but very risky and time-consuming if you're alone. Towers: Glad to hear that! Could it be that one of the tower-damage buffs is accidentally active the whole time?
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Afraid I don't have a ton of context on the reasoning behind the Quinn changes. From what I've overheard, you're correct in that the idea was to make her a slightly better choice in bottom lane. I think your crab suggestion is an interesting direction, too. As for towers: I find that unlikely, but will specifically check for it.
Fearless (NA)
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The main reason we haven't made the crab vision destructible is that it makes it much less valuable for a losing team. When the crab reward can be destroyed, a losing team that sneaks it gets very little from the action. They can't fight the winning team for the moment, so the vision lasts only until the winning team finds the crab shrine. With the vision persisting through a fixed duration, the losing team still gets the same benefit as the winning team would have. The uptime of the crab shrine and the details of the speed boost are still in iteration. Very likely to see some changes here.
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What levers do you have to pull if you’re not seeing strategic diversity? Both in team composition and in the jungle? You’ve mentioned a few of them in the dev blogs, but which ones do you think are most impactful, or, which lever will you look to pull first, as opposed to your more ‘last resort’ type changes? If itemization is going to be crucial to countering emergent strategy at the team comp level, are you willing to be aggressive and create new items midseason if needed? What are the limits to the Scuttle Crab’s AI and run distance? I feel like these changes (the Scuttle Crab and more valuable dragon) make warding even MORE important than it already is. Any plans to give players more access to wards, either through a larger placement cap, or additional items like wriggles that are power/stat items with a bonus ward slot? Is the ‘first time smite is used on the camp’ buff a one-off thing, or will this refresh on camp spawn? While I’m (kind of) excited that counter jungling will be more meaningful, will this be overkill? How is a jungler supposed to overcome losing the camp gold AND a valuable buff (which the enemy jungler probably just used to get even FARTHER ahead of you)? Really excited about the jungle item changes and think they’re brilliant in terms of solving diversity problems. Any more info to share on these? Any early ideas on how the aggregate of these changes will affect total average team gold gain? sorry for long questions and ty for ama
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I think the goal of creating levers isn't so much to have a "strongest" or "first" lever, but instead to have lots of different levers that accomplish different things. If we can adjust the strength of 1-champ split push without affecting the strength of 5-champ sieging, for example, that's a nice lever to have. The crab currently stays in one side of the river (e.g. dragon-side or baron-side), and dashes away from you if you corner him. I know there's still some iteration happening on his AI. First smite bonus refreshes each time the camp spawns. We're definitely going to keep an eye on the strength of counterjungling. We have levers like adjusting the counterjungle item vs. other jungle items. There are also some nice counter-counter jungling options like smiting wolves to get a patrolling spirit to watch for enemies entering your jungle.
Ypherion (NA)
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Levers for team comps: I think the power in towers or some items are probably the smoothest levers to pull that aren't directly on the champions themselves. More drastically we could add items. Even more drastically (and I'd be very sad) we could remove items. Levers in the jungle: We can look at certain Smite rewards that favor given roles/champions as well as the jungle item enchants. I think here we have so many levers that we can pull carefully that there aren't so many drastic changes...I'd say that directly tuning the jungle camps' defense and offense would be more to the drastic side. Adding items: We're totally willing to add items mid season. This could be for strategic items or to roles who need some help solidifying their niche. The Scuttle Crab is limited to within the river (unless Blitz or Syndra get involved). Unsure what you mean by the limits of the AI. RE: Vision. We're actually concerned that there may be *too much* vision in the game if anything. We're adding a bunch more through the crab and through the Murkwolf Smite reward. Having massive ward uptime ends up stifling gameplay and also leading to pretty rough snowball (since the winning team has more opportunities and resources to get wards up). Smite rewards are available once per camp spawn. No more info on the items for now :). They're available on PBE, but still very subject to tuning and change. Average team gold may be slightly lower due to the Dragon changes, but overall we haven't seen massive differences. Thanks for the questions!
patmax17 (EUW)
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1) Specific items: problem with these has always been, they fill a specific strategic niche, but currently still aren't used because they usually give very poor stats. Do you think this will still be a problem in Season 2015? I mean, if "niche items" will be skipped if they don't give good enough stats, but will be a must-buy if the give *too good* stats. 2) strategies: in League, as designers you always try to make the game rich and diverse, giving more and more option to players and teams. What happens though is that with time the best strategy/build/comp arises, overshadowing all other options. Do you think you can avoid this with Season 2015? What tools do you have ready to tackle this problem, apart from nerfing the "best choice"?
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> 1) Specific items: problem with these has always been, they fill a specific strategic niche, but currently still aren't used because they usually give very poor stats. Do you think this will still be a problem in Season 2015? I mean, if "niche items" will be skipped if they don't give good enough stats, but will be a must-buy if the give *too good* stats. I think there's a balance point where the stats are good enough that when you really need the effect they provide, the item is worth it and if you don't need the effect, the item is not worth it. > 2) strategies: in League, as designers you always try to make the game rich and diverse, giving more and more option to players and teams. What happens though is that with time the best strategy/build/comp arises, overshadowing all other options. Do you think you can avoid this with Season 2015? What tools do you have ready to tackle this problem, apart from nerfing the "best choice"? It really comes down to what actions you would take to counter the other team, and making sure there are appropriate responses to their strategy (and responses to responses, and...) If you build a strong teamfight and my team's only real response is to also build a strong teamfight, then that's just a dominant strategy where both teams will have to just do that. If you build a crazy wave clear team and make pushing towers impossible, and pushing towers is the only real way to achieve victory, that's again a dominant strategy and teams just have to do that (we saw this earlier this year with Ziggs/Xerath/Zilean). But consider what happens when there's an objective on the map that can be leveraged to break a stalemate - let's say Dragon's stacking buff has this effect (it might, it might not, but suppose it does). Your wave clear is still potentially a very valuable thing to have in buying time for your team to scale later into the game, but if the other team is getting close to maxing out their Dragon buff, your team is eventually going to have to come out of your base and take some risks, and you'll need to have a different kind of strength besides just wave clear to contest that Dragon. So, in that case, if stall becomes too powerful, one of our responses could be to make Dragon respawn slightly faster or make Dragon buffs a bit more powerful, thus providing some options to the other team to deal with your extremely powerful stall tactic. And both of these strategies could coexist if, say, there's a good payoff to stalling for a while even if you can't stall forever, such as allowing late game champions like Kog'Maw or Jax on your team to get their items. This is just one example of the kind of thing we're trying to build for preseason, of course.
