Are Champions As Awesome As They Could Be? @Morello @Feralpony @IronStylus @Xypherous

First Riot Post
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ItemsGuy

Senior Member

01-25-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by M0mentkill3r View Post
I wonder if Zyra could be fixed with her ultimate being changed from a cast able AOE spell to a DOT cast able spell like Morgona's chains. Have it hit every champion in a certain distance, and deal constant damage while close to her. Nothing like a toggle, just vines shooting out at the champions. Of course there needs to be a set tether distance and time. It fits her lore, and quote."Closer to the Flower, Closer to the Thorns".
Don't you think that Zyra should instead focus and capitalize on her plants, the most unique and characteristic part of her kit?


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MidWKing

Senior Member

01-25-2013

who cares.. So you cant tell what they do by looking at them.. QQ


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M0mentkill3r

Member

01-25-2013

I like the idea behind that new kit, but I have a few suggestions that could help, first would be as the Vine Lasher increases in growth it would slow the target a greater amount and sacrifice a portion of the damage increase, say 25% damage increase per level, 2 hit points, and say 15% increased slow, to leave it max level at 50% increased damage and a 60% slow. It also kind of fits with a thorn plant becoming a greater problem as it gets bigger, not necessarily as damaging.

With the Thorn Spitter you could have the range of the plant increase slightly as it gets to max growth.

With the ultimate you could have the plants temporarily gain increased attack speed when they re-root.


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guhnosis

Senior Member

01-25-2013

You guys come off as really cocky/abrasive. Like all those self-referential appeals to authority in defense of your designs ("remember guys, i'm in college for this stuff...", "if there's one thing I know (besides game design), it's character design", etc.). Makes me wanna gag. Let your work stand on its own feet please. On that note, the redesigns do a good job with theme generally, but the actual experience of playing a lot of these kits... well a lot of them break down in their own ways.

Redesign Ashe, for example, could easily be an amazing support (the passive alone...). And there'd be little reason to ever choose her as a carry (every skill disables autos for an extended period of time, which, yea, goes with her passive... she's designed more like a ranged ad caster than a ranged ad carry, even if she might be built and played as a ranged ad carry just because of the higher dps, and I believe you intended her to still be a carry?). So in this one I feel like you're lacking a good sense of how things actually balance out, and that's a problem quite a few have.

Others just don't seem viscerally satisfying to play - clumsy, awkward kits that fit theme only on a cerebral level. I realize this is more subjective, and not everyone will enjoy every character, so I only mention it because it seemed so common. So many awkward mechanics and too-subtle effects that fit theme but don't actually add anything to the player's visceral experience of being the character, the mental flow when timings and muscle memory and understanding of the character has been nailed down. What it actually feels like to kite as Ezreal, to dash and charm past a team and assassinate your target as Ahri, etc.

As chu8 puts it, when you're so familiar and good with a character, you don't have to 'think' at all anymore, everything's subconscious and 'felt'. On this level, your new Lee Sin is the most boring thing in the world compared to the absolute blast playing Lee is in current Lol (hell that redesign is just bad in general... worse on a cerebral, thinking level and a visceral, musclememory-playing level). And I wouldn't brush off this particular criticism if I were you. I think the core lesson of The Art of Game Design is it's all about the player's experience. If someone says your kit is boring to play, saying something like it fits the theme better is meaningless.

And finally, readability. You harp on this one a lot, saying 'if you fit theme then you don't have to do any homework to play!'. But it's just not true, and never will be in a game like this. Specific numbers, ranges, etc. are vital to understanding matchups and playing competently. Not to mention that just because mechanics fit a theme doesn't mean it's the same mechanics someone who heard the theme would've imagined. Sure, new Nunu plays like a Yeti, but it's a very specific imagining of a Yeti. It wasn't what I would've guessed from a Yeti, and there's lots of specific things I'd have to know to play right against it. And instead of coming back and saying something like "reducing burden of knowledge is about new players being able to play at all, not competitive players playing at the highest level", realize that I think it's still strongly present on both levels in most of your redesigns.

And that's not to say it's a bad design. I don't think readability being so good that burden of knowledge is almost eliminated can really happen unless the game's extremely simple (like, say, Divekick). At the least, you guys certainly haven't solved that one so it'd be nice if you quit acting like you did .

