League of Legends' new champion is Ornn, the Fire Below the Mountain, here's what he can do

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Update, August 21: Ornn's now got a brand new champion trailer, facing off against Volibear and the might of Freljord.

Ornn, the Fire Below the Mountain, should be coming out this week - or at least, his patch should be - so there's a new trailer that somewhat hints at the character's story. This means we should be getting patch notes soon. 

As an ex-Volibear main, I'm saddened by the Volibear abuse here.

While we wait for more information on Ornn, check out our list of the best League of Legends champions for beginners.

Update, August 10: Ornn has made his way onto the PBE, alongside footage of all his abilities, and information about how he can work with his teammates to add unique upgrades to some of their most powerful items.

The most wide-ranging bit of Ornn’s kit is his passive, which comes in two parts. The first, Living Forge, allows Ornn to craft non-consumable items (so anything not including potions and elixirs, pretty much) from anywhere on the map, which means he doesn’t need to return to the fountain to buy new items.

The second half of his passive is Master Craftsman, which allows his team-mates to spend gold to upgrade some choice items. These are mostly among League’s most powerful items, but there are a couple of support items thrown in there too. The items that can be upgraded are:

  • Infinity Edge
  • Trinity Force
  • Rabadon’s Deathcap
  • Infernal Mask
  • Rabadon’s Deathcap
  • The Black Cleaver
  • Sunfire Cape
  • Redemption
  • Locket of the Iron Solari

For more information about the upgraded items, including their boosted stats, you can check out the 7.17 patch notes.

Ornn’s four active abilities offer a lot of ways for Ornn to impact larger fights. With plenty of crowd control and the ability to make his own mini terrain, as well as his unique debuff, Brittle, Ornn will work brilliantly when he has his team around him to back him up. His abilities are as follows:

  • Q: Volcanic Rupture
    • Ornn slams the ground, sending out a fissure that deals physical damage and slows enemies. After a small delay, a magma pillar forms at the target location, functioning like a tiny wall for a few seconds.

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  • W: Bellows Breath
    • Ornn becomes unstoppable, shields himself, and belches out flames. These flames deal a portion of the enemy's current health as magic damage. Enemies struck by the final gout of flame become Brittle. Ornn's basic attacks knock back Brittle targets.
    • Brittle: When Brittle, enemies suffer a portion of their maximum health as bonus damage when struck by immobilizing effects. Immobilizing effects also last longer when used on Brittle enemies.

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  • E: Searing Charge
    • Ornn charges, dealing damage to enemies he passes through. If Ornn collides with terrain while charging, the impact creates a shockwave that deals damage and knocks up enemies. This ability destroys player-created terrain.

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  • R: Call of the Forge God
    • Ornn summons a massive fire elemental at a target location. It then travels toward him with increasing speed. Enemies run over by the elemental take magic damage and become Brittle.
    • Ornn can recast this ability to charge forward. If he strikes the elemental with the charge, he'll redirect it. The redirected elemental will then knock up all struck enemies, dealing the same damage as before and applying the Brittle effect.

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Ornn is set to be one of League of Legends’ most unique champions. With new mechanics on both parts of his passive, a new debuff and the ability to break terrain made by other players (think Anivia or Taliyah wall, Jarvan’s ult or Yorick’s W, among others), there are few characters whose arrival brings as many new possibilities to the Rift as Ornn.

As I said earlier, he’ll be at his strongest when he’s got his team-mates around him, and a lot of his kit will help that happen. For one thing, he lacks reliable hard CC, so while he can make his Brittle mechanic work by himself, he’ll fare much better in teamfights or alongside his jungler, where he can capitalise on the increased duration of stuns and snares.

Ornn’s abilities themselves will also synergise really effectively with certain champions. There are knockups on his Q, E and R, so he’ll be fantastic alongside Yasuo, and the terrain created by his Q will allow champions like Vayne and Poppy extra opportunities to use their Condemn and Heroic Charge.

