@Riot: Progress Report on Gangplank

First Riot Post
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NVDax

Senior Member

03-08-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riot GMang View Post
Hey all! Nice to see interest, thanks for bringing this up. I’ve been a bit of a lurker when it comes to forums—apologies for being so quiet about it!

Work on Gangplank is still in its formative stages. Gangplank is a cool character with some unique mechanical hooks in his identity, and I don’t want to rush him; currently, he has no timeline—more of a “when he’s ready” kind of situation. Right now, we’re analyzing and prototyping so we can formalize the right plan.

If you have thoughts on him, I’d love to hear them! What excites you about Gangplank, and what bores you? What frustrates, and what satisfies? What is he overdoing, and what is he missing? Inquiring minds want to know!
Oh, maybe this is asking to much, as I doubt you're able to share much of anything but... Is it possible, that you could give us a little taste of what's to come? Just a little small flavor


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Riot GMang

Senior Game Analyst

03-08-2014
2 of 2 Riot Posts

Whoa! Lots of great posts here. I can't do them all justice with responses, but I've read them all and I love the feedback.

Some trends I'm seeing here:

Most posters like:

  • Plundering mad bank
  • Q burst satisfaction (many mention crits)
  • Eating orange, being k
  • Role versatility (doing traditionally non-fighter things)
  • Global cannonballs from the sky
  • High move speed
  • On-hits (e.g. Shiv)
  • Being a badass pirate (also apparently "You Are a Pirate")

Most don't like:
  • Raise Morale is definitely underwhelming (thematically and mechanically)
  • Frustrating unreliability on ultimate (RNG)
  • Trouble functioning after lane (having to build tanky to function?)
  • Passive can be unsatisfying/awkward to use
  • Not much decision-making during combat
  • Laning phase can be drawn-out farm fest
  • Role confusion (what am I actually viable at?)
  • Various tuning issues (costs, cast times, stats, etc.)

If you think I missed a big one, let me know! As for the points themselves, I think most of them are right on the mark. They really underscore some of the mechanical underpinnings of his identity while showing his room for improvement.

I'm on board for these "likes." :P I can totally dig the satisfaction on Q's mechanics and the iconic-ness of W. Beyond that, my interpretation of the "likes" is that a lot of Gangplank's identity comes from his feeling of "rule-breaking": a fighter with a ranged attack, shrugging off CCs, a spell with on-hits, doing things across the map, being too fast to catch, etc. In retrospect, I think this "cheater" feeling is a big reason I became a fan of GP in the first place. Will definitely look to analyze this more going forward!

Also agree with most of the "don't likes" too. The two main takeaways I see are 1) Gangplank's kit is showing its age (ult RNG, tuning issues, E becoming stale over the years, etc.), and 2) Gangplank probably needs to be more "3-dimensional" in what he does (more interesting/varying decisions, uptimes/downtimes, strengths/weaknesses, etc.). Really excited to explore the "most Gangplanky ways" of addressing these concerns.

Hope those sound like fair takeaways to you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xaxziminrax View Post
However, GP just kinda buffs his team, then runs around in teamfights while Q is off CD. I'd love it if he had more defined strengths and weaknesses, because the well-rounded nature of his kit just leads him to be wonderfully average in all phases.

And that's really cool, and super balancable, but as far as just playing around goes, it's not necessarily "fun."
I think this is a fruitful line of thought. Gangplank is a tricky balancing act because of how generalist his identity is. Being a fighter with options is awesome, and I think we could do more to enrich his decision-making so he feels less "flat."

