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A Wild Knifecat Appears! (Rengar Discussion)

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Live Balance Designer


Hey y'all -

So i wanted to talk to you guys about our good ol' Stabtabby, Rengar. Classick handed off to me his initial refactor of Rengar that he had begun posting about a while back, but internally it was shown that while it certainly buffed him and fixed some issues with his design, more work needed to be done.

What our playtests revealed is that preserving the predatory feel by making his ultimate stronger is all well and good, but proved pretty abusive when it came to his burst potential. In a way, Rengar is a champion that has always been defined by his abuse-cases, either in TripleQ assassinating someone in less than a second from stealth, or double tap W + DFG pentakilling teams from stealth with AP, or simply stacking health + spirit visage splitpushing waves, then escaping from nearly any sort of chase. We've come a long way from the latter of these, but if the Pridestalker is to see any sort of return to glory we'll need to iron out some of the abusive kinks and round him out as a whole.

We're sticking with the direction that Classick originally outlined in his post here (http://na.leagueoflegends.com/board/...71487#37371487 (http://na.leagueoflegends.com/board/showthread.php?p=37371487#37371487)) - namely reducing the frustration/toxicity of Thrill of the Hunt (Ultimately allowing us to buff the spell in other ways) and driving clarity in his Ferocity choices by having the effects scale with champion level rather than rank of skill. Our other goal is to retain his dueling nature and strength in ambushes and skirmishes, but lower his instagib potential in favor of deferring his up-front damage into longer engagement windows. While he'll still be a threat, changing him to a sustained damage pattern allows us to pump more power into his other abilities/ferocity bonuses and make his ability set as a whole stronger instead of the current 'stabcat on AD carry and one or both of us will die' pattern that makes Rengar so frustrating and binary to play as and against on Live.

So with that out of the way, here are some questions i'd like to get your thoughts on -

-Do you identify Rengar's playstyle as one that would be a particularly good fit in the jungle? What improvements would you like to see be made to help him out?

-What is appealing to you about the defensive boost Rengar receives from Battle Roar? I'd like to change this from just flat Armor and Magic Resistance to something that can be situationally more powerful and makes him less 'meatwall' when he leaps on a target

-What types of improvements or changes would you like to see be made to Bonetooth Necklace? Ideally i'd like to see this moved away from a 'stat-stick' and embrace more unique enhancements like his 'Increases Leap Range by 150'

These questions are really just to begin the discussion - i'm certainly looking for thoughts/feedback on a variety of topics, but these are a few that we've been talking about on a higher level that have less of a set direction currently. Wav3break, one of our Live Design Interns is working closely with me on this project and will be monitoring this thread alongside me and will help to soak feedback and answer questions y'all may have.

Without further ado: Rengar! I choose you!

Here are the changes (Without numbers, as they are subject to change/tuning as always) that we've been testing so far:

Updated 9/24 - updates in bold

Bonetooth Necklace
??? AD, ??? AD/lvl
Recipe: Hunter's Machete + Long Sword + 100g
PASSIVE: 20% Increased damage to monsters

3 Stacks: Rengar gains Flat Movement Speed while out of combat, or while in brush

6 Stacks: Leap range increased

9 Stacks: Rengar gains %MS for 2s after leaping

14 Stacks: Rengar does not lose his Thrill of the Hunt bonus speed upon activating Stealth

-Base Health Regen increased
-Health Regen per Level increased
-Health per Level increased
-All Ferocity Bonuses are now scaled with Champion Level (Similar to his Heal) rather than with the rank of the ability.

Unseen Predator
-Rengar now becomes visible at the beginning of his leap, rather than mid-leap.

