Rioter Comments
  Rioter Comments
Retillin (NA)
: I think he is saying this: "You are making a tv show (LCS/Worlds) and not a balanced game. So you are building champions for 'flash' instead of substance". Btw, your first reply reads very snarky and your "You get thick skin doing this kind of work" doesn't seem to be true.
I tend to tease/snark more than most folks, but I'll pull back if I'm worried it's not coming off as playfully as I intend. That said, with regards to the idea that we're making a TV show - that's pretty false. We care about what League's viewing experience is, but far far less than we care about what League's _playing_ experience is. I'm happy to respond to Keevalroy's specific concerns in this area, but to assert that we just balance for the cameras borders on conspiracy theory.
: Keep sweeping the problems under the rug. Maybe if you keep telling yourself they aren't there, they'll disappear.
If you think there's a problem that's under a rug that isn't actively being worked on right now, I'd like to know. I'm not entirely sure I understand what exactly we're being accused of here.
: >They just want to have fun playing a balanced game, same as we do. Do you though? Or do you want to continue keeping your focus on the spectator event while you shield the problem children of League, nerfing the ugly, boring, and outdated kits until their 'eventual' reworks so they aren't being seen by the public?
We want a fun, balanced game - but I can understand how that sentence is hard to read with all the tin-foil in the way.
aperson1 (NA)
: Just wanna say I love this format. It reminds me of the long Red discussions on the old forums. Thanks for doing this.
: this is the most difficult question to answer...
r/fuckmyshitup is definitely my new favorite meme
: How do you guys deal with the stress involved with the game? I feel like every time I go to see news about League of Legends on twitter, Reddit, Facebook, or the boards there is ALWAYS some commentary about the game not doing enough in terms of skins, balance, server management, etc. I can easily see how being a part of the balance team (or any team at Riot) can quickly become overwhelming, and I would love to hear how some of you deal with stress involved. I know for a fact that I can deal with stress in a much more safe and constructive manner and I was hoping to see what things you lovely folks do to help manage. Thanks for all your hard work in making an incredibly fun and diverse game! Hope to hear from you all soon!! {{champion:157}} {{champion:157}} {{champion:157}}
You get thick skin doing this kind of work, but it'd be unfair to say that it doesn't get to you. I think the key thing to understand is that even the most angry, vile and vitriolic statements come out of passion for the game we all love and work on. Those people telling us we should be fired, and that we don't know what we're doing? They just want to have fun playing a balanced game, same as we do. In many ways, these can be viewed as motivators - when people are upset, we have a job to do. It's often thankless, but I think the nature of the constant, ever-evolving puzzle of a Live environment is a big draw for some. I'd also say we have a big emphasis on communication and teamwork within our group, and I've never felt like I've worked somewhere where I was both valued as an individual contributor and as a friend. It's that 'band-of-brothers' (and sisters) feeling that means no matter how deep in the trenches we are, there's always someone else with you ready to help out and make that next change the best it can be. In the end, everyone's got their own ways (many folks play other games in their off-time, many of us keep up with the gym, pursue art or personal projects, rick plays ffxiv, etc) but having a team of homies to back you up makes it all easier.
: Any plans to make upgrading the warding trinkets less awkward? Right now due to both the lv 9 and 250g requirement there is a lot of randomness that goes into being able to buy it early enough to matter, if you're forced to back at lv 8 you can't even if you have the gold. If you're forced to back at lv 10 but can either upgrade it or finish a key item, that's not a fun strategic choice. The cost just feels awkward to fit into your buy progression. A lot of players just put it off until it's too late in the match. You already pay for extra trinkets, and items, and pots. I feel like the FREE trinket upgrade should also just be, free, at lv 9. Since the counter to it, scanners, would also get a free upgrade. Seems like it balances itself out. Thoughts?
I'd be looking for something along these lines with the upcoming preseason. I agree that it's a major frustration to have people put off trinket upgrades for so long, and the entire trinket system has been a hot topic for the Systems team for 2016.
Zielmann (NA)
: What pair of champions would make the best doubles team for tennis?
Vel'Koz would have to be high tier - already hovers above the ground and has multiple appendages to fire back with. Possibly Zed or Syndra - infinite shadow clones probably gives a strong advantage while Syndra would just control multiple rackets at once!
Archon X (NA)
: Well as a support main I gotta ask, What specifically are the plans to update Sightstone? Specifically, are there still plans to split the upgrade between something like Ruby/Emerald/Sapphire Sightstone with different effects, something which could tailor to the three main categories of support: tank, utility, and mage? Also, any plans to update Frost Queen's Claim? Seems it's not as good as Talisman or Face of the Mountain.