I s'pose that's my point overall. You guys do a lot of good in these designs. Where there's flaws, they'd often be understandable, forgivable flaws (from a perspective of how annoying/damning it is to see the flaw be made, not from a perspective of making the best champion possible)... if you didn't have to go and act like they were so flawless.


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heathenscum

Senior Member

01-25-2013

Guhnosis had some good points. I think you guys understand theme really well but after reading several of your redesigns I don't think I'd want to play the game. Yes having a theme that ties things together is good but to focus on that to the exclusion of all else is not what game design is about. Take for instance your Nami. Nobody would have fun playing against her. You couldn't move and you'd be dragged around and not get a choice about where you go. Already that's is one of the most annoying things in the game (why do you think blitz is such a common ban)

Along with that you haven't given any though to synergy and how the game would play as whole. Its the same thing that the guy who has created the mathematical formula for which champions are most powerful. It'd work for spherical chickens in a vacuum. (Look it up on Wikipedia if you don't get it) but actually playing would be chaos.


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guhnosis

Senior Member

01-26-2013

Yea, Nami hits a few things you guys don't seem to like. I think the design would be MUCH stronger, from thematic cohesion translating to newbie-friendly readability, if the core mechanic of tides was played to even stronger, if everything was about controlling a certain type of tide that acted predictably after one encounter with it but could be used in all sorts of ways by the Tidecaller. Instead you have this water that slows you, this water that pushes you but you can fight against it or ride with it (I think? undercurrent is not very clearly worded), and this water that pushes me uncontrollably a long ways and then stuns me sometimes (but the other water that pushes me never does...), and they could easily be overlapping or occurring all at once. It's all very muddy for the player to learn the first time, and takes homework to remember 'this current that looks like this does this, this current that looks like this does this, etc.'


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Derpmaciaa

Senior Member

01-26-2013

How about League grows some balls and have all heroes with really strong abilities and a REAL ULTIMATE spell that makes everyone go crazy. But no one played DotaAllStars.


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BestBilbo

Senior Member

01-26-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by guhnosis View Post
You guys come off as really cocky/abrasive. Like all those self-referential appeals to authority in defense of your designs ("remember guys, i'm in college for this stuff...", "if there's one thing I know (besides game design), it's character design", etc.). Makes me wanna gag. Let your work stand on its own feet please. On that note, the redesigns do a good job with theme generally, but the actual experience of playing a lot of these kits... well a lot of them break down in their own ways.
I've said I'm only a '1600 elo scrub' and happend to have bumped into ItemsGuy, that he is studying for this stuff is a fact, aswell as the fact Morello has agreed countless of times with ItemsGuy here in this very thread already, aswell do I think he has a very big chance he'll get that internship.

If there is anything we don't want to sound like it'd be like some cocky pricks. We love the game dearly and appreciate every second we have talked or spent playing this game. Just because we are passionate and entitled to our opinion of how it could be better doesn't mean we are some cocky dudes, but this is your perception, I'm sorry if we gave you this impression.

Quote:
Redesign Ashe
She has the option to fire them instantly or extend the duration (pulling back the string) nothing is better and nothing is worse, it all depends on the situation. Similar like Thresh's Q, it isn't always the most optimal to pull your target 2 times and then press Q again to pull yourself towards the target, sometimes you just want to pull two times or sometimes you want to pull yourself towards the target from the get-go.

I feel you haven't thought about this one enough, drawing your bowstring back increases the range and is more 'sniperish', as all of the projectiles fire to one point, firing them instantly just slows people in a wider cone, wich is exactly what happens with Ashe's volley now.

Quote:
What it actually feels like to kite as Ezreal, to dash and charm past a team and assassinate your target as Ahri, etc.
What you actually do here is just compare them with the current kits the champions have. Not only can't you really 'feel' or 'realize' how cool these new kits would be, you also seem to forget other champions Redesigns can completely live up to this feel.

Quote:
As chu8 puts it, when you're so familiar and good with a character, you don't have to 'think' at all anymore, everything's subconscious and 'felt'.
You don't have to be chu8 to come up with this conclusion, it's obvious everything feels natural once you have learned something, even DotA2's invoker, this doesn't make him a good design. A good hero/champion.

