DJ Sona Q&A [CLOSED]

http://na.leagueoflegends.com/sites/default/files/styles/scale_xlarge/public/upload/dj-sona-ama-1280x720.jpg?itok=4UxTRQXy **Edit: Hey everyone, thanks for stopping by! It was fun answering all your questions and we'll see you on the Rift!** Hey guys, The skins team is stepping out from behind the curtain for some Q&A about DJ Sona! Whether you’re interested in her development, her music or other fun facts about skins – ask away and we’ll be happy to answer! If you missed DJ Sona’s opening set, get all the details on League’s premier disc jockey [here](http://promo.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/dj-sona/). * Nathan "Riot Paradox" Moorman * Elie "Riot Ve1vet" Lehman * Jeremy "Jestercapp" Putnam * Heather "Riot Baconhawk" Jones * Brennan "Riot Reaper" Haase * Paul "Partiest Cat" Jarvis * Sunny "Kindlejack" Pandita * Eugene "kyugene" Kang * Paul "Paulewog" Hoefener * Myke "DontHassleDaHoff" Hoff * Paul "RiotZeronis" Kwon * Katey "Riot KateyKhaos" Putelis * Adam "Riot AdamUnicorn" Kupratis * Tom "Riot Whist" Robbins * Toa "Iceburrg" Dunn * Viranda "Viranimal" Tantula
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new
Where did you think of the names "Ethereal", "Kinetic", and "Concussive"? What do they represent? Please answer Rito :) Love the idea!
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Each name is a different type of "energy" that we felt represented that specific style. We didn't want DJ Sona to be tied to existing genres but to instead have a trio of music styles that are unique to her.
new
@Paradox brings up a rad point here.. One of our goals was for the music to be as unique to DJ Sona as possible (as opposed to be being tied specifically to existing genres, or to the sound of a specific artist). This was actually why we had two artists collaborate on each of the styles... We chose these three “energies” to be representative of many many genres that we loved. Kinetic was meant to be an homage to high energy euphoric genres (such as house, trance, etc), Concussive was meant to be an homage to the darker side of electronic music (think industrial, dubstep, etc), and Ethereal was meant to be an homage to the more mellow electronic genres (such as ambient, downtempo, etc).
Varindra (NA)
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What do the other members of Pentakill {{champion:82}} {{champion:30}} {{champion:83}} {{champion:2}} think of {{champion:37}} Sona's electronica-based side project?
new
Maybe Sona is just branching out musically but still loves her bandmates!
new
Will Karthus see his folk singing career take off?
new
When the team started working on this skin I was a freelance artist, a huge LoL fan but with no idea of what was happening internally. I pitched a whole backstory where the band were all mad about Sona leaving them to go collaborate with other big name artists. Actually I created a fake news story as a promotional concept, I'll see if I can find it. None of it was used in the end but boy was it fun.
new
Hate to break it to you, but I heard him singing viking opera when he thought no one was around the other day...
kyugene (NA)
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Pretty sure electronica doesn't jive well with them. There may be some problems that need to be rectified...
Varindra (NA)
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Well it can't be all that bad. I mean, **"The Hex Core"** from *Smite and Ignite* definitely had an industrial/electronica influence to it. No doubt Sona had a large part in making that happen, but the other band members must have agreed to putting it on the album, right?
new
2 things: 1) Our names are oddly similar. 2) It's funny... we've actually had a lot of internal discussions on some how darker forms of electronic music that inspired Concussive (such as industrial, dubstep, etc), are essentially the electronic music world's equivalent to metal. I think electronic groups like Glitch Mob are pretty damn Metal! \m/
new
Let's just say it's hard to imagine Mord, Karth, Yorick and Olaf fist-pumping to Kinetic...
new
The most obvious question ever: Why did Sona get the ultimate skin? In other words, why make DJ Sona ultimate over something else?
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Hello! Thanks for the question. I worked on DJ Sona as Tech Artist/ Rigging Dude. So when deciding on which skin concepts we want to pursue, and at what tier, a lot of it is about the potential we see and our personal excitement about the concept. When looking at ultimate skin ideas, many folks on the skins team (especially the sound dudes!) had a lot of excitement about DJ Sona. We had a lot of feature ideas we thought were really cool, lots of opportunities to do things we hadn't done before, so we thought it was worth pursuing. Yes, there are characters that don't have as many skins as Sona, but we felt this concept had the most potential. :)
new
A followup: How long have you been working on the skin? This seems like a concept that would've been thought up pretty quickly, after all, and the skin seems to have A LOT more work put into it than the other two ultimate skins. Like, Super Saiyan 3 compared to Super Saiyan 1 levels of difference, just to have an obvious analogy. Just curiosity at work :)
new
Thanks for the questions! The skin has been in development for over a year, which I think was true for Ezreal and Udyr as well. One of the things that contributes to the development time is deciding which "super-saiyen-level" features to add, or how they'll exactly work. :P For example, there was a lot of discussion around how many forms she'd have, how they'd work, how to switch, how we'll get the music to transition, etc. We're trying to make each ultimate skin push boundaries, which means new levels of complexity and problems to solve.
new
As mentioned above I was an external freelance artist at the time and I felt the same way when I got the brief. But the more I thought about it the more excited I became because I realised that it was going to be amazing. I love music, and this skin is a love letter to music! Electronica, light shows, extreme high points, the opportunities for this skin to be huge are all there. Maybe we could collaborate with real world artists? Sona has been in the game for a long time, she is a really iconic champion and one that people feel very passionately about. I love to look at fan art and get pumped up by the outpouring of love champions in our game have and the more time that goes by the greater their followings grow. Some skins are great ideas but can be fully achieved at lower tiers. With DJ Sona there was plenty of space to crank it all the way to 11.
kman600 (NA)
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Who is actually coming to answer these questions. So far all I've seen are just other players commenting on other players, so I don't know what I can trust to be accurate.