I don't want to seem like I'm being vague, but Sightstone specifically is getting some changes in the upcoming Preseason that should hope to address your feelings here. Also, I see you on the lowkey pokemon reference. Good on you.
Shénzhì (EUW)
: #What is the main purpose of all significant changes recently (this year)? _Do they_ or _do they not_ contribute towards a bigger plan[?](
You weren't very specific with what you mean exactly by 'significant' changes, but I can already tell you that the answer is yes. Every change, be it a low-scope balance change (damage here, mana cost there) or a series of item updates (jungle items), up to the Juggernaut and up-coming Marksman updates are part of large, over-aching design goals that drive us forward. There's no literal 'by 2010, X has happened' plan that we're reaching for necessarily, but we've got values and we're sticking to them. For example, when it comes to the Live Gameplay team's work (that's this team, by the way!) - we focus on surgical, tactical changes that promote basic champion diversity. From huge 30-change patches like 5.5 and 5.16 earlier this year, little by little we're seeking to make each champion feel like they're viable options. We may never reach the a pure balanced state, and that's not even the goal - but if you load into champion select and say to yourself 'X, Y, and Z could all be good here' instead of 'I have to pick X because Y and Z are unplayable', we think we're hitting our goal. General Data (as well as Worlds' pick/ban!) are showing good trends here, but we're far from done. On the other hand, things like the Juggernaut Update and the soon (not tm!) Marksman Update are aimed at entire classes and subclasses - saying 'hey, you never really made a decision about whether or not you picked Garen or Darius, you'd just pick whichever is stronger'. Graves, Lucian and Corki have long held a similar pattern - 'Which one do I want?' 'Well they do the same things, which is strongest right now?' By pushing at our champion roster both in terms of viability (Do I feel like I can compete with this pick?) and strategic identity (Do I understand what situations I'd want this pick? Which ones I wouldn't?), we're aiming at a better, balanced game overall. Even if there _are_ Mordekaiser-shaped bumps along the way.
  Rioter Comments
Decrit (EUW)
: Bonus easy question because mine was hardcore: in which lass of which videogame do you see yourself? You are so many i had to ask this :O I bet Rick is the Astrologist!
I'm going to assume you meant 'class' and not 'lass', in which case this question is easier to understand (but far less awesome). rick plays astrologist, so a+ creepin' on that one. I play a snake pirate / druid hybrid that shapeshifts into a shark to protect my ship from attack. Manwolf plays a human mailworker, just to roleplay what it's like to be boring. Smashgizmo would probably be one of those dope battle-clerics that have hammers. Gmang is like the Beast from the X-Men. FeralPony is a mad scientist, and Jag would play someone that rode a motorcycle.
: ***
Someone's gotta help you get challenjour, man.
: So I noticed that recently, ever since the worlds patch, there haven't been any drastic balance changes or even that many small balance changes. Do you guys think League is currently in a balanced state? Are you just waiting and preparing for Preseason? Is the more diverse Worlds meta affecting your decision making in any way?
Mostly prepping for Preseason. 5.19 and 5.20 were relatively small, and 5.21 will follow suit as we're putting the finishing touches on our preseason work. Then, we will open wide each of our 10 mouths and sing the song that consumes the earth.
ddrox13 (NA)
: Site isnt loading properly, so these may have been asked QUESTIONS THAT MATTER 1. I kinda understand where you get your numbers for most roles, but I was wondering if there are any other numbers you look at to judge Support brokenness. 2. How much do you consider champion counter-matchups when balancing? 3, which champs need buffs atm? QUESTIONS THAT DONT MATTER 4. Leo buffs pls? 5. Best support in the format? 6. Why is Rengar so broken? COMPLETELY UNRELATED QUESTIONS 7. Best Rioter at Smash 4? 8. Smite, DotA, ot HotS?
