Article about LoL Lore from Kitae Talk

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Tortferngatr

Senior Member

11-20-2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gixia View Post
I agree with the vast majority of everything you said, but I wanted to ask for elaboration on this one point, because I freaking LOVED League Judgements. What exactly makes the League Judgments (or anything else really), a wall of text? And what exactly makes that a con? I mean, it's a written short story, it's kind of supposed to be all text, is it not? Novels are all nothing but walls of text, but you don't usually get people describing them like that's a bad thing.
It was not something you were likely to participate in if you weren't searching for it [unlike bios/login monologues]--they were practically invisible if you didn't look at the Lore tab.

That is my personal theory.

I liked Judgments too, but I like Kha'Zix's and Elise's character writing too. If I had to choose between no judgments and weaker character writing (does Karthus, as a character, scream "more than meets the eye" for anyone who didn't really pay attention to the JoJ? He's practically a generic lich in-game, and his mediocre joke and taunt [in the sense of "more signs Karth was originally a generic lich."] attest to it,) I'd choose the path the writers have currently taken--abandon the JoJ/Judgments for more "in-game-immersive" ways of conveying characters.

Compare Wukong with Master Yi--sure Yi has some great lines (YOUR SKILLS ARE INFERIOR), but he doesn't feel as alive as Wukong. Wukong not only makes a nice homage to Master Yi (the complementary lines--"I will show you the path" vs. "Show me the path,") but he also establishes his character--he's a student with a goal to prove himself to the world. His JoJ was awesome, but Wukong has depth you can feel without "reading the manual," so to speak.

Compare old Soraka with new Soraka--new Soraka feels much more VIBRANT. Her lore as a healer comes out in full in her new lore in-game, and as a package she fels COMPLETE.

Lulu versus Poppy--one feels hilarious and lighthearted to play, the other is a bit more...bland.

Heck, compare Kha'Zix with practically ANY 2009 character that didn't get a remodel/re-VO-ing. He just has better writing and character design. As an individual microcosm, Kha'Zix is conveyed by his gameplay and character. He's not a mishmash, he's a void alien who consumes and adapts, all while making you feel like an ambusher...heck, even his 3 completely character-relevant jokes add immersion!

Vlad has a cool JoJ, but ignoring that, he's essentially a blood pun bank with legs and no mana bar. Malphite, despite how funny his lines are, falls in the same boat. He's a flat character. Compare Malphite to Skarner (alright, I admit Skarner's JoJ plays a role in my like for him). Skarner's character is deeper. However, even though he's diminished without his JoJ, he's still a cool scorpion fighting for the sake of his kind. Malphite...makes no lore-relevant commentary at all. Was Blitzcrank's PERV service given even a small interaction between Rammus and Blitz? Rengar/Kha'Zix has an entire gameplay mechanic dedicated to it!

Trundle is practically the only one who gets away with being a pun engine, but he's a freaking troll who smashes things in the face with a club. I have no doubts he could get better writing if he were made today, but his lines are STILL hilarious and convey his character regardless of his JoJ. His JoJ gives additional context, but his character is conveyed well enough in his in-game writing and bio.

That is my other theory--that Kitae is taking the path of "make sure the lore content most people will actually be experiencing in our game is good before we do more things like JoJ."


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Grand Viper

Senior Member

11-20-2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tortferngatr View Post
(does Karthus, as a character, scream "more than meets the eye" for anyone who didn't really pay attention to the JoJ? He's practically a generic lich in-game, and his mediocre joke and taunt [in the sense of "more signs Karth was originally a generic lich."] attest to it,)
"Share... My curse!"

Why have that quote? Is he displeased with it? Why make new Karthus completely contradict his in game quote that you hear constantly whenever he walks and attacks if he likes his condition? If it's not a curse, he should say, "Share...My clarity!" or "Share...My revelation!" or even "Share...My personal point of view!"

Taunt

"I'll put you... in my book!"

What is in his book? Is it the names of people he's killed and he remembers their name via that manner? Is it a list of names of people who stole his cupcakes?

Let's look at his passive: Death Defied.

That means he's not dead. You kill him and you see the soul. Undead is not dead, otherwise he would be dead. He is in control of his soul and this is the biggest problem with current Karthus: He. Is. Not. Dead. He is not in that state of eternity because he is still, not freaking dead. Dead is not almost dead like the Princess Bride, it is dead. No more thought, no more comprehension, nothing. This passive? Shows he lives. New Karthus should kill himself to solve his own paradox of life. And if you say that he is all about the physical state of death then he is the world's dumbest lich.

Lay Waste

The icon has a shade ripping out of a person. This shows how brutal he is if you cross him.

Defile

Spell describes that he uses the souls of everyone he's killed to aid his him and tear apart your soul. Karthus deals strongly in souls, as it is established at this point.

Think of what a Requiem means. When is it issued? It's a mass for the dead. It's a hymn in remembrance of their life as it once was and helps issue passage to the afterlife. It is about respecting their lives, and it is to aid the transition of life to death for the soul, to give it a peace of mind.

All of these deal with the idea of souls. Now then, what can be inferred with that? Music is said to be, "a language which the soul alone understands but which the soul can never translate." (Arnold Bennet) He is the Deathsinger.

