Let's talk about Soraka

First Riot Post
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Cavni

Junior Member

09-10-2013

You are desperately making me want to design a 1 second cooldown heal. I don't think you will go with it, but I am going to throw it in the mix just to stir creative juices.

Put the heal on Starcall. Starcall does AOE that strikes everything around Soraka, damaging enemy units and healing allied units by a small amount. After 3-4 seconds of use, it goes on cooldown for 20 seconds.

Opportunity cost: During an engagement, Soraka has to remain still (constantly spamming the spell) and can't reposition OR use other spells or she won't get maximum use out of Starcall. Outside of an engagement, it's mana-intensive and goes on a long cooldown, although overall it heals the same as her current W.

As for her W, I'd really like to keep the armor-component of Soraka's kit since it's kind of my favorite bait ever. Cast on an ally, it transfers Soraka's armor/MR to them (at the risk of making her thin as a piece of paper - again, she needs to be careful with time and positioning). Cast on an enemy, it steals some of their armor/MR and puts it on Soraka, making her more durable while giving her ADC a squishier target.

It's not the CC that many people (including myself) have often wished for while playing Soraka, but I already have supports I can play for slows, disables, and knock-ups (LULU QUIT IT). I'd like Soraka to bring something new to the peel-for-the-carry table, and I think that something is messing you up gently while your attention is elsewhere.


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Aquodox

Senior Member

09-10-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by CoffeeDave View Post
I'm just spit-balling, but what about a spell/ability that makes the area around her prevent anyone from attacking each other for a second or two? For some reason, when I see Soraka, she seems to me to want to use an ability similar to the D&D spell Santuary. (Link http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/sanctuary.htm )
that sounds like a fun ability to have on a champion and doesnt seem to be to strong of an ability because it prevents both parties from attacking each other, just will be labeled as an annoying ability to face at times.

the only problem i can think of is where will this spell fit? her heals need to stay because it defines soraka, as well as her silence/mana and starfall.


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Cirgwath

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Member

09-10-2013

I play the dickens out of Raka. I love Raka. She is, however, sorely limited in many ways.

I like Soraka's kit. What I don't like are the limitations in harassment after the early game. A good Soraka focusing Infuse with a decent poky AD carry (Here's looking at you Ashe, Varus and Ez) can zone the hell out of the opposing lane and dominate early- this I know from experience. Once into the teamfight phase, there is so little she can do besides provide clinch heals- her HPS is too terrible to be otherwise, although yes, it allows for great clinch-heals.

An ap-raka can be formidable in lane- Even with just a Rylais, she can kite awfully well, especially with her heals.

If you wanted to make her more competitive, I see a few options. I will go over these by examining her kit.

Ult- DO NOT TOUCH. It's fine, and tweaking it would risk breaking her, one way or the other.

Q- This ability is iconic. Rather than removing it, could you grant a secondary range in which only one champion could be affected? Or extend range and limit it to 6 targets, wherein each Champ counts twice? This enables harassment and MR debuff in teamfights without excessively exposing her to easy murder via mobility creep.

W- Clinch heal is great. The only thing I would consider changing is buffing to add MR as well as Armour, but possibly reducing the value.

E- OMFG Infuse is amazing. The only thing I would consider changing is either increasing flat damage for more poke or adding a blind or silence component, so that it wouldn't be a pure anti-caster weapon. That or make it *more* of an anti-caster weapon (and pure AP tool) by reducing FLAT values of damage and mana given while reducing cooldown, while reducing the silence a lesser proportion- this allows for greater use in teamfights, and makes her more open to silencing Kat while still providing nukes.

Thoughts?


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Gespens

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Senior Member

09-10-2013

Why not change how her skills function?

Someone suggested making Astral Blessing a shield that depletes itself for a heal... but what if we make it a shield that will heal for the amount it has left? In order to make this a powerful spell in lane, but having counterplay at the same time, this allows greivous wounds to have double effect. For example, Tristana will E the enemy, and it not only weakens how much Soraka heals the person for, but it MURDERS how much it heals for. You lose the total amount from damage, and whatever you have left is gutted by healing reduction.

I remember reading that you guys tested giving Starcall a passive component, of giving your allies an onhit effect if you cast a spell on them, which would deal bonus damage + MR shred. What happened to that?

Infuse could need a total rework though.


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AcrobaticApricot

Senior Member

09-10-2013

How about buffing the damage on her Q at ranks past 1 and then buffing the heal at early ranks but nerfing it at later ranks to incentivize maxing Q to play her aggressively? Right now Soraka's Q is actually a really good ability, I know of one d1 Soraka main who advocates maxing it for bot lane already. We don't really have such a thing as a support with sustained damage; the closest thing is Lulu via her passive. I can imagine Soraka with a stronger Q absolutely crushing with a champion like Corki in extended duels. She could still theoretically max W if she was losing lane, the same as Taric. I feel that her heal is mostly problematic in the laning phase because it incentivizes passive farming and that it's not a problem later into the game because it's outscaled by poke anyway.


