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Game Modes & Metals

An update on rotating game modes, metal alloys in Runeterra, and creating Awaken.

Welcome to Ask Riot! Have a question?

Hello gamers. This week, it’s rotating game modes, metal alloys, and developing Awaken.

Q

Are you ever going to bring back old game modes, like Dark Star Singularity or Definitely Not Crystal Scar or Ascension?

A

Someday? It’s possible. Any time soon? Unfortunately not likely.

What we found with many of the RGMs like Dark Star Singularity and Ascension is that they were really exciting and novel for the first release. However with the second release of these game modes, players didn’t really engage. This was especially true of modes with limited champion pools, like Dark Star.

We often get asked, “Why don’t you just turn it back on or allow it in custom games?” Which would be nice, but there’s a surprisingly large cost in getting the modes back to a high enough quality to release. Often since the last time the mode has been on, there’s been a large amount of changes to the core game that affect these modes (champ changes, items, runes, bugs, etc.) that would need to be fixed, since we don’t think it’s right to give players a broken mode.

Right now, we’re focused on exploring modes that do remain engaging long after the initial release—Nexus Blitz and ARURF+ are examples of modes that we think you could want to play for a long time over and over. This means we’re putting a pause on the other RGMs for now, but we’ve got some new stuff in the works that we think (and hope!) you will love.

Senior Game Designer
Q

What kind of metal alloys exist in Runeterra? Is Garen’s sword made with petricite? What about Darius’s axe?

A

There are many, many different metals and metalworking traditions across Runeterra. Certainly we know of gold, silver, iron, lead, copper, and many more besides—perhaps even some that do not exist in the real world, as well.

Adding powdered rock to the finest steel would likely result in… well, weaker steel. However, the weaponsmiths of the Great City are certainly using petricite for something, and it has been claimed that Demacian steel can offer some resistance to magic. Maybe one day, we’ll find out the truth?

The axe carried by Darius is a wonderfully brutal Noxian weapon, and one that he has carried in battle for some time. In fact, he insists that the Trifarian Legion be armed and armored using ore from the Delverhold in the Ironspike Mountains, which he considers the best in the empire. I’m going to assume he’s speaking from experience, there.

Lead Narrative Editor
Q

In the video Awaken, Camille’s eye changes colors from yellow to blue—what is the meaning of this? Also, is the video canon?

A

Camille’s changing eye color is an allusion to her in-game passive, where she gains a shield based on the damage type of the champion she’s attacking. That shot in the cinematic is her realizing that Jhin has set a trap, and since it’s Camille, her reaction is to first analyze the threat before jumping into action.

In general, our approach to representing a champion’s abilities in cinematics is usually to start with, “What’s the fantasy behind it?” The Champion team does an amazing job with expressing these characters through their abilities in game, and one of the most fun parts for us is finding ways to build on those fantasies by exploring ways for the characters to manifest those abilities in the world of Runeterra. Sometimes that means a one-to-one representation of the in-game abilities, but a lot of time it’s about speaking to that fantasy while using it in a slightly different way that makes sense for the character and story we are telling.

In terms of it being canon—these are definitely scenes and events that take place in the world of Runeterra, in the present time. Have we reached those moments in those characters’ arcs yet? No, but we’ve got lots of stories still to come this year, and next…

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We are listening, though, so keep asking. We’ll make sure your questions are heard by the Rioters working on the stuff you’re curious about.

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