“Xerath Is An Extremely Good Farmer…”

There are a few farmers round my way who look like that.
I was just watching this League of Legends champion spotlight (below) over at PCG and couldn’t help feeling a bit weird. On the one hand I’m deeply embedded in enough in the general jargon and conceits of gaming to basically know that the guy narrating the Xerath reveal is going on about, but on the other I am aware that I definitely don’t understand the significance of this six minute overview within the context of the game and its other heroes. When alien archaeologists are digging up our fossilised internet from a cold, dead Earth in a billion years time, I wonder whether they will bother to try and decode all the games we played. It’d only take one slip up of inference on Extra-Terrestrial Time Team to imagine that were a culture that did little other than hover over icons to compare the specifications of our virtual equipment and/or skill loadout against another. Hell, maybe that’s precisely what we’ll end up being, if League Of Legends gets any more popular.


  1. pakoito says:

    Try today’s HoN spotlight instead: link to youtube.com

    • Dana says:

      Too bad HoN is much less popular then LoL.

    • Tams80 says:

      “Come fly with me. Let’s fly, let’s fly away”. That voice seriously creeped me out.

    • cyrenic says:

      Never fear! If there’s a story about LoL pakoito will be there to troll the comments.

    • mont3core says:

      Woah monarch looks sweet.
      I think learning HoN jargon is a better investment of time because everyone will likely move to dota2 and HoN is much closer to it. That being said, LoL is great and you can pick up the basics and learn a lot there too. I sure would hate to have to relearn all the items though.

    • squidlarkin says:

      Every time I watch a HoN video I’m struck by how pretty it is. And how unnecessarily difficult it is to follow the action.

    • Captchist says:

      I don’t agree everybody will move to DotA 2.

      From the outside as a person who doesn’t play LoL (although I do play HoN) it seems to me that at this stage the people playing League of Legends are 99% not the people who were playing DotA – the people playing LoL have no attachment to DotA, and so the idea of DotA 2 means nothing to them.
      LoL just came along at the right time as a Free to play game and caught the imagination of a lot of 14 year old kids and then grew to a bigger market, but it really isn’t just a bunch of people waiting for DotA 2

    • Drachenlord says:

      Having played both games extensively, I can safely say that Hon is Dying and will be completely crushed to dust when DOTA2 comes out….

      League of Legends on the other hand… will be fine, as it’s different enough to stand on it’s own merits.

    • Mopo says:

      Okay, we all know that HoN is superawesomesausely better than LoL and the players are a lot more intelligent and better looking too, so why does every article of LoL have to always compare the two? We get it, go play HoN and let us simpletons read the LoL blogs in peace…

    • Captchist says:

      No, the people who play HoN are mostly angry and nasty. But the two games are extremely similar. And so it’s not unreasonable that when a hero spotlight for one hero is discussed somebody say – “Hey, here is the latest Hero for this other very similar game for comparison”

      If DLC was released for Battlefield and COD at the same time you’d probably see both mentioned in a thread too.

    • mont3core says:


      That’s a good point, furthermore LoL players have already invested lots of money in their accounts and setup all their rune pages. I wouldn’t be surprised if LoL continued to hold its audience once Dota2 comes out, but I think the competitive scene will all head there. These games feel like an endless learning process and I always want to get to the next “level” of game play. While I personally think that Dota2 will be that next step I’m excited to see what Riot cooks up to compete with it.

    • heker_88 says:

      See people say HoN looks better than LoL but I really disagree. I’v allays really disliked games where they copy past the same art asset over and over on a boring flat plane e.g. the trees in HoN. But with LoL the strong cartoon style aesthetic is implemented well and each map is hand crafted so no two parts are really identical. This was for me the only real reason I’v always had an aversion to HoN in my opinion it just looks a little tacky, plus its seems impossible to follow what’s going on in gameplay (but that’s probably more as I haven’t learnt its ins and outs like I have with lol)

  2. The Sombrero Kid says:

    Like a more aggressive kog maw by the sounds of it.

  3. Zephro says:

    The word ganking should be expunged from existence.

  4. skyturnedred says:

    Looks like one of those ethereal fellas in WoW.

  5. Tei says:

    Not very unique, except that spells that don’t inmediatelly enter cooldown and let you re-fire. The passive seems could make a “combat mage”, less glass canon, and more pew pew pew pew with magic. Having a root, and a long distance artillery/nuke is good, but If you ask me, is better to have a long distance root and a medium distance attack. Anyway… Wellcome to League of Legends, Xerath :D

    • Xan says:

      The passive is “eehh” it’s 15% AP converted to Armor, if you had 1000 AP that would be 150 Armor. Not that great for a passive compared to some.

    • Tei says:

      If thats right, then what a shitty passive :-P

    • Dragatus says:

      Are you kidding? 15% is strong. Say you have 300 AP and about 80 natural armor. You’d get an extra 45 Armor which would let you take 25% more physical damage before you die.

      Or if you want to look at it from a gold perspective every 100 AP gives you 233 gold worth of Armor. So at 300 AP that’s 700 gold worth of Armor.

  6. Beardylocks says:

    Irionically, League of Legends is probably the easiest of the DOTA clones to understand and follow

    • anduz says:

      Why is that ironic? Being a simpler more approachable version of DOTA is exactly what League of Legends is all about.

      Sure there is the whole juvenile debate on which is the most PRO of them all. In reality however the only difference is the amount of guides your average player has running when he or she tabs out of the game. In League of Legends it’s only on what to buy and which skills to select in DOTA it’s also on how to build the items where to pick up their components.