Ypherion (NA)
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1) This is still something we're trying to solve. I think the new items (and updated items) are a good step and might get us there. If not we'll know more and can keep iterating until we crack how to straddle the line between must-buy-awesome-stats and cool-strategic-niche. 2) The goal here to make sure that different teams don't always want the same thing (moving Dragon to be less directly comparable to a tower is an example) helps here. That way we can see rotations of comps. It may be that we're not all the way there yet and certain strategies will rise to dominance. In that case we'll continue to work to bring other up, and possibly nerf the dominant. However, I think now we have more tools to nerf the strategy, rather than the champions which is an improvement in and of itself.
Konidias (NA)
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Will we ever see purple side with the same camera as blue side? This would be a huge benefit to balancing purple side with blue since there is definitely an advantage to being able to see more of your screen (bottom UI takes up a lot of real estate) and also the camera is angled in a way that benefits targeting a champion from below. Will we see this in season 5 along with the new rift?
Ypherion (NA)
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We're aware of the discrepancy and are exploring various options (yay!), but I don't have anything specific to announce on this (sorry!)
Morello (NA)
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Not as part of our preseason package - it's a different group that thinks about this stuff, currently.
patmax17 (EUW)
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Are there any plans for Marksmen? ADCs are the class with the least variety of builds and strategy, given the most significant part of their kits is the autoattack, which can't really be varied much apon...
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This patch is aimed more at the strategic level of the game - we're not doing items for specific roles except where the items provide strategic options in how your team is able to approach the game. So, no plans for a Marksman item pass at this time.
SnowFall (NA)
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Will you implement a system that detects 4v5 in ranked and gives "Loss Forgiven" to 4 man team? Edit: At least for the cases where a player is AFK from the start of the game till the end.
telkie (NA)
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That seems very game-able. For example - very bad lvl 1 gives trist a pentakill; someone on the team can dodge while the rest of the team gets a loss forgiven. I know LOL isn't the type to typically give up something for another, but I don't know that harsher penalties would help either. A duo quo could still dodge for the other guy.
SnowFall (NA)
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> That seems very game-able. For example - very bad lvl 1 gives trist a pentakill; someone on the team can dodge while the rest of the team gets a loss forgiven. I know LOL isn't the type to typically give up something for another, but I don't know that harsher penalties would help either. A duo quo could still dodge for the other guy. I'm talking about the cases where the player isn't present from the START of the game till the end.
Ypherion (NA)
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This is something I know we're looking into, but we're not the right folks to comment on it. Don't want to misinform.
Sharjo (EUW)
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So here's a question concerning the set up of the jungle camps and their jungler specific buffs. - On the side with the Sentinel, the Gromp and Murkwolves provide defensive capabilities for the jungler in the form of a defensive buff and defensive vision control. - On the side with the Cinderfang, the Krugs and the Razorbeaks provide offensive capabilities for the jungler in the form an offensive buff and offensive vision control. I imagine this was intentional, but what was the reasoning behind one side being focused on defense and the other being focused on offense?
Fearless (NA)
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The goal here was to provide junglers a chance to combo a few buffs and go off and do something very deliberately. Red + Razorbeaks works pretty well for a gank for example, letting the jungler know if they've been spotted on the way in, and then have the red buff for when they connect. On the other hand, if a tank Jungler is getting beat up and looking for some safety in their jungle, ghost puppy lets them know if they're safe to take a couple more camps, while the poison armor makes them a scarier target to duel if they're invaded, as well as helping their clear speed. We could have (and did have) more different types of buffs on each side of the jungle, but junglers generally just felt less positive about the buffs. Having the buffs work more like building blocks that built into a specific goal or purpose generally has been much more functional, and led to junglers feeling more able to take particular actions.
Yabio (NA)
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Are there any measures in place to protect against gromp usage abuse by say, purple teams bot? Seeing as smite can be used offensively, it is kind of possible for a support tank or some sort to role smite and then use the gromp buff after a quick kill for lane dominance. from lvl 1, its 45~ dmg over 3 which is a bit high at lvl 1. I imagine that if the buff is acquired, it pretty much means that the enemy bot lane is unable to attack a champ or take serious return harass punishment dmg until its duration is up. Unless, that is part of the intention to increase strategies in the case of a bullying long range harass aa such as cait/jinx.
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It's something we've aggressively tested and haven't seen happen - your laner has to pick Smite instead of, say, Ignite, and then get more use out of that minute or so of Gromp buff in lane than they would out of an Ignite or Exhaust. So we're keeping an eye on it and will fix it if it becomes a problem, but it doesn't look like we need to preemptively fix it. Now, I think we'll see some percentage of laners bring Smite because they want to help control the jungle from their lane, and they'll get some incremental benefits like this as a side effect. I'm fine with that as a thing some players do - opting into more strategic, team oriented gameplay seems appropriate. If it turned out to be super oppressive/unfun, or mandatory for some lane position, we'd fix it, of course.
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Will we ever see the themed Summoner's rifts like you did for the Harrowing and Snowdown in previous years?
Morello (NA)
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We think these are cool (but this is about preseason, not SRU :D) but we'd have to make new ones first :P
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Are the turrets gonna change at all like dmg?
Morello (NA)
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Turrets are getting some damage and statistic changes. Currently, the inner towers have a DOOM LAZER that hurts a lot and locks-on quicker, and all towers have different stats and scaling (generally slightly tankier).
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Does the whole team gets the dragon buff or just the slayer? Also what will happen with solo queue now? These changes promote teamwork , and there will be problems in solo queue for sure.
Morello (NA)
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Whole team will get the buffs. We think all League is about teamwork - whether in LCS or solo queue. Teams that work together in solo will be more successful than ones that don't.
