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New League of Legends Champs shouldn’t get “nerf after nerf” anymore, Riot says

Some of the newest and best League of Legends Champions, like Aphelios, Senna, and Sett, have had to undergo a few rounds of tinkering since their arrival in the MOBA game – and been slapped with a bunch of nerfs to balance them out. Now, however, Riot has said it’s not happy with how this panned out, and where a brand-new Champ is a bit “too strong” in the future, it’s planning to “follow up faster and with a more comprehensive set of nerfs” instead.

That’s according to lead League of Legends gameplay designer Mark ‘Scruffy’ Yetter, who has has posted a ‘quick gameplay thoughts’ blog on the game’s site. Looking back at the releases of some of the multiplayer game’s recent Champs, like marksmen Aphelios and Senna, as well as juggernaut hero Sett, the dev explains that: “Something we want to improve over the next few months is our champion release balance.

“In particular, we don’t want new champions to warp our game’s meta or for anyone to feel like they have to pick up every new champ to remain competitive.”

Detailing the studio’s two main plans of attack in delivering more balanced Champ releases going forward – one of which is “launching with a long term balanced target” – Yetter says Riot’s also looking to have a “faster/stronger followup” post-launch.

This means, “In cases where we do end up with a new champ or VGU that is too strong we will try to follow up faster and with a more comprehensive set of nerfs,” says, adding: “We really do not like how with Senna, Sett, and Aphelios, we have had to come back for nerf after nerf. If we could go back in time here, we would have bundled them together earlier.”

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Yetter makes clear that this doesn’t mean future Champs won’t need buffs, nerfs, and tweaks post-release as there’s only so much the devs can anticipate while in development (“We get 10x that amount of data within the first day of the champ in players’ hands). However, it looks like we’ll see a somewhat different approach to Champion changes with future releases, with fewer, more significant adjustments “bundled” together instead of spread out over multiple patches. Sweet!

Speaking of which, be sure to take a look at LoL patch 10.8 if you want to see the latest batch of tweaks, tinkerings, and goodies that have arrived in the live game, as well as our LoL patch 10.9 notes to get a look at what’s ahead next week.

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