Let’s Talk About | League of Legends’ Bard

Riot just introduced their latest addition to the League of Legends character roster: Bard, the “Wandering Caretaker.” Trying out our newest article format, “Let’s Talk About,” Jillian and Joey have a chat about Bard’s appearance and judge him on mostly superficial merits.

Jillian: Obvious first thought: descendant of No Face from Spirited Away.

Joey: Haha, okay, honestly I had a hard time figuring out how Bard even worked as a thing.

Jillian: Like, “What am I physically looking at here?”

Joey: Yes, exactly. If the thing that I think is his face is actually his face
It’s super small compared to the rest of his body.

Jillian: The gold thing appears to be his face, and you’re totally right.
In the main artwork it looks like he’s actually just a giant Santa wig that someone taped a mask onto.

Joey: Agreed. He’s just a mess of fur/hair. With some accessories.

Jillian: What’s up with his legs/feet? Are those drills?
Or one of those cups that retracts in on itself? Do his legs double as a hydration tool?

Joey: Whatever they are, they seem like they would be more difficult than stilettos to walk in.
Although based on these images he might just fly around, so he can choose painful footwear
Oh wait, scratch that last, I saw the video and he definitely stumbles around
Although it looks like every step is agony.

Jillian: He floats and stumbles: so pretty standard for a stiletto-wearer.


Joey: I’m not sure how I feel about the rings on his horn thing
Feels a little counter-culture
I wonder if he got them when he was a rebellious teen bard

Jillian: What’s hanging off the rings? Those gold things–good luck charms?
It’s an awkward mix of teenage mistakes and mystic ritual.
He’s also got bells attached to the end of his ponytail. I imagine he’s very jangly.

Joey: Agreed. He seems to make a lot of noise in those videos. As expected of a bard I guess?
But where’s his lute?
I thought those were mandatory.

Jillian: Huh, I didn’t even think about that.
Maybe that giant blue orb thing is some sort of instrument?
Although it’s definitely not lute-like; he seems to blow into it sometimes.
I think we need to talk about his clothes, although I’m trying to figure out what his clothes actually are.

Joey: This picture seems to have better angles.
Joey: Sidenote: the picture on the bottom left looks like he’s getting off of Air Force One and saluting the crowd.

Jillian: Haha, maybe it’s Clinton hiding under all that hair. With a blue orb saxophone.
I just don’t really get a “bard” vibe from this getup. Metallic blue shirt with rope-sized stitching and a full-body red apron is more “blacksmith” to me.
Maybe I’m too used to Edward-type waif bards, but this guy in general is way too beefy.

Joey: I dunno, his hobo look makes me feel sorry for him. Maybe it’s a tactic to get more tips?

Jillian: But he’s obviously doing okay for himself: that mane is way too thick and luxurious to not have been conditioned recently.

Joey: Good point. He could make some extra cash doing endorsements and maybe buy some actual clothes instead of an apron and some wristbands.

Jillian: Actually, looking closely at the presidential salute picture, I think those wristbands are covering up barrels that he’s using as gauntlets.


Jillian: How big IS this guy?

Joey: Maybe they are mini barrels?

Jillian: Like the barrel o’ monkeys game?
Now I’m just wondering what this guy did with all those monkeys.

Joey: Maybe his mane is made of monkeys he killed? If that’s so, I might have to get him.

Hot Take | League of Legends Lunar Revel Skins

League of Legends‘ annual Lunar Revel event is upon us and with it comes the usual smattering of Chinese-influenced skins that edit the appearance of the characters in-game. We took a look at the new event skins (plus a couple more) and judged whether each new skin was an upgrade or a downgrade from their previous look.

(Click on pictures for an enlarged view of the artwork.)

Battlecast Vel'KozArclight Vel'Koz

Vel’Koz: Battlecast >> Arclight


Downgrade. I think his original design of spacey eyeball tentacle alien is tired. Battlecast Vel’koz spiced him up a little, but Arclight Vel’koz is basically a palette swap of the original skin. Yawn.


Vel’koz Classic looks like some kind of Little Shop of Horrors Audrey 2 spin-off, so already pretty horrifying. Battlecast improved on this by just covering him in armor, so impenetrable flower-demon. But I actually think Arclight is a further upgrade: it looks like part of the Sphinx broke off and is terrorizing modern day with eyeball lightning. How do you even deal with that? Yikes.


Nidalee: Headhunter >> Warring Kingdoms


Upgrade. Warring Kingdoms Nidalee mostly wins due to the hairstyle. I know Headhunter Nidalee is supposed to be modeled after Predators and their weird alien braids, but it’s not a good look for them and it’s not a good look for Nidalee.


Definite upgrade. I agree with Joey on the Headhunter hair. Some people can pull off dreads, but she is apparently not one of them. I like both outfits about equal–the insectoid armor platelets and the segmented samurai variation–so the hair is really the deciding factor here.


Katarina: Slay Belle >> Warring Kingdoms


Upgrade. The Christmas-themed Katarina is almost good, but why did they give her orange hair when her natural red hair would have been perfectly Christmasy?


Oh, god, upgrade. That Christmas one is too much. I think the reindeer antlers push it over the edge: possibly the least threatening accessory imaginable. Love the gold detailing on the Warring Kingdoms outfit, especially along her upper legs. This could almost be a Christmas outfit with the red and gold but, you know, a non-ridiculous one.


Jinx: Mafia >> Firecracker


Upgrade. It’s an elegant look, but still maintains that manic feel that Jinx exudes. It’s an overall clean and cohesive look, whereas Mafia Jinx’s weapons/hat/attire clash in my opinion. Also she has a pearl necklace which will never be not-tacky to me.


First, I don’t play League, but I assume this girl is insane? She has utter crazy-face in both of these. I’m going with ‘upgrade’ as well. I love the flapper look, but Mafia Jinx is relying way too heavily on lavender. A little purple goes a long way, especially when your hair is bright orange. I love the full-arm dragon tattoo on Firecracker and the emerald accoutrements that provide pop without being over-the-top. I’d just recommend tights or a longer skirt if you’re going to wall-hang (or missile-hang) like that.


Annie: Panda >> Sweetheart


Downgrade. I’ve never been a fan of Carebears, which this skin is an obvious homage to. Annie herself is a bit mundane. I feel like the hearts are placed in odd positions as well; they should be complimenting the ensemble, not dominating it. It’s not terrible, but I find Panda Annie more appealing. Possibly due to my love of pandas.


Downgrade, ugh, ugh, ugh. This is just oozing dead-eyed-creepy-murder-doll. Way too many hearts as Joey pointed out, and way too many ruffles. She has ruffles on ruffles on ruffles. Panda Annie is a bit puffy for my tastes, but I love her panda-shaped hair and not-soulless-eyes. The panda, however, is horrifying and confusing: what’s with the straps on his head? Is he part football? Slight preference for Care Bear, major preference for Panda Annie.