Quote:
I think the core lesson of The Art of Game Design is it's all about the player's experience. If someone says your kit is boring to play, saying something like it fits the theme better is meaningless.
I don't think so. I think everything is paramount and if one aspect isn't good enough, you either have to tweak or drop the entire concept as a whole. I think Morello couldn't agree more, how many people like Invoker but the actual Burden of Knowledge he puts on players along with readability is just extremely frustrating.

It would be the entire 'having tons of fun at the cost of other people's fun' - not something you want to opt for.

Talking Lee Sin - if it happens he'd be extremely boring (this is just only your opinion now, entirely subjective) obviously we'd try to fix him and make him more fun. But perhaps you are just one of the people that wouldn't like him while there would be tons of others that would like to play this Redesign.

And please don't get me started on the current state of Lee Sin, he's all fun and all, just not very healthy for the game. Provided an explanation in the Redesign explanation beneath the Lee Sin Redesign hotlink.

Quote:
But it's just not true, and never will be in a game like this. Specific numbers, ranges, etc. are vital to understanding matchups and playing competently.
A game is still a game, bowling is pretty straightforward, you have to knock the thingies down (no idea what they are called in english, I'm from EUW you see), that doesn't mean you don't have to learn stuff, you have to know how much rounds everyone has, the difference between a spare and a strike and so forth.

It is extremely straightforward yet you still have to learn stuff, our philosophy improves on readability and counterplay, making it more easy and less frustrating for everyone over-all.

You'd still have to learn how far Nunu can travel with his new 'rolling snowball' ultimate, the fact that it is extremely thematically tied to him and is a familiar sight for everyone only makes it easier.

Quote:
Not to mention that just because mechanics fit a theme doesn't mean it's the same mechanics someone who heard the theme would've imagined. Sure, new Nunu plays like a Yeti, but it's a very specific imagining of a Yeti. It wasn't what I would've guessed from a Yeti, and there's lots of specific things I'd have to know to play right against it.
What you are doing right now is completely forgetting it is still a game, obviously you have to learn stuff and you still have to learn every character if you wish to become extremely good at this game, however there is a difference between the New passive of Nunu and the current passive he has - the fact that the new one makes more sense and therefore is way more memorable, way more readable than the 'oh he has some blue circle around him, what would that mean ?' experience.

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And instead of coming back and saying something like "reducing burden of knowledge is about new players being able to play at all, not competitive players playing at the highest level", realize that I think it's still strongly present on both levels in most of your redesigns.
Could you explain this ? I have no idea what you are trying to say here. I'm not trying to sound cocky here, I honestly have no idea what you are trying to say here, it's my english, my bad.

Quote:
I don't think readability being so good that burden of knowledge is almost eliminated can really happen unless the game's extremely simple (like, say, Divekick). At the least, you guys certainly haven't solved that one so it'd be nice if you quit acting like you did .
We are trying to say we greatly improve on readability and 'Burden of Knowledge', please dude, dig through this thread and you'll see a lot of comments where people have agreed and share their past problems they had with this game, stuff making no sense at all, not helping the player in any way.

I remember reading a post about Rammus, how the player has actually asked himself why he taunts people like that or makes the earth crumble/shake around him while we don't see how, what or why. It puts Burden of Knowledge on the player and is extremely frustrating. If you can help players by making skills more readable, then it would be good to do so.

You can't get rid of it completely, it's still a game and you still have to learn a lot of stuff, you can only make it easier for people (by laying an emphasis on theme so it should even enhance the player's experience of playing that character).

If you want to play a game that puts no burden of knowledge on you at all, LoL is not the game for you, you'd be better off playing 'Bubble Trouble', 'Bubble Games' or other 'mini-games'. I know you aren't actually telling me you want to quit because of burden of knowledge, I just hope I clarified that we don't get rid of burden of knowledge completely, because that's impossible. We greatly improve on it.

