@Riot'sLoreWriters: Please do not write such heavy-handed exposition

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1Eredale

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Senior Member

02-11-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eserine View Post
Hello Runaan, can you talk more about the decision to use unironic 1950's American police slang in Quinn's preview?

Can you discuss the consideration you guys gave to the societal impact of large amounts of paper being available in a pre-industrial agrarian society?

Are you able to tell us about the development of Demacian artistic techniques to the point of modern-quality renderings?

What specifically made you guys decide to abandon Lux's history in portraying a martial state that valued and encouraged absolute loyalty in the conscripts and enlisted troops, to effectively become the only parent and ideological authority to the fighters it trained to serve the country?

Are players ever going to get to know why a medieval peasant girl (however brilliant) was afforded the opportunity pre-ennoblement to master reading and writing, simultaneously with legendary-weapons and animal training, to an extent that she surpasses professional modern writers in understanding of the proper application of grammatical rules?

Given such aforestated misunderstandings of grammatical rules, do you feel that you and the other members of the lore team have the capacity to relate to the portion of players who are disappointed in seeing a massive potential in the lore for this game to become something really unique and special (artistically or politically), only to have those hopes dashed as you and your colleagues continue to develop the IP in another direction stylistically, aiming for a different segment of the public?

Before joining Riot did you ever personally interact with an imaginary world or IP you hoped might become awesome only to inexplicably watch it crumble to dust before your eyes, to the extent that it no longer became remotely enjoyable, even as an object of disdain, pity, or ridicule between you and your likewise-involved acquaintances? How do you feel that this experience shaped your artistic development?

Thanks for answering players on the forums! It means a lot.


Eserine, I have three words to say to you: Suspension Of Disbelief.

You are clearly looking way too deep into the story and the setting to actually enjoy it anymore. You are transfixed on the smallest details, tracing wild implications from each of them to paint a bizzare picture of a world that I fail to recognize as Runeterra.

I barely even noticed the slang. I doubt that a great many of LoL players were even born when it was used, and moreso, it fits the situation, given Quinn's line of work. And even if there are people as knowledgeable as you reading it, they would only note it as a well-placed reference, which it is. Thanks for pointing it out, by the way.

Then, Valoran is no-longer pre-industrial, given the technology of Bandle City, Zaun, Piltover, and their ties with other city-states. Runeterra is a setting that is hard to equalize to Earth's technological timeline, and that's the beauty of it. Due to the vast array of magic methods availiable to contemporary scientists and inventors, a large contrast in technological process is created between areas - while Piltover already has fully-automatic firearms (read: Corki's machinegun and inevitable derivatives) and basic limited electricity, the rural areas and villages still lack even the knowledge that such devices exist whatsoever. It's a world where swords go to war next to robots and wizards. Earth has never went through such a state, and neither did it have magic to assist inventors in their research - everything was done by hand, with fire, steam and steel. If I had to say, the most advanced cities are now relatively equal to the 19th century levels of society and progress, and given the currently ongoing scientific boom, I assume that I am (relatively) correct. However, the less wealthy and more distant rural settlements can date as far as a century or two back from that. It's a big contrast, and nevertheless, if it's Runeterra, it's possible. The same goes for the artistic expression - Bayeux tapestry is a wild hyperbole, I'll call you out on that.

As for the comparison with Lux, you have to understand that the cases we are dealing with are also vastly different. Lux came from a "paragon family of Demacian service", and regardless of her wishes, it was her fate to become part of the military, especially given her talent. She also took part in covert ops - and you do realize that it's not a joking matter, as complete secrecy has to be maintained, even from one's family. If she failed, no one would know; but she succeeded, and became famous. Quinn, on the other hand, was far from being of noble birth, and as such, it was hard for her to get into the military in the first place, and the fact that she rose as high as to directly work with the Prince and Garen Crownguard, and subsequently come to be a Champion, is beyond fantastic. She calls Garen out on being 'by the book', which states that she is inclined to break rules - I reckon that she has a history with unauthorized leaves, for which her finesse makes up though. The character suggests that she is part of covert ops, but I've yet to confirm this, so I can't talk about the secrecy restrictions placed on her; but I assume that even if there were any, she'd find a way to slip a note to her mother, with whom she went through so much. Lux doesn't have a bond with her mother as strong as Quinn's, but her feelings for her siblings are much stronger.

And, given that the time period you are assuming Valoran is set in is slightly off, she may as well have picked up writing in the military, and then continued it as a hobby. I assure you, not many people in the military spend tons of time on their writing or keeping a personal journal - they only need to be able to send a discernable message or read one in case of emergency. Quinn appears to be a special case here as well.

I won't reply to your last two paragraphs given their not-so-veiled implications, mind you.

