Mid Year Mage Updates - Annie Direction

Since the last update, we've thrown a couple mages into the pile beyond our original six as ones to tackle. Enclosed below is your one way ticket to Tibber’s Tea Party. Don’t miss it. One of League iconic duos, Annie and her bear Tibbers have gone through their fair share of updates as League has grown over the years. Throughout this, Annie has held on tight to her identity as a little pyro surrounded by gods and demons. Even the likes of Aurelion Sol is fated to die in a fire when matched up against a skilled Annie player. But while Annie has weathered well, her other half Tibbers isn’t living up to his fearsome potential. While Tibbers always makes a dramatic entrance, his contributions to the fight post-summoning aren’t always befitting the awesome flaming magic bear he is. **Things we especially like:** * The flash bear drop. Annie’s bread-and-butter burst combo is a threatening affair that’s more about skirting the edges of Annie’s range than dodging a skillshot. While League benefits a lot from the potential to outplay most abilities in the game, having Champions with reliable abilities is also good for the game as long as they don’t make less-reliable champions obsolete. * High accessibility, high mastery curve. Despite being one of the easier champions to pick up, Annie’s performance scales dramatically with experience thanks her limited but sharp windows of opportunity. **Things we are working on improving:** * Tibbers AI and Control. The current state of affairs re: summoning leaves much to be desired, reducing him to be League’s cuddliest walking sunfire cape. Tibbers is certainly a powerful ally, but commanding him beyond tanking a turret or walking towards your enemies often yields a less-than-satisfactory experience. Often, he’s left cancelling his basic attacks while Annie is busy slings spells. * Hiding power behind poor threat communication. Constantly checking Annie’s buff bar should not be the correct, or only way to know if she’s hiding a stun behind her next Molten Shield. * Throw-away Passive stacking spell. We’d like Molten Shield to have a use past “Pyromania Stack”. **What we hope comes out of the update:** * Annie players should feel connected to and empowered when accompanied by their summon Tibbers. This _will_ mean shifting some power out from Annie’s direct abilities into Tibbers himself. * Players matched against Annie should have better communication around when she’s most threatening and when she isn’t. * Molten Shield should have value as a powerful defensive ability on a mage; especially one that’s often bear-dropping into the thick of battle. With this update, we’re finally answering that age-old question: Yes Annie, we _have_ seen your bear Tibbers. Best, Beluga Whale
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