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A good amount of the DJ Sona team/most of the Skins team is hovering around! There's a lot of questions to catch up to so stay tuned ^^
new
Why did you choose Caramelldansen as the dance for DJ Sona?
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Animator here! More than anything, I thought it would fun and cute. Dances are always a cool opportunity to do something fun and light-hearted regardless of the base thematic, and it was one of the more requested dances I've seen in comments over the years so I rolled with it and internally people really dug it!
lVarronl (NA)
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There was something I've been wondering about DJ Sona's Concussive Stance, I'm not sure if you can answer it but I might as well ask. In her Preview ( When it was showing her moves and how her music would work. ), She was using both her hands to use the cube, and was headbanging to the beat; which seems to work perfectly fine since a song like that requires a lot more attention if she was creating it on the spot. In the PBE though, she seems to only use one hand, and sways left and right rather quickly, and doesn't seem to be in sync with the beat of the song, she seems more calm, which doesn't seem to quite work considering that it seems like you've went with a more Sinister and Hectic view with Concussive. So my question is: Why was there a change?, Was there technical problems into bringing that with DJ Sona or did it not workout in the end? It's just a nit-pick I've had with the skin. Other than that, I absolutely love the skin, and I cannot wait to use it.
new
I can definitely speak to that - There was a good amount of iteration done with a few of her idles mixed with some really unfortunate timing. At the time the promotional videos were being shot, she was still in development and we couldn't get around shooting them without showing off those WIP animations. The "holding the cube and jamming out" was still a pretty big WIP idea that ended up not making the cut after a few rounds of feedback that it was conflicting with the music. The timing wasn't spot-on with the beat and felt really strange any time it wasn't perfectly lined up (which was almost never). At the end of the day I had to make the call to go with something that was a little more ambiguous. In a perfect world I would have found a way to make it all work, but time is finite on big projects like this. I'd love to add something else to it later if given the opportunity, though!
Siachi (NA)
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So to start off with a lighter question: For any Rioter who wants to answer, which of the three tracks is your favorite?
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#TeamEthereal
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+1 for Ethereal
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#TeamEthereal I love all of the music, but something about the Ethereal track has me on the hook.
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That's like asking someone to choose their favorite child :( (Forreal though, Concussive.)
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I second this!
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Kinetic fo' life. @RiotVe1vet, there can be no peace between our peoples. Edit: Partiest I thought we were friends.
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We shall fight like gentleman
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Concussive all the way!
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**TeamKinetic** http://fc03.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2015/052/7/5/lol___3d_dj_sona_kinetic_chibi_render_by_cubehero-d8ixzkh.jpg thx cubehero
new
I feel like the chick bidding one dollar on The Price is Right, but... Concussive! :D
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I was all about Kinetic until I heard the full Ethereal mix for the first time.
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I thought concussive was my favourite but over time I now like Kinetic and Ethereal is growing on me. So hard to decide!
When do you plan to release it?
Diran825 (NA)
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> [{quoted}](name=Queen of Imanity,realm=NA,application-id=6kFXY1kR,discussion-id=u0la3EaL,comment-id=0009,timestamp=2015-02-24T20:04:46.780+0000) > > When do you plan to release it? I agree I feel like Udyr's skin came out pretty close to the reveal day It's been a little over a month now and still not even a release date?
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Good question :) I'll tackle this one. Just so you know who I am, I'm former Skins Content Quality Analyst and now on Skins Promotions in a project/dev management role. We haven't wanted to withhold League's #1 DJ from the scene. BUT, she is *really* ahead of her time, and required a ton of testing, fixing, tweaking, ~~twerking~~ er... yeah. That said, she's comin' in *hot.* **EDIT:** how about... [really really soon™](http://euw.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/game-updates/patch/patch-54-notes#patch-dj-sona)
wuzzam1 (NA)
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So... soon? Like 5.4?
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Soon like... You'll See™
xPitohui (NA)
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Why is there never a definitive answer? Are you just not allowed to say? Or does no one want to be 'that guy' who revealed the release date?
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We don't like to give definitive answers because of the following: 1. We like to produce the highest quality content possible, sometimes that takes extra time for dev/testing 2. Sometimes concepts and production pipelines stall out and a product must be shelved 3. Because 1 and 2 can happen, we don't like to state timelines on them so we don't disappoint everyone. hope that makes sense. Also, she's coming out in 5.4.
new
EDIT: how about... [really really soon™](http://euw.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/game-updates/patch/patch-54-notes#patch-dj-sona)
Thanks for not giving an actual answer.
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just edited my post since no one is seeing my reply {{champion:17}}
Diran825 (NA)
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Thank for that information but that doesn't answer the question that was given. I mean no disrespect but where asking for a date or time frame, wither it be today or a year from now, not that shes coming we already know that. If you could provide that it would be more helpful to the community. Thank you very much{{champion:150}}
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Edited my post since no one is seeing my reply
Iccorius (NA)
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The patchnotes for 5.4 just came out and DJ{{champion:37}} is coming out
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It's true! :D
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Just wanted to say you guys did an awesome job with this skin as a Sona main. Keep up the good work! :)
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http://media.giphy.com/media/RwoQAq0Sbox1e/giphy.gif
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Thank you! it was a huge team effort that spanned every discipline! Certainly the largest project I've seen since I joined riot.