Once again, I'll tell you this - don't look so deep into this. As a roleplayer, I, of all people, know how important it is to have a wide understanding of the setting that I am playing in, and how much knowledge and research is needed to achieve it; but you are digging way, way too deep. If we apply the same methods and disassemble almost any given fantasy fiction, we would be able to see that it has a lot of inconsistencies and doesn't work the way that we expect it to, because we perceive it based on our experiences and knowledge of Earth.

To have fun and enjoy the setting, you need to view it from a less critical perspective. You need to be able to suspend some disbelief, and allow things to happen because they do. There is no pleasure in taking the lore of a setting apart, because you're only going to become depressed at the fact that things don't work that way in real life. And clearly, you've been doing this for way too long, so much that you feel the need to personally call out writers given the chance. I have absolutley no idea, maybe our tastes are different, maybe this is fun for you, but I somehow feel that you just forgot how to enjoy some good fantasy, how to read a fairy-tale without reading between the lines, how to simply immerse yourself in a story without caring for anything else.


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Garlyle Wilds

Senior Member

02-11-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotRunaan View Post
Coming back from that tangent, I'd love to find a place for Quinn's journal to live in the client, but it's tough to find a home for a one-time project like this (that isn't to say that we won't do more like it, just that if we do future stuff, it might take a different form depending on the champion). Don't rule it out entirely, but it's not a priority at the moment.
Well, it's not quite a one-time thing.

Talk to the AIR client guys and see if they'd be interested in working in a "Bonus Material" tab for Champions, which provides direct access to things present and past. The "Sneak Preview" comics/illustrations, for instance, or the League Judgments for many of the much older characters. Hell, as a cool bonus, maybe even include things like concept art, or old Splash Arts, and so forth in them for the champions you don't have expanded material for.

A lot of champs have stuff that you have to really go digging for these days, off-site - but it's really cool and helps you to get to know the character well, and should be available right there in the game!


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Cerubois

Senior Member

02-11-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
.
*Slow clap*


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FlySkyHigh777

Senior Member

02-11-2013

Inb4 Caleb is Talon. Just sayin.


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Eserine

Senior Member

02-11-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
Eserine, I have three words to say to you: Suspension Of Disbelief.

You are clearly looking way too deep into the story and the setting to actually enjoy it anymore. You are transfixed on the smallest details, tracing wild implications from each of them to paint a bizzare picture of a world that I fail to recognize as Runeterra..
The entire point of the preview pages, according to IronStylus and the lore writers in a number of recent posts, was to fuel speculation among the players about Quinn's personality and the world of Runeterra, just as one might speculate about the implications of how you have chosen to spell the word "bizzare" and what that might indicate about the clarity and quality of your thinking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
I barely even noticed the slang. I doubt that a great many of LoL players were even born when it was used, and moreso, it fits the situation, given Quinn's line of work. And even if there are people as knowledgeable as you reading it, they would only note it as a well-placed reference, which it is. Thanks for pointing it out, by the way.
Certainly, it is probably a "well-placed" unconscious reference to horribly-written popular American police or forensic procedural dramas on television which bear almost no resemblance to actual modern police-work, and where you "barely noticed", for others who don't have experience with such shows the decision was likely a glaring inconsistency.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
Then, Valoran is no-longer pre-industrial, given the technology of Bandle City, Zaun, Piltover, and their ties with other city-states.
The entire point of Demacia existing thematically is its recognizable parallels for players to a medieval kingdom, just as Bilgewater exists as a recognizable pirate enclave, and all the other city-states and world interests fit into their own specific and separate niche. The "ties to other city-states" are not sufficient to create a homogenous culture among all Runeterrans, for the very reason that this would make an extremely uninteresting game where one nation is much the same as the other, where everyone buys paper from the single (hard to replicate) Hextech paper mill in Piltover and then hug one another and drink gourmet coffee.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
Runeterra is a setting that is hard to equalize to Earth's technological timeline, and that's the beauty of it. Due to the vast array of magic methods availiable to contemporary scientists and inventors, a large contrast in technological process is created between areas - while Piltover already has fully-automatic firearms (read: Corki's machinegun and inevitable derivatives) and basic limited electricity, the rural areas and villages still lack even the knowledge that such devices exist whatsoever.
Actually the outskirts of Piltover are a lawless techno-slum according to the Vi lore, and without "equalization" to some aspects of Earth (such as the medieval heroes not having a Wal-mart available to run to if they ever need any supplies) the readers of the lore will never be able to understand the characters at all, or how the technology of the characters' culture shapes the life or environment of each character, and that is not a beautiful thing.

