The final Big responce on Varus new Lore, as well as the Paradox within

@Riot DyQuill Answers On Varus? What are your plans?
Hi! This is a message directly to Riot Dyquill, you are one of the few rioters that actually braved the boards and answered people's questions about the state of Varus's new lore and how people feel about it.
First off i would like to thank Riot DyQuill for keeping his promise. He allowed us to feel free to quote or link to his comment so i have done so for the purpose of this thread. **It now so appears, amongst all that has been said on the Varus retcon, that the only way for players to actually influence the creative process is to be proactive - meaning to state oppinions about something, that they actually don't know about is happening, but only while it is happening. After the process is complete it's done. ** **So how do we discuss influence something we don't know about? The answer is we don't. Sad to say that, what has been stated is the polite way to announce, that the player base no longer has ANY influence in what the creative team is doing with the game, nor will it have a chance to do so. As we all know you can't just run back in time and discuss something in it's creative process, that you do not know anything about while it is being processed, but only after it has been announced to you as a finished deal.** If you would turn your attention the the following text explaining the creative process behind Varus on the questions that we Varus fans had stated: > [{quoted}](name=DyQuill,realm=NA,application-id=6kFXY1kR,discussion-id=WJKTWhlI,comment-id=0011,timestamp=2018-01-13T02:23:59.031+0000) > > Hey all, back again. This is gonna be my last post in this thread, but we’re still working on more Narrative communication to come. > > I tried to answer questions as best I can without launching into essays for each, combining similar questions where possible but omitting loaded or entirely subjective ones (e.g. “Why the deception when the PBE story leaked” and “Do you plan to address the lore update that was uncalled for and extremely poor in it's creation”). I also didn’t pin it because this is really just following thru on a promise I made to this small group of dedicated Varus mains on Boards, and not meant to be a big announcement. That being said, feel free to link this comment if you see others bring it up who haven’t read it. > > Thanks for sticking with me on this wild ride - hope we deliver something that resonates with you more in the next one. > > > **WHY DO THIS AT ALL? WHY VARUS SPECIFICALLY?** Super simply put, our philosophy is to keep evolving League - not just the game, but the story and world. In most respects (based on gameplay data + affinity and sentiment surveys), Varus was middling (check out 3m20s mark of the /dev video: If we did our job right, players will now feel a lot more strongly about Varus either way - love or hate - and far less will find him just “ok.” > > I’ll note that it’s totally conceivable to have done this story with a completely new champ; however, our plan is generally to update older champs like Varus regardless, and we thought this story could be a good fit for him. > > > **HOW DID YOU DECIDE? WHAT IS THE PROCESS LIKE?** This is a good example of the kind of question i think is better answered holistically, about our process for all champion updates of this nature. But I’ll try to be more specific. > > Some of you have asked for specific arguments for and against updating Varus, which I’m not gonna replicate, because we have meetings, emails, messages, random conversations over lunch, survey data, etc. that all contribute to the “argument.” There was never a “final debate” where one side “won” and the other “lost;” in the end, the team (specifically the writing and creative leads) made a decision on what they thought - given everything i’ve just listed above - was the one to do. > > That being said - there was a ton of debate internally, among the core team but also Rioters in general. Virtually all the arguments that have come up on Boards and beyond came up during that process. > > (This next bit is more on the holistic side, and really oversimplified, but for what it’s worth…) we generally view champion updates through the lens of “pain versus gain: how many narrative and character possibilities are we gaining at the cost of losing some of the things players already love? We’re still collecting feedback and sentiment, but so far we think we achieved more gain than pain when it comes to Varus. > > > **WHAT DID THE TEAM CONSIDER "CORE" TO VARUS' CHARACTER? **“The core of the character, to us, was the tragic loss of a loved one, the desperation that leads to a "deal with the devil," and obviously the corruption stemming from a weapon.” First answered here: > > > **WHY REMOVE THE FATHER ASPECT? THAT FELT CORE TO ME.** Originally answered here: > > But yeah, we agree this is fair feedback. Ultimately, we felt that romantic love would be a stronger motivator and bond for this particular story - see the next answer. > > > **DID YOU TALK TO VARUS PLAYERS ABOUT THIS?** We have ongoing surveys that ask about favorite champions, as well as “Player Labs” where we invite mains of champs (among many other participants) to give us feedback on work in progress. For Varus specifically, we looked at existing data for sentiment on his backstory and affinity for his character. > > Every champion has diehard mains, either of that champ’s gameplay or story or both. We’re fully aware that changing champs always runs the risk of leaving those mains feeling betrayed, and so we apply the “pain versus gain” framework I mentioned above in addition to trying to capture as much of their “core” character aspects as possible - but while still trying to push the bar creatively. > > There’s a ton (and I mean a ton) of work behind the scenes that goes along with making decisions like this. This article on naming a champ ( gives a good peek behind the scenes. You may not see the surveys, or the conversations, or the “arguments,” but trust me, they happen. > > > **WHY MAKE VAL AND KAI GAY? WAS THIS A PR STUNT OR MOTIVATED BY SOMETHING OTHER THAN THE STORY ITSELF?