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On behalf of the whole team thank you! Personally I'm psyched to be involved in creating something so amazing. Many tears were shed in joy.
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Thanks! So glad you like her! :D
new
Which Rioters worked on this skin/animations?
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Lots of us! I did her animations.
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I worked on rigging/ skinning, collaborated with Partiest to get Sona all the moving parts she needs. :)
kyugene (NA)
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I worked on her music with the six artists we announced, sound effects, and voice overs.
capzir (NA)
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how did you land these amazing artists to do her music? I was completely blown away....
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thanks for the kind words! I think when it comes to working w any of the artists we work with here, it's all about being a good fit... we were fans of all of these guys and reached out with the concept. Some of them we've worked with previously, and some were ones we'd been developing creative friendships with over the course of time, but hadn't had the right project to collabo on until now.,
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I just tried to feed my promotions guys and keep them sane. And I keep a big sword by my desk. http://i.imgur.com/FmnQJsV.jpg http://st.elohell.net/public/chill/0fa2d73ba2e21779aeb1d784b35262cf.jpg
Thryale (NA)
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was hatsune miku used as a reference for the development of this skin? If so, what aspects carried over into the final design? Also, is there any tribute easter eggs for miku in the skin? I love the caramelldansen dance you gave her, why did the team decide on this for her dance?
kyugene (NA)
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It's kind of hard to see regular Sona, let alone DJ Sona, without thinking of Hatsune Miku, huh? She did come up quite a few times, but she wasn't the sole inspiration for her appearance. As for easter eggs, I can speak to one musical easter egg: In her Kinetic form, after ulting for the first time, there is a section in her music that's a reference to a certain Nintendo series--specifically one that involves being a bounty hunter :D And I'll just copy and paste what the animator said in regards to her dance: "Animator here! More than anything, I thought it would fun and cute. Dances are always a cool opportunity to do something fun and light-hearted regardless of the base thematic, and it was one of the more requested dances I've seen in comments over the years so I rolled with it and internally people really dug it!"
new
When looking at Sona's base you can already see some similarities with Hatsune Miku. I like the idea of being inspired by vocaloids in general, but this was just one direction along with many others; K-pop, Hip Hop, Club DJs, Technique DJs, Electronica etc. There was just so much I tried to pack into my concepts!
new
Hey Rito! I have a few questions pertaining to the new Toggle command you are implementing. - Though DJ Sona is the first skin to have access to this unique command, two skins before it already have toggle-able cosmetics. I’m of course talking about Neon Strike Vi and Night Hunter Rengar. The toggle on those skins, however, are bound to their Taunt command (I always found it weird how Vi doesn’t keep her taunt because of this). Will you be remapping these toggles anytime soon? Or are they going to remain the way they are? - As a follow-up, what about Heimerdinger’s swag walk that normally can be toggled using an emote? Is that going to be moved to the Toggle command, or stay where it is? - Will this Toggle command be spammable on DJ Sona? Or is there a measure in place to keep players from doing this (i.e. freezing Sona in place until the transformation animation finishes)?
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Hullo, Tech Artist here. Regarding points 1 and 2, we've talked about it, but do not have concrete plans to move those skins over to this system at this time. I'll be interested to see feedback on this UI. Regarding toggle spam, as I think a couple folks mentioned in another post, there's a 2 second cool-down between switches and you have to be out of battle for a bit to do it. :)
Xanini (NA)
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I personally love the type of helmet/gear she has on. -Was that an aesthetic choice to look more like daft punk or were there more reasons behind it, since concussive is a full helmet? -Why that type of helm/visor? Most characters that use those types of helmets are normally Followers and zealots, design wise like . Interesting choice because she doesn't look like a follower.
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Hey Xanini, as one of the concept artists who worked on her I'll field this one. It was definately a conscious decision. We knew early on we wanted to go in a more sci-fi direction with this skin as opposed to modern day DJ. We looked to tron, daft punk, and EDM culture to provide inspiration for the final look. We loved the idea of Sona wearing a helmet to get into her onstage persona. Another reason behind the helmet decision was to allow more real estate to show a visual representation of each different form of music: the sound bars for kinetic, heartbeat wave for Concussive, and calming streaks for ethereal.
new
I really wanted Sona to have a display helmet Daft Punk style for a similar reason that they do. Sona doesn't speak, so how does she communicate with her fans during a show? I designed a number of different helmets with various displays, each of which could display every alphanumeric character so she could spell things out for her fans, as well as keep an eye on equalisers for cool-factor. Also it seems like my 'thing' is fast becoming covering pretty faces - just look at my eclipse Leona fan concept >:D There were plenty of designs without the helmet too, or just with huge headphones, but ultimately the helmet was a direction we all felt was going to be the strongest for the skin design.
Treblade (NA)
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Is there any particular reason you chose the sale percentage the way you did? I hear people referencing Pulsefire Ezreal and Spirit Guard Udyr's sales being more "fair". I'm going to buy the skin either way, but what are your thoughts on this?
With all ultimate skins, our goal is to introduce something never-before seen into League of Legends. For DJ Sona, that meant completely reimagining the in-game musical experience with switchable genres, evolving music and giving teammates the ability to tune in. As it stands, Ultimates take the most time to create and have the lowest return on investment to Riot of all skin tiers. As we continue to grow, we want the teams to be able to continue to push the bounds of what is delivered to player both at a cost and completely for free. Look back at the changes to champions that have been reworked (Sion for example), where we update the champion, skins, splash art, particles and VO. Or at Summoner’s Rift and all the new elements. We want to continue to invest in League and provide more amazing experiences, and to do that, we had to bring the initial launch discount on DJ Sona to a more sustainable level.