Exactly how well Ornn’s passive will fit with the game is yet to be seen, but I imagine it’s intended as a last-minute upgrade, reserved for the late game when you’ve got plenty of money but have run out of space for more items to spend it on. There are only a handful of items available to upgrade, and they aren’t always the best choice by themselves. Rabadon’s Deathcap, for example, is a powerful item, but can easily be swapped out for Void Staff in certain situations, so there’ll be an extra level of decision-making when you’re playing alongside Ornn - take the extra damage or health from an upgraded item, or stick with the utility offered by something else. My main concern with the mechanic at this point is that almost every marksman in the game will happily build Infinity Edge, so upgrading that is a bit of a no-brainer and could provide a dangerous late game boost to champions like Draven.

Ornn will go live with the release of the next patch, and you can check out all of his abilities and skins, as well as finding out more about his upgraded items, in our 7.17 patch notes.

Update August 8, 2017: Ornn's abilities and website are up! He's a tanky top laner who looks to provide a whole lot of utility for his team. But, who cares about my speculation: here's a short video showing off the new champion, plus his introduction above.

  • Passive: Living Forge & Master Craftsman
    • Living Forge: Ornn can spend gold to forge items for himself any time he's out of combat. For convenience, suggested items appear in a special on-screen menu. Ornn can also open the shop manually to build any item.
    • Master Craftsman: Ornn and his teammates have access to special upgrades for select items in the shop. Each player is limited to one of these upgrades.
  • Q: Volcanic Rupture
    • Ornn slams the ground, sending out a fissure that deals physical damage and slows enemies. After a small delay, a magma pillar forms at the target location, functioning like a tiny wall for a few seconds.
  • W: Bellows Breath
    • Ornn becomes unstoppable, shields himself, and belches out flames. These flames deal a portion of the enemy's current health as magic damage. Enemies struck by the final gout of flame become Brittle. Ornn's basic attacks knock back Brittle targets.
    • Brittle: When Brittle, enemies suffer a portion of their maximum health as bonus damage when struck by immobilizing effects. Immobilizing effects also last longer when used on Brittle enemies.
  • E: Searing Charge
    • Ornn charges, dealing damage to enemies he passes through. If Ornn collides with terrain while charging, the impact creates a shockwave that deals damage and knocks up enemies. This ability destroys player-created terrain.
  • R: Call of the Forge God
    • Ornn summons a massive fire elemental at a target location. It then travels toward him with increasing speed. Enemies run over by the elemental take magic damage and become Brittle.
    • Ornn can recast this ability to charge forward. If he strikes the elemental with the charge, he'll redirect it. The redirected elemental will then knock up all struck enemies, dealing the same damage as before and applying the Brittle effect.

He's coming in Patch 7.17 - once the PBE gets updated with him and other tidbits, we'll let you know the exact numbers and any balance changes to the rest of the game's champions and items.

Original story August 8, 2017: The next League of Legends champion will be Ornn, The Mountainsmith. The “playmaking, self-reliant” vanguard has been teased on the League of Legends universe site, which gives players information about the factions vying for control of Runeterra.

Riot often try to announce their new champions in ways that tie into their lore and personality, and Ornn is no exception. He’s announced in a song entitled ‘The Path to Hearth-Home’, which suggests he’s some sort of blacksmith of the gods. The final verse of the song reads “Sparks leap and fly from the star-fallen ore/ forging his works, divine/ Bellows erupt, with unbridled force/ No longer lost, the Mountainsmith - Ornn.”

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There’s not a lot more information about Ornn provided, but if Vanguards are supposed to be able to choose where to start a fight, expect either a tanky top-laner a bit like Trundle, or an engage-heavy support like Leona. The wording of the song suggests that Ornn will have some sort of terra-forming ability - think Taliyah’s ult, Weaver’s Wall, or Trundle’s pillar; the song refers to Ornn as ‘the shaping hand’, and there are a lot of references to chasms that could be used to trap foes.

I’d also expect to see some sort of Howling Abyss event attached to Ornn’s release, as his song is pretty explicit when it references the map, mentioning a “bridge, frozen in time” across a wide chasm. 

Ornn won't be ready in time for the next patch here's a slim chance that Ornn will join the fray in 7.17, in a couple of weeks. If that is the case, however, expect to see him disabled during Worlds, which will take place on patch 7.18. 

Ornn was first mentioned during the most recent champion roadmap, which Riot used to spell out the changes they’ll be making to champions over the coming months. As well as teasing Ornn in the post, they mention changes to champions including Xin Zhao, Evelynn, and Swain. 

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