** Val and Kai and their relationship was 100% a product of creative story decisions, and nothing more. The /dev video goes into some more detail at 5m11s mark (, but essentially we knew that for this story, they would need to have a super strong bond that would both bring them to desperation and then allow them to overcome the darkin presence; they would need to be partners on the battlefield and in life. While that suggested to us romantic love, rather than familial, the particular genders wouldn’t change anything about their heartlight relationship. So from there, the first draft of the script was written, and featured two warriors named Val and Kai. Simple as that. > > > **WHY DOES YOUR COMMUNICATION SUCK? WHAT WILL YOU DO NEXT TIME THERE'S BACKLASH LIKE THIS?**We’d like to think we suck a lot less now, but there’s always room for improvement. You can expect more Nexus articles and /dev diary videos (which have some of the best reach versus cost-to-make ratios), and the usual smattering of comments on forums like reddit and Boards. If you have other ideas of things you’d like to see, like a podcast or more regular blog, let us know so we can point to your comment and say “LET US GIVE THE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT.” > > As for handling backlash - we’ll keep listening and communicating, and take action based on those two-way conversations. But it always starts with the conversations. > > > **HOW DO WE COMMUNICATE OUR PLEASURE/DISPLEASURE WITH YOUR DECISIONS?** Honestly, the way you’re doing it now is fine. I think what this question really is getting at is, how do we have more of an impact on the things Riot does? Which is a fair question as well. > > My best piece of advice is to be proactive, saying what you’d like to see from X champ long before we’ve locked in the story. Feedback after the fact is still helpful and super encouraged, but we’ve likely made our final decision already, and it's more likely to inform our next decision than the current one - whereas proactive feedback about what you'd like to see can be taken into account during the actual development cycle. Obviously there are cases where we revert those changes, but it takes a ton of strong, accurate, and consistently negative feedback for that to happen. > > > **DO YOU INTEND TO CHANGE/REVERT THE LORE? WHAT WOULD IT TAKE?** I know this isn't the answer this group wants, but no, we don’t. There’s no magic formula that has to happen or threshold that has to be reached for decisions to be changed, but as mentioned above, we’d have to see some major negative backlash before totally reverting a decision that’s been in motion for some time. > > > **AT THE END OF THE DAY - DO YOU GET WHY WE'RE STILL FRUSTRATED AND ASKING YOU ALL THESE QUESTIONS?** Yeah, we totally get it. Wouldn’t still be talking if we didn’t. > > > **WHY SHOULD I BELIEVE ANYTHING YOU SAY?** I can’t answer this for you, but I hope as we continue to communicate about our decisions and update League, you’ll see what we’re saying is truthful and that we’re not here to bullshit you. Even when we disagree with one another, we’ll talk it out and keep it real. You cannot help youself and see a few things off. I would like to thank DyQuill on keeping his promise and i am very grateful for that. There is however the matter of what i commented below, of which i am still expecting a responce: > [{quoted}](name=IDarkIFire,realm=EUNE,application-id=6kFXY1kR,discussion-id=WJKTWhlI,comment-id=0011000d,timestamp=2018-01-14T22:07:56.016+0000) > > Hi there, thank you for keeping the promise. > > I have only 2 questions and i am also done with this thread as anything further would be utterly pointless. > > **First - are you kidding me with the following:** > > _"My best piece of advice is to be proactive, saying what you’d like to see from X champ long before we’ve locked in the story. Feedback after the fact is still helpful and super encouraged, but we’ve likely made our final decision already, and it's more likely to inform our next decision than the current one - whereas proactive feedback about what you'd like to see can be taken into account during the actual development cycle."_ > > **This whole segment is a paradox, since we cannot be proactive in something we have no idea is currently happening and being developed in the first place???? Therefore it completely elimitaes the possibility of us having ANY impact on the creative process, since as you said your decisions are final and if we didn't speak while it was in development it's too late now.** > > **Second of all regarding loosing the loved one (which technically neither of them didn't)**, i would like to direct your attention to this short segment explaining why there is no actual loss of a loved one in the new Varus lore, which i explained in the least possible amout of words and referencing your own comic book: > > **How is there a loss of a loved one again ? Rhaast keeps saying he's immortal. They are fused together in 1 and immortal. Who's dead in Val and Kai's lives since last time i checked only the darkin race is gone ?** > > > That's all from me There you have it for anyone that was wondering. I have also included a quick poll for anyone just to test out what the general oppinions are.
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