LoL Tank: Aesthetic checklist and skill concept

Finished with researching both fictional and non-fictional warrior women, it’s now time to recap on the features I thought were cool. I can use these in my designs to help create a sweet back story for my champion.

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  • War Paint/Markings – from Boudicca
  • Broken Bonds – from Zenobia
  • Heavy Armor – from Joan of Arc (probably a single piece, rather than a full set)
  • Some form of long, gown-like clothing – from Boudicca, Zenobia and Joan of Arc
  • Elaborate Girdle – from Hippolyte
  • Animal Skin Cloak – from Freyja (falcon feathers) or Atalanta (boar)
  • Some hella long legs – from Atalanta

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It’s a pretty long list of items. I will try to use them all in moderation, to prevent the design being some garish mess! My champion also needs a weapon. My weapon of choice could be singular, Jean Hachette’s hatchet would be pretty sweet. It would also suit a general Norse styling. However, I also have a skill concept in my head which would impact her aesthetic, and back story, quite heavily.

My champion is going to be stance based, but to an extent much greater than Udyr. Currently, Udyr switches stances which activates a short term effect, and then he gains a passive effect while that stance is active. His passive ability gives him a buff every time he switches stances, which encourages him to stance dance. When I reviewed Udyr last year, I commented that the auras and effects do not linger after changing stances. I thought this was a missed opportunity, since discovering optimum switching patterns and combos is very tactical and challenging.

The tank I will propose, will be similar to DotA’s Invoker. She will have 3 stances, which she has to choose to level throughout the game. However, these stances will have an additional castable spell (performed by selecting the stance you’re in and casting) as well as an ultimate which adapts to whatever stance you have pre-selected. On top of that, switching into stances will have a similar effect to that which Udyr has. It sounds complicated, and it kinda is. It’s much easier explained with a diagram…

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Above is the table of skills that my champion possesses. Unsheath* abilities are like Udyr’s activated stances. Castable abilities are spells which can be activated when inside a stance. Passive is the general effect of being in that stance, like Udyr. My champion’s Ultimate ability will be a timed charge, similar to Malphite but without the knock up effect. At the end of the charge, there will be an AoE effect which depends on the weapon currently selected. This is the Initiate ability.

I’ve yet to come up with the passive effects, but that’s the least important part right now.

What this skill table does, is provide a list of combos which fulfil particular roles on the battlefield. A tank is one of the most varied roles on the battlefield, and requires the ability to soak damage, protect allies, provoke attack and lead the battle. When a player chooses which skills to level up, they must take into account the combos available to them in order to maximise their effectiveness.

A typical combo is Initiate -> Unsheath -> Castable. The champion charges into an enemy pack, unleashing their Initiate ability. Then, they will want to Unsheath (which will activate her Innate ability) to activate their next AoE ability, while in range of the whole enemy team. After that, they will use their powerful Castable, which is likely to save an ally, kill an enemy or cause even more AoE pain. Here are some examples…

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Initiates to amplify damage and boost her survivability, unsheaths for an AoE stun, then leaps towards a back row Carry for massive damage.

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Initiates to slow enemies and speed up allies, unsheath to protect teammates as they escape, then casts a damage dividing shield to ensure a safe getaway.

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Initiate to knock a single enemy into your team, unsheath to blink back to your allies and buff them. Then, cast your long range AoE to finish your victim (but grant gold to your Carry). Also works as a personal escape mechanism.

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This 3-hit combo is the essence of my champion. However, you can stance dance with constant Unsheaths, or begin a fight with a Castable, then Unsheath, then Castable with the new weapon. The combos are limitless. Due to these linked abilities, players can skill themselves accordingly. Skilling Battle Axe and Shield will create a more traditional team-fight support tank. Skilling Dual Swords and Battle Axe will result in a more offensive tank, also capable of contributing damage buffs to her allies. Skilling Shield and Dual Swords is a hybrid off-tank, for when you have enough CC and want to maximise the protection of your allies and the damage your enemies take.

As you can probably tell, I’ve been thinking about this a lot. However, I’ve only just put it down on paper, so I’m sure there are issues already. That’s not even taking into account the details of the ultimate (I don’t just want it to be a charge), the weapon passives and her innate passive ability (I’m thinking a 0.5 second taunt every time she unsheathes). Real specifics about cooldowns and cooldown sharing also need to be covered (do I want them players to be restricted to 1 castable at a time, or should she be able to switch>cast>switch>cast almost instantly?).

For now, I have enough to get started with my drawing. She has 3 magical weapons and tons of iconic equipment, the outcome should be awesome… if my drawing is up to scratch!

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Sam

*Yes, I am now aware that unsheath is spelt un-sheathe. Just didn’t want to change all my image files, so whatever!

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2 Comments to “LoL Tank: Aesthetic checklist and skill concept”

  1. Wow cool idea, though that’s a lot of abilities. I can see it being kinda confusing for when you first pick up the champion and try to use her. Are you planing on having her run off the old mana system, or are you going to go for a rage or other system?

    Awesome idea, though if someone gets good with all the little nuances she can do.. I can see it now.

    “OMG! OP! NURF!”

    I can’t wait to see your next colored art of her.

    This post was so well thought out and awesome, I just had to leave a reply. Here’s to having Riot notice and liking your idea and maybe even using it! Cause this would be a champ I’d like to get my hands on.

    P.S.
    Found this blog while looking for early Nocturne builds. Thank you, I’m putting them into use now.

  2. Hi Dienur,

    Thanks for the reply! I’ve almost finished the coloured art, so I’ll probably work on it more while I wait for the EU to patch Nocturne into the game.

    Good luck with the builds, I haven’t even touched Nocturne yet so I wish you the best of luck… they could be terrible! I’ve heard he’s quite OP (or just stomping pub games) so I guess the quality of a build will depend on how much you win by, rather than failing miserably!

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