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I personally very much dislike the new Dragon changes and would prefer that they be scrapped altogether. I see 3 main problems with the current PBE implementation. 1. There is basically no reason to fight over and contest early dragons. The first 2 buffs are pretty trivial and dont have much of a game impact. Why bother contesting a Dragon when you can take a turret instead to get global gold and map control which is substantially better than -8 damage from single target spells and attacks or whatever the number maybe be. I feel these changes will remove any incentives to fight over early game dragons. I know your answer will probably be something like ' you should contest early dragons to prevent the enemy team from getting to the later stages of the buffs'. But if you concentrate on snowballing your lead and take more important objectives rather than Dragon, whats to stop the opposing team from just closing out the game before the Dragon buff becomes relevant? 2. It takes away the ability to use dragon to come back from a gold deficit. With the current implementation if you're losing a game its possible to sneak or take a dragon and potentially catch up to an enemy team with a gold advantage. With the proposed implementation, im not sure how the first 2 buffs will do much to help a team that is behind as both are pretty trivial. 3. It basically requires the game to last for 40+ minutes to get any real benefit from these changes. What are your thoughts on these points? Aside from these points i hate the idea of non item permanent buffs.
Ypherion (NA)
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< Edit: 3rd time I've tried to post this and it finally worked (internet hiccups)! Sorry it took so long to reply!> 1) Valid concern! What we've seen in internal (and pro) playtests has been a general shift from feeling that Dragon is less important with these changes to thinking Dragon is VERY important. We'll see what happens on Live, but if players in general just don't care about Dragon anymore that's definitely a problem and we'll make changes accordingly. We have a lot of ways we can change this to encourage early Dragon play again if we need to. 2) The first couple of buffs are not negligible and are multiplicative with other stats making them more valuable than they might seem. That said, if we see a major upswing in snowballing and feel like Dragon is a culprit we can revisit this and look for ways to add comeback mechanisms. 3) I agree that T5 isn't likely to come online in much less than 40min, but T1 + T2 + T3 is a significant amount of power. The T3 especially is extremely powerful. So overall, agree that T5 will be rare, but I think the impact of T3 will show itself in many games.
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1. If you consistently trade early towers for Dragons - your team better concentrate on closing out the game as fast as they can. This is compounded on top of the fact that, due to the changes to tower defense scaling and the inner tower - pushing deep is a harder task than it was previously. The problem here is that if Towers and Dragons give exactly the same reward pattern (Gold and XP) - then the dominant pattern in the game will be to maximize whatever it is. We've cycled through fast push to Dragon control to fast push over and over - because the only meaningful difference between towers and dragons was the amount of gold / xp it granted. This effectively enforces that a single set of strengths will be dominant and that will be whatever set of strengths can take whichever reward is more powerful vs. risk at the time. It is highly likely this concept will need to be retuned. It is highly likely that the bonuses aren't right. However, the rewards for Tower control vs. Dragon control need to be different enough such that a Tower team and a Dragon team can actually show different strengths and weaknesses relative to each other. 2. It also takes away the ability to use Dragon to start a gold deficit which is a huge problem in terms of tuning Dragon and Towers against each other. It's likely that you won't be able to use Dragons to come back from a gold deficit, absolutely true. It also prevents there of being a Dragon's worth of Gold Deficit to begin with (unless a team is choosing to sacrifice a tower over a Dragon.) 3. You're right - it will be 40 minutes before there is a **direct** impact of the **last** Dragon bonus onto the game. There are a couple of things working against this - The Tier 3 bonus is fairly strong. Many of the other bonuses are not insignificant. However, throw all that aside: You don't need a bonus to have a strong direct impact to have a strong influence on the game. You need enough of an impact to keep you in the game - but the long term threat of dragon itself can bend decisions around it. An analogy: an advancing pawn does not need to be reach the last row to promoted to a Queen in order to have a direct benefit. The threat of it is what makes it a strategically interesting option. You are entirely welcome to dislike the change. It is entirely valid to feel like non-level / non-item progression is weird and wrong. Going back to all the Dragon changes however, the Dragon reward vs. the Tower reward is a major factor in determining which champions can be strong at any given time (Tower pushers vs. Dragon team fighters). Only by offering different reward structures for each, can we get to a point where it is feasible that both sets of these champions can coexist which each other. I'm pretty certain we're not there yet with the bonuses - and it's entirely possible that this reward structure is wrong. But it's the preseason and it's the time to risk mistakes to get to a better possible place.
Morello (NA)
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We think if you want a gold lead, taking a tower is the better decision for global gold and map control. Dragons still give some gold (+ a buff), but this lets the decision of tower-v-Dragon cleaner, as opposed to "just trade top for it." The buffs are also still in flux, though we do want more focus on ranks past 1. For the last point, 5-stack dragon is a threat to a team and also cracks a stalled game and ends it. This is a "release valve" for teams that decide to stall. We want to give non-gold rewards to give some strategic meaning to what you do on the map. Gold rewards being the only one really limit your choices.
Omni (NA)
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Aside from the jungle creep and jungle item changes are there any plans to make jungle tanks more viable again? Nautilus, Sejuani, Alistar, Cho'Gath, Mundo, Blitzcrank, etc? Are you planning to do tweaks to their individual kits or you guys think the item changes will be enough?
Morello (NA)
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It's a little of both. I suspect some tanks will need changes. We won't be making Ali a jungler :P
Dolph1n (NA)
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Will you seriously be able to smite champions? I will cry and go to Dota if this is true No joke Joke none {{summoner:11}} {{champion:1}}
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What in particular about smiting champions would make you cry?
SIayton (NA)
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How committed are you guys to the jungle itemization changes and the increased difficulty of the jungle camps? Is that something that's up in the air? I know I'm going to miss the spirit stone mana and health mechanic a lot personally. Could there possibly be an item that functions like spirit stone did in the future for junglers?