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That was the coolest, most round about way to say "It's just not cost effective and we can't keep eating the lost profit" I have ever heard :) Will Riot make an open announcement about this on future Ultimate skins and more importantly, will the discount % shrink until it's no longer there? And will this philosophy carry over to the 1350 skins that come out as 975?
Thanks! I can't promise anything here - but I do know we're always looking to optimize our offerings for you all. This includes both in price and products that we're offering. As of now, we're not looking to nuke our discounts, or make them shrink into nothingness. :)
Staars (NA)
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Isn't DJ Sona going to be the same price as Pulsefire Ezreal and Spirit Guard Udyr, which is 3250?
DJ Sona will be 2450 RP for the first few days after her launch.
Orders (NA)
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What made you guys decide to cover up her eyes?
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as one of the concept artists who worked on her I'll field this one. It was definately a conscious decision. We knew early on we wanted to go in a more sci-fi direction with this skin as opposed to modern day DJ. We looked to tron, daft punk, and EDM culture to provide inspiration for the final look. We loved the idea of Sona wearing a helmet to get into her onstage persona. Another reason behind the helmet decision was to allow more real estate to show a visual representation of each different form of music: the sound bars for kinetic, heartbeat wave for Concussive, and calming streaks for ethereal.
new
I only did some of the concepts, but I have a thing for covering pretty faces >:D Honestly I think it was the strongest concept in the end. There were some with big headphones, visors and various styles of sunglasses. It goes well with the electronica/future theme and creates a cool point of interest and 'Tron/club' feel.
new
I'm a little bit confused on how the track will change on each ability use. Will spamming Q, for instance, cause the track to start to loop?
kyugene (NA)
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Here's a general break down of how you can interact with DJ Sona's music: - When you use her ult for the first time after putting a point in it (EX: using it once after it hits lvl 1, once after lvl 2, etc), Sona's music will progress into a different section of whatever section she's in. She has 4 sections per form and ulting will cause the music to progress to the next form for all genres. - Using Q, W, and E, for the first time, will unmute layers in the music. - /toggle or ctrl + 5 will switch genres
new
If you've ever seen electronic music laid out in a program each component (say for example a drum beat) has it's own channel. When you use abilities it switches on different channels within one continuous song. I always remember Mixmaster Mike's work on the snowboarding game SSX3 which had these amazing interactive tracks: if you wiped out, went through a cave, landed a huge jump or approached the finish line the music would change to reflect the highs and lows. I always remember how awesome that was and wondered why more games never did this. Dead Space did something similar where tense music would get louder the closer you were to an enemy, which was a different implementation that worked better for survival horror.
new
This is mostly idle curiosity here. Are you all in the same room right now, laughing and giggling as you answer our quirky questions? Maybe with pizza and soda involved? Because that would be awesome.
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The whole Skins team sits together in the office so technically yes! Though we had jamaican food today instead of pizza :)
Ashrakem (NA)
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What was the inspiration behind Dj Sona?{{champion:37}}
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DJ Sona makes so much sense. A lot of the strongest skin concepts come from the obvious. You know when a skin comes out that really resonates and you think 'of course, how could this not already be a thing?' that you're onto something good. As a concept artist I can say that my specific inspiration came from not just performance electronica like Orbital and Daft Punk but also from DJ roots. I am a huge fan of DJ Shadow and Mixmaster Mike and watched a heap of DJ championships and was blown away by artists like DJ Craze, ie.MERG and DJ Kentaro (this guy omg). As a musician I also got really obsessed with the gear and the vinyl, but ultimately a lot of that kind of stuff can't be reflected in a champion skin because of the small scale. I feel like by collaborating with some real artists we managed to create a skin with some real 'cred'. One word that I kept coming back to was 'experience' and I feel like that is something at the core of both music and games. A concert is an experience, a game of LoL is an experience. Let's take those and multiply them!
new
Hello! I'm super excited for this skin! Was a pleasure and honor to be part of the production. :)
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We're all super excited for it too! You folks did an *incredible* job, and I at least am amazingly impressed. Here, have my respect. All of it. You folks did great!
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Thank you! I'll let the team know. You're super kind!
new
Firstly, I wanted to mention that I love the game, the character, and the skin. I think this is some really high quality work, Riot, and you have my respect. This is the first time I at least have seen a skin add new interface elements to the game (I'm referring to teammates abilities to "tune in" to DJ Sona's music). I am curious, what made Riot decide to include something so extreme? That is truly outside the box for a skin, and I am curious to hear if Riot plans on releasing other skins and/or champions that affect the interface in some way.
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Thanks very much! I think the reasons you list describe why we did it - it's something extreme, out-of-the-box, that had never been done. Those are the sorts of features we want to try to include in Ultimate skins, to make them push the boundaries of what skins can be. :) You can expect us to continue adding features like that when appropriate, but I don't know specifically around "interface" when the next opportunity would be.
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When I started working on the skin I pitched a long list of insane ideas. They told me to go crazy and I certainly did. This was one of the ideas that the team decided was actually possible and I'm so impressed that they pulled it off. I mean really, what is a DJ without an audience >:D
new
Why is her joke not Darude - Sandstorm?
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Because Darude - Sandstorm is not a joke. :I
Hylas (NA)
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Is the reason why Dj Sona only 25% off compared to other discount prices because of all the effort and things that went into the skin? as in 3 forms, 3 different skill animations and custom music.
