Creative Design AMA - Soraka and Warwick

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Dobyk

Member

09-19-2012

I think we all made a point here: please reverse the lore changes


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Boudiccea

Junior Member

09-19-2012

I kind of like the new lore for Soraka, as she has been my favorite and my main since I started. Will her appearance be changed at all? I'm fond of her goat feet and horn, and it's what drew me to her in the first place.

Some clarification on how much blood Warwick needed, and a little more on how Soraka feels about being duped by him would be nice. I'd also like to know how she feels about no longer being connected to the stars. I gather she is okay with losing their guidance, but does she ever miss them or feel a little like she disappointed them?

Also, since we now have all three celestial themed beings (Leona being the Sun, Diana the Moon, and Soraka the Stars) can we have the three meet and debate the finer elements of being a heavenly body powered thing? Of course, you would have to take away weapons at the door, and make Diana and Leona swear to not fight the entire time...


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Siing

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Senior Member

09-19-2012

I'm sorry to say this, but I really, really dislike this new lore. No... The more I reflect upon it, the more it begins to rub me to complete frustration. Don't take this the wrong way; I simply have a very strong attachment to Soraka's previous lore. I'll try my best to specify my problems with the new lore, and how it pales in comparison to my respect for the past.


Soraka’s old lore:
While not written in the most pristine way, the imagery behind the words evokes a sense of absolute tragedy, as one of the most benevolent of souls succumbs to sheer pure hatred. Soraka was almost like the celestial being you describe in the new lore: a kind, loving being that wishes only for the absolute best of those around her, and will do whatever it takes to achieve that. Except in this lore, she isn’t a god... She’s human- a human, so pure in soul that they seem to transcend into another being all together. But even the most virtuous can succumb to “the most primal of emotions”.

Soraka stood and watched, powerless in her attempts to save her people in the Ionian war. With all her strength, she tried and tried, over and over to heal their wounds, but one after the other they fell. Standing amongst a massacre, a field strewn by the corpses of her people... Try she may, but her magic could not bring life to the dead. Amongst her fallen brethren, surrounded by the flames engulfing the village she once called home, stands the shadowy figure of the perpetrator of their demise... and in a moment beyond reason, Soraka’s mind breaks as it overflows with despair... disgust... hatred so strong, that for the first time in her life she wishes only the most excruciating of pain upon another being. As the figure turns around, she looks into the eyes of a man in front of her, their piercing red shine and the sound of his laughter sinking into her skin. She calls upon her power, looking up to the sky as a full moon towers over head, and demands the stars curse this man to become the monster he is within. The stars however, spite Soraka for calling upon them for such a disgraceful deed, and torment her with the same curse she called upon her undoer, transfiguring parts of her body to resemble the ugliness she diminished to in her time of exasperation. As she collapses, it takes all her strength to look up once more, as she witnesses the shadow of a beast flickering amongst the flames in front of her, before she falls unconscious amongst the dead.

This is what my mind sees from the lore currently in the client. While this isn’t all specifically written word for word in her lore, the lack of in-depth clarity is what allows the reader to let their mind fill in the gaps. Soraka’s lore works perfectly for this, as should be clearly seen in my interpretation above. Add in the fact that cursing your enemy in an attempt to torture them in a moment of rage could back fire so badly... I’m literally dumbfounded how the overwhelming irony of this situation could be considered a “double fail”. “Having fallen from grace”, Soraka realizes her mistake and dedicates her life in an attempt to redeem herself- to perhaps one day alleviate her curse and to make sure she never betrays her desire to nurture, heal and extend peace of mind again.

Soraka’s new lore:
Ok... This may get convoluted but stay with me here. Where should I begin? I suppose I’ll start with what it means to be ‘mortal’. Both versions of Soraka’s lore explore this concept in different ways. In the old lore, Soraka was a human being whom eventually transcended beyond an ordinary mortal: a “trans-human”. In her new lore, it’s the other way around, having fallen from her seat as a celestial being into a mortal (but still not a human). Being human is something we all share and can relate to. Soraka’s intense moment of hatred is something we could potentially see happening in ourselves. The desire to live happily is again something we all share. Of course, what pertains to happiness is a subjective thing... But I won’t get into that. It’s the mere fact that these people are what they are, human beings that we can relate to them and what they go through in some way or another. A ‘celestial being’ has none of this. The reader has nothing to go on with from a ‘celestial being’, for what is a celestial being? What makes a celestial being? How are they different to us? How are they similar? The only things we have to work with for these answers are what we are specifically given in the lore. There’s nothing immediately relatable with a celestial being, because they are the unknown. Being human is important, as it allows for a sense of comfort, as despite the differences between us, we are both ultimately alike- we are human. A ‘celestial being’ only serves to alienate the audience.