Morello (NA)
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Very committed. I think it's one of the most important directional changes we're doing. A lot of the reason you only see 3 champions in the jungle is there's one way to succeed - clear under X, gank all the time, and be good at dueling. This doesn't leave room for different styles of junglers - just pick whoever's strongest. Tougher camps make "safety" a jungler aspect they need to manage again. WW's really safe, but his pre-6 ganks are really poor. Compare this to a Rammus, whose ganks are nasty and his safety and dueling are weaker... This allows diversity on a more fundamental level.
Forsit (NA)
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Has there been any thought into increasing bans by 1 extra ban per team? What sort of thoughts are thrown around if the idea has come up around HQ? The champion pool as grown significantly since the last increase in bans per team, what was the mindset to increase then and is League at a similar point in growth now compared to then?
Morello (NA)
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We're looking at Pick/Ban, but it's not part of this set of stuff (I also don't think increasing bans is good, but changing how we do picks and bans is).
Veraska (NA)
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as a Wukong {{champion:62}} jungle main i have some concerns about my favorite monkey. in the season 4 jungle spirit of the elder lizard {{item:3209}} gave champions health -and more importantly, mana- returns for their damage. this created a new place in the jungle for junglers without innate sustain, champions like Pantheon {{champion:80}} Vi {{champion:254}} and my favorite champion Wukong {{champion:62}} the new machete upgrades for season 5 don't seem to have any mana return passives on them, are you concerned that this will significantly hurt the class of junglers that relied on spirit of the elder lizard? do you think this could create an over dependance on blue buff for most junglers? i would really like to go into season 5 knowing if i could still play my favorite champion in my favorite role.
Morello (NA)
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It might - it gives Wukong a weakness you have to manage, which is mana. Now that we want every jungler to manage something they're good at and bad at, that means it's possible Wukong can be played if you're fine with his downsides.
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What happened to Zz'Rots Portal? Did the item got scrapped?
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It's not scrapped. The item is complex from an art perspective (it requires a couple unique models), so it's still being made.
Avious (EUNE)
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1. Do you think that the preseason changes overcomplicate the jungle? I think they are hard to get used to by current players, imagine how harder it will be for new players to understand. 2. Why isn't the Dragon giving at least a small amount of global gold? Why did you decide to change dragon SO much? 3. Will those crazy {{champion:133}} buffs we saw some weeks ago return? They were awesome! 4. Unnecessary suggestion. The person who finishes the Nexus should be getting a bigger price than 50g like 1000 or so. That way it will be visible in the end game screen. Maybe it could give a small IP bonus too, like 15-25, nothing extravagant :p
Morello (NA)
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1. We do - some of the post-launch work will be to clarify this. For this preseason, though, we chose to focus on additional depth, but didn't worry as much about complexity. It does need to be managed though. 2. We wanted the reward to not be "somewhat like a tower" and to basically give a way to end the game via objective control over the course of the game. We also think the "bot takes dragon, top snowballs from free gold" is generally not awesome.
Ektura (NA)
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5 Questions: 1. I Know everyone will be asking this, But is URF coming back in preseason? 2. When will the new SR be released into Stages 1, 2 and 3? 3. Will there be any major changes to Champion gameplay or reworks? 4. Are there changes to Minion stats? 5. Will there be any HUD Enhancements? (Such as turning off moving from clicking the minimap/visual changes). Thanks for the Q & A, really appreciate somewhere to be able to get answers from the Riot team and not just rumours on Youtube.
Morello (NA)
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1) Not as part of preseason. If we reopen URF, it'd be as a featured game mode (we think new SR is pretty different, so don't wanna steal URF's thunder). 2) I don't understand this question :( 3) Not for this season - some champion balance changes will come with it (Like Lee is still insane in the new jungle, so we'll just deal with him as a special case) 4) Yes, though it's mostly to combat really crazy waveclear. The Baron Buff gives minions additional defenses too. 5) Maybe one, but I don't think it's in the preseason package.
Nixtarma (NA)
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Two things: 1. Do you only get the smite reward if you *kill* the large monster with smite, or do you still get the buff you if just used smite on it at all. 2. Can you guys quote the posts you are referring too? I really want to know what you guys are saying in your bits of light from the heavens, and I get confused without a quote >_< Thanks!
Morello (NA)
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When you smite it, you get the bonus (even if you don't kill it!). Fights around red are nuts :)
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This is mostly about supports and mana regen changes. 1. Will casters with lower than average mana regen get adjusted? (i.e.: Lulu, Lissandra). 2. Is Mana Font (Chalice passive) intended to be weak on non-mana stackers? On a level 18 Ahri (1184 Mana), the passive is worth a modest 4.5/9/13.5/18 MP5 at 75%/50%/25/0% mana. 3. Athene's Unholy Grail looks extremely weak compared to similar options, is it intended? {{item:3174}} Athene's Unholy Grail (2700g) 60AP, 50% Base Mana Regen, 20% CDR, 25MR. Mana Font. Mana restore on kills and assists. {{item:3222}}Mikael's Crucible (2450g) 100% Base Mana Regen, 10% CDR, 40MR. Mana Font, Cleanse Active. {{item:3165}} Morellonomicon (2100g) 80AP, 100% Base Mana Regen, 20% CDR, Grievous Wounds. 4. With the non-linear base stats scaling only breaking even around level 15, doesn't the new stat progression end up hurting lower level champions (i.e.: Supports) more so than other classes? 5. Would it be possible to tone down the visual effect for low game play effects? (i.e.: auras). I personally think the new Dragonslayer buff is way too noisy past 2 stacks. I can understand the max stack version having a cool visual, it's not necessary before that. 6. Any plans to change some text strings in the floating combat text (i.e.: Stunned!) to localization independent icons? Playing with a Kalista today "kill secured" popping around constantly looked really silly.