Covered this above :) http://boards.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/c/story-art/u0la3EaL-dj-sona-qa?show=nested&comment=00000003
new
Love the skin and I'm sure as heck gonna buy it, but one thing that's been confusing me, What's the reason behind making both Kinetic and Ethereal have blue and delving into green and purple, respectively? Would it not have been better to make Ethereal a form with more purple and pinkish tones, much how like Concussive is purely made of red and orange tones, and leave Kinetic as is?
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Hey HealerDoc The color schemes for each form went through a lot of iterations. While we wanted to represent each form with different colors we also wanted to make sure there was a range of hues in each since her LEDs were going to shift to the same color during her auras. so if we went with just blue, purple, orange, or green with any form, the player wouldn't be able to tell there was any hue shift when she used one of her auras or her ult. So we landed on green/blue for kinetic, orange/red for Concussive, and Blue/Purple for Ethereal. At first we tried pink/purple for Ethereal but the hue shift when she used her purple aura wasn't apparent enough so we decided to Include more blue in the ethereal color range. Another reason to include blue is because its a relaxing color, which matches the mood of the music.
new
This is a question everyone probably has in their mind, but will you give her ultimate skin a 50% discount on her release date like Ezreal?
DJ Sona will be available for 2450 RP upon launch.
new
Does Pulsefire Ezreal know that there is another person with such advanced technology on the fields of justice? Seems he's not the only one *centuries ahead* anymore. {{champion:81}} {{champion:37}}
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If he doesn't know now he will very soon!
new
what do you base the criteria of ultimate skins on a champs kit or champs popularity in the community
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We put all of the champions pictures on the wall and throw darts until we hit one ;) In all seriousness though, we look at Ultimate skins as an opportunities to really evolve the game and do something we've never done before. In this case, the team was very excited about the idea of creating a unique musical experience and an awesome skin to go along with it.
new
As an artist and Support main I want to thank you guys. This skin really shows the dedication you guys put into pleasing your community unlike many other games. This is why we love you so much
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Thanks Thorusoma, as a concept artist who had the privilege to work on this incredible project. Its the other artists, fans, and cosplayers who really make my job so rewarding!
new
As one of the first champions I played, I am very happy to see Sona get an Ultimate Skin. What kinds of troubles did you have during the construction of the skin (Cosmetic or Environmental) and how did hurt/delay the overall finished product? Also how worried were you about setting the skin apart from say Arcade Sona like Reddit so graciously flamed?{{champion:37}}
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Hello! I worked on her animations and she definitely had her fair share of troubles. It's tricky to describe without getting dry and technical, but there were a few technical hurdles that took a good amount of exploration on my end to get working - Her hair When we first started working on her and we still had a lot of unanswered questions about how she was going to look, how we were going to tackle her hair came up a lot. We weren't sure if we wanted to animate her hair by hand or if it was going to be done completely in particles (VFX)! There was even a point early on where she had four ponytails instead of two, but it just made her look like a mess of hair tentacles. - Her ambient deck animations This one took a long time to get looking right. Each deck needed to animate independently from the rest of her, but there also needed to be moments where I could override that (or add to it) when she interacted with anything without forcing things to reset. Her idle animation in her Kinetic form is a pretty solid example of this! She needed to be able to scratch and interact with them at any point in their turning cycle and have it look clean. It's one of those small details that will largely go unnoticed by everyone, but I put a lot of work into it :D. Hologram blinking was also tricky and worked in the same way. I'm pretty sure Sona is now the most complexly-animated champion under the hood in League and I don't know if I should be proud of that. Sorry QA! None of the issues are anything too out of the ordinary for a project this size and didn't really hurt or delay her -- We really wanted her to be something special and were given the time we needed to get her there :) As far the Arcade Sona comment, I feel like that worry was squashed pretty early on. We fielded plenty of similar comments from other Rioters when the idea first got the thumbs up, but everyone got on board with the idea once they saw it in action!
DocDrex (NA)
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is there a reason behind the design choice to not keep the shimmery mirage effect on DJ sona's aura casts like she has in her default skin/other skins? did you think they would be too noisy and distract from the sound visualizer effects?
In the spirit of really "Leveling Up" her visuals, we wanted to bring every Visual element to a new level. We actually had the aura from her base for a while in development however discovered that it was such an open opportunity to make an awesome, animated visualizer.
moana (NA)
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Hi, Sona was my first main and my first love. I'm *super* hyped about this especially because my birthday is in 12 days so it's an unofficial birthday gift lol. ^q^ Anyways, I've been stalking her progress obsessively so my curiosity is strong with these questions: 1. A lot of people remarked on this already but... were there any previous outfit designs before settling on a bodysuit? I study character design so I [think I] understand why you chose the outfit but I'm curious to the other concepts you might've had. 2. What were some notable complications you had to confront while making this skin? Be it design, animation, coding, etc.? 3. What's your personal favorite feature(s) about DJ Sona? Thank you so much for such an ace quality skin! =]
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Hey Glinda, 1. we went through a few different ideas for her outfit in the early stages of the concept. A lot of them were based on the musical form she would be playing. In the end we decided the costume should stay the same so it didn't distract from her cool transforming deck, and also to reinforce that she is remaining in the same persona and just embodying different moods of EDM music. We felt a slick bodysuit served as an effective "blank slate". something we could keep consistent but also didn't feel aligned with one form more than the others. 2. DJ Sona was a huge undertaking. She got a new model, animations, specially engineered tech to render her hair, and a new music element ( not just for one, but all three versions) so needless to say this skin was a huge file size. The team had to be super clever in finding ways to optimize the skin to meet our specs. I didn't experience that since I am a concept artist who doesn't work on the technical portion of a skin, but major props to my team members for blazing that trail. 3. My favorite part of the skin is definitely the ability to transform from one form to another. It was so fun designing the same character, with essentially the same deck, while still communicating the mood of the different musical styles through color and shape language theories.