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Morello

Lead Designer

09-10-2013
8 of 18 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kandyvag View Post
Sorry this post took a little longer than I wanted it to. There was an..*incident* at work.

While dedicated healers might be a problem in terms of actual design, let's look at sustain in the actual game. Given that Soraka is generally paired with Marksmen I'll be focusing on their sustain.

Marksmen/ADCs will generally start with a long sword+pots or a Doran's blade. This gives them a bit of sustain, but nothing over the top. next item is either a B.F. Sword or a vamp scepter, slightly more sustain, but Soraka is still able to burst out the health. Then a BT or BotRK is purchased and now our carry is starting to sustain themselves quite a bit. Next item is probably an IE or PD, at this point the carry is really starting to get fat chunks of health back that our poor gold-starved unicorn girl can barely keep up with. After that, they basically out-sustain her for the rest of the game with Soraka being able to give a half second more life to a friend.

Now, why do we need Soraka as a dedicated healer? Draven. More specifically, we now have plenty of champions with exceptionally good early game burst potential that have given rise to Barrier as a popular spell on SR. Without her ability to stop a level 2-3 all-in from someone like Draven or Xin Zhao with a quick burst heal and some extra armor, her carry would surely die and the enemy would snowball out of control. Soraka is there so that Tristana, Vayne, or Kog'maw can survive a terrible early game from these other carries and try to make it to that mid-late game where they become monsters. Soraka is there so that if your ADC gets hard countered, you have someone who can take some of the sting of trading off so you can try to whittle them down and not feed. Soraka sacrifices any form of engage or hard CC so you can try to survive what is going to be a hard fought lane. Soraka makes sure your mages get extra damage off on the enemy with her amazing shred abilities and then she makes sure the enemy can no longer say bad things about you by silencing them.

So what do I see Soraka as? Soraka is THE Healer of League. Sure, other champs have heals, but they're kind of meager and a little spammy. Soraka on the other hand, expends huge amounts of her mana to bring forth what little divine power she has left in order to save her team. She is the archetypal healer, the lifegiver, and the only source of MR aura left. Soraka is a fallen God trying to heal the wounded before her, she is the one trying to stop the killing. However, she is not afraid to call upon the stars to try and smite down whoever dare hurt her friends and teammates.

In short, we need Soraka as a healer. We already have so many archetypes in league that having just ONE dedicated healer is not such a bad thing. After all, some of us like healing.
Your argument is why we need supports that can protect allies, and some type of health recovery mechanics need to exist so that fall-backs patterns can occur against reckless and aggressive opponents. On that, we agree.

I'm saying there's no one who does that by healing as their primary contribution to the team that's healthy. I never doubt that people like healers (I had an 80 Resto Druid in WotLK for quite awhile myself) - that's not a contention point - I'm saying it causes harm to games, much based on the examples we've seen in LoL, WoW, TF2, any MMO ever, and plenty of other games I'm forgetting.

And with Leagues's focus on interaction as opposed to winning at setup, having it be a weird counter but still cause poor gameplay is not an approach I'd like for League.


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Morello

Lead Designer

09-10-2013
9 of 18 Riot Posts

Oh - I DO have a dedicated healer design I want to prototype, but it's definitely not for the MMO healer player archetype :P


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Sedirex

Junior Member

09-10-2013

I don't have much to offer in terms of a full rework, but here are some thoughts:

1) The armor and MR buffs have to go. They're both deceptively strong and almost completely unappreciated, even by her big fans. You'd be hard pressed to find someone who says "I love playing Soraka for 16 MR and 25 Armor at level 1," but you'd better believe they can completely change the dynamic of the lane when used well.

2) The giving mana thing is actually really interesting. Playing alongside Soraka is traditionally very dull, but "my dude can use his awesome stuff more often" both creates opportunities for champion synergies (something League generally lacks beyond stacking AOEs) and gives her a more positive effect on her lanemates. However, if it were made more powerful, it would have to be tied to some sort of resource. Maybe that's mana, maybe it's something else (not sure if changing a champion's resource is something that you consider when doing reworks), but generally getting something for nothing leads to poor gameplay (just ask Rengar and his free heal).


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CoffeeDave

Senior Member

09-10-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquodox View Post
that sounds like a fun ability to have on a champion and doesnt seem to be to strong of an ability because it prevents both parties from attacking each other, just will be labeled as an annoying ability to face at times.

the only problem i can think of is where will this spell fit? her heals need to stay because it defines soraka, as well as her silence/mana and starfall.
No idea. I'm just the new guy with years of D&D experience. I was just hoping someone that knows what they're doing would help out with that. My first reaction would be to add it her Ult, but that would seem too strong.


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StationaryObject

Senior Member

09-10-2013

You show them Morello.
I believe in you [and Anivia].