Support Scaling and duo lanes discussion

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Morello

Lead Designer

11-21-2013
19 of 29 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by LVNsNASmurf View Post
Here's my problem with supports are a champion class.

They don't contribute to winning games. Plain and simple. I'll expand a bit before I get lynched.
  • Supports are weak, so cannot duel. They cannot remove enemy champions from defending.
  • Supports have low AD and AS and thus are unable to take down towers or inhibs.
  • Supports have low damage, so can not effectively help with baron or dragon
All they can do is act as restrictions to losing. They provide heals, shields and MS. This doesn't help win, but it helps prevent losing. Their CC is a nice neutral mechanic, in that it can be offensive or defensive, but in an offensive manner, they cannot capitalise on it themselves.

Thats the problems, in that these non damage champions can't win games. However, they had one ace in the hole. That was, they worked very well on no gold. They provided more utility, damage, CC etc than any other kind of champion would at zero gold. This was their trump, until late season 3. Here we see what I will call "immobile mages", zyra, fiddles and annie, champions which had strong utility, but also strong base damages and ratios. These proved effective because these champions sacrificed "not losing" for the much better option of "helping to win"

Lets rock through why the supporting role is not liked.
  • Supporters don't get much gold, and gold is needed for the cool items
  • Vision is so powerful what they do get, they spend it all on wards.
  • Thus don't get a good power curve.

You brought in sweeping changes to give the supporting role lots of gold, and you also tried to rebalanced the supporting champions, as their high ratios would give them too much damage with that much gold. Thus, you gave them utility ratios. There's a problem though, in that supports weren't being played for their utility. If they were, then you wouldn't see mages in the role. Instead of giving them more utility and more CC (through scaling) you nerfed their bases so that they had less utility and less CC.

If you want to rebalance supports to be the team focused allies you want, then you have to start with a few things.
  • Revert the utility nerfs. All supports with say, 200 AP should have the same utility as before.
  • Add AP scaling to all non damage aspects of their kits, such as CC duration etc, so that they are not overshadowed by mages.

Finally, you must understand how much power hard CC gives. Unlike any other form of utility it capitalises on situations, covers up mistakes, gives clutch plays, opens or closes gaps, negates damage... I will trade a sona for a nami any day of the week, because sona has no hard CC til level 6, and Nami has it at level 1.

As a personal note, every single one of your support champions feels horrible to play, and I refuse to play them. It's a combination of poor visual effects, poor characters, and not being a 'champion'. LoL is a battle ground, so if you can't do battle, why are you here? About the only thing I can stomach is Leona, and she's a tank. Thresh is marginal, his abilities still feel like love-taps.
I generally agree with your analysis points here - and if the gap is huge, we can revisit numerically - super open to it. I disagree with your critique of supports objectively as a "fun" class (because engineering gameplay fun is couched in understanding that there's a broad set of expectations and differences).

I think there are people who feel really differently about supports than you do, though. We've already made hard calls on dedicated healers, I'm not willing to go all the way to supports - I think they can change the context of fights and things like shields can provide windows of harass/engage, saftey for a vulnerable character like Ashe to make plays, and otherwise drive action. In lane, supports currently drive MOST of the action - even traditional support.


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Morello

Lead Designer

11-21-2013
20 of 29 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sophitia View Post
Still not sure how I feel about Soraka. I don't like the concept of dedicated healer, but I guess it works for making interesting plays (still afraid she'll be overshadowed by someone like Nidalee bot now, who can poke hard and heal for a decent amount).

What about "comboing" for damage. E.g., kind of acting like ahri's new charm mechanic for supports. If you hit crescendo, power cord does [x] more damage, or you can heal or slow for [x] amount more for example.
We have a few ideas like this on the rework. As you can imagine, it's a pretty challenging one


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Mynt

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Senior Member

11-21-2013

I'll expound on my theories about Tarted Ally Spells:

There are two kinds of these spells--those which lend themselves to range reductions, and those which fundamentally must remain long range in order to be usable.

Examples of potential short range spells:
Soraka's Heal
Nidalee's Heal + auto-attack enhancer
Nami's Auto-attack enhancer
Janna's Shield

Examples of mandatory long range spells:
Nami's Heal, because it's also a nuke
Taric's Heal, because he's melee
Sona's Auras, because they are AoE

The trick is to manage the mana costs of long range spells, making that the gate to early game power. Lower range spells can be stronger, or more mana efficient because their gate is the durability it takes to use their spells in increasingly dire situations. This is how to make characters like Soraka feel powerful for building durability--buff her heal power, reduce its range so that her having stats indirectly allows her to use it better.