I'll do my best to respond, not sure how many of these I saw answered elsewhere! 1. Numbers actually don't discriminate when it comes to things like pick rate, win-rate etc for supports like you might imagine - though they're often banned far less than other champions unless they're wayyyy out of line (A little while ago, Janna sported a higher win-rate than maybe all but ~6 champions in our game, but was banned in less than 1% of games). TL;DR - We evaluate supports on similar metrics to the rest of our champions, though we've seen large swings from small changes in this category specifically due to the smaller pool of supports (so even a small nudge could make someone played a ton or played a little, because the next one replaces it). 2. Heavily, actually. Our changes to all of the Juggernauts in 5.18 (where all 4 + GP/Fiora were nerfed) were actually done with champions like Gnar in mind, who we consider to be a popular and effective counterpick to these champions. Worlds has proven this to be _mostly_ true, though obviously GP and Mordekaiser need further work. Often times if some champion or strategy is domineering, we'll think a lot about why that is - and in some cases, endeavor to buff a champion or item that's part of that champion's counter-matchup (such as making Spectre's Cowl more efficient/better when mages are everywhere top, etc). --- 1a - Leo's pretty strong, definitely in the top 5 of star-signs for the moment. Unsure if we'd buff, will have to check my horoscope. 2a - Best support in the format is definitely Evolving Wilds. Battle For Zendikar's proven to be a more diverse limited format than Rise of the Eldrazi in terms of color identity and strategy, so the windows you open yourself for a 3 color deck (4 if green) by early-picking Evolving Wilds outweighs some of the power you lose in the process. 3a - Rengar spends most of his time hunting monsters much larger than him, which I imagine translates into a large amount of fractures. Pretty good shape considering. --- 1b - SmashGizmo had a pretty good Sheik until he got frustrated and went back to playing Melee full time, but ya boy scarmander's got the dirtiest DK this side of the Mississippi 2b - It's really hard to walk around and **not** see people playing some of these games at their desk, but for our team specifically? Probably HotS the most (my valla goes IN). Pwyff is a big DotA player. ManWolfAxeBoss is super good at Smite!
: So before I buy the dunk master skin, what are the plans for Darius? He's a really strong pick right now but I was just wondering what kinds of things the team was playing around with balance wise. {{champion:122}}
Still waiting to see what effect the 5.20 balance changes had and evaluate from there, but verrrrrrrrrry early data points to them having had some effect. That said, I used to be a Woad King man, but switched to Dunkmaster post-update. When you get 5 stacks of bleed the buzzer sounds, which is super awesome and lets your opponents know it's time to slam jam.
Rashadove (EUNE)
: Are we going to see something like 5.16 soon that will make the game more **interrrresting** ? :P
Yes in the sense that preseason is around the corner, meaning you'll generally see heavier amounts of disruption compared to the rest of the year. I like to think that game's always more interesting each patch! :D :D
: Has the balance team considered doing a large pass on boring/forgotten passives on old old champs? No one really takes Alistar's AoE passive damage into much consideration, Singed has a conversion passive that can cause headaches, among other things. Even Zilean's rework left the passive alone until now, and just NOW he gets a new passive, separate from the rework. Seems like those old passives should be given more consideration when a champ is reworked or rebalanced.
Generally speaking, this is more a task for the Champion Update team to hit as they take on projects, but old passives remain as strong levers for us to tune if we want to add power to the champion. Consider though, that unless we take on the champion as a full-blown update like Fiora (where her passive health regen turned into the Vitals mechanic), some designers shy away from using these specific levers because the passive in question doesn't provide a ton of gameplay. It's a big win when we're able to turn it into something (shout-outs to 20thCenturyFaux for the pretty cool Zilean passive!), but if we've decided to buff Galio, we'll often err on the side of buffing something impactful that both sides can play around like Idol of Durand rather than say 'okay, he gets 20% more MR from AP' and call it a day.
: Someone's secret weapon and they don't want to show their hand yet... Alternatively, popular team compositions right now aren't terribly favorable for Lux, but I wouldn't be surprised if she showed up.
I'd agree with MWAB here - Lux's performance in normal play (especially since 5.17) has actually improved a lot, but professional teams just don't seem to be valuing their pick-potential from the midlane, opting for Kalista, Kench, Thresh, Elise etc to do that for them. She's got the waveclear though. She's one of my few picks (like caitlyn, thx flash wolves :D) to still see play before the tournament's end!
: Another question (this one is more directed to champion design, but still): How do you decide which role in the game is allowed to have what power. For example: We all know that giving an assassin a silence is a bad idea, which is why you removed it from every assassin. On the other hand supports are allowed to have an aoe zhonyas, ally untargetability, aoe silence, a 10 year root, etc. I am not complaining about these design decisions. As a support player i like having this much power in my hands and i really like the current state of the game balance, i am just curious as to how you determine what champions are allowed to have what kind of power.
Perhaps not an exciting answer, but these are really case-by-case. For instance 'no hard-cc on an assassin' is thrown out the window by Ekko, but we specifically designed all of his damage output and abilities around that fact. I'd say it's generally less that there are 'hard rules' and more that there are some mechanics or abilities that are handled with extreme care. For instance, sustain and hard CC tend to be some of the ones that make people the most nervous - having the highest 'potential' to get out of control if not handled carefully.