-Cooldown decreased
-Damage slightly reduced
-Attack Speed Bonus slightly increased

Ferocity Effect: Savagery
-Damage Reduced
-No longer grants Attack Speed
-Now Grants 3 Ferocity

Battle Roar
-Damage increased
-Cooldown decreased

Ferocity Effect: Battle Roar
-No longer grants Armor/MR (Base Battle Roar still does)

Bola Strike
-Now a skillshot
-Range greatly increased
-AD Ratio increased
-Slow no longer scales with rank
-Slow no longer decays over 2.5s

Ferocity Effect: Bola Strike
-Root Duration increased

Thrill of the Hunt *REMADE*
-No longer immediately stealths Rengar
-Now consumes all Ferocity on cast (Each 1 Ferocity consumed this way increases the Duration of Thrill of the Hunt by 1 second)
-Rengar gains Movement Speed, Vision, and Ferocity Generation while in Thrill of the Hunt and his first basic attack will cause him to leap.
-After a brief delay, Rengar may recast Thrill of the Hunt to stealth for a few seconds at the cost of Thrill of the Hunt's bonus speed
-Cooldown decreased
-Movement Speed% increased
-Duration increased

END MAIN POST---------------------------------------------------------


It may very well be that the removal of Rengar's stealth is a terrible decision, one that ruins the very fabric of space-time, and if that is so i will not go through with it. I'm not saying 'yep, i've made up my mind!' What i'm saying is over the time i've worked on Rengar (with some changes inherited from Classick), we have tried a lot of things on a lot of abilities. Some of them have even been fun. This is just another change that's trended well in our testing, and while i'll continue to try it, nothing in this thread is final. I'd like a version similar to this to go to PBE so that players who are passionate about it can test and give feedback, but i will always make the best decision for Rengar.

A few misc thoughts -

-28 AD on bonetooth is not final, and is the exact reason i tend to not post numbers. Numbers are inconsequential. Everything about a champion could be buffed 500% if we believe the mechanics are on-point. Bonetooth will have enough AD to compensate. None of these Rengar mechanics are in our competitive balance tests, and as such, aren't really being tuned. We're nailing feel and mechanic direction.

-To the one person some pages back who thought we were taking the slow from Bola Strike, how did you get that idea? I mean this honestly because if i posted something misleading i'd like to correct it. All i said was Bola Strike is getting more range/damage due to being a skillshot.

-All this talk of 'Predator has stealth, Rengar needs it' sounds really silly to me. This is completely outside of the discussion of whether or not Rengar is a good candidate to have stealth on. The argument that 'just because he is based on a thing from pop culture he must mimic that in all ways'. That's not how we make champions, nor will it ever be. The Predator alien is a tech-using alien bounty hunter. Rengar's a lion that uses hand-made tools and lives in the jungle. He has a launch skin based off of the Predator because it seems really cool (and because we knew Kha'Zix was not far off), and they both use heat-seeking vision. Rengar's had a ton of inspirations, from Lion races in other IP's to Hunter characters from other IP's - There are more compelling arguments as to why rengar should have the mechanic, but saying that he needs it because the two characters are similar is something i can't buy

EDIT: About this being jungle-centric, Top Rengar is still totally a thing that we want and will be viable. From all of our lane-testing between myself and other top laners within the company we haven't seen that he's much worse, other than his 'lol first blood at level 2' all-in is considerably weaker. His Q-train hits like a truck, and increased AS% as well as generally better bases + cooldowns have added to his damage potential in toplane - not to mention the AD Reduction make him take almost 0 minion damage and really put the breaks on AD scaling champions/bruisers that like to rush tank stats (Lookin' at you, Renekton).

Will continue to tune and make this true, but the reason a lot of this looks jungle-centric is just because we wanted to make sure that any buffs/changes that were to increase Rengar's general performance would buff his jungling aspects as well.

Apologies if i'm coming off as 'pissy' - i don't intend to be. The negative feedback is a very important part of an iterative cycle, and in this case one that i anticipated. I'm going to continue testing it, but this was all intended as a 'Heads up, we're testing this and it's a possible outcome so i'd rather you know now' than a surprise change. If anything, my re-iteration that no changes are final isn't trying to get snippy with any of you, but just trying to keep you guys realistic. This is not the end of the world. This is likely not even the end of these changes. Overreacting about changes that may or may not occur is something that keeps out good discussion, and a lot of people so far have been able to disagree with me without yelling or in one case telling me to kill myself (stay classy).

