Riot Gives Sneak Peak of Ao Shin, New League of Legends Champion

Riot has given us a sneak peak of an upcoming champion in Ao Shin, an eastern-style dragon with a great look.
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The bad news is Ao Shin is not the next champion Riot Games is releasing for League of Legends.  The reason that is bad news is because he looks like he is going to be awesome.

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As sixtwo from Riot explained it, Ao Shin is the culmination of the long-held desire by players for the League of Legends to have a genuine dragon among its playable champions.  Shyvana was an early answer to the desire, but was only a partial fulfillment of the wish given her half-dragon status and transforming gameplay.  At the same time they did not want to steal any of Shyvana’s fire in making a full dragon, so they began designing Ao Shin.

There are a couple things of note to specifically get excited about.  The first is realizing we have seen Ao Shin before on the last page of this comicimplying he has been in at least conceptual development for months.  The second is this line by Riot’s Meddler.

…size is also something that’s got a decent amount of discussion, as is how to capture the sort of power associated with dragons in a way that’s both satisfying and balanced. We’re not ready to talk details yet, great topics for discussion once we are though.

Trying to craft a champion to live up not only to players’ in-game expectations but even to mythological ones (especially for an eastern-style dragon) seems likely to result in some eye-opening capabilities.  Riot being unable to give us a specific size for the in-game model is also exciting, because given the size in the comic image above, he may very well end up rivaling Nautilus or full-stacks Cho’Gath in terms of raw size to back up that power.

At this point Riot cannot even tell us what role he will fulfill, though it seems safe to say he is unlikely to be a Ranged AD champion.  I could see him being a storm-throwing AP Carry or a powerful brawler equally well, but only time will tell!

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Writer, gamer, and generally hopeful beneath a veneer of cynicism.