Update 1.5.0 introduces an incredible new hero & two new items, adds more cards & skins, improves the early-player experience and brings much-desired balance changes. Have fun diving into all this! —PlayoffBeard
FORTRESS BACKGROUND & LORE
This Halcyon Well guardian is a snarling, frightening sight in the jungle. He stalks prey, closes in with teammates, flanks targets and creates challenging, multi-front confrontations. Stay near your allies and bite and claw your way to kills.
Read the lore:
FORTRESS EARLY-ACCESS PERIOD
Fortress will be unlockable with ICE only for the first 7 days. Afterward, you will be able to unlock Fortress with ICE or Glory.
PACKMATES (HEROIC PERK)
When Fortress is near an allied hero, he will move faster after 1 second. He will maintain this move-speed bonus so long as he’s alongside any allied hero.
TRUTH OF THE TOOTH
Fortress marks the target enemy as prey and his next basic attack becomes a short-range lunge. Fortress and allied heroes gain move speed when moving toward anything marked as prey.
LAW OF THE CLAW
Fortress claws his target for crystal damage and causes it to bleed. Bleeding targets take damage every second. Attacks from Fortress and his allies have lifesteal against bleeding targets and increase bleeding by one stack. Upon reaching max stacks, the target is dealt a burst of damage based on its max health, is slowed and receives mortal wound (-33% healing).
ATTACK OF THE PACK
Fortress howls, gaining increased health and attack speed and calls to him a pack of wolves. Each pack wolf seeks out a different enemy hero. These wolves apply bleeding with their basic attacks. Important note: You need to attack a pack wolf three times to kill it (3 ticks of health). These can be basic attacks, but you must attack the wolf three separate times and cannot simply burst them down.
NEW SKINS & CARDS!
“The rollout of skins and cards continues — and if you don’t see a skin for your favorite hero yet, don’t worry; it’s on the way! As always, it’s optimal to unlock Tier I skins with ICE if you can and save your cards for the higher tiers. And remember: The GET CARDS section of the Market is coming soon, where you can get cards much faster (including by using your extra Glory). So, there’s much, much more to come as we fill out the skins system.” —PlayoffBeard
- Adds Tier I skins for Ardan, Joule & Krul.
- Adds Tier II skins for Glaive, Koshka & Ringo.
- Adds more cards, including Epic rarity!
- Skins for the remaining heroes will arrive in future updates.
NEW GAME MODE: BASIC BOTS
“These bots are intentionally stupid. Don’t expect an epic base-race in these
Co-op vs. Bots matches. These bots are designed to help new players acclimate to the game in an environment that won’t mess up your public match experience. That said, this paves the way for more robust, intense bots down the road.”
- Co-op vs Basic Bots: VERY simple bots help new players learn and give players a way to try out new builds.
“Your Vainglory account now has XP leveling associated with it. Right now, it is primarily a gating mechanism for early players who are earning enough experience to play public matches as well as helping to clarify that your skill tier is distinct from an account’s level, but it will also give you rewards (cards, etc.) when you hit certain level thresholds. For now the level cap is set to 20.” —Kraken
- Guided early-player experience before Public Matches
- Account levels up to max of 20.
- Experienced players graduated to Public Matches automatically.
UI & SETTINGS CHANGES
- Vainglory Settings restored. (Look in Settings app on your device.)
- ‘Larger active item icons’ option in Settings
JUNGLE MONSTER CHANGES
“Jungle dominance has been very strong, oftentimes deciding games too early based on the outcome of jungle skirmishes. This has also pushed the meta toward early-game jungle-dominators such as Koshka and Skaarf. We are shifting some of the gold from the easy-to-steal camp near the jungle shop and putting it into the inner camp near your base. This makes jungle invasions less profitable unless you sweep all the way to the deep end of the enemy jungle, which is significantly riskier.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Jungle camp near the shop changed from big + small monsters to small + small monsters.
- Small monster gold up from 19 to 22; health up from 150 to 250.
- Big monster (not the healing one) gold up from 41 to 75.
