Riot Games uploaded a new and rather large patch to their Public Beta Environment server for League of Legends recently. What's in the patch? Why, it's a significant graphical rework that actually improves performance on low to mid-range systems. The patch doesn't end there though, as a number of smaller fixes and additions were also included in the patch.
Here's what we know has been added so far.
- The graphics overhaul focuses mostly on retexturing Summoner's Rift. The largest differences are noticeable in the ground and river areas, though the brush also looks remarkably better. The best part? Due to Riot's growing technical abilities this update actually improves performance. This has to do with how textures are stored and loaded by your system.
- AI controlled monsters are receiving improved animations. This includes the Ancient Golem, the Lizard Elder and the big purple snake himself, Baron Nashor. And with mixed emotions they also announce the removal of the previous shopkeeper, and the inclusion of a new yordle to handle the store. He even brought his pet yonkey.
- Ashe, the Frost Archer, has had her model entirely reworked. She also has been given new animations to fit her now more properly shaped form. Fanboys will be sad to know her torpedo bust has been nerfed. The update will dramatically change Ashe's Queen, Woad, and Freljord skins, and the Amethyst skin will finally get her purple arrows.
- Towers will now produce a sound when they target you! The sound plays as soon as the tower calculates you as the next target, not when it fires its first shot at you. A marker also appears over the tower's head, in addition to the sound effect. Check it out in motion on Youtube.
- New skins added! Sad Robot Amumu, Dark Flame Shyvana and Tyrant Swain (unofficial names, naturally) will all be coming... eventually. The release schedule may be up in the air, but that doesn't change how impressive they look.
If you're interested in the unofficial PBE patch notes, those are now available as well. These aren't all of the stat changes, just the ones the author found.
Also, for those curious, here's the new free champion lineup for the week: Sivir, Mordekaiser, Shen, Kennen, Garen, Miss Fortune, Sona, Cassiopeia, Shyvana and Nautilus.
League of Legends just keeps getting better! I can't wait for these surprising changes to hit the live server, and I'm plenty excited to hear what Riot is working on next.