Rell is on Riot’s hit list for a “mid-scope update” in League of Legends: the mini-reworks which have evolved more than a dozen champions could help bring the support’s fantasy back to life, developers say, but work hasn’t started yet.
You could be forgiven for thinking Rell wasn’t on the League of Legends champion roster. It’s somewhat of a meme in the community as she’s never really seen in pro or casual play in lieu of other tanky supports.
Despite that, Rell is far from being useless. She currently boasts a 50.39% win rate with a pick rate just above 1%, according to LoLalytics. However, she’s gravely unpopular compared to rivals like Leona (48.83% win rate at a 8.03% pick rate) and generally seen as underpowered regardless.
This perception has been hard to drop since Rell’s release given her clunky kit meaning she can’t make solo plays like engage supports typically can. There’s also the issue surrounding how her fast movement fantasy gets quashed as soon as she dismounts in fights.
All this and more has drawn Riot’s attention to a potential “mid-scope update”, a type of rework the developers have been pushing very eagerly in the last year.
“Rell is a champion we talk about as a possible target for a mid-scope update, similar to what we have recently done with Swain, Olaf, and Taliyah,” developer Ryan ‘Reav3’ Mireles told players. “We think we could potentially smooth out some of the issues brought up in this thread with an update like that.”
While Riot said work hasn’t started on a similar scale update — one that has been successful in overhauling more than a dozen champions on the roster including Ahri and Rengar — they admit Rell needs some changes.
“I personally think we missed the mark on her fantasy,” Reav3 continued.
“When we were in early development she was a really interesting and cool champion. When she was on her horse she was really fast, and then she was really slow when on the ground.
“As we started to balance the champ much later in development we found that her speed in her horse form would cause her optimal play to constantly leave her lane partner behind and just roam the whole game. It ended up being a pretty unhealthy play pattern so we had to nerf her horse movement speed to the point that her unique gameplay identity kind of disappeared.”
Changes to Rell would look at giving her that “super fast horse rider power fantasy” by shifting her power around. The developers don’t want her to be considered Leona 2.0, which is the general community sentiment, but rather a unique alternative to the Targon support.
“Both are awesome armored tank supports. Right now if you like Leona you probably don’t have a good reason to also play Rell and that is something we would want to address in a mid scope.”
No Rell changes have been penciled in yet, but players can expect to hear more from Riot as League of Legends Season 12 goes on. For now, the developers are working on shipping Taliyah and Olaf’s mid-scope updates as part of LoL patch 12.9 in mid-May.