MINION MINE CHANGES
“Minion mines have been completely ignored until late game at high-level play, as their pushing benefits did not out-weigh extra gold given to enemies. We are amping up minion damage versus turrets, allowing big waves to flat-out kill turrets in the late game. Combined with the jungle camp changes, expect greater pressure to control multiple areas of the map.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Minion Mines give lane minions more lethality vs turrets. (Big waves can take down turrets on their own.)
- Capturing a Minion Mine instantly upgrades existing minions.
- Mortal wounds (Taka/Fortress) now also reduce the amount of barrier you get from any source.
“Skaarf’s early game was insanely strong, particularly because player movements were extremely predictable early on — and players have very little shield at level 1 to mitigate the % health burn damage. As Skaarf levels, he could maintain high damage with Fan the Flames because of the shield piercing mechanic and still build nothing but defense items. We are shifting Skaarf’s offensive power from levels to items, forcing him to buy crystal power to keep Fan the Flames relevant, but also improving his crystal scaling on his first two abilities.” —SurpriseBirthday
Fan the Flames
- Damage down from 4% + 2% per hit to 1.5% + 1.5% per hit.
- Piercing removed; damage now scales by +1.0% per 100 crystal power.
- Refresh duration down from 3.5 to 2.0 (initial duration is still 3.5)
- AOE reduced from 3.5 to 2 meters.
- Spitfire fireball speed down from 12 to 9-11 m/s (speed increases as ability levels up).
- Spitfire crystal ratio up from 90% to 140%.
- Goop puddle burst crystal ratio up from 40% to 80%.
- Goop puddle burn crystal ratio up from 50% to 80%.
- Dragon Breath damage down from 640-1015-1390 to 550-875-1200.
- Move speed down from 3.4 to 3.3
- Armor at level 12 down from 108 to 86
“Vox was still too strong because last update’s double-shot resonance bug fix was a pretty substantial buff. Vox’s wave clear was so strong that it was giving him an unusually high amount of farm starting at around level 4. We’re heavily shifting his power away from up-front Resonance bursts and toward sustained basic attacks, along with making it easier for enemies to avoid bounces.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Resonance crystal ratio down from 50% to 35%.
- Resonance amp from Pulse applies to heroes only (no longer helps wave clear).
- Resonance bounce down from 3 to 2 targets.
- Resonance bounce range down from 5 to 4 meters.
- Resonance does not bounce from Kraken.
- Attack speed at level 12 up from 144% to 160.5%.
“Mad Cannon is counterproductive to weapon builds, switching over to a lower-level of crystal damage and preventing SAW from dealing normal damage until he dispenses all of his ammo! We are adding back weapon damage to Mad Cannon, but dropping the base crystal damage so that Weapon SAW doesn’t get too out of hand dealing hybrid-damage. Crystal SAW will in turn be compensated with some serious buffs to his ratios.” —SurpriseBirthday
Roadie Run (combat knife shank)
- Crystal ratio up from 230% to 280%.
- Each shot is considered a basic attack, which means it can crit if you have crit chance.
- Crystal damage down from 150/225/300 to 40/60/80.
- Crystal ratio up from 60% to 140%.
“Koshka has a smaller case of Skaarf’s problem: High base damage and poor scaling pushed her toward tank builds on a character not meant for tanking. We’re shifting her power from base to items also and reducing her early-game power with a defense nerf to her early levels, but she returns to normal at level 12.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Armor down from 42-86 to 20-86.
- Catnip attacks down from 30-55-70-95-180 to 30-55-70-95-150.
- Catnip attacks crystal ratio up from 80% to 110%.
“Celeste was still wave clearing at prohibitively fast speeds. With the new emphasis on lethal Minion Mines, wave clear will become a premium ability. She is still one of the best in the game even after this nerf, though.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Minion damage crystal ratio down from 50% to 25%.
“Joule’s damage was too high and the piercing prevented effective counter-building.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Bonus piercing down from 15-20-25-30-40% to 10-12-14-16-20%.
- Cooldown down from 3.5 to 3.5-3.4-3.3-3.2-3.0.