Final point: Karthus' new lore states he wants everyone to die. Why then is he in the League? Everyone dies. There is no avoiding it. Why does he feel the need to help speed this process up in any way whatsoever if it's a natural progression in life? Why does he feel that he needs force it on others when hey, they're all going to die pretty soon in his immortal life?

I used as little of the JoJ as possible, but the matter of fact is that the JoJ? Still has its own tab in the client. It still. Has. Its own tab. It is VERY accessible and I just checked now, it still loads. If you want to have that extra oomph to your narrative, it's in the in game client to the top right next to your profile icon.


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SonofOrion42

Junior Member

11-20-2012

Interesting article. I'm glad that they do recognize the problem with the lore. Just hope they take it in the right direction. The champions are cool enough as they are, but getting to know them on a deeper, more complex level is what truly impresses me. Personal stories would be the ultimate way to present their development as characters, I believe. Here's hoping they manage to do that, in spite of the challenges a tournament-based setting brings. I want Riot to take the lore beyond these tournaments and show what they can really do with the characters and setting.


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Arcane Azmadi

Senior Member

11-20-2012

I honestly don't care what Riot says they're "trying to do" with LoL's story any more. Words are cheap, at least when making excuses. 'Cause what they're ACTUALLY doing with the story is absolutely jack-sh*t nothing (except changing stuff that already exists for the worse).

Seriously, I've given up on LoL's lore. It was actually really good and interesting with champion judgements, the Journal of Justice and all that, but in their desire to "do better" Riot have completely and utterly dropped the ball. Seriously, the once-great lore is now nothing better than a farcical joke. You hear me, Riot? It's a joke!


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Vongeo

Senior Member

11-21-2012

I wish I had time to post one of these great detailed Critique, but I am too busy to do anything but bump and say, the new lore makes me want to quit. League in its Gameplay and lore used to be a huge big mystery to me and it was kind of a mental adventure. Then I progressively learned more and more of the world and that was intense, but now I don't even want to. Like all I've ever loved its falling into the appeal of the masses. Things all variations that I know someday, unless I quit I'll be forced to settle and decide things weren't that great back in the day, and this new stuff, the new stuff I started out despising It's not so horrible.


It will still be as horrible, I'll just appease myself.


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Vrouge

Senior Member

11-21-2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by maxterdexter View Post
I'd rather have the plot of the league than the "Reliving of this THE FINAL BATTLE FOR THE FATE OF EVERYTHING" of Dota/2/HoN.

It doesn't make sense? Most fighting games don't, or sport games. You want more? Great! let's see what can be done, but don't leave us hanging or take out what was built before.
Except that Dota 2 has a living, breathing world where there is no final battle to be had. I also like the more chaotic and diverse lands and personalities in Dota 2. LoL just feels like a bunch of city states with brothers and sisters, masters and apprentices and whatnot. It feels really really generic and uninspired.


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Gixia

Senior Member

11-21-2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tortferngatr View Post
That is my other theory--that Kitae is taking the path of "make sure the lore content most people will actually be experiencing in our game is good before we do more things like JoJ."
Eeh... I don't really feel this is a one-or-the-other situation. A lot of the little touches that make a champion feel more 'alive' now are animations and such, things that would take more time from the animation team than the writing team. And the dialogue is something they're going to get either way, so again, it shouldn't take any more time, just more effort to give them good lines. So I don't feel this is a valid reason why there isn't currently multiple approaches going on.

Furthermore, I don't necessarily feel that current champions are that much more alive than say, 2011ish ones when JoJ was still going strong. Sure, many of them now have nice, added little touches. The way Kha'Zix shifts his posture while treading through the bushes is really nice, etc. But dialogue wise? I don't feel any significant improvement over say, Riven, when we still had both League Judgments and the JoJ (albeit both died very shortly after). The difference is that, with Riven, I actually get a sense for why she's there, despite her bio not having a throw away line mentioning her joining the League, and it adds to the experience and my ability to connect with her. Adding in the league judgment just gave so much more detail on top of that, that I get a real sense of purpose from her. A desire to show that the power and strength of the Noxian ideal does not need to be honourless or deceitful, while also a need to find a new place for her self in the world. For Kha'Zix, I can't get over the fact that he shouldn't be there, and all the little character building details are rendered meaningless because my suspension of disbelief has been broken. He's so singularly focused on a task that can not be accomplished in the setting (consuming Rengar/other powerful champions) that it leaves him without purpose within it, and he comes off feeling half-assed, despite the fact that a great deal of effort so visibly went into him.


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Cerubois

Senior Member

11-21-2012

It seems kitae has disappeared again. Here I was hoping for a proper discussion instead of another thread of hopeless ranting. :/


Quote:
Originally Posted by Vrouge View Post
Except that Dota 2 has a living, breathing world where there is no final battle to be had. I also like the more chaotic and diverse lands and personalities in Dota 2. LoL just feels like a bunch of city states with brothers and sisters, masters and apprentices and whatnot. It feels really really generic and uninspired.
It's a different style of story entirely.

LoL's story was created to be somewhere between seriousness and fun, which actually gives it many different routes to develop plotlines without restrictions (hence why you can have characters like Diana and Veigar in the same game). They have the ability to introduce siblings and rivals and so on because it makes sense to the story and actually fits quite well.

From what I've seen/heard of Dota 2 (keep in mind I haven't done my research on it, so I may be pulling things out of my ass here), it's entirely serious. There isn't any room for silliness. There's no room for 'relations', at least not in the same way.