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> 1. Will casters with lower than average mana regen get adjusted? (i.e.: Lulu, Lissandra). Can't speak to specific champions too much but basically the answer is yes. We recognize that we will have to tune some champions to our new systems. > 2. Is Mana Font (Chalice passive) intended to be weak on non-mana stackers? Not weak. But it is not intended to be the magic pill that it is on Live where it solves all mana problems. > 3. Athene's Unholy Grail looks extremely weak compared to similar options, is it intended? We want there to be a chance you would buy the other items. Right now, that happens infrequently. There is seldom a reason to not get Athene's, provided you want the stats. And all of those stats are pretty darn good! If we find that there is a new sheriff in town, we will be quick to adjust accordingly. > 4. With the non-linear base stats scaling only breaking even around level 15, doesn't the new stat progression end up hurting lower level champions (i.e.: Supports) more so than other classes? We've been keeping an eye on this. The impact hasn't been bad thus far, but definitely worth our continued attention, which it will receive. > 5. Would it be possible to tone down the visual effect for low game play effects? We have an ongoing discussion about this: you're not the only one who feels that they're pretty loud. > 6. Any plans to change some text strings in the floating combat text (i.e.: Stunned!) to localization independent icons? Playing with a Kalista today "kill secured" popping account constantly looked really silly. Also something we've been discussing, but more in terms of dragon call-outs. Not sure what the final call is there. If we use the 'floating combat text' more for in-game messaging we will have to implement a system to localize that text.
Morello (NA)
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1) Yes. The Live team will be shipping adjustments on champions in 4.20. 2/3) I'd have to ask Reinboom. 4) It almost (essentially) breaks even at 3-4, so we don't think this will have a huge impact except in very early levels. 5/6) Sorry, other team and I don't wanna misinform on this.
Desmoshi (NA)
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How will be introducing the new changes to Summoner's Rift? Will you do this slowly over time or will it be in one big swoop? And how will the changes to map affect us as players?
Morello (NA)
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Huge swoop. A lot of things will change, especially for junglers and objectives. It's hard to summarize outside of the devblogs, as there's a lot.
The removal of Negatron Cloak really surprised me, so I'm gonna ask about that. Firstly, is Null-Magic Mantle going to be buffed stat-wise at all? I don't suspect any tampering with the price, since it was stated that having viable low-cost defensive options was a priority, but mayhaps will it give a bit more MR now? Or, perhaps, will it build into something a little beefier that takes the place of Negatron Cloak (similar to how Chain Vest is going to be)? And I noticed you said Null-Magic **Mantles**- ergo, not just one- would take the place of various MR items. Are you concerned at all that this might lead to inventory space issues?
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At the moment, NMM got a slight increase in cost (pushing out of starting item territory without certain masteries) and then replaces Negatron cloak in all other cases. Currently, nothing requires multiple NMM. More interesting starting choices for items is an eventual goal (at least right now), but we don't really like the place NMM would have there. This change was more to make sure that you could easily buy the defensive stat you need at later points in the game and feel screwed over from later choices based on which of the two branches you got.
With the new buffs which are only given by the use of smite. Lets say that I am a jungler and I smite the Rock minions, located beneath red buff, and a team/enemy player comes and kills the main Rock minion. Does the buff passes on to him? Do I get the buff? Nobody gets the buff? .. Thanks :]
Morello (NA)
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You get the buff when you smite it. It doesn't come back until the camp respawns. (HINT COUNTERJUNGLERS)
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Just wondering where bruisers will end up this season, and how the marksman dominance will be evened out.
Morello (NA)
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This season won't fix champion class balance well, though it's the next thing I have my crosshairs on.
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Is Ancient Golem still going to be around as a jungler item? I jungle Sion and I love this item on him.
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The new jungle items replace the old jungle items wholesale.
Mar10FaN (NA)
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I know that {{champion:150}} is still a new champ and all but will he get a new splash art update?
Morello (NA)
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No - his splash is one of the most up-to-date and awesome!
With the new Poacher jungler item, I feel like the reward for counter jungling is a bit too high. For one thing, junglers who use this item will simply ignore fighting champions. The goal as a jungler will become "How many camps can I take while the enemy jungler ganks another position?" Someone who is using Poacher will simply try to counter jungle whenever possible, even at the expense of laners who need help fighting off the enemy jungler. It doesn't promote healthy team play. If the enemy jungler simply stays in the jungle, the entire Item is either completely useless (as the enemy jungler will simply spot you doing your counterjungling and will kill you in the process) or it will enable you to get so far ahead of the enemy jungler that there won't be a way for them to jungle at all. Champions like Nunu, Shaco, and Lee Sin, whose counter jungling is extremely oppressive as is, will be able to bully junglers away from most of their camps just by being able to steal camps with little risk (Shaco and Lee having major escapability and dueling, and Nunu having Smite as a skill as well as a Summoner Spell). In the case of bullying a jungler completely out of their own jungle, not only does the player get the benefit of drastically reducing the gold income of the enemy jungler, but they also are granted even MORE gold, to give them an even more oppressive lead. While you could argue that the enemy jungler should simply go out and gank lanes to make up for it, that means that laners would need to help their junglers get back in the game, which is the complete opposite of what a jungler is meant to do. I'm not saying that it needs to be removed, but I do feel like the Poacher item is a bit too powerful for its own good. It creates a "feast or famine" scenario that encourages a style of play that is already rewarding on its own.
Morello (NA)
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We worry about tuning on this too - a lot of preseason will be used to figure this out under the weight of millions of games.
One of the largest problems I've been having with the past season is the increasing ease of playing a team comp. that only needs to build damage. Rather than filling roles of tank, bruiser, etc, success was based off your ability to build full damage and still be safe and successful. Fiora's ult, Fizz's invulnerability, Riven's shield, or Zed's shadows being examples of building only damage, but still being safe. It's this meta that has brought Ryze into the meta, seeing as he can build damage and tankiness simultaneously. Most tanks or bruisers can't do both and fall behind. And even should a level of tankiness be achieved, items such as void staff and last whisper are almost first buys for most damage dealers and negate any progress. With the new elixir of wrath, the building damage whilst staying safe looks to be easier, as the damage translates into health. TL:DR, being a tank is hard, yo. My question is: How is the game going to change for tanks in the preseason? Tower diving with the new Ohmwrecker, regenerating health out of combat, or initiating more easily isn't going to stop you from dying immediately whilst the enemy team invicibility, shields, or jumps away.