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I s'pose that's my point overall. You guys do a lot of good in these designs. Where there's flaws, they'd often be understandable, forgivable flaws (from a perspective of how annoying/damning it is to see the flaw be made, not from a perspective of making the best champion possible)... if you didn't have to go and act like they were so flawless.
I find some Redesigns myself very tricky and have mixed feelings of how they would pan out in an actual 'LoL 2' game, I have said this from the start and have continued to say this through-out this entire thread, there even have been people humble enough to ask for some more explanation behind a Redesign not because they 'think it was entire sh*t and would never ever work' but wanted more explanation to see if we could convinced them.

NoirTheBlack (I believe) in this thread concerning Ahri Redesign, ItemsGuy gave an explanation and the conclusion was that it was hard to say how it would pan out, but saying 'yes it would work 100% sure' or 'no this would never ever work' was invalid, because you honestly can't tell.

Yet again I'm extremely sorry if we gave the impression we are some cocky dudes, we are just passionate and entitled to our opinion, but I do not intend to sound cocky by any means.


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BestBilbo

Senior Member

01-26-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by guhnosis View Post
Nami Redesign potential Burden of Knowledge.
Let me read this, editing this later.

EDIT: I disagree completely, please for the love of god, try to visualize the actual abilities:

-Q: Actual flowing stream (you can fight the current btw, people facing the current can walk up the current, they are just slowed when they do so, perhaps ItemsGuy should edit this in) - very specific, this would be extremely readable.

-W: 'Pouring'/'Throwing' water over her allies, would look similar to her current W, nothing weird about that. Readable.

-E: Leaves a trail of water, it doesn't move or anything, it's just a trail, very much distinctive from her Q. Readable.

-R: Giant wave (much like her current ult) - extremely readable.

Now you might think I come off way to cocky again just because I 'agree' with this Redesign, this is just my opinion and unless you give me some solid arguments of why this would be burden of knowledge or not distinctive at all I'll continue to say this about Nami Redesign. She works.


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ItemsGuy

Senior Member

01-26-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by BestBilbo View Post
Let me read this, editing this later.

EDIT: I disagree completely, please for the love of god, try to visualize the actual abilities:

-Q: Actual flowing stream (you can fight the current btw, people facing the current can walk up the current, they are just slowed when they do so, perhaps ItemsGuy should edit this in) - very specific, this would be extremely readable.
An actual movespeed slow on the ability would be a little redundant--like I've said before, it pushes enemies back at a rate of X units/second. If X here is 100 and you're moving at 400 movespeed, if you're in the current and trying to "fight it" (walking upstream), you'd actually be moving at 300 movespeed due to the two 100s cancelling each other out. That's why the counterplay to it is to just wade over to the side--that's even how rivers/streams/currents work in real life! (Like literally--the best thing you could do if caught in a current is to swim perpendicularly to it, as if you wasted all your energy fighting against it, you wouldn't get as far and would eventually get exhausted and drown. Personal experience speaking, here!)

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-W: 'Pouring'/'Throwing' water over her allies, would look similar to her current W, nothing weird about that. Readable.
Just wash away that CC, man--like cleaning off mud!

Quote:
-E: Leaves a trail of water, it doesn't move or anything, it's just a trail, very much distinctive from her Q. Readable.
"Nami's moving fast because she's a mermaid and she's now in water--and she leaves this water behind, which allows her allies to move as fast as she does, while slowing us down? Makes sense!" I'll admit, this ability was partially inspired by the Aqua Jet ability in Pokemon

Quote:
-R: Giant wave (much like her current ult) - extremely readable.
Actually, I'd say it's something more along the lines of "a giant tube of water" (ever seen "Finding Nemo"?), but the point still stands!

Quote:
Now you might think I come off way to cocky again just because I 'agree' with this Redesign, this is just my opinion and unless you give me some solid arguments of why this would be burden of knowledge or not distinctive at all I'll continue to say this about Nami Redesign. She works.
To be honest, I think this guy may be confusing "confidence that stems from doing intense research and using accumulated knowledge and wisdom from people that actually have had careers in the field, and using all of this to create sound arguments based on concrete facts of science and the game design theory that comes from it" with some sort of brash cockiness. I wouldn't be saying all of this stuff if I didn't have evidence to support it, or if my arguments (such as "more homework" = "less fun") were grounded in common sense and scientific evidence!

