Skarner Rework Follow Through

First Riot Post
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Sightless66

Senior Member

02-14-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotScruffy View Post
This has been very useful feedback and looking at early data suggests that he's struggling much more in the early game than the late game. I'm tentatively looking to put together some changes for next patch:

-E missile width increase
-E slow values increased (especially at low ranks)
-Maybe mana cost improvements

A few things about these changes:
-We don't want to over buff him and have to nerf him again in the future, so keep that in mind.
-We want to make E a much better 1 point ability to help his early ganks
-We want to generally increase the CC payoff for hitting the E because of the difficulty/risk of landing it

These changes aren't final so please share your feedback.

-Scruffy
Probably not enough yet.

Don't just boost the slow value of E. You have to boost either the uptime of the E or the W, so that he has more potential to chase people down. If you only boost the slow value, then he's just going to become more of an ult-based initiator instead of a champion with some degree of early and midgame independence. That's not desirable. That isn't what Skarner was, and it's not what we want him to become.

Making the E and 1 point skill would be very good. He needs that desperately. His level dependency was drastically increased with the rework.

There also shouldn't be a maybe to mana cost changes. Mana costs have always been one of his most frustrating issues. You identified this yourself when the Skarner rework started. You guys have since released the spirit stone changes, but you also forced him into using the E early, so it's pretty much the same as it was. Mana cost buffs are necessary.

If I could give you one thing to think about, it would be this: The skillshot does not feel rewarding, and it probably won't ever feel rewarding unless the payoff for hitting it is massively overtuned and becomes the primary focus of his kit. He's a full melee champion, but you've made his entire kit dependent on hitting a ranged linear skillshot. That means that we don't get a feeling of reward for hitting it, we get a feeling of punishment when we don't because it means that we can't utilize the rest of our kit in any way, shape or form. That's boring.

I'd change the skillshot to be something easy to land, and with CC that can be kept up semi-consistently, but with the potential for the opponent to dodge it. That would fit Skarner's desired playstyle much more while also bring counterplay that the old permaslow didn't.


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RiotScruffy

Game Designer

02-14-2014
10 of 29 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maulkrieg View Post
Against assassins, whoever has more items wins, not whoever made the better plays. How are slows more toxic? At least your team has time to respond with slows.

Explain pls

Btw, THANK YOU SCRUFFY. YOU FINALLY PERSONALLY ACKNOWLEDGED AN IDEA. I believe that the secondary CC should be a brief hard CC though. You'll never have time to reach 3 Q stacks even with that secondary effect as hard CC.
In the case of assassins, we are actively working to not make it the case that when an assassin jumps on you, the determining factor for the win is items not skill (looking at you kassadin).

I don't think anyone thinks slows are toxic, the design philosophy is that when both players have the opportunity to make plays and change a fight it results in more engaging fights and a more skill based game overall.


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Shoukansha Ichi

Senior Member

02-14-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Siigari View Post
-Balancing means sometimes overbuffing and finding that it's too strong, then nerfing later. It's okay to overbuff. Whenever you nerf something else you buff something indirectly.
-Skarner needs a base movement speed increase. He's too slow for a melee champion to brawl with a 1000 unit slow. Think about this -- 1000 units, Skarner moves at maybe what, 385-400? Then their movement speed is decreased 20-50%, so he won't even catch up (math: 400 x 2.5 = 1000, but 400 x .8-.5 = 320-200 x 2.5 = 800-400 so total disparity is 800-400 at max range.)

Please Scruffy, are you even considering putting the slow back on Q?


edit: Slow needs to be LONGER and HARDER. I suggest a 4 second slow to begin with and go from there. Make Skarner really feel like he has some effect, please.
Make the slow increase in duration with range. There.

EDIT: Hi Scruffy :3


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Asatorrr

Senior Member

02-14-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotScruffy View Post
This has been very useful feedback and looking at early data suggests that he's struggling much more in the early game than the late game. I'm tentatively looking to put together some changes for next patch:

-E missile width increase
-E slow values increased (especially at low ranks)
-Maybe mana cost improvements

A few things about these changes:
-We don't want to over buff him and have to nerf him again in the future, so keep that in mind.
-We want to make E a much better 1 point ability to help his early ganks
-We want to generally increase the CC payoff for hitting the E because of the difficulty/risk of landing it

These changes aren't final so please share your feedback.

-Scruffy
he definitely needs a mana balance, without blue all he can really do in the jungle is spam q and if his ganks last more than 10 seconds he probably goes oom.

I would rather his E missile speed be increased than width change, its hard to hit because the travel time just feels awful combined with the inability to cast it while moving.


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Terchio

Senior Member

02-14-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotScruffy View Post
To answer your questions:
-Yes getting permanently slowed by his Q was frustrating to play against, but there are actually other gains that we were trying to achieve with the change.

Permanent slow in melee range often only created two situations for Skarner, the case where he catches someone and they can never escape and the case where he can't ever engage on his target. The winner of fights often revolved around who had more items, not who made the better plays. We hope to create more situations where Skarner catches a target in the first place, but more opportunity for escape one the target has been caught.
That is true for nearly any utility tank and assassin, definitely not just Skarner. If that was really your concern, lower the slow value, but don't make it spikey like this remake. At least Skarner leaves the enemy alive for a while if he isn't uberly fed. And, in this day and age, those "unfun" situations of being caught by Skarner are a thing of the past because no one plays him anymore. They just reminisce about the horrors of being caught by Skarner once upon a time. The horrors each new champion brings is far worse, which is why he fell into obscurity. Skarner only needed a buff, not some assassin-esque remake.


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Crunk

Senior Member

02-14-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotScruffy View Post
In the case of assassins, we are actively working to not make it the case that when an assassin jumps on you, the determining factor for the win is items not skill (looking at you kassadin).

