LoL preseason 10 almost had baby dragons, jungle minions

Milo Webb • December 30, 05:59

The League of Legends preseason 10 patch brought some big changes to Summoner’s Rift, but just as noticeable were the features that never made it past the development stage. Riot Games released a developer update and gave fans a look at what ended up on the cutting room floor just ahead of 2020.

One of the earliest ideas the Riot design team experimented with was revamping how First Blood operates and attempting to balance it by spawning a bush around the location where the first player dies. This could’ve helped out a team who gets ambushed in the jungle to better retreat, or perhaps even counterattack. However, this concept didn’t function too well outside of the jungle and was eventually dropped.

“It ended up kind of weird. For example, if you died under your own tower, you had this lovely brush you could safely farm under tower from. It didn’t feel great to play against that,” a Rioter said.

Another major change was a new addition to the Baron. The idea was that players with the baron buff could slay jungle monsters and turn them into loyal minions that would travel to the nearest lane and begin pushing along with the creep wave.

The design team eventually chose to scrap this mechanic because they found it wasn’t fun to force players into dueling with powerful creep waves in a game that is mainly focused on battles between players.

Baron wasn’t the only buff Riot was attempting to redesign. The developer was also looking at changing up the function of dragons. One of their earlier concepts were “baby dragons.”

These wyverns would sit in the jungle and would function differently depending on their type. For example, mountain drakes would provide a shield and infernal drakes would attack nearby enemies. These dragons, as well as their buffs’ effects, would grow over time.

The design team trashed this idea, but continued its work on overhauling dragon buffs. Eventually their experiments would result in the new dragon buff system that was added to live servers during the preseason patch.

These proposed concepts were scrapped for good reasons, but it’s too bad players won’t be able to get their own baby dragon to take care of them in-game.

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