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About how long has DJ Sona been in the works, and are there any funny/interesting stories you could tell about something that occured throughout her development?
When I first started working on her VFX, like the very first week.. I created a small "Beet" (like a turnip) falling our of her hand everytime she threw her basic attack.. It stayed in there for about 3 weeks.
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I received an animation bug towards the end reporting that her "behind appears concave" in a specific animation. There's something special and hilarious about QA sending me butt reports. There was a point where animation iteration was kicking into high gear and I was making a ton of under-the-hood changes to try and get all sorts of things working, which started yielding some pretty wacky results when I'd forget to check a box or set up an animation correctly. Oops...
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I feel like I need to include a quote from that butt bug, because it was hilarious: > Bug: The Model of her posterior is much smaller from certain angles than the texture would have it appear, as well as all other animations/idles. > Expected: Model's backside does not appear flat or indented; Sona's buttocks are consistently as voluminous as the texture and other animations in Respawn_Loop animation.
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For any of you that have seen [Frequencies](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4bQBmAO0hk4#t=670), all I can say are two words... Danny. Lohner. (aka Renholder from Concussive). Every moment working w that dude is a funny/interesting story waiting to happen...
Thales (NA)
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How did Sona's gameplay update affect the development of DJ Sona? Were there any pieces of tech for DJ Sona that got reused for the base?
Acutally, there was a handful of specific engineering requests us artists made in order to achieve her final result. For example, Her hair is a new VFX treatment that broke many aspects of the VFX until we figured out how to make it work. We began by leveraging the tech we used for Arcade Hecarim's tail and then had to really improve and add upon it.
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Dear Rito, where is the darude sandstorm?
kyugene (NA)
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On copyright island--just off the coast of 1999esburg.
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http://media.giphy.com/media/iqE3LircFY5ck/giphy.gif
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When did you start making the skin? And what is the hardest part you did in making it? I mean there is a lot of cool things added, but there should be one thing you focus to make it so awesome.
For the VFX side of thing. The hardest part was creating 3 entirely unique sets of VFX for every basic attack and ability for just one skin. It was a challenge to this about what a shield would look like on a DJ... then to say "We need three DIFFERENT DJ Shields". It was a really great feeling when the team rallied and were able to hit each unique genre with such success.
Cycoo4 (NA)
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I wonder if this real I know its euw but want to share with you guys http://euw.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/game-updates/patch/patch-54-notes#patch-dj-sona
Cycoo4 (NA)
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http://euw.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/game-updates/patch/patch-54-notes#patch-dj-sona So go to bottom of the page it says she will be out in 5.4 is that true ? Edit: we have same thing in our patch notes too ^_^
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O hey cool, we released patch notes.** Yes it's true!** She will be in 5.4 :D
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Why is her butt wider than her shoulders? do you think this causes her bone issues? Don't let Sona suffer in silence, even though she is silent.
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I don't mean to troll here but speaking from an anatomical perspective womens hips are around the same width as their shoulders. Males are characterized by wide shoulders and thin hips and vice versa for Females. While Sona isn't exactly 100% true to life proportions, stylizing character's proportions is part of the art style in League.
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> [{quoted}](name=Paulewog,realm=NA,application-id=6kFXY1kR,discussion-id=u0la3EaL,comment-id=00730000,timestamp=2015-02-24T21:27:54.720+0000) > > I don't mean to troll here but speaking from an anatomical perspective womens hips are around the same width as their shoulders. Males are characterized by wide shoulders and thin hips and vice versa for Females. While Sona isn't exactly 100% true to life proportions, stylizing character's proportions is part of the art style in League. Plus this wouldnt be a fantasy game if all the charcters were 'too human'.
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Oh man don't even mention that game :P
Since Sona is now a DJ, does this mean shes no longer part of Pentakill?
kyugene (NA)
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That's a good question...we shall let the gods of metül decide.
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She might have an especially hard time with this since she has a hard time speaking up for herself ;)
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How did you go about making the hair? It seems so ahead of everything else in LoL. Also, why couldn't said technology be applied to say, Nocturne's lower half? (God knows he needs it)
Ah Sona's HAIR! This girls hair had me really busting a forehead vein. We began by utilizing tech for Arcade Hecarim's tail. It would have worked as is if we didn't have her entire EVERYTHING change when she did a transition into a different genre. That's when our amazing engineers worked with myself and the animator to get everything working the way we imagined it. Essentially her hair is 'invisible' according to the engine. We then 'hi-jack' the geometry in the hear and 'ghost' it using a particle effect. This allows us to scroll textures, fade in and out etc. It even was quickly used on the new Vel'koz skin!
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I've been thinking about this for so long. I will ask this here hope you could reply. Have you guys actually consider giving DJ Sona more color varieties for her spells, instead of always making them blue, green, and purple?
Her spell VFX are highly connected to gameplay. "W" is healing and everyone in the game needs to know at a glance what is going on. Color and Shape are the 2 biggest reads for players. Especially in team fights. If we mix these up too much then it will hurt the players experience. However, we are always aiming to improve. Perhaps looking at colors with more flexibility is something we can consider moving forward!
