@Morello You used to work on Guild wars; why not make Soraka a Protection Monk?

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Morello

Lead Designer

01-30-2014
3 of 4 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Explosion View Post
Well, I'm not sure why in League there must be this absolute exclusivity of 'Kill the Healer'--

Isn't there that balance point where enemies must decide whether they want to target the support versus targeting the DPS?

Like, there's a point of healing strength where the healer is terrible. They do nothing and are ignored.
Then there's the perhaps opposite point of The Healer Is Everything, and they are responsible for the life and death of the entire team.
But between those two, there may be a point where both the healer and the DPS are contributing
somewhat evenly to the success of the team.

It's like when discussing the power of MTG cards: Is a 2/3 for 1 mana OP? Probably. How about 2 mana? And so on. Eventually you get to a point where it becomes balanced. And past that, underpowered.

So with Marksmen currently, they exclude other forms of DPS. I mean, that's their problem.

Would a healer exclude other forms of support like Blitzcrank or Janna? In theory, you should have a valid strategic reason for each choice.

That's a function of game balance.

So currently in League, a symptom of imbalance is bans being used on 'fotm' champions, rather than trying to ban team strategies. Playing a hard engage team should tend to ban Janna to further the strategy.

But if both teams are playing to the same "protect the marksman" strategy, and there's only one set of most optimal champions for that, the game may get 'hemmed in' as to what can be done.
I think this is the crux of the, specifically, "healer" type. I think their healing must be so impactful that ignoring it will end in failure. This isn't true of supports, but in this case healing specifically. This is also only when your only controlled piece/unit is a healer, strategy games that feature multiple units can sack the personal satisfaction for great effectiveness balance (Medics in SC/Priests in WC) and still feel good.

I do think each person in a fight needs to generate "threat," to use RPG terms. Support probably don't do enough of this, or cause play changes to happen due to impact (Janna shielding in a 45-minute game teamfight? Maybe we need to swap targets for a sec and let it fall). There should be a decision of if you need to deal with the support, but I think that decision might be too easy right now.


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matrii thana

Member

01-30-2014

just suggesting some interesting mechanics, if you're taking them.

skill1: enchants ally/allies - any ally that is cc'ed instead ignores the cc and blinds all nearby enemies. if cast on a cc'ed ally, ally is freed from cc but no blind occurs. cc should include hooks? this would counter thresh's hooks, make good decisions, counters amumu and fiddle, etc.

skill2: shields an ally for x points. remaining shield at the end of the duration becomes target ally's mana. allows enemies to counterplay - more interesting decisions for both sides.

skill3: enchants ally. ally struck by damage instead reflect % damage back on the inflicter up to soraka's current mana or health. might be good to keep burst assassins on their toes.

i'm not suggesting that all 3 skills be introduced. just thought a new mechanism would be interesting. though gw1 was perhaps too many mechanisms and became a balancing nightmare.


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AntiMage II

Senior Member

01-30-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Explosion View Post
Asking to delete a Silence that perhaps doesn't cost any mana to cast.

You may need to work on your anti-maging.
Free mana? Literally the worst thing ever. She's an enabler.


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OMG halp meh plz

Senior Member

01-30-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by AntiMage II View Post
Free mana? Literally the worst thing ever. She's an enabler.
If KotL Ezalor gives you mana, what do you do?

How does it feel to be given mana by a magic user?


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OMG halp meh plz

Senior Member

01-30-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Morello View Post
I think this is the crux of the, specifically, "healer" type. I think their healing must be so impactful that ignoring it will end in failure. This isn't true of supports, but in this case healing specifically. This is also only when your only controlled piece/unit is a healer, strategy games that feature multiple units can sack the personal satisfaction for great effectiveness balance (Medics in SC/Priests in WC) and still feel good.

I do think each person in a fight needs to generate "threat," to use RPG terms. Support probably don't do enough of this, or cause play changes to happen due to impact (Janna shielding in a 45-minute game teamfight? Maybe we need to swap targets for a sec and let it fall). There should be a decision of if you need to deal with the support, but I think that decision might be too easy right now.
Supports with CC generate more threat than those without, which is one of the reasons why Soraka is in a bad spot. Sona gets by because of her ult, but that still isn't optimal since her utility scaling is so low.

What if you gave Soraka some CC? shameless plug - http://forums.na.leagueoflegends.com....php?t=4225940


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Super Explosion

Senior Member

01-30-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Morello View Post
I think this is the crux of the, specifically, "healer" type. I think their healing must be so impactful that ignoring it will end in failure. This isn't true of supports, but in this case healing specifically. This is also only when your only controlled piece/unit is a healer, strategy games that feature multiple units can sack the personal satisfaction for great effectiveness balance (Medics in SC/Priests in WC) and still feel good.

I do think each person in a fight needs to generate "threat," to use RPG terms. Support probably don't do enough of this, or cause play changes to happen due to impact (Janna shielding in a 45-minute game teamfight? Maybe we need to swap targets for a sec and let it fall). There should be a decision of if you need to deal with the support, but I think that decision might be too easy right now.
So healing is just a tool for support. It essentially just augments the health bar for survivability.

Say you make a champion who gives movement speed to allies. You can make that OP enough to be at the must-kill level of an RPG healer. Or you can make it UP enough to be almost completely unnoticeable.

Of course if you make a champion themed on 'health augmentation', it needs to do that on par with a champion themed on 'position augmentation' to balance the game.

For supports in general, the 'threat' decision now is reasonably easy: They're usually not threatening.

This is because support abilities in League seem designed around the principle of being weak enough that it forces the requirement of another champion to be present, rather than being strong and stronger with other champions.