Quote:
Originally Posted by h 2 View Post
Raise Morale has been overworked and overnerfed into an incredibly boring and underpowered ability. I have zero morale for the current state of Raise Morale. Raise my Raise Morale Morale, morelloplz
Sounds from this thread like people want a more exciting E, and I totally agree! :P I would be unsurprised if Gangplank ended up with an entirely different spell in that slot (though some of the high-level functions of current E should probably appear on the kit); currently prototyping is trending that way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImTheSideKick View Post
Honestly I love playing AP GP OP

reasons why

His ult does MASSIVE damage in team fights, shredding lines apart
His Q would do close to 700 damage (over 200 of it ad and the rest magical due to lichbane)
and his Oranges would heal for 1.3k
Are there any particular aspects of those things you'd identify as especially important to you? Is it seeing big sexy numbers (how does critplank compare?)? Is it having impactful teamfight AoE (if so, how does on-hit-plank appeal to you?)? Is it having more highs-and-lows in your pacing (moving emphasis away from P+Q+E and towards high-cooldown W and R)? Is it just the feeling of using unusual item builds?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Critkeeper View Post
Shouldn't a pirate be able to find a treasure chest somewhere?
Heh, you're not alone in wanting treasure chests (coughFeralPonycough). :P No plans for something like that yet, but nothing's off the table.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ForumAccount23 View Post
Question: Why rework? If he needs buffs give him buffs.
This isn't really coming from a balance angle. There's a deeper question I want to answer: is Gangplank living up to his potential? Could Gangplank be a more fun, unique, and healthy character? I think these things can be addressed in ways that actually excite current Gangplank players, not turn them off. Believe me, there are plenty of old-school GP fans at Riot—myself included!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Monsieur Bane View Post
Gangplank is definitely one of the more boring champions to play against. When he was strong, there were 3 things that could happen: he will shoot you when his Q is off CD and sometimes it hurts more than others; he will run at you when he gets an advantage and slow you forever so you cant get away; or he will run away from you when you get an advantage and nullify any CC you lay down.
Definitely worth considering playing-against issues like these. I think a lot of this is due to his "flatness" in lane: high-uptime, low-variance abilities that can turn him into a "stat-check fighter" to lane against. This is definitely something we want to keep an eye on!

Thanks again for sharing, everybody! Looking forward to more discussions/updates in the future.


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CynicalGiant

Senior Member

03-08-2014

It really doesn't make sense for Gangplank to provide any utility to his team. He is a selfish pirate.


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NVDax

Senior Member

03-08-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riot GMang View Post
Whoa! Lots of great posts here. I can't do them all justice with responses, but I've read them all and I love the feedback.

Some trends I'm seeing here:

Most posters like:
  • Plundering mad bank
  • Q burst satisfaction (many mention crits)
  • Eating orange, being k
  • Role versatility (doing traditionally non-fighter things)
  • Global cannonballs from the sky
  • High move speed
  • On-hits (e.g. Shiv)
  • Being a badass pirate (also apparently "You Are a Pirate")

Most don't like:
  • Raise Morale is definitely underwhelming (thematically and mechanically)
  • Frustrating unreliability on ultimate (RNG)
  • Trouble functioning after lane (having to build tanky to function?)
  • Passive can be unsatisfying/awkward to use
  • Not much decision-making during combat
  • Laning phase can be drawn-out farm fest
  • Role confusion (what am I actually viable at?)
  • Various tuning issues (costs, cast times, stats, etc.)

If you think I missed a big one, let me know! As for the points themselves, I think most of them are right on the mark. They really underscore some of the mechanical underpinnings of his identity while showing his room for improvement.

I'm on board for these "likes." :P I can totally dig the satisfaction on Q's mechanics and the iconic-ness of W. Beyond that, my interpretation of the "likes" is that a lot of Gangplank's identity comes from his feeling of "rule-breaking": a fighter with a ranged attack, shrugging off CCs, a spell with on-hits, doing things across the map, being too fast to catch, etc. In retrospect, I think this "cheater" feeling is a big reason I became a fan of GP in the first place. Will definitely look to analyze this more going forward!

Also agree with most of the "don't likes" too. The two main takeaways I see are 1) Gangplank's kit is showing its age (ult RNG, tuning issues, E becoming stale over the years, etc.), and 2) Gangplank probably needs to be more "3-dimensional" in what he does (more interesting/varying decisions, uptimes/downtimes, strengths/weaknesses, etc.). Really excited to explore the "most Gangplanky ways" of addressing these concerns.

Hope those sound like fair takeaways to you!


