Update 1.12 includes a new archer hero, a limited-edition holiday skin, major stability & performance improvements and meta-shifting balance changes. Let’s take a look …
KESTREL BACKGROUND & LORE
Kestrel is an elite Stormguard archer who takes down targets from a distance. When building weapon, she deals rapid, sustained damage and uses stealth to find better footing when enemies get too close. Kestrel’s crystal path affords longer stealth times, which sets up aggressive tactical plays. She’s best in the lane where she can use the protection of her turret to safely collect gold.
Want to know more about Kestrel? Read her interconnected lore with fellow Stormguard soldier, Catherine.
KESTREL EARLY-ACCESS PERIOD
Kestrel will be unlockable with ICE only for the first 7 days. Afterward, you will be able to unlock Kestrel with ICE or Glory.
ADRENALINE (HEROIC PERK)
Whenever Kestrel lands a basic attack, she gains attack speed and reduces the cost of her abilities. This stacks up to 5 times and and wears off after a short time.
Kestrel fires an arrow, landing an armor-piercing basic attack on the first target in its path. The arrow then pierces through, dealing crystal damage to the target and other enemies behind it. Kestrel can keep several arrows in reserve. After a duration without using her bow, these arrows are automatically reloaded. Reload time is decreased based on attack speed.
Kestrel instantly vanishes from sight and gains bonus move speed. Additionally, she leaves an invisible phosphor mist at her location, revealing enemies as they walk through it. If Kestrel deals damage to an enemy hero within the mist, the mist will detonate, damaging and stunning all enemies within its area.
Kestrel’s basic attacks reduce the cooldown of Active Camo. However, Active Camo cannot be triggered while Kestrel is taking damage from an enemy hero, putting it on cooldown. The length of time Active Camo is disabled is reduced by bonus weapon power.
After a delay, Kestrel fires a single arrow across the fold, impacting on the first enemy hero, large creature or structure in its path. When this hits an enemy hero, it reveals that hero and grants Kestrel full Adrenaline stacks. This deals reduced damage to non-heroes.
The base damage dealt by this ability is weapon damage. Higher ranks of this ability gain armor piercing.
‘GIFT-WRAPPED’ FORTRESS LIMITED-EDITION HOLIDAY SKIN
Gather around the fireplace to hear the story of Rona’s favorite present ever: ‘Gift-wrapped’ Fortress! For a limited time only, use ICE to unlock this limited-edition, super-festive hero skin in the Market. Soon, this skin will be gone … and then only those who unlocked this special skin will have access to play with the fluffiest Fortress ever.
SEASONAL SKIN LORE
Fuzzy antlers! Jingly bells! A nose so bright! And twice the fluff! ‘Gift-wrapped’ Fortress is truly one-of-a-kind, and it’s only available for a limited time. Your enemies will be too distracted by the cheer to notice that they’re bleeding to death. Read how Little Rona received a one-of-a-kind present for the holidays.
- Improved reliability of match notifications
- Few issues with players get into their matches
- Fewer incorrect bans for declining
- Fixed an issue that could cause regional outages
- Improved reliability of network connectivity between our servers in Europe region
- Increased capacity of servers in Southeast Asia and North America
- Rolled out new monitoring for improved early detection of issues
- Increased efficiency in communication between our servers
- Less contention for network on game servers
- Increased speed and reliability of starting matches
- Improved the performance of the Friends list
- Improved connectivity and performance of chat
- Now able to install Vainglory to an SD card. If you have an SD card with enough disk space for the game present, you will get a pop-up with a choice to install to your SD card.
- Smaller Vainglory app file size. (iOS file size also improved.)
- Game will look more crisp on certain Android devices
- Fixed issue that caused the old Gingerbread UI theme to show on new devices. The install process and settings are now themed to the preferred operating system look.
- Koshka’s Yummy Catnip Frenzy won’t trigger .1 seconds earlier than expected, which made it harder to Reflex Block.
- Blackfeather no longer lunges in place when targeting turrets.
- Skye won’t permanently gain vision of Petal munions that she’d locked onto (even after the lock expired).
- Fixed a bug where displacements sometimes cancelled abilities.
- Fixed a bug where early-cancelling a basic attack before it fires could cause it to go on full cooldown.
- Fixed a bug where you could attempt to stutter step again after attempting to attack too early.
- Fixed a bug that could cause irregularities with hero respawns and teleports home.
- Fixed a bug causing some players to see multiple identical guild tags in the Rewards ladder.
- Deleted guilds will no longer mess up the Guilds section UI.
- Tap on the nearest guild tag in your season Rewards ladder to see the guild’s full name.
“Before 1.12, every kill you get would add 50 gold to your bounty, essentially giving 50 gold to the enemy team for each kill you achieve as long as they eventually kill you once. This actually hurt the weaker team sometimes because the team ahead on gold could throw their lives away in order to steal jungle camps from losers. In 1.12, we are moving kill bounties to be based on team gold. This means that losing teams are incentivized to trade kills because trades yield more gold when you are behind on net worth. The typical gold differential in a one-sided match has the leading team with ~4000 more gold by around 15 minutes.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Bounty from killing a hero is no longer adjusted on their kill/death streak. Instead, it is adjusted by the gold difference between two teams.