    • Xerian says:

      Aye, the whole “PROest!!11” debate is silly, and sure, LoL is perhaps the “easiest” (not to mention being alot friendlier to new players; Giving them a big amount of increase in their player-base) But at the same time its the most original one, having persistent summoner-levels, runes and and pretty damned great lore (If you’re into that, which I am). Whereas HoN is just Dota with improved graphics and new champs.

    • Berzee says:

      anduz, it’s ironic because this is an article about how confusing it is for a non-LoL player to listen to the video

      (join me next time as I explain why very tall men are easier to spot in a crowd ^_^)

    • Gnoupi says:

      I have to agree with that. I started last week, just out of curiosity, and it’s surprisingly very welcoming.

      The game really goes out of his way to explain the mechanisms in the two tutorials (there is for example no way at the end of the second tutorial that you haven’t understood that you shouldn’t attack the turrets without your minions, for example. For the game will pause and warn you each time you do this mistake during the tutorial). But at same time, they are still pleasant to play, you don’t feel that much in a tutorial.

      You can even easily play the game without ever checking the whole list of items to buy, since it proposes a nice set of “recommended” items by default, easy to access, specific for each hero.

      Seriously, from the people involved in it, I was expecting something hardcore, unfriendly, in the direct line of the original War3 map. But it’s surprisingly really pleasantly explained.

    • Azradesh says:

      Honestly I find DOTA simpler conceptually but harder to play well.

  7. Santiaguito says:

    Actually, in League of Legends it’s also about how to build the items, as creating a, say Trinity Force, in some order may be more beneficial than in any other. To everyone still on the debate of which one is PRO-er, they are the same, you know, pro-wise. The only thing that League of Legends doesn’t have is creep denying, but it does have brush covering and a spellcaster oriented stat (Ability Power), so they have about the same deepness to it. I do like League of Legends better, tho.

    • FrogCities says:

      Well, admittedly Dota has trees that take advantage of the fog of war instead of bushes. You can move between a lot of the trees in Dota unlike LoL, and you can knock down the trees to create new hiding spots.

      Yeah, there is AP, or basically magic scaling in the game. Part of what makes LoL an easier game to grasp since end game isn’t vastly different from mid game. A mage will still burst someone down incredibly fast at end game.

    • Gnoupi says:

      I’m glad there is no denying. In my opinion it’s only an annoying thing to do. There is already plenty to do without having to make sure your enemy doesn’t kill your own minion.

      It was in the original DOTA mostly because the engine made it so. But it’s really a hassle. I’m glad they didn’t put that there.

    • MaXimillion says:

      AP makes the game LESS deep, not more, since it means caster damage scales just like physical does and it’s thus much easier to create a team that’s actually good both late and early game.

      Also, brush is just a simpler version of the paths between trees that HoN has basically everywhere, not to mention that you can fell trees and create your own paths in HoN.

      LoL is a nice casual game, but claiming it’s as deep as HoN on top level is just silly.

    • FrogCities says:

      And HoN is more casual than Dota because they don’t have a secret item shop. I JUST WENT THERE

  8. Rane2k says:

    Haha, when I saw “Xerath” in my RSS feed I first thought of this band:

    link to xerath.net

    Check them out if you like metal with film score influences. :-)

    • spann says:

      That’s my friend’s band – When I saw the name “Xerath Update” yesterday I thought they’d done music for it or something.

  9. lunarplasma says:

    I was planning to get this champ when he comes out. Now after seeing this video I think I will have to prepare myself for the inevitable screams of ‘KS! from my silly teammates.

    • WrongThinker says:

      I don’t understand why people get annoyed about that. So long as the guy gets killed and my team gets the gold, I don’t really care who delivers the finishing blow. In fact, if an ally of mine finishes off a guy I’m attacking that just gives me a few more seconds to refocus on nearby minions, towers, or other champs.

    • cavalier says:

      because PuG’ers are only their to stroke their own epeen and they can’t do that if they don’t get every KB.

  10. FrogCities says:

    Would be nice if league spent some more time trying to make champions unique from one another, instead of popping one out every few weeks with a full list of skins for people to spend cash on.

    • Mopo says:

      The game is f2p, so how else do you expect them to make money? Are you willing to pay a monthly subscription to them or something else?

    • Montoli says:

      To be fair, this actually is a fairly unique character, I think. He’s basically a siege tank. His whole game plan seems to revolve around knowing when to immobilize yourself for better damage/range and when not to. I don’t think he’s quite as cookie-cutter as people make him out to be.

      He actually reminds me a little of the Heavy in TF2, since you have to make such a conscious tradeoff between being mobile, and being damaging.

    • FrogCities says:

      @Mopo, that is fair, it’s a free game. Still, I wish they wouldn’t sacrifice the quality of the game with such hastily implemented champions. They should just start making hats!

      @Montoli, yeah he’s somewhat defined but still merges too much into the territory of other champions. It seems like he’s just a long range version of Annie or Brand; one stun and a bunch of damage spells.

  11. Ricc says:

    I played against Xerath mid today. He is real mean with blue buff. :/ Luckily my Gragas had enough range. We won in the end, but Xerath did very well during the early game.

  12. Daniel Klein says:

    Phreak needs to say Arcanopulse some more.

    Also, if people had a list of things they don’t understand about this? I’d LOVE to find a way to make the terminology more understandable to players from outside the MOBA genre, but I’m so deeply entrenched myself that I cannot possibly imagine not knowing what cooldown reduction or movement speed buff mean.