Wodin (NA)
: I love hearing about how people think about problems and communicate organizational knowledge, so I'm curious. Can you talk about some of the balance moments or stories that the team uses to teach new people, or looks back upon as great examples of changes that made the champion better/more fun/more balanced in a way that was a win for both the team and the playerbase?
I think every member of the team will have different examples for this one, personally - for me, I think one of the clear wins was when we changed Death Mark to place Zed's shadow at his starting position rather than behind the target. At the time (end of Season 3, Worlds), Zed was a 100% pick/ban for the whole tournament and a sore spot for players on Live as well. This change not only made Zed easier to play against (the previous clone being behind them often made escape impossible), but also gave Zed players new avenues of outplaying opponents and making hype plays by actually finding cool ways to make use of _both_ clones to escape or all in. That said, at the time of this change it was extremely controversial, with many people thinking we 'killed zed'. Often we'll need to take away something powerful (and thus reliable) to create the gameplay that we want and really drive deeper interactions between our champions overall. This sort of initial perception hit is something we always struggle with when we make major changes to champions - Ahri's Q gaining speed (but losing a ton of damage) earlier this year was seen as a huge nerf, as was Veigar's Event Horizon gaining a cast time, but I'd argue both changes are essential towards making them balanced long-term.
  Rioter Comments
: Zilean. Let's throw it back to 3.14! What a time to play bot lane
A portal opens. Suddenly, Riot, the players, the servers, and all 10 Galio mains are thrust into a distant and uncertain future. Stormclouds surround the population in a thick black pitch. The sun is dead. The sky breaks open briefly as lightning envelops all for a brief but clarifying moment; all that remains of the world we once knew is a Colliseum, the landing point of our time-worn League travelers. A sign hangs above the entrance - "20XX WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS." In this future, Worlds is not a time of year - it is a state of mind. There are no placements, no tiers, no promotion series - all compete on the World Stage, every minute of every hour, destined to a meaningless victory erased with each passing day. We have been brought by Zilean to the darkest timeline - The Dark Eternity of Esports. During the 20XX World championships, Faker, now a shadow of his former glory, presides above his 'competition' seated upon a throne of solid Challenger-tanium (a new metal made from smelted World Championship titles and the tears of his opponents). With a flick of his wrist, he orders all to be seated and the day's show begins. Holograms appear upon the floor of the stadium as the top players from every dimension gather, armored and altered to look like champions. They land upon a summoning platform as the landscape transforms to resemble The Howling Crystal Butcher's Riftline Chamber, the only 'viable' map in 20XX. As the 'champions' load in, the guests in the stadium stand up-right and begin marching as if compelled by some dark force. One by one, they walk towards one another in a strange pattern as the stage finishes completion. In this timeline, _we_ are the minions. Endlessly marching to our assured doom, just to become gold in someone's pocket. In your final moments, you think "Trusting Zilean may have been unwise..." "...but at least Skarner's not broken anymore."
GLBuck (NA)
: Probably more of a job for {{champion:245}}
Ekko rewinds us 4 patches back to 5.12, an era where Runeglaive mid-laners are all the rage and Ezreal is in every game. If you trust in Zilean to rewind, we could end up in any patch, past /or/ future - who do you choose?
: Between Two Turrets - Come chat with ClakeyD! [COMPLETE]
Who's the most handsome toplaner you've ever been on a team with?
Retillin (NA)
: Yeah, I loved the idea here Scarizard. But if its only such a small selection of questions, why are they not just answered on the boards when they are brought up? 3 questions really falls short of expectations for most people. (Granted I could be wrong) But yeah, felt really underwhelming...
Already something we'll be looking to do for the next one (include more answers) even if it takes a little bit more time.
Flemman (EUW)
: will you keep to pick in the last batch question or must we ask the question one more time? :p
We're keeping the giant pool we have and only adding to it going forward.
: i was expecting all questions to be answered, or at least multiple of the same question answered at least once. if you're going to just do whatever you feel like, i guess thats cool too.
Seeing as there were 1060~ questions just from North America alone (with about 800+ uniques) within a time-span of only a week of collection, answering every question from every region isn't really feasible. For future issues we'll work on pushing more of them out, but 3-5 is around what our current expectations are, every few weeks.
: Only 3 questions? That's...I don't want to sound ungrateful for you guys doing this or not, but I was expecting a bit more for two weeks, you know? Especially if this is going to be a common thing.
Our goal is 3-5, but between the collection of the questions from each region, actually sifting through all of them by hand, cat-wrangling the designers to have Real Conversations about our thoughts and feelings (inbetween all the actual designing these guys do), then the writing of it, it gets to be a pretty hefty task for something we've only just started. As the process improves i'm looking for us to get better and faster about pumping these out, but your feedback is noted!
