Riot Games gave us our first glimpse of the latest League of Legends champion to join the Rift: Kled. You can check out the pretty hilarious reveal trailer below.
I’m presuming that the white-furred Yordle is Kled and not, in fact, the adorable dragon creature he rides into battle. Kled joins Sejuani as League‘s second animal-mounted champion. He looks somewhat similar to Paragon‘s Iggy and Scorch as well. While Kled’s massive halberd looks like he’ll be a primarily melee-based hero, his friendly terror looks enough like a dragon to hint at some ranged attacks as well. Kled is the first champion designed by former Narrative Writer Iain ‘Harrow’ Hendry. As a fan of adorable monsters in video games, I’m thrilled to get a pentakill with a creature that looks both harmless and incredibly huggable.
With a couple months still left before Worlds, Kled may be the final release champion available for professional esports players to bring into the tournament. This comes right alongside the announcement that Riot will be implementing some significant changes to tower health and reward in their pre-worlds early game update. The first tower kill will now grant significant team gold, much like First Blood now gives to champion kills. This change will absolutely abolish the lane-swap meta in pro-games, which currently sees 2v1 matches in both top and bot lane.
The change is already controversial among pros, but does push the competitive scene closer towards the actual experience of playing the game. Lane swaps might be popular for esports players and high-level organize League play. but the vast majority of players run the standards lanes popular across MOBAs — one top, one mid, one jungle, two bot. By pushing the pros back to standard lanes, Riot is hoping to make the finals tournament more legible for its millions of viewers.
We’ll see how these tower changes and Kled’s eventual release will affect the League of Legends world championship when it kicks off this October.