Now, let’s look at character... and how it disappoints in the new lore. Soraka seems to suffer from similar problems as the infamous pre-rework Jayce lore. She’s all good and... well, little else. As a celestial being, she does not have the human flaws that ruined the old Soraka. She’s... umm... holy, and uh, otherworldly and “so long as evil threatens”, she will not rest! ...Really? Do you see my dilemma here? You guys even went so far as to directly quote ‘evil’ in her lore. In her old lore, there is a clear reason for her actions. Although she starts off in a seemingly similar character as her celestial being self here, her human self shines through as she gives in to her emotions, and attempts to redeem herself afterwards. You say how it was meant to be a “moment of triumph” for Soraka- but no, it wasn’t. The moment of triumph was still to come. That’s what she was working for, to redeem herself and ultimately overcome her past mistake. That’s what she joined the League of Legends for. The old Soraka has plenty of character, and much room left over for the imagination. The new Soraka is linear, a being that lived in immortality in an enchanted grove for centuries, unknowing of the pains of sickness and death directly herself. Hence she cannot sympathise like a fellow mortal that knows those pains would, so where did she develop her sense of kindness and compassion? She was just born with it? A human develops their personality, while a god simply ‘is’ what they are for no real reason. They just are.

Now, with all that said, don’t think I’ve just ignored all the work you’ve put into the actual story in the lore. Putting aside my issues with a celestial being, the overall story is good enough. Though it is far more constricted than the open to judgment old Soraka lore, there is nothing directly wrong with it- I simply very much disagree that it is an improvement is all. At least on Soraka’s side- Warwick is another case all together. That being said, there are some discrepancies that could use with further clarifying which have already been mentioned in the thread, but I won’t go over them again. Though I will say that blood being spilt part should definitely be addressed; just add a line that mentions the wound healing too fast for her blood to be extracted and it’ll be ok.

Well, those are the majority of my issues summed up. I still have a lot I could say about the new lore, but I’ll leave it at that. No wait- one more thing that I forgot about. Why does the new Soraka join the League of Legends? That needs to be clarified in the lore somewhere. You can’t just leave that part up to us to think of, that’s the most important part of all. It’s the reason she joined the League, and hence why we even know of her existence at all. Don’t just let it be ‘because she figured it was the best way to help people’ either. Go that little bit more in depth and reference the actual reason for the league in the first place. Perhaps she joined the League in the hopes of ending political dispute, and eventually hopefully bringing peace to Valoran that way? Better than nothing.

___
Unfortunately, I’ve spent far too much time than I have to spare writing this response up, so I can’t analyse Warwick and Singed. My grievances for Soraka will have to do.

Just one more thing before I must go.... For future lore changes I have to at least try and ask... Please, please keep the same lore of the champions intact. You do not need to create an entirely new lore like you have here to make the points you wanted to make. It is entirely possible with the same lore; just re-write them and integrate the points you wanted to make into that lore. I know this may be asking for a lot, but there are some of us, or at least one of your league fans out there that really do care about the lore, and hate to see canon change so drastically. The world of Valoran is a huge place, with endless possibilities.


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Eserine

Senior Member

09-19-2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandrockcstm View Post
Runaan... I feel like you are ignoring the criticisms being leveled against these retcons. I've read through this whole thread (which I never do for any other topic) and 90% of them are constructive, but critical of the stories themselves. There are some serious issues and inconsistencies with these stories, and I'd appreciate it if you would address those of us who took the time to give you feedback. These AMA's are good for clarifying in general circumstances and with new champions, but I think it's obvious to all of us keeping up with this thread that the quality of these new, retconned backstories is so poor that we need to dispense with the normal format and have a brass tacks discussion about quality control.
+1 to this comment, I regretfully once again must voice my disapproval on the subject of lore alterations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotRunaan View Post
There was a bit too much similarity between Warwick and Singed to have Warwick remain one of the most legendary chemists in Zaun--we'd rather save that space for Singed alone (as it's what you experience with him in-game). With Warwick, we saw an awesome opportunity to give him a unique space in Zaun and also flesh out the city's dark inner workings a bit at the same time. Like Soraka and Warwick, Singed and Warwick are now equals rather than master and apprentice.
Warwick does not seem seem unique, he is a ruthless (half-animal) hunter of prey, which is exactly what Rengar was created to be. The appearance and theme similarities brought about by these story changes make them seem like alternate skins of the same character, and even more importantly his stated motivations and "ambitions" are not clear at all. Zaun is a nation driven by lust for fearsome and secret products of the intellect, but it seems, as it is written, that Warwick is interested in some sort of ambiguous individual power, what form would that power take exactly? Does he want to be the most famous laboratory procurement sales executive in Zaun? "Ratcatchers" and lab-animal breeders on Earth are not afforded much renown, so if this is different in Zaun it should be made more explicit than simply noting that "some people" fear and respect him. Some people fear and respect ugly and physically imposing garbage men, but this doesn't cast light upon the career choices of the specific garbage man described. Does Warwick seek the wealth given by his acquisitions? Is he guided by patriotism or a loyalty to the research of his friends? Why if he only hunts rare human physiotypes does he need to be stronger than a normal human? Presumably 'the rarest", most coveted humans for illegal experimentation, as on Earth, would be sets of young identical twins and triplets and the severely deformed or mutated. Further if Warwick possesses the ability to hire local bands of thieves and brigands wherever he goes and concoct clever plans of ensnarement (as demonstrated), doesn't this clearly remove the need for him to risk transforming himself in a dangerous and untested procedure to give himself a higher capability to bench-press things while he is hunting a difficult quarry? I feel like this characterization idea may have been roughly inspired by the "Jew Hunter" role in the film "Inglorious Basterds" or perhaps Boba Fett, but central to these portrayals have always been the point that intelligence and detective-work is fundamental to success in playing "the most dangerous game", and not wolf-fur.

