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So with the ruined King finally being revealed there’s some discussion about his visual design. It seems like there are two general opinions: The one side says that he looks like a teenager, when he actually should be atleast in his 30s or 40s, given he was said to be Kalista’s uncle. While the other side says that it makes sense that he appears to be quiet young, as someone, who foolishly brought such chaos upon the world by trying to save his wife, wouldn’t be an old wise king, but rather a hopeless romantic young men.

Well I actually think he shouldn’t look like a human at all! Think about it: He was the single cause of the ruination of the Shadow Isles, which caused every inhabitant of it to be cursed by the black mist, thereby becoming twisted spectral versions of their former selves. Just look at Hecarim or Thresh, they are barely recognizable as their former humanselves. Viego was at the epicenter of the ruination and while others got turned in horrifiying abominations, he barely got touched by it! All it did was to turn his skin pale, his hair white and…rip open his jacket? Well of course he needs some sex appeal.

While we don’t know his full lore yet, and there might be an explanation why his appearance barely got altered by the ruination, I simply was expecting the ruined King to be a twisted monstrosity, someone whose appearance instills fear into those that have to face him, given he is such a big deal in the lore.

I don’t think the design in general is bad, but I simply hoped for something else for the ruined King and not just another ‚sexy human‘.

Nonetheless I’m still hyped for the upcoming ruination event, even though I‘m a bit disappointed by Viego’s visual design. But those are just my 2 cents.

Edit: Spelling

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10 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

so heres the explanation of this. So the black mist corrupts people and makes them look altered and monstrous. Viego controls the black mist though, it doesn't control him, so he hasnt been corrupted by it at all like other SI champs

7 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by FruitfulRogue

I'm curious if your job entails anything else other then damage control lmao

I'd be happy to see the champ team just say that they're more focused on making broadly appealing designs then constantly seeing you flounder to justify all these same-ish sexy male, female champs all the time lmao

I have been very transparent about our goals when others asked. We have had the goal for the last 3-4 years of making 70% broadly appealing champs and 30% niche each year. This includes VGUs as well, so last year Volibear, Fiddle and Lillia where targeted niche and the rest to be broadly appealing. In general we would be happy to hit like 50/50, but the reality is if you have goals to have 70/30 a few are going to miss the mark, and at the end of the year we generally end up hitting about 50/50 when we try to hit the goal of 70/30. In the past when we tried to hit a more even spilt of 50/50 we ended up with something more like 30/70 with 70% being niche. What's worse is if a niche champion misses the mark they end up in a very rough spot (Taliyah/Ivern for example), whereas when a champ targeting broad appeal misses the mark they usually just end up niche (Aphelios/Qiyana, for example) The reason its important to be hitting at least 50% high engagement champs is that the primary goal for champions team is engagement, so if we are seeing like 70% of the champs released in a year with very low engagement, the team isn't really doing whats its intended to do, which is getting people to engage with new content, weather thats playing as or against a new champ. If no one is playing the new champ then no one is playing against it much either.

7 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by TreeKeeper15

Is the 70/30 split the goal this year as well? I know last year the justification for Lillia was that there were two monster champ reworks so you guys wanted to balance it out with a cute niche champion. This year we already know of 2 niche releases in Mundo and the Yordle, and I know a lot of people are being pretty pessimistic about the chances for any other niche designs this year. Could you tell us if there are plans for any other niche designs this year, or are those the two for this year? It's been a while since we got a really monstrous new champ (Rek'sai) and I would really like to see another one. I know we got Fiddlesticks last year, but that's just making a monster more monstrous, not something new.

currently yes their are 3 niche champs planned for this year, Mundo and 2 new Champs, though niche doesnt always mean monster champ. It can be of course, but their are some broad appeal creatures spaces like Yuumi (Cats are pretty appealing) as well as niche human spaces like Swain, Brand, for example.

7 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by bz6

Hey boss! Is the champion team the smallest its ever been? It seems that a lot of people have left it and not enough bnews on potentially replacing or new coming in. Is it possible to tell us whose on the team currently? <3


it always kind of fluctuates up and down but stays relatively the sameish size

7 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by Sharjo

Is there enough data to say where Rell falls on the spectrum of niche to broad appeal? Supportive tanks seem like a largely niche gameplay concept, so it'd be interesting to see where she lands

yeah we targeted her as broadly appealing for a tank support, which is a pretty niche role. To early to say where she will land longterm yet. usually it takes like 2-3 months for a champs playrate to settle

7 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by Spideraxe30

While I really like the goals, I want to play devil's advocate here so why not just focus entirely on broadly appealing champs. You mentioned in another comment that even some creatures end up quite popular like Kha and Yuumi, so that does seem possible w/o sacrificing creature champs

Because not everyone is going to be into broadly appealing champs. It is good to hit a specific niche of players that would never be excited about most broadly appealing things. It also allows us to to make crazier kits, that we know won't be super appealing to a lot of players, but it's still cool to have them show up in games every once is awhile. It also allows us to make some champs that might be really good adds for the lore/IP even if they won't get played as much in LoL

7 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by Ozaiko

Is there a way to balance a super appealing gameplay (Ahri, Lux, Seraphine) with a niche and super interesting design (Azir, A Sol, Kindred, Bard) ? Most of the time interesting champs get niche gameplay and doesn't receive the love they deserve.