Shíny (NA)
: So these live gameplay Q&A's are more for high-level questions? i guess for the next collection period I should focus more on higher level concepts instead of champion focused questions?
It's not a hard rule that all champion-styled questions are out (we have a couple in our bucket), but very pointed questions like 'Why did you nerf X/Y' usually are passed up for questions like 'What are the issues with balancing champions with X or Y mechanic?' The more durable knowledge an answer can provide, the higher we tend to value it internally. Things like 'Who do you balance for', for instance was the most popular non-champion related question across all regions, so we thought i'd be a meaty topic to dive into for #1
: Q: Why is Riot (once again) relying on a third party website ( for it's Community Relations? The Forums just not good enough anymore? Can RIOT not do "anything" in house now?..... So many questions...
A big reason we used as a collection method was that it's a nifty tool for allowing us to 'mailbag' the questions that we receive and sort them accordingly. We'll be posting the answers (and discussing them!) on the Boards as we've done here!
: So hum, where are the answers? Ps: And btw, askfm is as terrible as Twitter for that sort of thing. Character limitation makes it impossible to ask a question with context.
Now that we're finished collecting, it'll be a small while as we gather some of 'em up and publish the first issue. Soon, not soontm~
: I realize this is a question but I don't think it'd a good question to put on When will we see the first responses? May 11th? A week? Soon™?
After the 10th we'll start sifting through the responses globally (quite a few other regions are participating) and grab a couple to post some detailed responses to. I won't post the tentative dates for publishing (as it's the first time we're trying this) but the first publication should be well before the month is finished!
aperson1 (NA)
: You guys are gonna be swamped with so many angry questions from anonymous nerds on askfm. If you really are gonna read through all that I just gotta say I am super impressed.
A few hundred since i posted this up on noon. Folks get passionate because they care about a game and feel like they aren't being heard or considered - we're here to show they are. It's frustrating, and while not everyone has something constructive to say (REMOVE RIVEN messages today my god) i'd rather we take the brunt of that frustration and pave the way for a conversation that just let everyone bottle it up forever, y'know? While you're at it, consider tossing a question into the abyss! It'll get read, that much i can promise you :D
  Rioter Comments
  Rioter Comments
: Hey, I have a question, As a long time league of legends player, what do you think the transition time will be for players like me to adapt to the new changes. I have played on the PBE from time to time, however, I have not notice that much difference. Can you also give a prediction on how long it should take the average league players to adapt. Thanks
Good question! I think that even in the harshest cases it should only be a few games; for example, when we first tested the change internally we didn't tell any of the playtesters for a while that a camera change had occurred - of the hundred or so testers, not a single one had noticed the camera change until we told them. That anecdote isn't to say that some of y'all on live won't notice or have a period to adapt, but all signs that we've seen during internal testing and the PBE phase is that adaptation shouldn't take you very long at all.
  Rioter Comments
: Fun Facts About Rioters (as told by other Rioters!)
I was going to make a list of Rioters and their quirks/tendencies/fun facts, but honestly, i didn't think it was worth detracting from the weight of this one in particular. RiotNome doesn't have texting.
: Maybe Give The Ult Some CC... It doesn't have to be much, but garen is rarely seen in any ranked play. This primarily being because his lack of CC. Due to the fact that his ult does have a relatively long cooldown compared to many other ults it is more that fair that this now provides a brief stun. Additionaly it will make his ult more versatile so it wont just be a clean-up.
The big issue with including something like CC on Garen's ult is that it confuses the use-case. Garen's ult, when successful, executes your target (which is quite powerful that he has a 'just kill you' button). If we were add CC to it, likely two scenarios would arise: 1. You'd rarely ever see it, because the majority of your Garen Ults are killing your opponent (making the CC ineffective/superfluous). 2. The CC in question would be so effective that Garen's would use their Ult on targets that they want to die, but are not in execute range - (i.e. if Demacian Justice stunned the target for X seconds, you'd never get satisfying damage. You'd just use it on a person you wanted to CC.) Even in case #2, often times the point of CCing a target is...well, to kill them. If Garen's ult -were- to get some love, we'd likely make the threshold at which it does maximum damage a little higher so that you can take out targets easier, or decrease the cooldown so that he were to have it more available. That said, Garen's ult is pretty satisfying at the moment (imo) - and i wouldn't be excited about increasing the power of an ability that comes at the end of the engagement rather than one that's used/felt throughout.


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