W's changes are intended to build in a strength and weakness in one go. By shifting his power budget to make him super effective vs a certain set of champions, we can also make him weaker vs some others so when you see 'They have an AD + Bruisers' you can feel better about your Rengar selection, or that when the enemy picks Rengar you can say 'X type champion will do really well here'. The W changes aren't 100% necessary for the rework to ship which is why i'm trying it out, but does give it a targeted use-case and shuts down some opposing laners in Top as well as making him have a better go at jungle, so it's worth scouting out the potential.

To me, 'stalking' can mean just as much about strength/speed/stalking in a brush or fog of war rather than stealth. A lot of these changes are targeted around making Rengar more scary not only in brush, but in skirmishes/disorganized fights in places near it and Fog of War (Dragon, Baron, Buffs) and lowering his power outside of those zones. Rengar -can- have stealth if he needs it, but making him King of the Jungle (not necessarily in role, but in literal map locations) may not necessitate it.

Again, i don't mean to spurn anyone - i'm just against any type of reaction that limits discussion. As for your thoughts on 'this kills lane Rengar' - why do you feel that way? I see that the changes can come off as more Jungle Rengar specifically because it's something i want to improve, but nothing in testing has shown that Top Rengar is any weaker at all outside of level 2 instagib cases. His W makes him take next to no minion damage and gives him great trading potential vs bruisers/assassins alike and while his E is no longer targeted, hitting it from a longer range is a great enabler - not to mention it's just as easy to hit once you've used brush to leap directly on to your target, dealing more damage and allowing you to wail on your opponent with Q's buffed AS%. That + buffs to health/health regen in the main post make me most excited to play him toplane, as a top-laner main specifically. I'd like more insight into why you feel Top Rengar suffers here?

Quick post because i woke up way too early, read the last 10 or so pages since i passed out 4~ hours ago, going to pass out again but -

- 28 AD/lvl is not final and i've said across many posts i'm looking to increase this. Damage numbers were kept low to see 'How worth it is this item for these types of bonuses without a heap of AD forcing you to get it?' I have less issue with this getting more AD - this is generally why i don't post numbers because they're constantly in flux. Seeing so many people saying 'I like it/could like it but the AD is so low it seems useless' is why numbers are a tuning point.

- I don't want to seem stubborn when i say that i'm going to continue to test this no-stealth version (Testing is testing, and i'm going to see how it goes) but you guys are pretty loud and clear about needing stealth in some form for this to be anywhere near what you want. I've seen enough posts/feedback that 'Like the changes, concerned/worried about loss of stealth' that i think there are some solutions to have it be back on the kit.

Previous iteration to this (Full stealth + Warning) had issues. Current iteration (Much longer duration, Much higher MS, Much shorter CD + No Stealth) seems to be hitting the gameplay that we want but loses the Stealth that you guys really want. I think there's a way to introduce Stealth back in - i have a cool idea that might be really dumb but it's too early in the morning to know. Gonna go back to crashing, but i'll be back when i'm up to talk more.

(To those of you who actually like the No Stealth changes - this isn't about me buckling under pressure - if the 'No Stealth In Any Form Whatsoever' Ult is best for our game, i'll do it in a heartbeat. I just want to do some more exploration/prototyping on some ideas that may reincorporate Stealth for those fans who feel it makes/breaks his uniqueness.)

Thanks for continuing to post - you're all very passionate about the changes, and i am never someone to turn down feedback, even for those of you who don't care for me or where i've taken it so far. I'm listening. I hope the next time i have an update it will be something that most of you can agree with!

Likely that this will get buried along with my previous post this morning - there's an issue with Dev Tracker showing my post as a 'next riot' one to navigate to, but -

I have an idea that i think can really capture the best of both worlds, as well as make Rengar players feel their ultimate is unique. While i can confirm this iteration of the ult has tested well in terms of functionality for the champion, i totally get the whole argument that his identity would be changed and that has a lot of value for players.

I'm going to head in to the office tomorrow and see if i can't get it hooked up before the playtest on Monday, and also pick the brains of other designers to see if i'm not walking into some obvious missteps - just skyped Wav3break about it and he's super pumped about it as well.

As soon as i have it hooked up and functional i'll post a tooltip here for y'all to see and get your feelings. Have to say though, i think this could be really cool.