The lore is missing a mastery of the concepts of Guns, Germs, and Steel, or even more directly Agincourt, and every time that the authors choose to use magic as a silly unlimited panacea for consistency problems instead of a vehicle for complexity or challenge to the protagonists ("Uh...papermaking is the most basic spell any apprentice mage will learn anywhere within the world, and the Demacian military employs hundreds of acolytes who just materialize paper every day out of thin air for their countrymen... and all the audiomancers from JoJ#1 are dead now so fancy stationary has taken over as the primary communication medium?"), they drift farther from building a good gameworld that can deliver any meaningful story (because no character or nation or force faces any challenge that can't be easily solved with a quick visit to the magic shop or super-machine shop).

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
It's a world where swords go to war next to robots and wizards. Earth has never went through such a state, and neither did it have magic to assist inventors in their research - everything was done by hand, with fire, steam and steel. If I had to say, the most advanced cities are now relatively equal to the 19th century levels of society and progress, and given the currently ongoing scientific boom, I assume that I am (relatively) correct. However, the less wealthy and more distant rural settlements can date as far as a century or two back from that. It's a big contrast, and nevertheless, if it's Runeterra, it's possible..
I have no idea what you are talking about here. Cities that you suggest "are now relatively equal to the 19th century levels of society and progress" have achieved flight (long-distance Zeppelin and airplane) , crimeless cities, immortality, modern robotics, rocketry, artificial intelligence, flamethrowers, steroids, micronutrient cultivation, laser optics, telecrystal entertainment channels, and high-volume international beer distribution franchises. The 17th century of Earth in no way resembles the countryside of Runeterra, except in places where the 17th century was identical to the far previous centuries (and if you don't believe me there are very comprehensive 17th century fantasy novels that you can read).

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
The same goes for the artistic expression - Bayeux tapestry is a wild hyperbole, I'll call you out on that.
Techniques like "perspective" or "line and contour" or "shading" or "pigment application" didn't just pop into existence within the minds of the very first human artists, it was only as human technology developed (such as those allowing people to have wider access to paper, or different paint chemicals, or the trial-and-error invention of the paintbrush and charcoal pencil, over generations of collaborative effort and experiment that works like the Talon sketch, or Caleb sketch, or a detailed topographical map became possible, and with these advances in technology the cultures who adapted them were also completely changed by the advances in understanding or describing the world that these developments granted (better pictures leads to easier education of children and the citizenry on almost any subject, better maps leads to more complex military tactics and public works projects being possible, mixing fluids together to make pretty colors leads pretty quickly to alchemy and chemistry, etc.) Thus having Quinn draw art like modern artists or cartographers might is very strange-looking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
As for the comparison with Lux, you have to understand that the cases we are dealing with are also vastly different. Lux came from a "paragon family of Demacian service", and regardless of her wishes, it was her fate to become part of the military, especially given her talent. She also took part in covert ops - and you do realize that it's not a joking matter, as complete secrecy has to be maintained, even from one's family. If she failed, no one would know; but she succeeded, and became famous.
I don't think that you've read the Lux judgement or understand The Measured Tread's reach upon Demacian society (or what it was originally referencing as a warning to players before a change happened)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
Quinn, on the other hand, was far from being of noble birth, and as such, it was hard for her to get into the military in the first place,
Medieval militaries took in as many peasants as possible to stand in front of enemy arrows, infantry marches, and cavalry charges.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
and the fact that she rose as high as to directly work with the Prince and Garen Crownguard, and subsequently come to be a Champion, is beyond fantastic. She calls Garen out on being 'by the book', which states that she is inclined to break rules - I reckon that she has a history with unauthorized leaves, for which her finesse makes up though.
... or she had an expensive magical bird imprint on her as its mother and now they have to keep her around to use it even though Quinn is a kleptomaniac who steals everyone's arrows and paper, starts fights in the ranks, and never takes a bath.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
The character suggests that she is part of covert ops, but I've yet to confirm this, so I can't talk about the secrecy restrictions placed on her; but I assume that even if there were any, she'd find a way to slip a note to her mother, with whom she went through so much. Lux doesn't have a bond with her mother as strong as Quinn's, but her feelings for her siblings are much stronger.
This seems to be unqualified interpersonal speculation, what if Quinn grew to hate her mother and blamed her mother for Caleb's death? How do you know that Lux and her mother weren't once best friends and Lux's mother had a horrible life losing all her siblings and parents and having half her face burnt off as a child for the glory of Demacia?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
And, given that the time period you are assuming Valoran is set in is slightly off, she may as well have picked up writing in the military, and then continued it as a hobby. I assure you, not many people in the military spend tons of time on their writing or keeping a personal journal - they only need to be able to send a discernable message or read one in case of emergency. Quinn appears to be a special case here as well.
It is good that the military seemingly took pains to train her in writing so that she could carry around evidence of her connection to the Demacian royal family and all the missions that she has performed with Valor so that when she is killed or captured by enemy agents they will know everything about the work she has done- oh yes! or alternatively they could just torture her unguarded mother/penpal for information if your suppositions about her activities are correct.