Morello (NA)
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I don't think tanks are a big problem to play other than having a place to live. Amumu is GROSS in preseason, as is Rammus. I think letting tanks jungle more effectively is a huge answer, especially with their gank presence now being good enough to select them. Some tanks will need more individual kit work to get there.
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I'm worried that we're going back to the S1 style of 'Are you Warwick, Nunu, or Fiddle? If not, get out of the jungle!' My favorite jungler, Sej, already has dangerous clears, and I'm not too excited at how this is playing out. I'm also worried that any changes to the jungles are going to be useless as long as Lee, Elise, and Kha exist in their current form.
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One of the bigger significant goals that all this provides for us is the idea of having more control over classes of junglers. Tanky dudes feeling weak? Amp up the Juggernaught build of jungle items. Ganking Control too strong? Pull back on the slow a champion smite. It might take a bit to achieve that in actuality, but you guys can play a TON more games than we can and we welcome the feedback on that for this reason. It'll be an ongoing shift.
Sozan5 (EUNE)
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Are there any plans for resourceless champions? I mean, few months back you were talking about "Meaningful Choices" and I think that resourceless champions are exact opposites to that. There is very little choice involved when you can use the skills whenever you please with very little consequence (at least less than for energy/heat/mana/health based champs) and it also removes one counterplay option - that is waiting till enemy runs out of his resource. Also, it makes those champions harder to balance (they will feel too good if their skills outshine or at the same power level as the one costing resource and they will feel bad if their skills are worse). IMO it adds nothing to the game and I see no reason to keep it. I always wondered what's your opinion about it.
Morello (NA)
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Sometimes, resources aren't part of the rich decision, but many cases where there's no- or a wrong resource, there's a problem. Kennen, while not OP, is very hard to balance being ranged with energy. No plans to tackle just this, but it's a problem we agree with.
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I don't have any serious questions, but there is something that's been on my mind lately. Over the years, I've seen numerous complaints about the nature of critical strike as a stat, and historically Riot has always come back to rebalance it or the champions that utilize it in some way (we're all looking at Tryndamere). I was wondering if there have been any discussions over at Riot as to how to make critical strike more of an engaging stat and not something where the person facing a critical striker's only choice is to simply "buy more armor," as that's the choice that a player would take when facing any AD champion (critical strikers merely making the purchase of armor more important without any real depth to the interaction). And not just auto attack critical strikes, there are a small number of champions who can critically strike on certain abilities (like Garen's spin) who could benefit from expanding upon what critical strike is and how it affects player dynamics. With this in mind, I thought it might be kind of interesting to introduce a new stat to go alongside critical strike chance and call it critical strike rate. Sort of liking adding a cooldown to crits. While you could sport a 55% chance to crit, with a crit rate limiter, you could make it so that you can only crit once every 2-3 seconds, so that crit functions off of more than just attack speed. With such a stat, you could create and rebalance a whole slew of items targetted towards non-auto attacking crit strikers who could use crit without attack speed, and you could think about adding more on-ability critical strikes. But this is mostly just me rambling...
Morello (NA)
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We actually had this task on our things for preseason, but had to scrap it to focus on the things we did do. I think we can do something more interesting with crit.
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I will try and ask this in a more general way. It's evident that changes to do with: items, overall and specific diversity, methods and strategies, etc; are currently being worked on. Ultimate Question: **Have you guys thought about, currently are, or will work on, the larger, specific, game problems?** *Examples:* -the phenomenon of "feeding" -the phenomenon of losing/doing terribly/having a bad game because of things like this: 1. Goes in lane against a champions that counters mine 2. I die one time 3. I end up feeding because the enemy champion is fed 4. I lose lane and can't recover. Other possible effects: 5. That champions ganks other lanes early 6. the enemy champions in the other lanes get fed from the ganks 7. We lose the entire game because I laned against a champion who counters me. (All of this, 1-7, has happened to me. Ryze vs. Fizz smh) -out of place champions, which can also affect other champions: Ex: Ryze top and Gnar top have caused regular top lane champions to become less used -the ideology of "its just ARAM" or "its just norms" -players of a different level (both technically and non-technically) being in the same game [Ex. In my times of being level 20-29, I was commonly paired with players who were in a ranked series] -the summoner spells ultimately not being strategically balanced (Clarity, Clairvoyance, etc.) -mass champion fixes, nerfs, buffs, and such that are needed (Warwick is literally from the 80s, Katarina... nuff said, champions that were OP and in result were over-nerfed and are now useless, etc.) *Note: Recently champions are being over looked, re-skinned, completely re-done, getting small changes, etc. (Ex. Sion, Cho Gath). So with this point, just keep doing that with a good pace, there's a decent amount of champions that needs these things.* I think there are things, like the ones listed above, that really do need to be looked at. I understand that you guys do bugs fixes/small changes pretty much regularly, I just was wondering if improving the game in this sense is currently a priority.
Morello (NA)
new
I mean, is the question "what about every other issue in the game?" Yeah, there's other issues :P We have to prioritize work - and we think gameplay stagnation is a big worry we're combating with the preseason changes. Champion stuff is a different group, but matters a lot. It's the next important thing to me.
thehaze (OCE)
new
is there a estimated date for the new map because all i know is that its gonna come out before season 5.
Morello (NA)
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Before Season 5!
Shogger (NA)
new
When you say that Elixir of Iron grants **increased size,** is that purely a visual effect or does it make your champion's hurtbox larger (to tank extra skillshots, etc)?
Morello (NA)
new
Hitbox increases too. For tanks, this is a benefit. For squishies, this is a penalty.
new
How will Udyr {{champion:77}} fare in the new Jungle? I would like to know if he you consider he is on the weaker side of balance and if any buffs could be throw his way. I always liked the idea that Udyr's abilities get an bonus effect at max rank, like flat stats. Tiger could give flat attack speed, or increased Bonus damage. Turtle could give flat resistances or tenacity or mana sustain. Bear Stance permanent speed bonus aside from the boost, maybe a longer stun. Phoenix increased range on both the aoe Dot and the AA flame cone proc. Especially with the indirect nerfs to him via superior base stats for junglers makes it harder to invade, something udyr excels at.