In Dota, Doombringer and Naga Siren can be supports. Shadow Shamen is a support. The key principle behind being a support in Dota tends to be 'you have a powerful ability which helps teammates'. This is where 'intra-game uniqueness' comes into play. No one else has Doom, Doom is powerful, I can pick the character for Doom, and if he went Aghs/Refresher support, I may want to blow up the Doombringer first.

That example is to indicate that by contrast, League supports don't have Doombringing power.

They seem to have more generic small-buff abilities that just kind of gently boost up allies, smoothing over ally gameplay. Which may not be as satisfying as "You're DOOMED".

It's both late game and early game. At both points, supports just kind of fuse themselves with another champion, perhaps combining abilities to obviate weaknesses.

So sure, Janna could have lategame Titan Shields. Lulu could have lategame Titan Shields. Orianna could have lategame Titan Shields. But you see the problem? They're all largely doing the same thing, in a very hands off way.

Supports should bring unique strategic strengths, applied through their team.

In theory, utility scaling should allow similar things to Aghs/Refresher. "I want to send Janna mid, because when she gets that Refresher Orb, it's going to make my team's strategy even better."


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Morello

Lead Designer

01-30-2014
4 of 4 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Explosion View Post
So healing is just a tool for support. It essentially just augments the health bar for survivability.

Say you make a champion who gives movement speed to allies. You can make that OP enough to be at the must-kill level of an RPG healer. Or you can make it UP enough to be almost completely unnoticeable.

Of course if you make a champion themed on 'health augmentation', it needs to do that on par with a champion themed on 'position augmentation' to balance the game.

For supports in general, the 'threat' decision now is reasonably easy: They're usually not threatening.

This is because support abilities in League seem designed around the principle of being weak enough that it forces the requirement of another champion to be present, rather than being strong and stronger with other champions.

In Dota, Doombringer and Naga Siren can be supports. Shadow Shamen is a support. The key principle behind being a support in Dota tends to be 'you have a powerful ability which helps teammates'. This is where 'intra-game uniqueness' comes into play. No one else has Doom, Doom is powerful, I can pick the character for Doom, and if he went Aghs/Refresher support, I may want to blow up the Doombringer first.

That example is to indicate that by contrast, League supports don't have Doombringing power.

They seem to have more generic small-buff abilities that just kind of gently boost up allies, smoothing over ally gameplay. Which may not be as satisfying as "You're DOOMED".

It's both late game and early game. At both points, supports just kind of fuse themselves with another champion, perhaps combining abilities to obviate weaknesses.

So sure, Janna could have lategame Titan Shields. Lulu could have lategame Titan Shields. Orianna could have lategame Titan Shields. But you see the problem? They're all largely doing the same thing, in a very hands off way.

Supports should bring unique strategic strengths, applied through their team.

In theory, utility scaling should allow similar things to Aghs/Refresher. "I want to send Janna mid, because when she gets that Refresher Orb, it's going to make my team's strategy even better."
Hmm. I think we agree generally on this - I think we might disagree with execution details on how.


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Super Explosion

Senior Member

01-30-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Morello View Post
Hmm. I think we agree generally on this - I think we might disagree with execution details on how.
Well the determiner I've recommended for examining support abilities is "How many thanks does it get from teammates?"

Shen Ult gets a ton of thanks from teammates.

Janna shield (and similar) tends to get negative thanks. ("Why didn't you shield me sooner noob? Do your job.")

I mean, I like support duo lanes. Duo lanes are probably the most fun dynamic in League presently.

But I don't like the 'required fusion' dynamic of supports currently, where they're basically expected to perform maintenance on their lane partner rather than jointly fight.

So how to rectify that? Well either through rework of supports or itemization, they should probably gain more strategic power.

Basically, if you can balance the game so that supports 'Become Blitzcrank'. Gamechangers.

If I draft Naga Siren, I changed the game.

If I draft Blitzcrank, I changed the game.

Carries (marksmen) probably have a similar problem as well. By virtue of working similarly, they each promote similar strategies.

In Dota, if the carry's Jungle Lifestealer, that's going to perhaps have a very different strategy from Ganking Luna carry.

To be honest, many support problems may be tied to the mechanics of the Marksmen they are currently usually paired with. The safer laning of the marksman, and the 'required farm and protect for lategame' may limit the power of supports-- they can't dominate everyone when paired with a marksman, and they can't make the marksman too untouchable on top of the ranged safety already present.


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Musche

Senior Member

01-30-2014

morello helped in guilds wards?

he probably made the on release dervishes


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Fashion Mage

Senior Member

01-30-2014

Supports aren't focused right now either because their abilities are relatively weak (you yourself even called their ratios/itemization "myopic") or because they're a tanky support so focusing them isn't smart. This is ironic for squishy supports (Sona, Soraka, Janna, etc) because despite being very squishy, their abilities aren't quite as impactful as tank/mage supports. There's supposed to be a trade-off here for being so squishy, and logically that trade-off means exceptionally powerful abilities, but "exceptionally powerful abilities" doesn't mean "I can target allies with this so its power is being limited severely".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Morello View Post
I think this is the crux of the, specifically, "healer" type. I think their healing must be so impactful that ignoring it will end in failure.
There's a fine line of balance for everything in games, and healing isn't excluded. There are trade-offs for having a lot of healing. Squishiness, lack of mobility, lack of damage, lack of cc, and being particularly weak to effects like grievous wounds. These weaknesses should rightfully give healers powerful healing abilities, but they should still only be as impactful as everyone else in the party, and I personally don't believe it's impossible or even hard to achieve this. This also applies to squishy supports in general.