It was sad to see Riot throwing job offers around in the Quinn preview thread when no player or Riot member among the herd apparently thought to challenge the idea as the lore team has decided to write it. Dreadful! There is an easy way to fix things of course but Runaan doesn't seem interested in "constructively" engaging with players much in this thread anymore, and I certainly prefer not to help Riot given its unwillingness to adapt to what is best for the players so far.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1Eredale View Post
I won't reply to your last two paragraphs given their not-so-veiled implications, mind you.

Once again, I'll tell you this - don't look so deep into this. As a roleplayer, I, of all people, know how important it is to have a wide understanding of the setting that I am playing in, and how much knowledge and research is needed to achieve it; but you are digging way, way too deep. If we apply the same methods and disassemble almost any given fantasy fiction, we would be able to see that it has a lot of inconsistencies and doesn't work the way that we expect it to, because we perceive it based on our experiences and knowledge of Earth.

To have fun and enjoy the setting, you need to view it from a less critical perspective. You need to be able to suspend some disbelief, and allow things to happen because they do. There is no pleasure in taking the lore of a setting apart, because you're only going to become depressed at the fact that things don't work that way in real life. And clearly, you've been doing this for way too long, so much that you feel the need to personally call out writers given the chance. I have absolutley no idea, maybe our tastes are different, maybe this is fun for you, but I somehow feel that you just forgot how to enjoy some good fantasy, how to read a fairy-tale without reading between the lines, how to simply immerse yourself in a story without caring for anything else.
Your lack of standards saddens me. LoL does not need to be like "almost any given fantasy fiction", Riot has the resources to create a work that transcends the negative stereotypes of the genre being shallow escapist wish-fulfilment pulp for cretins obsessed with dragons- just as Riot are attempting to redefine e-sports.

IronStylus is actively promising this to the players:

Quote:
Originally Posted by IronStylus View Post
Stay tuned, more is coming. I'm doing what small things I can but never doubt for a minute there aren't a host of people, MUCH smarter than I, working diligently, with an attention to detail finer than any artist, to craft something amazing. Like League of Legends this will evolve. What's embryonic now will mature into something complex, rich and beautiful.
and yet the lore team doesn't ever seem interested in adding depth to their work

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harrow View Post
I'm not an artist, not gonna speak to that kinda style decision, but I'm happy in the knowledge that Science * Magic = Explanation.
or listening to criticism from players to learn about why such things could even be important.

When a reader or audience-member encounters an excellent work of art it has the potential to change their "taste settings", and that is why you should ask more of the lore team (or the people employing them). Just as the artists who create LoL's newest in-game character models don't routinely churn out bad, poorly-made designs and ask players for a "suspension of disbelief" aiming for the players who care the least about such things, it behooves players to ask Riot for similar standards in the writing of the game so that LoL doesn't come to resemble the worst imaginable sappy trash-fiction.


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Eserine

Senior Member

02-11-2013

or

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotKiddington View Post
Critical thinking is important, and we should promote it.
or

an ancient Italian proverb comes to mind: "There's No Worse Thief than a Bad Book"


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Xulsigae

Senior Member

02-11-2013

What does that have to do with critical thinking? I'm all for reading good lore and thinking critically about it.


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HellComet

Senior Member

02-11-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySkyHigh777 View Post
Inb4 Caleb is Talon. Just sayin.

Inb4 Caleb is Swain


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IronStylus

Sr. Concept Artist

02-12-2013
5 of 6 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eserine View Post
GIven such aforestated misunderstandings of grammatical rules, do you feel that you and the other members of the lore team have the capacity to relate to the portion of players who are disappointed in seeing a massive potential in the lore for this game to become something really unique and special (artistically or politically), only to have those hopes dashed as you and your colleagues continue to develop the IP in another direction stylistically, aiming for a different segment of the public?

Before joining Riot did you ever personally interact with an imaginary world or IP you hoped might become awesome only to inexplicably watch it crumble to dust before your eyes, to the extent that it no longer became remotely enjoyable, even as an object of disdain, pity, or ridicule between you and your likewise-involved acquaintances? How do you feel that this experience shaped your artistic development?

Thanks for answering players on the forums! It means a lot.
I might just be an artist and therefore not know much about words, but even an amateur such as myself knows that your condescension is beyond them.

Edit! Bad spelling, told you I was terrible at this!


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Vacus

Senior Member

02-12-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by IronStylus View Post
I might just be an artist and therefore not know much about words, but even an amateur such as myself knows that your condecention is beyond them.
Not sure if intentional or just tired.


I'm a big fan of the counter-trolling paradigm and that guy sure seems like someone who would freak out over a spelling mistake. On the other hand, I like IS being tired because that means he was working hard making awesome stuff for us