I don't think anyone thinks slows are toxic, the design philosophy is that when both players have the opportunity to make plays and change a fight it results in more engaging fights and a more skill based game overall.
what if Skarner got a .5sec root if he landed an autoattack or q after the E?


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Redeemed In Fire

Senior Member

02-14-2014

Someone made a great point many pages back that Skarner now compares to (Phoenix) udyr. His damage and early game still needs tuning but he's not that far off from being competitive with him. Another idea is to possibly move up the ramp-up time on his MS bonus to 2 or 1 seconds; it's not a trivial one but a 3 second ramp up makes it feel useless because you dont get to notice the MS increase.


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Siigari

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Senior Member

02-14-2014

I just played a game and maxed E first.

Our team was 3/17 at 17 minutes.

What a joke.


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Maulkrieg

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Senior Member

02-14-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sightless66 View Post
Probably not enough yet.

Don't just boost the slow value of E. You have to boost either the uptime of the E or the W, so that he has more potential to chase people down. If you only boost the slow value, then he's just going to become more of an ult-based initiator instead of a champion with some degree of early and midgame independence. That's not desirable. That isn't what Skarner was, and it's not what we want him to become.

Making the E and 1 point skill would be very good. He needs that desperately. His level dependency was drastically increased with the rework.

There also shouldn't be a maybe to mana cost changes. Mana costs have always been one of his most frustrating issues. You identified this yourself when the Skarner rework started. You guys have since released the spirit stone changes, but you also forced him into using the E early, so it's pretty much the same as it was. Mana cost buffs are necessary.

If I could give you one thing to think about, it would be this: The skillshot does not feel rewarding, and it probably won't ever feel rewarding unless the payoff for hitting it is massively overtuned and becomes the primary focus of his kit. He's a full melee champion, but you've made his entire kit dependent on hitting a ranged linear skillshot. That means that we don't get a feeling of reward for hitting it, we get a feeling of punishment when we don't because it means that we can't utilize the rest of our kit in any way, shape or form. That's boring.

I'd change the skillshot to be something easy to land, and with CC that can be kept up semi-consistently, but with the potential for the opponent to dodge it. That would fit Skarner's desired playstyle much more while also bring counterplay that the old permaslow didn't.
On that note, why not create an interaction on his E like Maokai's Q, where certain distances have different effects? Combine that with his old E->Q detonation.

Voila.

You have the potential to add interactions between his E and Q to require skillful timings in order to maintain aggression and actually stick. I feel you should utilize that in order to make the Skarner feel more skillful and allow the opponent an opportunity to upset that via silences, slows, and other forms of CC or denial.

This would retain the feeling of old Skarner while introducing several new forms of counterplay.

Think about it please.


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JuiceBox TERA

Senior Member

02-14-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotScruffy View Post
This has been very useful feedback and looking at early data suggests that he's struggling much more in the early game than the late game. I'm tentatively looking to put together some changes for next patch:

-E missile width increase
-E slow values increased (especially at low ranks)
-Maybe mana cost improvements

A few things about these changes:
-We don't want to over buff him and have to nerf him again in the future, so keep that in mind.
-We want to make E a much better 1 point ability to help his early ganks
-We want to generally increase the CC payoff for hitting the E because of the difficulty/risk of landing it

These changes aren't final so please share your feedback.

-Scruffy


These aren't exactly the biggest problems with Skarner right now Scruffmaster.


The three things people want the most are as follows:


1) The E missile speed is super slow for what it does, it's a weak slow at rank 1 which is what most Skarners will probably keep it at for a while because you need Q for clearspeed and dueling the enemy jungler. It needs to move faster so the gap between Skarner and his enemy doesn't become so drastic during the travel time that there is no chance for Skarner to follow up.

For example look at Mundos cleaver, rank 1 the slow is stronger it travels much faster and costs no mana. The cooldown is also 3x shorter, why can mundo gank infinitely better than Skarner? That doesn't feel right to me.


2) There needs to be some sort of follow up CC on his E, when his E hits it marks them and Skarner should be rewarded for getting into melee range to land either a Q or an auto attack to proc another slow because currently he lands his E, walks up and then what? The enemy just walks away, he has no way to do anything, the enemy doesn't need to CC skarner or blow gap closers, your ganks literally have absolutely no impact, they can walk away without even using abilities after you land at maximum one auto attack of followup on your E.

Let's compare Skarners E to Elise, Elise will land her E which travels at about the same speed as Skarners, it will LOCK the person in place and Elise has instantaneous gapclosing abilities and huge burst damage to follow up, she can instantly chunk someone for 50% of their health upon landing an E as well as root the person in place for ally followup. Does this seem fair when compared to Skarners E?

3) The shield ramp up time is not needed, it just makes Skarners ganks weaker for no reason, he has to keep only one point in his shield because other abilities take priority making the movespeed buff incredibly lackluster and the shield gets broken in one auto attack removing the boost entirely. Using his W and his E which costs a crazy 120mana he sometimes can't even close the gap on an opponent who doesn't even have escapes in their kit. This doesn't seem weak to you?


Side points:


1) His mana costs have been greatly increased from the jungle, just initiating ganks now costs double the mana of before since Skarner now needs two abilities to set up his ganks rather than one. Before his E was not used for ganking. Mana hungry champ is now more mana hungry than before.


2) The heal on his E, why was it removed exactly? It served it's purpose late game to help Skarner survive better and it was his bread and butter skill in lane, without it he can barely lane anymore.

The heal is finally useful because the E is a skill Skarner needs now even early game and you remove it... just an unneccesary nerf in my opinion.


Thanks for reading.