I think this is a fruitful line of thought. Gangplank is a tricky balancing act because of how generalist his identity is. Being a fighter with options is awesome, and I think we could do more to enrich his decision-making so he feels less "flat."


Sounds from this thread like people want a more exciting E, and I totally agree! :P I would be unsurprised if Gangplank ended up with an entirely different spell in that slot (though some of the high-level functions of current E should probably appear on the kit); currently prototyping is trending that way.


Are there any particular aspects of those things you'd identify as especially important to you? Is it seeing big sexy numbers (how does critplank compare?)? Is it having impactful teamfight AoE (if so, how does on-hit-plank appeal to you?)? Is it having more highs-and-lows in your pacing (moving emphasis away from P+Q+E and towards high-cooldown W and R)? Is it just the feeling of using unusual item builds?


Heh, you're not alone in wanting treasure chests (coughFeralPonycough). :P No plans for something like that yet, but nothing's off the table.


This isn't really coming from a balance angle. There's a deeper question I want to answer: is Gangplank living up to his potential? Could Gangplank be a more fun, unique, and healthy character? I think these things can be addressed in ways that actually excite current Gangplank players, not turn them off. Believe me, there are plenty of old-school GP fans at Riot—myself included!


Definitely worth considering playing-against issues like these. I think a lot of this is due to his "flatness" in lane: high-uptime, low-variance abilities that can turn him into a "stat-check fighter" to lane against. This is definitely something we want to keep an eye on!

Thanks again for sharing, everybody! Looking forward to more discussions/updates in the future.
I said it before, I'll say it again, I freaking love you. Thanks a bunch for looking into this your the Man...g
I have a feeling gp's in good hands,


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Super Explosion

Senior Member

03-08-2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riot GMang View Post
(having to build tanky to function?)[*] Role confusion (what am I actually viable at?)
So these two things may go hand-in-hand-- Melee has to build tanky or have extreme levels of burst/escape to function League.

You probably really really need to solve this globally. Squishy-destroying Towers and Marksmen shut out perhaps most of the gameplay your engine is capable of.

So it's not really 'role confusion' perhaps: It's likely other champions being better than him at every role available in the game currently.


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Jens DV

Senior Member

03-08-2014

Hey there Riot GMang.

Sorry to bother you like this, but I am in need of Riot assistance, and was wondering if you could take a look here for me.


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Urgot my Waifu

Senior Member

03-08-2014

You can remove his current passive completely and change his E completely as long as he gets something back in return that follows in line with the positives you mentioned.

Also I think his E is still bugged? As in it reveals him to enemies if he casts it in the FoW.


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FeedtheGangplank

Junior Member

03-08-2014

@riotGmang
Dude I love this I've been waiting for a Gangplank update for ever, in skimming thru this post most of my thought have been put in. I would like some input of my own to show some more we could do for our scallywag.

His E is so underwhelming as of late it's needs new skill, I rarely pick it up unless laning phase ends early, max w max q then ill touch e is my normal.

One thing I LOVE about Gangplank is his IDC attitude towards eh I want to build tanky to MORE DAMAGAE NOAW. And I would really hate to see a lot of those choices go away.

His passive, I love it regardless of what anyone says, I wouldn't mind seeing it go but a slow would be nice. The thing I liked about the passive is how hard it is to lose a level 1 fight with Gangplank. I think people underestimate it.

Last nail for me. His ult. While I love it dearly I feel like it could be like how Rumbles ult meets thresh flays where u place where it starts and ends where u want it to end but still the same area as it is originally.

Otherwise I can't wait for these changes as a Gangplank main I'm shaking in my peg leg for this!


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Thales

Senior Member

03-08-2014

Quote:
In retrospect, I think this "cheater" feeling is a big reason I became a fan of GP in the first place.
I would emphatically second this. He's a pirate, that's as dishonorable as they come. Perhaps make his "cheating" lower uptime, but splashier when it does happen? Oranges have about the right feel, I think.


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HiIamaPotato

Senior Member

03-08-2014

I feel that the current E is very boring and non "pirate"
Gmang if the E was replaced with a damage ability, would Parrrley
Be tuned down??