NEW UTILITY ITEM: CONTRAPTION
“This is the perfect item for tactical map control. It allows you to maintain vision control without taking up a precious item slots for mere consumables. It also upgrades Stormguard in a new direction: splash damage. This allows you to push lanes very hard and combined with the new minion power, create serious threat in the lane.”
Recipe: Stormguard + Chronograph + 650 gold (2600 total)
- 3.0 energy recharge
- 30% cooldown acceleration
- Active: Target yourself to place a scout trap. Target the ground farther away to fire a flare. Holds 3 charges max. 25 sec per charge.
- Passive: Stormguard (2.5m splash damage)
NEW WEAPON ITEM: MINION’S FOOT
“Critical strike had no Tier 1 item, making the transition from attack speed to crit a little strange. We’re ironing out this kink … and adding a cute little mechanic for your early game. Fun times!” —SurpriseBirthday
Recipe: 300 gold – 10% crit; 10% crit damage
Passive: After buying this item, your very first attack on an enemy hero will crit.
“Warhorn really shines as a hard engage item, so we swapped out the cooldown and replaced it with health. This way, the cooldown + Stormguard build path now points to the new item (Contraption) instead.”
- Recipe change: Chronograph removed; Dragonheart added. Stats and prices reflected.
“Stormguard was always a little too expensive for what it provided. Instead of lowering the cost, we are amping up its power and late-game worthiness.”
- Non-hero DPS up from 35 to 50.
“Ironguard gold was still not enough to make the poor supports any richer, taking 7-8 minutes of normal play just to break even — and that’s ignoring gold lost from being one item less powerful for that entire duration! We want to thank the thankless job of supporting your teammates with some more gold … and some shiny new support items to play with!” —SurpriseBirthday
- Bonus for jungle monsters up from 30% to 50%.
“Broken Myth is now an expensive, late-game damage scaling item. We’re shifting this item away from piercing just like we did with Breaking Point a few updates ago, allowing us to create strong late game damage items without shutting down shield as a viable defense option. This is an excellent third or fourth offensive item on heavy crystal damage carries such as Celeste, Skaarf and Vox.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Heavy Prism added to recipe & price (from 2050 to 3100 gold; from 20 to 70 crystal).
- Each stack amplifies all crystal damage by 10% instead of granting 5% shield pierce.
- Max stacks down from 5 to 3.
“Scout traps are deciding too many early fights with its massive (and often unavoidable) damage from its timing and radius. Instead of lowering its power, we are slowing the detonation to make them more avoidable if you are paying attention. Trick plays involving slowing and stunning enemies over scout traps are still equally devastating because the damage remains untouched.”
- Explosion delay increased from 1.2 to 1.3.
“Travel Boots and Journey Boots are now more attractive upgrade options throughout the game.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Sprint Boots: Move speed down from +0.50 to +0.40.
- Travel Boots: Cooldown down from 110 to 90; +0.45 move speed, health from 150 to 200.
- Journey Boots: Cooldown down from 70 to 50; +0.50 move speed, health from 200 to 300.
- Vainglory is now a universal binary with native 64-bit support. (Delete ‘Vainglory for iPhone’ and use the ‘Vainglory’ app for all devices.)
- Misc. performance improvements
- Players cannot move off the starting platform during the Loading screen.
- SAW: Does critical-strike damage as expected.
- Koshka’s pounce and Taka’s X-Retsu will work on Kraken from max range.
- Skaarf: Fixed Fan the Flames dealing an extra half-second of damage beyond intended.
- Skaarf: Hitting Spitfire no longer displays 2 stacks of Fan the Flames. (Visual bug; damage was correct.)
- Fixed gold trickle starting at 0:25 instead of 0:10 (when minions spawn).
- Fixed gold trickle being ~13% slower than intended.
- Dodging penalty changed to 5 minutes. Dodge victims are now automatically moved to the front of the matching queue and given priority to reduce wait times.
We are incredibly excited about this latest massive update. Go play now, try out the new hero and items and (as always) give us your feedback in the forums and subreddit. Here’s hoping you score your first Epic card! —PlayoffBeard