Riot locks in Udyr for League of Legends rework after Season 11 fan vote

Isaac McIntyre
Udyr is locked in for League of Legends rework in Season 12.

Udyr, the iconic League of Legends spirit walker, will finally be getting a LoL champ rework, Riot Games has confirmed, after the very outdated jungler won the honor over Skarner, Shyvanna, and more in a Season 11 fan vote.

The Spirit Walker cleaned up the VGU poll in a “landslide,” collecting 37.2% of the LoL vote. Riot confirmed they had heard “loud and clear” that League of Legends players want to see Udyr brought up to the title’s modern standards.

“That’s just what we’re going to do,” the League devs wrote.

Udyr beat Shyvanna (18% of the votes) for the rework. Skarner boasted 17.3% of votes, while Nocturne (15.4%) was fourth. Quinn was last, with just 12.1% wanting to see the Demacian ranger-knight reworked.

Riot has plans to “start work” on the rework soon, and promised to keep League fans updated through a series of dev blogs. The champion team is now targeting an “early 2022” release date ⁠— Season 12 ⁠— for the long-awaited Udyr rework.

Udyr earned his upcoming League rework in a Riot-run fan vote.
Udyr earned his upcoming League rework in a Riot-run fan vote.

Rework confirmed after Udyr resurgence

Funnily enough, the rework news comes just a little over a week after Udyr made a shock re-emergence in pro League of Legends, sparked by Korean interest.

The Spirit Walker had been picked just four times across three years between 2018 and 2020. Now, nearly a month into the 2021 competitive season, Udyr has been selected a whopping 78 times, and banned in 42 more games. He now has a worldwide pro win rate of around 39.7%.

Equally, the shaman has had a shock return in solo queue too. Since his pro renaissance, Udyr has spiked to a 7.72% pick rate, with a 56.06% win rate to boot.

Udyr is finally back in the LoL meta after four years on the bench.
Udyr is finally back in the League of Legends meta after four years on the bench.

Riot wants to do Udyr “justice” with rework

Riot has yet to confirm what the Udyr rework will look like — and how much of his current kit he’ll retain — but it sounds like they want to stay “true” to his overall vibe.

“There are lots of things with him that are already working,” concept artist Justin Albers said. “We can just embellish on those characteristics, namely his ancient, primal nature vibes, doing something really cool with those different stances, and making sure he feels right at home in the Freljord.”

His gameplay — currently based around ‘spirit stances’ — should also stay close to the original: gameplay designer Stash Chelluck said he wants to “do his stance-dancing motif justice” by “pushing the unique playstyles of each stance.” Udyr should be a “heavy-hitting, full-melee fighter” after the rework.

The Spirit Walker is also expected to get a small lore overhaul with his rework. This should be based around the “ferocity and spirit” of the Freljord.

Udyr dominated the Season 11 rework votes.
Udyr dominated the Season 11 rework votes.

Before the Udyr rework, however, Riot has plans to ship a Dr. Mundo overhaul. The Madman of Zaun is getting a Season 11 refresh in April.

Tanky speedster Rammus is also expecting a League of Legends rework this year. The Armordillo has not yet had his update penned in for a specific date, but Dexerto is expecting it to drop in the next few patches ⁠— maybe even patch 11.3, though that’s probably a little unlikely at this stage.

Finally, Tahm Kench is set to have his “acquired taste” adjusted in 2021 too.

About The Author

Isaac was formerly the Australian Managing Editor at Dexerto. Isaac began his writing career as a sports journalist at Fairfax Media, before falling in love with all things esports and gaming. Since then he's covered Oceanic and global League of Legends for Upcomer, Hotspawn, and Snowball Esports.