Soraka's original lore was much too close to the Night-Elf lore of Warcraft III. Now players are still left with many questions springing from bad explanations, what is a "celestial being"? Is there a heaven dimension "among the stars" where goodness and light protect the souls of fallen Runeterrans under the eye of a powerful god or gods? Is any of this related to the now-not-alien winged race of people Kayle and Morgana belong to? Why as a healer was Soraka living in a grove of trees and not a major metropolis where she could assist many people? Is she some sort of Dryad who needs to commune with nature constantly or otherwise lose her powers? Does Soraka remember any origin or parentage before mysteriously sitting in a forest for a few centuries, and if so isn't that an important part of her backstory?


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VexTheHex

Senior Member

09-19-2012

The new lore sets up more confliction between Warwick and Soraka, which is a plus in a way. Warwick's change in role of society is both good and bad. The good is that it actually fits his personality better and the bad is that other lore pieces actually touch on Warwick's role in Ionia. Many people who mentioned the old lore, brought up how stupid it made Soraka out to be as she basically made him a whole different threat.


I offer a possible change...

How about Singed hires Warwick to hunt down Karma, who had managed to free prisoners that he planned on doing research on and foiled his plans. Warwick quickly finds that Karma isn't the easiest to track down and ends up finding out that Soraka is a friend of her's and a rather trusting being that is unaware of what's going on outside her humble sanctuary. (Possibley kept that way, so she wouldn't become corrupted? Karma could be one of the few the Ionians trust to have contact with her, as Karma is highly spirtual and collected enough to not let her emotions get the best of her.) Warwick seeks her aide, possibly pretending his wife or child was last seen with Karma after his village was brutally attacked. Soraka, never having faced dishonesty, tells him her location willing to help despite something feeling wrong. He laughs and possibly attacks her and leaves to go kill Karma. Soraka sensing she screwed up decides to leave and find Karma before he does.

That then leads to the Karma judgement where Warwick is blowing up the village she is in, and he attempts to kill her in cold blood.

Soraka shows up and uses her powers to strike down and curse Warwick, which begins his transformation. At first he enjoys it, but he quickly finds that he is losing his mind. He seeks help from Singed who tells him he needs the blood of the one who cursed him, and thus everything is tied back together.

This option also connects Karma and Soraka.


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RiotRunaan

Writer

09-19-2012
17 of 18 Riot Posts

Hey everyone,

I'm sorry I haven't been able to get back to this today, we've been pretty busy around here. I know there are more questions to be answered and I'll get to them as I am able!

We had a discussion based on your feedback about the confusion over whether or not Warwick acquired Soraka's blood--you guys were right, the details are confusing. To clarify, we're going to be changing what Warwick needs to stabilize his transformation: now, he'll need Soraka's heart. Thank you guys for pointing out this inconsistency--our explanation wasn't good enough, and you helped us fix it. : )


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Zerglinator

Senior Member

09-19-2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotRunaan View Post
To clarify, we're going to be changing what Warwick needs to stabilize his transformation: now, he'll need Soraka's heart. Thank you guys for pointing out this inconsistency--our explanation wasn't good enough, and you helped us fix it. : )
Oh. now I feel better.

Wait, no, I feel TERRIBLY GUILTY NOW.

Also, Runaan: SYNDRA LORE AMA WHERE


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RiotRunaan

Writer

09-19-2012
18 of 18 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zerglinator View Post
Oh. now I feel better.

Wait, no, I feel TERRIBLY GUILTY NOW.

Also, Runaan: SYNDRA LORE AMA WHERE
Harrow will very likely be doing the Syndra AMA tomorrow, time allowing.


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TheUltimate3

Senior Member

09-19-2012

So Karma's lore will also be updated to match this, yes?


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Eserine

Senior Member

09-19-2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eserine View Post
I feel like this characterization idea may have been roughly inspired by the "Jew Hunter" role in the film "Inglorious Basterds" or perhaps Boba Fett,

It just occurred to me that the creative process in this case was probably someone sitting on a couch smoking marijuana and watching an episode of the reality show "Dog: The Bounty Hunter".

Dog... Wolf... Warwick... Cheetos...



This saddens me.