It's only an idea, and I'm merely a mortal. But it's something I've been chewing on for 5 years now. A support class that is even melee would still be farther behind the line of engagement than the long ranged carry they are supporting.


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Peacemaker9669

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Member

11-21-2013

Dear Morello,

As a long time support player since season 1, I'm excited and looking forward to these changes to support, it should change up the game and make supporting more interesting. I was curious about two things though:
1. Do you think the relic shield favors ranged supports and might change up the game to make supports the ones last hitting in lane while the adc focuses on harassing?
2. Now that we can only use one vision ward, would you say that Evelynn would be a little bit strong now that pink wards are visible?


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Morello

Lead Designer

11-21-2013
21 of 29 Riot Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by ValderiusRex View Post
It's not just "how do we fix core healer game play?". Janna breaks even at 200 AP, Lulu breaks even at 150 AP, Soraka breaks even at an absurd 600 AP. If supports are going to get a death cap every single game, fine. But we all know they're not.

As it stands, i think it's a great idea with rubbish execution. Getting gold to buy items feels great. Buying a ton of items and having less power than when I used to have no items feels HORRIBLE.
This actually makes me happy, as odd as that sounds. Let me explain what I mean.

I'm really not worried about the tactical execution because is transient and temporary; the team will fix it if it's off and we're all really aligned on the direction here - to me, I guess, that's an easily-solvable problem.


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SSLRranma

Senior Member

11-21-2013

Morello, i think one of the big problems is that your going so many nerf all at once, and big ones all at once. have you thought of doing smaller nerfs? you update often enough that i think you guys could do smaller numbers to test instead of large chunks.


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AmbushIntheDark

Senior Member

11-21-2013

I still dont understand why these changes are needed in the first place. The support role right now (imo) is in the best position it has EVER been in. Sure theres a couple supports no one plays but overall the acceptable pool of support champions has never been bigger. The changes at the begining of season 3 were just what the role needed and now youre trying to change up the role again because....? What are you trying to turn the role into? Not a damage dealer because you've said that you dont want supports to do damage. Not a tank because thats already a thing that roles like jungler or top and fulfill considerably better. Until now support has been a role that focuses on vision and map control, but apparently thats not good either because some idiots in Bronze/Silver dont recognize how impactful vision is. Whats left? You've nerfed people like Raka Taric and Sona for being aura-bots. When you give supports too much utility you get permaban status like Thresh and Blitz.


Even now we already have different styles of supports. You got your tanky intiators with leona,ali,taric thresh and blitz. Your heavy disengage with Sona, Lulu, Janna and Nami. Your poke/damage heavy champs with Zyra, Annie and Lux.

You keep saying that support doesnt feel satisfying. Its because those people arnt support players. Words cant describe how boring and stupid it feels to play ADC, but that doesnt make the role as a whole flawed in some way, it means that it isnt a role I'm going to play.


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LoveSparkle

Senior Member

11-21-2013

Morello, I don't want you tanking this stuff anymore. The stuff you tank for the live balance team makes you look, well, stupid.

I'm sure you're doing your job when a big change goes through.

But you aren't the one who should be doing this. You just aren't.

Example given: Support = healer when 6 of 9 of the labelled supports in the client can heal others, and Nunu can heal himself, and Nidalee which goes bot often isn't even labelled a support. Zilean even has a revive which is arguably the best heal.

Which would be 8 of 10 support champs by adding in Nidalee.


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Samflash3

Senior Member

11-21-2013

I know this is kinda unrelated but what about executioner's calling? Is there any change coming up for this item? Because i haven't seen anything happen to it in the patch or the PBE.


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WindLord7070

Senior Member

11-21-2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mynt View Post
I'll expound on my theories about Tarted Ally Spells:

There are two kinds of these spells--those which lend themselves to range reductions, and those which fundamentally must remain long range in order to be usable.

Examples of potential short range spells:
Soraka's Heal
Nidalee's Heal + auto-attack enhancer
Nami's Auto-attack enhancer
Janna's Shield

Examples of mandatory long range spells:
Nami's Heal, because it's also a nuke
Taric's Heal, because he's melee
Sona's Auras, because they are AoE

The trick is to manage the mana costs of long range spells, making that the gate to early game power. Lower range spells can be stronger, or more mana efficient because their gate is the durability it takes to use their spells in increasingly dire situations. This is how to make characters like Soraka feel powerful for building durability--buff her heal power, reduce its range so that her having stats indirectly allows her to use it better.

It's only an idea, and I'm merely a mortal. But it's something I've been chewing on for 5 years now. A support class that is even melee would still be farther behind the line of engagement than the long ranged carry they are supporting.
i dont understnad why u are trying to make supports who are squishy have to walk into meleerange to use skills if they do that why not make all adcs melee as well