BTLmovies (EUW)
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I know it's to late but there was an idea for her ultimate (maybe to make the ult better). If DJ Sona ults, the target dance and a spotlight throws light on the target. (Kinetic -> green spotlight etc.) Okay sorry for the bad english :D
That's a fun idea! I actually didn't think of anything like that. It's not likely to change now that is all wrapped up with a nice bow. However, if in the future there is a practical opportunity I may look into editing the "R" affect. Thanks!
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How did you go about getting professional DJ's to make music for DJ Sona? Were they familiar with the game or the character?
Iceburrg (NA)
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There was definitely a range, but some of the artists were very familiar with League - like Stefan from Dada Life that plays a mean Dr Mundo. Some knew of League, but didn't play themselves. One of my favorite parts of this project was the creative process of digging deep into DJ Sona as a character with the artists and then exploring what the music should be like for each form. When it came to choosing which artists to work with - there were a few reasons...here are some of them 1) We were fans of their music and craft 2) They were flat out cool folks and totally engaged in the idea of this project. *There are definitely more... but I'm hungry now..
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Further to @Iceburrg's point, we were fans of all of these artist's music and craft first and foremost. Some of them were folks we've already built rad creative trust with on other projects (The Crystal Method on Lucian and Danny "Renholder" Lohner on Pentakill for example). The rest were folks we've been slowly getting to know for a while and were just waiting for the right project to collaborate on. Also, an interesting tidbit... Two of our composers (Christian "Praeco" Linke and Alex "Scherzophrenia" Temple) actually wrote a few bars of orchestral melody for Sona which were given to the DJs to inspire them and keep things centered. A few of you guys with sharp ears have already noticed this, but if you listen carefully, the pieces for each of the three forms do share some musical elements between them...
Elebunny (NA)
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{{champion:37}} always wears a flowing dress in her other skins, while working on this concept what gave her this new sleek look?
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Hey ElleBunny, We were inspired by daft punk, tron, and EDM music culture for the look of this skin. We really wanted the costume and deck designs to feel futuristic, sleek, and minimalist. We felt a full dress design didn't fit the thematic as well as a sleek suit. Another reason we chose to go with a suit is because its a bit more of a "blank slate" meaning it can fit well with each different form. An elegantly flowing dress clashes with the Concussive thematic which is much harsher and higher energy.
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How much dubstep/electro music did you listen to while developing DJ Sona? And did said music inspire the skin?
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Ohhh yes, I was listening to A LOT of Daft Punk, Glitch Mob, Pretty Lights, and Crystal Method, when working on the concept. I like to listen to music that is thematically inspiring while concepting!
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Yeah for sure. No matter what skin I'm concepting I like to throw on appropriate music. I play the character in game, walk around like the character and practice saying the character's lines! I listened to The Mummy soundtrack and Darude-Sandstorm a lot when designing Guardian of the Sands Kha'zix for example. "CHANGE is GOOOOOD"
Anserem (OCE)
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Hi there, just a bit of a curious question... I was just wondering, what does the clues given by Wizardcrab and Morello about the upcoming Ultimate skin earlier relate to Sona? (As that would explain a lot) Earlier in August, there was a really convincing post, explaining that Shaco would be the lucky winner for the new Ultimate skin. (Courtesy to adminpwnsu, Check it out here: http://forums.euw.leagueoflegends.com/board/showthread.php?t=1855539) The clues were: Six S Hide Assassin J (According to Morello) The champion getting the Ultimate skin have "A" as the 4th letter of one of his abilities. (I understand that Sona's W, Aria of Perseverance applies to this clue) And finally, a post by WizardCrab: 541daw6s5d41a6s5d If it could be explained, then it would be much appreciated! Keep up the great work Riot!
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I can't speak for Morello's, but I can tell you my clue. First thing's first though: go back and read the context under which I posted the hint. Especially the parent comment and the parent comment's parent. Here's the link: http://www.reddit.com/r/leagueoflegends/comments/2cwihg/limiting_the_champion_pool_for_ultimate_skin_to_7/cjk79oz?context=10000 If you'll notice, my hint comes on the backs of two comments talking about how the hints are probably nonsense. With that in mind, I wanted to post a "hint" that was mostly nonsense as a joke (although it's only nonsense in the way that I could never even dream of someone figuring it out. It's a real hint but truthfully just a bad hint). Either way, I had a great time with it and I love love loved all of the fun theories, real and joking, that people came up with based on it. It was amazing. The hint came from my impersonation of DJ Sona. I pretended I was DJ Sona scratching. I used WASD and the numpad on my keyboard as my turntables and went to town. It wasn't a hint you were meant to figure out. This is why a lot of people on Reddit have me tagged as "Trolling Rioter." See other evidence here: http://www.reddit.com/r/leagueoflegends/comments/1lbknm/guess_the_championship_skin/cbxuzap But oh man did I have a blast with this one. I love this community; you guys are awesome. :D
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Q: how did you come to the decision about the 9 other players hearing DJ Sona's music ingame? i mean why not let the player playing DJ Sona decide who should or shouldn't listen to the music. for instance she can decide if all 9 players can hear her music or if her teammates only or no one but her. in the case of two DJ Sona's then the game would automatically force only the music of the DJ Sona on each team.
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So for clarity, DJ Sona's music plays only to her teammates. It's "opt in/ out" for teammates, so they aren't forced into the experience. Leaving that control on the teammate rather than DJ Sona made the most sense to us, as we feel that players should have control over their own game experience.