Also, regarding that comment on Jesse Schell--"I think the core lesson of The Art of Game Design is it's all about the player's experience. If someone says your kit is boring to play, saying something like it fits the theme better is meaningless."

I hate to say it, but you're missing the point completely--if you had read that chapter, you would've seen that it was all about how well keeping everything thematically unified (with the example he gave being an actual game he worked on and developed--that one Pirates of the Caribbean game) enriched the player's experience and made the game as good as it could be. Since I'm fairly confident you didn't actually read his quote (otherwise you wouldn't have said what you said), allow me to reiterate:

"We can create games with powerful themes right now. But why should we do this? We aren't artists, we are designers.
Artistic expression is not our goal. Our goal is to create powerful experiences.
It is possible to create games without a theme, however if games have unifying, resonant themes, the experiences we create will be much, much stronger."

The quote also goes on to say how finding a theme can also help with the developmental process--if something doesn't fit with the theme, it goes (such as the PotC game having, say, a FPS segment in the Civil War--while that segment could be amazing on its own, it would detract from the "pirate" experience and thus the game, as games are only as good as the experiences within). This is very much one of the primary principles behind many of my design decisions. Graves's smoke screen was a cool ability, but didn't work towards his theme, and thus prevented him from being the "ultimate Shotgun champion"--so I removed it and replaced it with something "shotgun," and put the smokescreen on a champion that's all about that ultimate "smokescreen" playstyle!

I can accept that you don't agree with some of my changes, but do you think that may because you simply wouldn't like how that champion would play, and are equating "I wouldn't enjoy playing this" to "This is poorly designed"? One of the things that would happen (even more than it currently does) with this huge element of champion diversity I'm pushing is what Morello said in the Champion Retrospective--we want players to have a few champions they're absolutely crazy about, that they could play for months on end and still love because they're tailor-fit for how they enjoy playing the game. Like setting up points and fortifying? You'll probably love Heimer! Like sneaking around patiently and waiting for the perfect opportunity to snag your prey and tear them apart? Kha'Zix/Teek is the champion for you! Prefer the ability to help out your teammates and make them feel safe, no matter where you are? Take Galio for a spin, I think you'd enjoy him!

The point being, here, that yeah--if your sense of "fun" is captured by a lot of the champions now due to a lack of real definition between them, you may have fewer champions that you would really like to play. However--what I've done here is polish every sense of fun until it glows. While you may not like champion X or Y after their redesigns, you may love Z more than ever before!

I don't want anyone to feel "luke-warm" about champions--I want them to fall in love 100% with the experiences and play each champion brings to the table in a unique way, and defining things as strongly as I have makes that possible. Both Morello and Jef Jew agree with this "push things as far as they can go" philosophy--Morello in the Darius thread (and regarding Zyra's sort of "lack-lusterness" currently), and Jeff in the Retrospective.

I'm not just pulling rabbits out of my hat here, guys! A lot of the confidence behind my work also stems from a confidence in the developers and the designers in knowing what they want (in Thread III, we use quite a few quotes from the Rioters--including just about every point made in the Retrospective--to back up our points 100%; you can't really argue against whether or not that's what we've done!); all I've done here is try my very best to make every champion possible reflect those ideals! I have the benefit of not having to focus so hard on "the next thing" like Riot must always be doing (no time to look back on old champs, just making the new one as good as possible because that's what's important right now), as well as being able to observe the progress that Riot has made in the past few years as far as design goes. I wouldn't have done all of this if I hadn't played Rengar--I wouldn't have gone on this quest to try to uncover what exactly makes a really satisfying champion, if Riot hadn't already done all of this hard work!

For any of you that may be under the misconception that I'm just some cocky newb that doesn't appreciate all the years of balls-to-the-wall man hours the entire Riot staff has put into this game, or that I'm angry because Riot's "doing it wrong," I'm going to have to say that those opinions are unfounded! If it weren't for Riot's work, I wouldn't have been able to observe their progress, and I wouldn't have discovered so much about the principles of good game design if I hadn't spent so much time analyzing League and trying to figure out where the "next step" is. This has been a tremendous learning experience for me, and I thank League and Riot for making that all possible!