Sejuani Champion Spotlight is live

Riot posted the Sejuani Spotlight late last night, giving us the first look at the League’s first mounted champion. I wasn’t all that excited about Sejuani until I saw the way her mount moved around. I have to say, I’m a little sad it took Riot this long to make a mounted champion. Sejuani looks awesome. Yes, I said awesome. I’m not talking about her skills, just the way she actually looks running around. I would really like to see more champions like this – the animations are just very, very cool.

As for her actual abilities, it’s tough to say. I only had one game with her today. I was surprised to find that her Shyvana-style AoE scaled with her health. In the single game I played I laned top against a Lee Sin and actually held my own. He definitely underestimated my tankiness and control, which allowed me to rocket ahead fairly early in the game. Unfortunately, my team’s comp wasn’t great and our Wukong disconnected somewhat late in the game. We ended with a surrender.

I will probably try to get a few more games in with her over the course of the week, so keep an eye out for an impressions post. Though I did enjoy my playtime with her, I would like to see her get a little more Leona-style tankiness rather than the big health, medium damage she currently has. I could see a damage-dealing, Trinity Force build doing fairly well on her, as unfortunate as that is to say. We’ll see.

  

Sejuani reignites the sexy-female-champion debate

Female Champion body types.

I can’t remember exactly when it started with League of Legends, but some time ago the classic “Why is every girl a barbie-proportioned stripper?” question started to pop up. Despite arguments on the other side of the fence (“What about Poppy?”), I think the argument holds a lot of weight. The diversity of female champion design in League of Legends could be described as falling anywhere on the scale between “tragic” and “nonexistent.” I’m going to try to avoid getting into the argument much because, frankly, it’s overdiscussed by a group of people who aren’t serious about it and underdiscussed by the people who really care. What interests me is the range of responses Riot employees give as reasons for continued stream of bimbos.

A good place to start is at this thread, which is where I got the image above. The interesting thing here isn’t that the champions tend toward slutty archetypes, but more that the body type is exactly the same, regardless of tier. This was a much more interesting analysis to see than the typical “OMG LOOK HOW BIG HER BEWBS ARE.” I would love to see a witch/hag champion that has some crusty old woman flavor. I also love the silhouette of a large, ogre-ish woman in the top right.

The really weird parts of this discussion come courtesy of Riot employees, like Ricklessabandon, who says, “while i’m totally okay with seeing variety in form, i don’t really like the idea of having diversity just for the sake of having diversity. that is to say, i wouldn’t want an old chick just because there are too many 20-somethings in the roster–that’s not a good reason in my opinion. i’d want an old man/woman only if we had a good story concept and the best fit happens to be an older person. the main problem i’d want to avoid is aesthetics replacing part/all of a champion’s character, and i think that’s harder to do when you set out to create a character for the sake of adding diversity to a roster.”

What he neglects to address is that the roster is almost exclusively 20-somethings, and that for the most part there is no character design that backs this trend. Why wouldn’t a woman capable of wearing full plate mail be a little thicker in stature? Would trained warriors really be such waifs? Annie, one of the few characters that bucks the trend, is also one of the few characters for which there is actually a character-driven reason behind her aesthetics. That’s to say nothing of the fact that story doesn’t really have a place in League of Legends. I’m not saying character design/flavor isn’t important – it is – rather that Riot shouldn’t be waiting for a cool “story” to design some different champions.

I’m going to leave a link to another thread through CLGaming’s redtracker because it will allow you to see the original post and IronStylus’ red response. This also contains links to two Kotaku articles that are worth a read if you’re interested in this stuff. I’ll end my discussion here, though. Let me know what you think in the comments.

Image Credit: Lunakuneko on the official forums

  

Sejuani ability list announced

Sejuani.

As expected, Riot announced Sejuani’s official ability list this weekend. It looks like the Tanky DPS rumors were partially true. Her kit sounds like she’s meant to be a pure tank. Let’s have a look at this boar-riding beast of a champion.

Frost (Passive) – Sejuani’s basic attacks apply Frost, reducing enemy Movement Speed by 10% for 3 seconds.

Arctic AssaultSejuani charges forward to deal magic damage and apply Frost to enemies. Sejuani stops upon colliding with an enemy champion.

Northern Winds – Sejuani summons an arctic storm around her which deals magic damage to nearby enemies every second. Damage is increased against enemies affected by Frost or Permafrost.

Permafrost – Sejuani converts Frost on nearby enemies to Permafrost, dealing magic damage and increasing the Movement Speed reduction dramatically.

Glacial Prison (Ultimate) – Sejuani throws her weapon, stunning the first enemy champion hit. Nearby enemies are stunned for a shorter duration. All targets take magic damage and are affected by Frost.

On the whole I think Sejuani has a decent kit, though there is the usual ambiguity with regard to how some of her skills work. For instance, can she cast Permafrost if nearby enemies don’t have the Frost debuff? I would hope so. Forcing her to rely on hitting targets to use her primary nuke would really hurt. I could also see her ultimate being incredibly frustrating to land properly. I’m also curious about its range.

If anything, I think Sejuani’s strength will depend on the usability of her charge. Her abilities sound like they synergize fairly well, but none of them matter if she can’t get close enough for a Frost debuff.

Keep an eye out for her this week. I’ll be giving my impressions as soon as I have a chance to play her.

  

Riven finally catching a nerf

It’s nice to get a little affirmation that you were right every now and again. I make a lot of predictions about LoL (and occasionally other games) on this blog, and though sometimes I get it right I often get it wrong. At least, I often get it relatively wrong. I think certain champions are OP that others think are weak and vice versa. With Riven, though, I was sure I was right. I was even sure I was right before they fixed her animations and gave her some small buffs. I just knew Riven’s kit — particularly since it scaled with AD — was too good from the start.

She’s finally getting a nerf, or at least what seems to be a nerf. According to the patch preview, she’s getting a nerf to her regen alongside a change to her shield that should make her less durable in lane. The change moves some of the damage from her shield to her Broken Wings skill, which should incentivize leveling the skill as more than just a movespeed buff.

That said, I think the combination of Broken Wings and her shield/stun may still be a bit too strong in lane, particularly if she’s getting a damage boost on Broken Wings. That skill gives her an easy way to proc her passive. It’s not a ton of damage on its own, but with a buff to Broken Wings I could see her still dishing out some serious pain.

  

The next champion is…Sejuani?

Riot has used the same formula for new champion releases for quite some time now. They release a champion sneak peek, usually in the form of a comic, and follow up with an ability/lore reveal and finally a champion spotlight. This week they skipped the comic entirely and just dropped an art spotlight on us. People seemed a little confused at first, but since it’s a chick riding a boar, I think we can probably forgive the change of pace.

You can see Sejuani’s model in the spotlight above. I have to say, I like the concept. First off, she has a flail. I know, I can hardly believe it’s not a sword either. Also, she’s riding a giant tusked pig. Again, pretty awesome design. I have to wonder what her skills will be like, though. Some early “leaks” suggested she would be a tanky DPS (shocking, right?) with significant initiation and slowing skills. This part I’m not nearly as excited about.

From the looks of things she should be out next week. Keep your eyes peeled this weekend for her lore/ability announcement. I would assume Riot will give us that much prior to her launch.

  

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