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> [{quoted}](name=JesterCapp,realm=NA,application-id=6kFXY1kR,discussion-id=u0la3EaL,comment-id=00a70000,timestamp=2015-02-24T21:47:08.404+0000) > > So for clarity, DJ Sona's music plays only to her teammates. It's "opt in/ out" for teammates, so they aren't forced into the experience. Leaving that control on the teammate rather than DJ Sona made the most sense to us, as we feel that players should have control over their own game experience. Yes but why not let the enemy team also have access to her music ingame? Two DJ Sona's wasn't really the issue at hand because the game would automatically put the other 8 players to listen to their team's DJ Sona if that was the case.
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I'll see if someone else knows the full reason for that, as I'm not sure - I know some concerns raised involved potential gameplay impact of enemy team knowing when you're switching, solving tech-wise the override when there's two Sonas, etc, but I don't remember the final reasons. Edit: it sounds like the gameplay/ disruption concerns were the primary reasons.
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Btw,Petition to make the announcer or something say "d-d-d-drop the bass!" when Sona secures a ShutDown or is killed with DJ skin at a later date. >_>
haha I mentioned this in another post but when I first started working on her VFX I added a small Beet (or turnip) falling out of her hand every time she threw a basic attack. It went unnoticed for a good week :)
Renbot (NA)
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Why is Concussive the only form with a fully masked helmet?
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Hey Renbot, A lot of people have been asking this question. We hoped this design decision would make players feel the Concussive form is a bit more sinister and mysterious than the others, which are more lighthearted and fun.
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DJ Sona is debuting in patch 5.4! http://na.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/game-updates/patch/patch-54-notes#patch-dj-sona
GZuez (NA)
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What dictated what? As in did the skins dictate how the songs were going to sound like or did the songs dictate what the skins were meant to look and feel like. Or was it overall "we want three different genre, a steady pace song, a hard bass song and smooth melody."
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So this is how it went down. When we first came up with the idea, the team got together and hammered out which genres of music we thought would make sense. We knew we wanted her to be able to transform from one genre to another. Eventually we decided that staying withing EDM, techno trance, would be the best option. Once we figured that out we decided having three "moods" of dance music would allow us to provide the most distinct and individual forms while staying cohesive thematically. we chose: upbeat techno, dubstep/industrial, and chillstep as very basic thematic directions for each form. At that point I went to work on flushing out the look of each "mood". I used color and shape language theory to make my design choices. For example my goal with Concussive was to use color and shape to communicate aggression. I used hard edges, sharp shard-like shapes to construct the deck because those basic shapes are more threatening, while soft round shapes are comforting. Colors can also influence the way you feel. I used red which is a color that evokes higher energy levels. its really interesting a persons heart rate can increase just from sitting in a red room. After the looks were nailed down The audio team assembled a BADASS team to use these thematic looks and built a soundtrack tailored to each design.
Syllin (NA)
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First, this skin is amazing. as someone who loves electronic music/synthesizers, this is a GOD SEND. and the music itself is simply FANTASTIC. My question: What is the feasibility that at some point down the line, Sona's library of songs might see some expansion. the 3 current ones are amazing, dont get me wrong. but as with all music they may start to feel stale after hundreds of playthroughs. is there any chance you guys might add a new track after a year or 2?
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Awesome to hear you're enjoying the music! Your idea is a rad one- I think what it comes down to is that in-game music like this takes a lot of time to develop and many members of our music team to create. So, what would the opportunity cost be, i.e., what other projects would we have to pull resources from in order to make something like this happen? p.s.- since you mentioned being a fan of synthesizers, here's a rad pic from The Crystal Method guys' studio, aka synth heaven. This particular analog model was the same one used to make R2D2s sound effects: [http://imgur.com/M0KaaTR](http://imgur.com/M0KaaTR)
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First, I want to say great job on this skin and great idea. You guys are awesome, thanks for all the work you put in! I can tell you love making the game just as much as we love playing it( and you love playing it xD). What I want to ask is, can we expect any more big skins like this within season 5? Part 2: How long were you guys going between art ideas for the skin? about how many looks did she have through the process?
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As a freelance concept artist I was submitting ideas for various aspects of DJ Sona for about 6 months, and I certainly wasn't the only concept artist on it. It was a huge project!
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I have seen on an answer that "Many tears were shed in joy", so I just want to know, how hard was the proses of making this skin? How many team members took to make this skin? Was this skin the idea of only one or some already had this skin in mind?
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Hey dude I just want to say that this was a whole-team project. Everyone helped in some way. To quote Gary Oldman in The Professional: "EVERYYYYONE!"
Armormew (NA)
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Were the looks of Sona's legs developed during the creation of this skin, or were they already defined previously. I'm curious, since her other skins contained no visible legs. Thanks for all the work!
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In early concepting I was thinking a lot about what it means to be an Ultimate skin and I made a list of things we could bring to Sona players that they've never seen before. One of them was her legs! So I pushed for it and RiotZeronis drew them oh-so perfectly >:D
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what made you guys go with a DAFT PUNK look on DJ SONA?
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I tried a ton of different looks. Seriously, I wore out my imagination producing style after style. I think in the end it's a direction that has some great music to offer, fits well into the world of vidya games, provides a very unique look for Sona and stands alone among all our skins. Ultimately it resonated most with the team!
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Which champions attend Sona's concerts when she's a DJ?
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I imagine that the other members of Pentakill are too bitter to attend. But I think all the supports would follow her tour, the Piltoverians (?) would be fascinated by her future sounds, Noxians would form a mosh pit, Zaunites would create remixes... I could see Armour of the Fifth Age Taric gettin' down with Challenger Ahri and PFE serving as a disco ball >:D
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