Morello (NA)
new
Udyr's currently strong on live, and seems strong in preseason too.
new
1)Are there any plans for changes/updates/improvements to the other maps such as the Howling Abyss & Twisted Treeline? 2)Will the new jungle make it easier for players new to the jg role or wish to improve at the role?
Morello (NA)
new
Not as part of preseason. Maybe the environment team would know more there. I think the new jungle will be more difficult to learn to optimize, but much deeper.
new
Is URF coming back permanently? And when do we receive our ranked rewards?
Morello (NA)
new
Nope - URF will never be permanent. It may return as a featured game mode again.
new
As a support main, what can i expect in season 5? Will there be new objectives that the support has to worry about or will there become a stronger unity between the support and adc in contesting objectives? With the new champion, Kalista, i feel like there could become a strong bond between the two and look forward to what riot masterminds this time :)
Morello (NA)
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Dragons over time are a huge factor for bot lane to think about, as the stacking dragon buff getting to 5 is a game-ender. I think that's the biggest specific to support.
hajro (EUW)
new
Do you fear that the massive homogenization of stats, items, baron, drake are going to make this game more boring to play?
Morello (NA)
new
I don't actually understand your question. What are you concerned about?
new
Is this preseason going to drastically change the game? I am just a little worried that the game will be too different.
Morello (NA)
new
It will change the game, but not the fundamentals. There's still laning, last-hitting, teamfights, and objective control. The game's foundation is similar, but the bits are pretty different.
Kobold (NA)
new
You have stated before that there is no planned changes for the masteries and runes. Would you reconsider this or is it set in stone? If you would not do complete new runes and masteries like all the other seasons would you at least take a pass at some of the masteries and make changes? Example being once again same as last preseason the mastery Bandit.
Morello (NA)
new
Set in stone for preseason. We think Runes and Masteries need something way bigger to get anything actually to improve there.
new
At most, we would do minor tweaks to these at this time. We don't have any significant changes planned for this preseason for runes and masteries. It was outside of our focus area.
new
When is new summoners rift coming out? Also when it comes out will we be able to play on the old one?
Morello (NA)
new
New SR will replace old SR after it's fully on (out of any betas, etc).
Can u explain why u decided to show the health of the large monsters?
Morello (NA)
new
The information is already available, and so we would either make it clear, or remove that information. Having skill being "read the hard-to-see-UI in the corner" is not what we'll support :P
Will pre-season changes interfere with ongoing projects, like fixing the mess that was made of **Cassiopeia**? Getting ignored for over a month because World's was happening wasn't particularly fun to wait through, will pre-season be just as disappointing for her fan base?
Morello (NA)
new
(THERES A WHOLE THREAD FOR THIS I POSTED IN LIKE A BILLION TIMES :P)
bane898 (NA)
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What are your goals considering the new Dragon, Baron, and crab monster buffs in the jungle? Are you looking to encourage more team fights over these objectives? or do you think that the changes aren't substantial enough to really change game play?
Morello (NA)
new
Yes - we're looking for these to be more contested. Jungle camps by junglers, mainly, and large monsters are more important to control consistently. Dragon, however, is less impactful if there's only a one-dragon difference than currently on live.
new
Is there going to be any changes before season 5 to poppy's kit? Such as she can be reliable in the jungle or the bot lane?
Morello (NA)
new
Not before season. We need to "Sion" her, but the good news is she's high on our priority list.
Daen (NA)
new
With the fact the game's systems (particularly jungling) seem to be getting more complex in this preseason, are there any plans to create an actually valid form of instruction usable by the players? I think we can all agree that the current format for tutorials is woefully inadequate and completely skips important gameplay knowledge and mechanics. The tutorials show the absolute basics, yes, but it's kind of like teaching someone soccer by showing them how to kick a ball and pointing at the goals then considering their training complete.
Morello (NA)
new
We're actually worried about this quite a bit. I don't have a good answer, but we share your concern.
new
One part of the preseason changes are the tweaks to stats-per-level distribution. My questions are about these adjustments. I do not understand the basis of these changes. **(1)** Why are you doing them? If we look through the [list of champion statistics](http://leagueoflegends.wikia.com/wiki/Champion_statistics_at_level_18), we find a lot of inconsistencies. Some champions have nearly identical stats despite different playstyles, others the opposite of this. **(2)** Why isn't there a more standardized approach to stat distribution? I find it extremely disheartening that champions like Nidalee, Ryze, Morgana and Lulu are some of the most naturally tanky mages, especially when I also consider that these are some of the most commonly seen champions in competitive play. **(3)** Why aren't there any clearer patterns for these distributions? e.g. poke style champions have low base AD and HP, sustained damage has higher base ad for closer quarters, etc. Once again, looking at the list there are just a bunch of champs that just so happen to have 4 HP less, 6 more AD, 5 Mp/5 higher, etc despite playstyle differences.
Morello (NA)
new
1) We're doing changes to make the level-2 spike of "one extra minion" spell death less often in serious play and somewhat reduce the importance of that single moment. 2) Honestly, because we've never prioritized it as a task. I think it'd have value. It's on the "backlog." :P
new
So 3 different questions 1. The new jungle changes so far are kicking the crap out of the majority of junglers. should we expect to see some better balance coming to the jungle? 2. Why does the first dragon kill grant stats right away? They might not seem like much but for some champions they could tip the scales into a snowball out of control. Why not have the first dragon kill be the catalyst for the future dragon kills which would then grant stats. It just seems like to much free stuff to early right now. 3. What exactly are the goals of the scuttle crab? right now it feels pretty awkward and favors the red side a little more than the blue side. Red side can cover a sizable and important vision area with the wolf sentinel the jungler can spawn and scuttle crab shrine effectively covering the red sides bottom lane from getting ganked from behind. Blue however remains completely exposed to its rear gank path with no neutral vision benefits. Has having the scuttle crab spawn on both sides of the map, alternating with each respawn been considered?
Morello (NA)
new
1) The pill to swallow is that jungling will be riskier, harder, and less dominant than Season 4. Jungler game impact in S4 was of-the-charts high (junglers run games, right now) and it will feel like a knee-capping. It's relative as there's new ways to succeed in the jungle and new classes of junglers to bring. 2) We still do want one dragon to be meaningful itself, so we don't want to defer all the power there. 3) It's to give something neutral to fight over, and what it provides opens up safety and map mobility for the winning team. We have some worries of vision creep, though.
