Riot’s latest Champion Roadmap has revealed a ton of information about upcoming champions and champion reworks, so let’s break down the biggest talking points.
A charming new Jungler
The next champion to be released will be a skirmishing jungler. Several clues have been dropped about this champion’s character and potential abilities:
- She is an Empress hailing from the Void
- She may be able to charm or mind control enemies to damage structures
- Her form may change while enemies are charmed/mind controlled
- She may get stronger for every champion she charms/mind controls
This new jungler could be a combination of several pre-existing ideas, taking influence from Evelynn/Ahri’s charm, Renata Glasc’s ultimate, and champions who get stronger if they land an ability (such as Cho Gath’s ultimate). If the hints are true, it will be interesting to see how these concepts combine for a skirmish-focused jungler.
An elusive figure and ‘The Pride of Nazumah’
Following on from the ‘Empress’, a mysterious bot laner from ‘the land of a thousand colours’ will be released. They may be able to control the mist -- similar to Viego or Senna -- and have water-based abilities, but that’s about all we know about this stranger. However, they were able to best 10 Noxians in a Bilgewater bar fight, so Draven, Darius and other Noxians had best watch out.
Later on in the year, ‘The Pride of Nazumah’ will be released. All that was teased about this champion is that they will be a high-skill top laner who hails from an area of Shurima we haven’t seen before, so watch this space.
Udyr and Aurelion Sol
New details about Udyr's upcoming VGU were announced. This is the first champion with an ultimate skin to receive a VGU, so Riot has needed more time to update the skins and ensure Spirit Guard Udyr feels like an ultimate skin. It will feature the same animals currently found in live, but with a more intense and dynamic feel.
Aurelion Sol has been in a sorry state ever since his release. Though his visuals are stunning and the premise of playing an astral dragon is exciting, he has one of the lowest playrates in the game and he has never found a stable spot in the meta. Consequently, he will be the first champion to receive a Comprehensive Gameplay Update (CGU).
His visuals, lore, and theme will remain the same, but his entire kit will be overhauled. The ability changes will be on the same scale as Urgot and Sion's, with a sharper focus on his star forging dragon persona. Riot are hoping the changes will make him feel intuitive to play, have spectular visuals, and will debut toward the end of the year.
This year, we can expect to look forward to a new jungler, bot, and top, and huge updates for Udyr and Aurelion Sol. With Renata Glasc's release a little while ago, this means every role should receive a new or updated champion across 2022.