This is me responding to you. My last two posts have detailed how i understand the frustration and anger about Rengar's loss of identity tied to the loss of stealth. In both of these posts, i mention that i am working to implement a version of the ultimate that retains stealth, but works together with the current implementation to give players choice of fast and ruthless, or slow and steady.

You're entitled to be mad, and as long as you're being constructive i 100% welcome it.

Even better, i'll use actual words instead of "Meh"

One of the big reasons i think it's unlikely for us to make him (or anyone, really) half-transparent just so that it makes it hard for players to see Rengar is that we value readability pretty heavily in our game, especially with respect to particles/animations in teamfights.

It's one kind of frustrating to get stunlocked, instagibbed, or jumped on by stealth - those are situations where you felt options were removed from you and you weren't able to react. It would be much worse however, if you were to die to someone simply because the game developers decided to make it hard for you to see what's killing you. (God forbid you have low settings like some of our players! D: )

When we do things like deny information, we tend to be forceful about it - Nocturne removes vision from everyone definitively, and then gives it back. Graves removes vision within a zone. While i agree that it's an interesting idea/possible to give Rengar a 'pseudo-stealth' like invis on minimap but not invis in game, i feel like it breaks enough of our rules for vision in our game that the gains would be very low. I'd like to go bigger than say to Rengar players 'You have to really hope the opponent isn't looking at their screen!!'

Bonus: To a lot of the people saying to add some Evelynn type stealth ring - it's not a terrible idea or one we haven't though of before, but two issues came to mind that made us reconsider.

A. Evelynn's stealth is kind of -Evelynn's- stealth, and specifically the reason that in the 'Stealth Rework' she received it while twitch had his streamlined into a reliable steroid. Putting something like this on Rengar runs the risk of really crashing into her play

B. It's not even clear it would really work. Eve's stealth is cool because it's permanent - you're constantly Solid Snaking it around the map, sometimes even in lane but dancing just outside their vision. Rengar not only would have this on a low/medium duration, but the Leap Range of his passive would mean that the range at which you'd have to see Rengar would get pretty massive, or the actual 'range' wouldn't be at all a deterrent to him leaping on you - because the moment you'd see he's out of stealth, he'd already be in range to jump on your face.

There are a lot of reasons i can't show you videos of playtests - ones that i know of consist of the fact that we rarely -if ever- playtest singular test-subjects. Often times this includes an upcoming rework, visual update, patch balance changes (in which case we have many more variables) or a new champion altogether. Not to mention new particles, items in the shop, etc.

And that's just the reasons i can think of pertaining to Game Design. Lord knows there are tons of potential Legal concerns and other stuff i haven't even been introduced to, but showing you a video of our playtest is kind of off the table. Please stop spamming the same thing over and over D: it's not really a good way to help a discussion at all.

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Im still scarred from AP rengar.

I think the problem is with double cast. As long as he can double cast an ability he will be OP or UP because he has so much burst that you can't react to him or he has so little sustain damage that he doesn't do anything outside of his burst.

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Senior Member


Not Enough Bushes to jump out of

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Senior Member


remove the triple q - shouldn't have to rely on a glitch to kill somebody

change his e to a skillshot

remove a large amount of attacks speed on his q in exchange for a better ratio

reduce his damage to towers (yall have stated you don't want a tower to be gone if somebody leaves lane for 5 seconds)

make his level 1 clear better, no clue how to do this though

rengar and talon are similar

they either instagib you or do absolutely nothing, there needs to be a middle ground

rengars split push is ridiculous though, same with tryn

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Senior Member


Kitty kat rengar skin pls

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Senior Member


Ap rengar was the stuff of nightmares.

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Senior Member


Hopefully new Rengar will benefit from his redesign as much as new Karma

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Senior Member


Rengar's roar feels and looks more like a "IM A STRONGER FOE THAN YOU" rather than "IM BUFFING MYSELF UP", almost like it should buff him offensively rather than defensively.

I also feel like you should just straight up remove the heal and def boost and replace it with something else. If you did that you could make it an AD ability that did physical damage so its actually useful to Rengar.

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Renekton Bot

Senior Member


At least it ain't Nasus.

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Arctic Bro



best Rengar games is when we all lvl 1 invade
aanndd R.I.P. Rengar Stealth
escalated too quickly