Kikanolo (NA)
new
What do you envision as the place of Shyvana in the new jungle?
Morello (NA)
new
Fast-clear/Counterjungling, weak ganks pre-6 (and ult-reliant).
CalvsDez (NA)
new
Is Rito planing to rework any other underused/bad champions? Also are there any nerfs happening soon for truly over powered champions?
Morello (NA)
new
Reworks aren't part of preseason this year (though the team working on those is still doing them). We'll be doing some nerfs in 4.20 to really bonkers people that blow up preseason, and will look at what happens on live for 4.21.
new
YOU NEED TO LET LEONA USE HER OWN PASSIVE SO I DON'T GET KS'D ALL THE TIME! It's bogus you can't lane with any one else and expect to be a carry, which in my hands she is totally capable of, when your allies basic attack can Ks's you like an abil. {{champion:89}}
Morello (NA)
new
Leona helps people. She needs friends to be successful. Therefore, Sunlight is not self-proc.
Sozan5 (EUNE)
new
Ok, another one. With the upcoming Health Regen changes, it's quite clear that you want to make sustain other than life steal to be viable at every point of the game. Also, it seems that you want to add some diversity between the types (with the Warmog regeneration increased out of combat). So, have you considered any changes to Life Steal? In S4 (and pretty much since S2) Life Steal was the only item-based sustain that mattered a lot, especially in late game (Spell Vamp from items is much lower and is much more of a niche pick and health regen was low - even Warmog wasn't all that great). IMO Life Steal should be the superior choice in teamfights, duels and generally fights between champions. But right now it's also incredibly good tool for sustain between the fights (like - adc healing half health by killing a ward) and I feel it will make it superior choice regardless of cirumstances. Yes, I do realize that Life Steal requires hitting enemy units - but let's be serious - going into jungle and hitting wolf 3-4 times isn't hard. What do you think about buffing life steal number but reducing its effectivness against minions and monsters (to keep Life Steal the better choice for fights and health regen for between the fights)? Also, what about Spell Vamp?
Morello (NA)
new
I agree with your thoughts on LS - I wish it was worse OOC and better in-combat. Right now, the game's razor-balanced on LS for marksman, so it'd take something pretty comprehensive to fix.
new
Is Nunu getting new buffs with his q or are you just changing the names?
Morello (NA)
new
I THINK just changing the names for now, but we'd like to fix that.
new
Hi I hope you answer my question! And just wanted to say I been playing 2 years and I am so glad there is a game like this! 1: With new seasons I get big anxiety when it comes to vision. Is there still going to be a 3 ward limit + 1 Pink Ward for supports? I kind of feel like 3 Isnt enough. or is there any way to reward players who actually do ward? 2: From Season 3-4 you guys focused a lot on preventing snowballing off one kill. However late into the season it seems like some champions only need one kill to snowball, still. Is this still an issue or is it just me? 3: Will mid laners get blue buff from jungle in season 5!? I know its silly question but I saw something that a jungler can have only 1 buff?? is this to push the jungler to giving out his buffs and to show junglers they truly are just glorified supports?
Morello (NA)
new
1) No changes to Ward Limits in this season - we're worried about TOO MUCH vision with Crab. 2) I think we're thinking about Snowballing being a big problem still - something to watch. 3) Junglers can still have more than 1 buff, but the SMITE rewards are one at a time due to the cooldowns.
new
I feel like Athene's is getting way over nerfed with the current PBE changes. Some people at Riot also seem to seriously hate the item and there are misconceptions surrounding it. 1. It does not give unlimited mana. In conjunction with blue buff sure, otherwise it doesnt. Many champions on which Athenes is core can EASILY go oom in a short period if time even with the item. 2. People dont buy other items on these champions because there are no other viable options. The champions that buy it need both CDR and are usually massive mana hogs. Morellos does not provide enough regen for most of these champions. Tear takes a long time to stack and doesnt have CDR, Rod of ages takes a long time to stack and doesnt have CDR. If you really want mages to use other items add a new item with CDR and high regen, otherwise decrease the mana costs of champions that need to spam spells. Otherwise increase the cost of morellos and give it more regen,
new
The whole chalice is kind of a cyclic problem. With Chalice being so dominantly powerful on negating any control we have over mana regen rates, we have to nerf mana regen in order to compensate for the existence of chalice. Basically, certain champions are starved for mana BECAUSE chalice exists. New chalice fulfills a slightly different role and has a different point of power that's more reflective of the whole item build rather than on the individual champion power. If this change results in some champions being too starved for mana without options out of it, we can now more safely just buff the mana regen on those champions.
new
Problem with your logic is that there's the existence of manaless champions, that don't particular pay enough of a price for being manaless in the first place. Akali, Zed, Katarina, they really don't give a crap about your chalice. And they'll be able to stay in the lane longer because of it and will come out ahead for it. So the itemization for mana-champions needs to be a hell of a lot stronger than the itemization for non-mana champs. But that currently isn't the case.
new
If you consider the energy vs mana difference problematic, then this is in line with that. Scenario A: Chalice is solo-y strong. Result: Mana users have low base mana regen and must buy chalice to stay relevant. Scenario B: Chalice is solo-y weak. Result: Mana user can have higher base mana regen and no longer need to buy chalice to stay relevant. Which scenario would you like and why? We're pushing for B.
new
But if it becomes such that you don't need to buy mana regen in order to stay relevant against a mana-less champion, than what's the point of mana besides 'don't be an idiot with your spells'?
new
Relevancy does not dis-equate mana gating. "Don't be an idiot" is actually a bit of an interesting statement. That has the potential to mean quite a bit. If we made it so that all mana champions were only gated by the effect of "Don't be an idiot" and then we removed mana as a cost entirely, what would that mean to those champions? Would they suddenly be able to do things that would otherwise be idiotic to do? If so, then that means that mana *did* do something when it was an effect.
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