League of Legends developer Riot Games has confirmed that Yuumi, arguably the least-popular champion in the game’s 162-strong roster, is getting reworked to address ongoing frustrations with her design.
Introduced in 2019, Yuumi’s main selling point is her ability to latch onto another character and become permanently untargetable. Unless her companion died (and there was no other ally nearby to jump to), Yuumi’s enemies couldn’t touch her. The original intention behind that design choice was to provide an avenue for new League of Legends players to learn the game from a position of relative safety, but the Magical Cat has proved hugely impactful at all levels of expertise, right up to professional play.
Riot acknowledges that despite all its attempts to curb her power, Yuumi remains unstable in solo queue, and “one of the premier champions in the last two World Championships.” The most recent competition, which concluded in November, saw several key figures in the competitive community break ranks, complaining that Yuumi – a member of the fragile, healing-based ‘enchanter’ category of champions – could output more damage than her teams’ DPS champs, offered a huge amount of extra utility, and could do it all from a position of unparalleled safety, untouchable while latched onto an ally.
That Riot’s deciding to rework Yuumi is a notable decision in itself. Firstly, most champions that get a full gameplay update have been around significantly longer than this one – Yuumi only arrived in 2019, but Udyr, who got a full visual and gameplay update earlier this year, first showed up in 2009. Secondly, another major factor in determining reworks is a lack of popularity, but Yuumi has consistently been a recurring pick. There’s plenty of solid reasoning as to why this change is being made, but it’s still outside Riot’s traditional remit.
There’s no word on exactly how Yuumi will look once the rework comes through, but her ability to remain attached to allies is mentioned as an “essential” part of her kit. Increased counterplay is a major focus, as is her ability to grow in power as the game progresses.
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