Riot strips Vayne down to nearly nothing


The S&M tribe that Riot has moonlighting as a group of artists did their worst to Vayne for Valentine’s Day. The Vampire Hunter was given her own version of the very tired stockings-and-corset costume. This will no doubt cause a flood of masturbatory spending from the 13-year-olds playing League of Legends.

I imagine the resumes in Riot’s art department are pretty short. How many different ways are there to say “I drew fantasy babes in stockings, thongs, and corsets every day.”

I’m not anti-sexy, just anti-lack-of-creativity. We’ve seen this skin one thousand million times. It isn’t interesting. At all. Not one bit. Nothing about it. Nothing. Not a single part.

…but good job on the Nautilus model.


Don’t sell yourself short


I hopped into a game this afternoon with one of the readers here, playing a Blitz/Vayne combo on bottom lane. I really thought we were going to dominate – we were up against Lee Sin and Janna, which on second thought I should not have underestimated as heavily as I did. Janna is such a strong lane partner and, frankly, Lee Sin does a hell of a lot of sustained damage with a support to back him up.

Things didn’t go exactly as I had planned. I died early thanks to an Ignite/Exhaust combo and struggled to get my farm up for the rest of our lane phase. Around 15 minutes I checked the score; our team was up 14 to 5, but I was a whopping 4 of my team’s deaths. Ouch.

My deaths didn’t tell the whole story, though. In fact, I was 4/4/4. It was more deaths than I would have liked to endure early, but I also had a nice kill count and the cash from four assists. I had been involved in 8 of my team’s 14 kills, which is a pretty nice contribution for early in the game.

I’ve always maintained that stats don’t tell the whole picture. Sure, four deaths worth of gold was a lot to give up in the early game, but my dying usually allowed my team the opportunity to turn a couple kills, which resulted in much more gold for my own team than I was giving up. It was a frustrating early game for me but it resulted in a very solid performance for my team and a handy win. Always make sure you’re looking at the big picture in those frustrating lanes. If you’re playing smart, sometimes it’s okay to be the one soaking deaths for your team, even as a carry.


Recipe for a bad Vayne game


I have been blowing people out of the water with Vayne since her release, pretty much without exception. I have lost a game here and there – I went 26/4 in a game and still lost with her thanks to absolutely rampant feeding by my four teammates but I still had fun trying to win that one – but I haven’t had a truly bad game until tonight, so I thought I’d share my recipe for losing games with Vayne.

1 teammate (Gangplank or Nunu work best in my experience)
1 open solo lane
1 duo lane
1-2 opponents, depending on taste

Take your 1 teammate and knead until ready for feeding. If he requests a solo lane, knead some more. If he still requests a solo lane, give it to him. Watch that solo lane die to 1 opponent at level 1. Ask him to play more safely. Watch him die 3 more times. If working with the Twitch brand of opponent, prepare to never leave your turret. Surrender at 20 minutes.

Alternatively, knead your teammate until ready for feeding and place him in a bottom lane for storage. When ready, join your teammate bottom lane and sift slowly with last hits. When he starts trying to zone two of the best laners in the game (Blitzcrank and Lux), gently persuade him to not do that so close to tower. When he dies four times in ten minutes, realize you will get zero farm in that lane, cook at 450 degrees for twenty minutes and hit the surrender button.


Vayne skill list announced

We now have the official “New Champion Approaches” post for Vayne, giving us a look at the skillset for Riot’s latest champion. I’m most certainly not excited to see yet another ability attempting to address the Tanky DPS situation but it is interesting to see ranged DPS get the kind of mobility that could mean survival in many cases. More on that later – let’s get to the skills:

Night Hunter (Passive): Vayne ruthlessly hunts evil-doers. She gains bonus Movement Speed when moving toward nearby enemy champions.

Tumble: Vayne tumbles, maneuvering to carefully place her next shot. She rolls toward the cursor and her next attack deals bonus damage.

Silver Bolts: Vayne tips her bolts with a rare metal, toxic to evil things. The third consecutive attack or ability against the same target deals a percentage of the target’s maximum Health as bonus true damage. (Max damage vs. Monsters is capped)

Condemn: Vayne draws a heavy crossbow from her back, and fires a huge bolt at her target, dealing damage and knocking them back. If they collide with terrain, they are impaled, dealing bonus damage and stunning them.

Final Hour (Ultimate): Readying herself for an epic confrontation, Vayne gains increased Attack Damage, stealth during Tumble, and quadruple the bonus Movement Speed from Night Hunter.

I’m going to be curious to see how Vayne plays. At first I thought condemn might feel like a bit of a throwaway skill, and chances are it probably will in a lot of situations, but I also think her passive coupled with her dash could make it much more usable than Poppy’s Heroic Charge.

As I said above, I really do not like addressing metagame issues with abilities. Those abilities will almost surely need a rework if that metagame shifts, which brings up some ugly questions about Riot’s intent for the metagame. Are we sticking with tanky DPS for a while? If so, are the loads of older champions who have slipped from viability going to see reworks? Vayne has a couple skills that vaguely remind me of Tristana, a champion I haven’t seen produce stats in a ranked game in ages. This is all to say nothing of the fact that true damage is an ugly beast to manage. Can anyone think of another true damage champion on live that Riot has been unable to balance? Anyone?

I’m also interested to see how Vayne’s ult will play out. Riot said in the announcement thread that the ult has a “very short” cooldown. A steroid ult is rarely fun, but with the escapability offered by her knockback and her dash, she could be great at kiting. I’m also guessing she’ll be able to dash into a lane Shaco-style with the Tumble ult mechanic, which could be very cool.

Vayne looks to have the best ranged DPS kit of any character released remotely recently, maybe overall. Watch for the live preview Monday night at 10:00PM EST.


Champion Sneak Peek: Vayne, the Night Hunter

Vayne concept.

I really thought the Monkey King would be our next champion, especially considering the amount of artwork that’s been done on him. I would imagine Riot is trying to avoid the Lee Sin situation – lots of hype, little conversion – so we’re getting a different champion next week.

That champion is Vayne, a sort of Van Helsing inspired vampire hunter it would seem. I’m guessing she/he/it (pretty sure it’s a she, but it could be a he with very delicate legs) is a ranged DPS champion, a class that is woefully underrepresented in the current metagame. Could Vayne mark the return of the ranged carry? Check back this weekend for the skill list.


Related Posts