Riot Games announced the newest addition to their mega-popular esport, in the form of the prehistoric “yordle,” Gnar. Yordles are League of Legends’ cute, fuzzy heroes, and Gnar is the most interesting one yet. Time passed him by when he was trapped in ice millions of years ago. But he’s finally thawed out, and ready to bring the beatings in his new role on Summoner’s Rift.
On the surface, Gnar is a mobile top laner that specializes in darting in and out of the fight, evading opponents whenever possible. Armed with his trusty Boomerang Throw, Hop, and Hyper, this yordle has the ability to damage opponents from a distance while avoiding their own counter-attacks.
But Gnar has a special trick up his sleeve. While he fights, he fills up a special rage meter—and when the meter becomes full, the little guy evolves into his bigger form, Mega Gnar.
When he becomes Mega Gnar, he gets slower and more resistant to damage, but more importantly, he’s able to dish out a ton of his own. His attacks also change, becoming more offensive and making it easier to fight in team battles. His ultimate ability, “GNAR!,” throws all enemies in a direction, along with slowing and damaging the lot of them. Additionally, if an enemy is thrown into a wall, they take bonus damage and are stunned for a short amount of time.
When his rage subsides and Gnar shrinks back down, the little guy’s mobility should prove integral to cleaning up after team fights and securing that final kill.
Designer Gypsylord provides some insight to the new champion, describing a desire to make a transforming champion with unique strengths in both forms, but limiting players’ ability to control the evolution.
Removing control of the transform from Gnar means that [a player] has to anticipate when he’s about to pop (or er… unpop?), and position and prepare to play in a completely different way, adding extra complexity and depth to his gameplay.
This lack of control will set Gnar apart from other transformable champions like Nidalee and Jayce, and may very well determine how popular Gnar becomes or whether he can make it into professional games.