- Old formula: ((45-210 for level 1-12) + 50 * (killstreak-1)) * (0.85 * deathstreak)
- New formula: ((50-160 for level 1-12) + (gold_difference * 8% if gold_difference > 0)
VAIN CRYSTAL BARRIER
Barrier was unnecessary given that it already regenerates. This will also reintroduce the fun and drama of backdoor Vain attempts.
- Vain crystal no longer has a barrier.
“Now that roam heroes have more gold, Ardan’s late-game health scaling on Vanguard is extremely strong. Also, we want enemies to sometimes consider walking through the Gauntlet. Ardan can build crystal to make the wall much more punishing.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Vanguard health ratio down from 50% to 35%
- Gauntlet damage changed from 350-500-650 + 100%CP to 250-375-500 + 250%CP
- Stun duration down from 1.5 to 1.2
“Basic attacking on Blackfeather should feel much more fluid now. Yay!” —Zekent
- Fixed an issue with Blackfeather’s base attack speed.
- Feint of Heart cooldown reduced from 12 / 11 / 10 / 9 / 8 seconds to 8 / 7.5 / 7 / 6.5 / 6 secs.
- Rose Offensive charge time down from 50-35-20 to 30-25-20.
“Truth of the Tooth allowed Fortress to have too much burst potential without building damage. We’re tuning it down a bit so that he isn’t quite as punishing.” —Zekent
TRUTH OF THE TOOTH
- Truth of the Tooth damage down from 100-160-220-280-400 to 60-120-180-240-360
“Crystal Joule, while powerful, has some massive cooldowns in the late game. This change should allow her to be a bit more ready for engagements while still requiring her to put some thought into where and when she decides to zap her enemies.” —Zekent
BIG RED BUTTON
Big Red Button cooldown lowered from 120/105/90 to 100/85/70
“Koshka’s early ability spamming lacked a drawback. Her early-game aggression has been slowed without compromising her later in the game.” —AdyEndrus
- Cooldown up from 13-12.5-12-11.5-11 to 15-14-13-12-11
YUMMY CATNIP FRENZY
- Fixed a bug where the stun was applied early.
“Krul’s stacking lifesteal mechanic sometimes became insurmountable when ahead, but became useless if he fell behind early. By smoothing out the lifesteal scaling we were able to find a nice medium to sand down both extremes of how Krul performs.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Lifesteal per stack of Spectral Smite changed from 5-7-9-11-17% to 10-10-10-10-12%
“We like where Petal is in some capacities but want to let her succeed everywhere. Adjusting how munions interact with lane minions should give Petal players a better time in lane.” —AdyEndrus
- Pet/seed health down from 4-5-6-7-9 to 4-4-4-4-6
- Lane minions no longer attack Munions
“This lumbering fellow just wants to find some friends to play with…” —Zekent
- Cooldown lowered from 65-55-45 to 60-45-30
“Rona has a fair amount of built-in durability along with some fairly high damage ouput without specifically investing into either.” —Zekent
INTO THE FRAY
- Damage reduction lowered from 8-10-12-14-20% to 10-10-10-10-15%
- No longer executes an instantaneous basic attack immediately after either activation.
- Self slow during channel increased from 30% to 35%
“After Forward Barrage’s change in 1.10 we liked the direction it was going for red Skye but it needed a little push.” —AdyEndrus
- Bonus critical strike damage increased from 50-50-50-50-70% to 60-60-60-60-90%
“We shortened Kaku’s grace period a bit too much, causing Taka to be knocked out of invisibility by in-flight basic attack projectiles. We’re also giving Taka’s weapon power a slight early game nudge. The kill bounty changes will be favorable for Taka who can likely secure a kill even when behind.” —SurpriseBirthday
- Base weapon power up from 62-126 to 68-126
- Heal up from 25-30-35-40-70 to 40-45-50-55-85
- Decloak grace period up from 0.4 to 0.7 seconds
“Making everyone’s life easier! Now those pesky Adagio burns won’t be taking away those last hits on accident.” —Zekent
- Generally prevents damage-over-time and summons from taking unintentional last hits, leaving the minion / monster at 1 health instead.
- Passive damage to heroes down from 25% to 20%
- Changed from 8 stacks of 6% armor shred to 7 stacks of 7% armor shred
“The slow duration was too short on ranged heroes and slightly too long on melees.” —AdyEndrus
- Ranged slow duration up from 0.4 to 0.6
- Melee slow duration down from 2.8 to 2.0
“These were just a bit too cost efficient. You will no longer receive a bunch of defensive stats for something you didn’t itemize towards.” —Zekent
- Secondary stat down from 20 to 10
The wait is over! The single most-requested hero type in Vainglory is here as part of Update 1.12: Go play the archer Kestrel now … and be sure to get the limited-time holiday Fortress skin before it’s gone from the Market!