We have examples like that in champs like Blitzcrank, who has very high gameplay scores and low theme/art scores. These champs tend to do alright still, but not as well as champs with both strong visual and gameplay scores

7 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by TreeKeeper15

I think Blitzcrank at the very least is hindered by his outdated visuals and voice lines.

Maybe but Lee Sin is in like the top 10 visual and theme scores in the game

6 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by Talamare

What weird examples...

Taliyah was crazy popular until her kit was beyond gutted and nerfed into the ground. Ivern is currently crazy popular, but I expect the nerf team to smack him into oblivion too.

Aphelios ends up unpopular because the design team created a literal monster when they decided to give him 473 abilities. I have no comment on Qiyana...

Then we have garbage cancer champions like Yasuo and Kayn that even when they are sitting at 35% win rate and 60% ban rate, they are still at 40% play rate... So of course, despite the 60% ban rate and 40% play rate, they get ridiculous buffs instead of addressing the issue as to why they are sitting at 60% ban rate...

hmm at no point has Taliyah or Ivern ever been crazy popular, even when they are OP. Here is the B/D chart of both compared to like Sett and Yone.


As you can see even when they launched which is the smallest point on their tracks (each point represents a patch and the thicker it gets the more recent patch it is) they were niche, and much lower playrate then some popular champs when they are very underpowered. Ivern still hasn't even crossed onto the right side of the graph which is where we would say a champ is popular , which is still very far from crazy popular. My point with Aphelios is that despite having a super complex kit he is still a pretty successful niche champ with a small but dedicated playerbase If Aphelios had a less appealing visual design I think his playrate would be closer to something like a Rek'Sai or Ivern, which is to say extremely unpopular

6 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by FruitfulRogue

So is the case to say Lillia was meant to be "niche" ?She was incredibly cutesy and whilst she was not "Broadly appealing" I wouldn't go out of my way to say she was monstrously niche either. She was so much in the middle.

Sorry but I really feel like your "niche" champions recently have just been attempts at satisfy 2 audiences and not really apealling fully to either.

I don't think it's unfair to say when players who want monster champs, they want MONSTROUS champs. Stop doing this where you try and make them like Neeko, Yuumi and Lillia and just give people another Cho'gath. It's literally where all the criticism comes from over new champions. Because you refuse to deliver fully to any audience nowadays other then "Sexy Male/Female with big weapon".

Hell even Rell was meant to be appealing to Tank players but just ended up being another chick in a body suit. It is so disappointing seeing you waste the teams potential like this, and it's safe to say you've disappointed a lot players in the process.

I never said she was monstrously niche, i just said she was targeted at niche. Niche does not mean a champ is a monster, though monsters tend to be niche, in general. Lillia is cutsey because we wanted to make a creature champ, and when we looked at our roster the vast majority of creature champs where more monstrous, especially in the jungle, and we felt that a colorful cutsey creature jungler would add something a lot more unique to the overall roster then another jungle monster champ. We felt for 2020 that the Fiddlesticks VGU would resonate well with our players that like monstrous champs and we do count VGUs towards the overall years champ diversity

6 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by quepha

So the "Ruined" king is ironically the only one not "Ruined" at all? People just call him that as a joke?

He is emotionally ruined when his wife was poisoned and ultimately died, which in turn caused him to trigger the ruination

6 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by SuperMrBlob

Did the team consider making Viego a bit gruffier, say closer to a WC3 Arthas than his current teen self? Do you think doing that would've really made him less broadly appealing? Surely not every broadly appealing champ has to be <~23 yo?

Thanks for the work you do and for talking about this stuff on Reddit, it's really interesting.

We did of course, we talked about and tried many things in early ideation. For one we didn't want to overlap to much with Arthus, but more importantly when we asked ourselves what kind of person would damn the whole world in a attempt to bring his wife back to life we felt that was something a younger more vain king would do. Someone who just experienced first love, was infatuated with it, and then lost in quickly after he found it and would do anything to get it back. It just felt correct for him to be a young, handsome, hopeless romantic given that backstory. It also separated him from many others Shadow Isles champs. It also gives him a very unique space in our Shadow Isles roster. All these reasons led us to his current visual design.

6 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by CalmYourNeckbeard

Is Vlad going to be targeted as broad or niche whenever update?

hmm i think Vlas has the potential to be broadly appealing at least by battle mage standards, probably not like a lux or something but fairly broad

4 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by TabaCh1

I get why he had to be young and handsome, but why skinny jeans, a jacket 3 sizes too short and shirtless?

We were inspired by a lot of Goth Rock/Metal stars/singers for his look, since we felt Goth rock aesthetics meshed well for the whole vain, hopeless romantic angle

3 days ago - /u/Reav3 - Direct link

Originally posted by Zoli_Ben

Hey Reav3! Is the Rammus update effectively eliminates him from the VGU list? He has been always a constant member of your tier lists since 2016 and you said that he'd be be needing smaller gameplay work and it is here. Is this the end for him like Xin's VGU plans? Have a nice weekend!

Not at all, we still want to VGU him someday

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