Again we have a new champion in League of Legends! This lovable, lanky lad of a champion brings all-new concepts and mechanics to League of Legends, and an entirely new perspective on the treatment of jungle creatures.
Ivern is a good, old-fashioned redemption story. Apparently, he was originally dubbed “Ivern the Cruel,” but his evil tendencies were curbed when he tangled with an ancient entity called the “God Willow.” Thus he became “Ivern the Green Father,” intent on bringing life and abundance to Runeterra.
Before discussing any of Ivern’s abilities, I want to mention the manner in which he was slowly revealed to the public- first through teasers in the form of short sound bites that randomly erupted in the jungle after killing a monster, and then with a very short cinematic teaser when his face was revealed and finally with his official release webpage.
This is an example of Riot’s method of hyping up a champion release to make it more of an event for players. They did it with Kled and Tahm Kench, among many others, as well as for the release of the “PROJECT” skins. Quite aside from creating a buzz in online League of Legends forums and in the community at large (which leads to an obvious influx of business for Riot Games), this “teaser and release” format is extremely exciting for new players or players who have quit the game. One of the ways Riot sucks you back in is through exciting new concepts like these, and there are no more exciting than those presented by Ivern.
Ivern cannot kill jungle monsters. He abhors all violence towards these poor defenseless creatures (this excludes the epic monsters – Baron, Rift Herald and Dragon can fend for themselves). When right-clicking on a jungle monster, Ivern will not attack them but instead expend some health and mana in order to start a timer. When the timer is completed, Ivern may right click again to free the monsters, receiving all the gold, experience and buffs he would otherwise obtain. If he uses smite straight after right-clicking, the camp will be freed instantly. Furthermore, the Red and Blue Buff will leave behind an extra buff for a teammate to collect!
This will obviously mean an entirely different playstyle and approach to how you consider timing your jungle-clear as, while the timer is progressing, Ivern is free to wander around, gank lanes and clear other camps to his heart’s content. He can then pop back to pick up his semi-free snack of gold and XP and continue on his merry way.
The second all-new mechanic Ivern brings to League of Legends is his W ability “Brushmaker.” This ability is self-explanatory. Unlike his ultimate “Daisy!” That one is a little less transparent. The fact remains, however, that Ivern can create brush on the map in League of Legends! He can literally hit W and there sprouts a brand-spanking new piece of undergrowth. This presents some different ganking options, and I will be interested to see what strategies people come up with on how to use it best.
As well as functioning as cover (where you will become invisible to enemies), it gives Ivern a ranged basic attack with increased damage. It also increases the range on his skillshot ability, Q. The question remains on whether or not it also works with any of the champion passives in the game that interact with brush. Although I wish I could say that I thought we would be able to play Caitlyn, Rengar, Ivern, Teemo team-compositions with ridiculous range, damage, invisibility and mobility, I fear Riot hasn’t given us this one. It remains to be seen of course. Maybe they have been generous this time.
His Q ability again presents an interesting dynamic. Although it dresses in the guise of a classic skillshot snare, beneath that deceptive skin it has more going on. If the snare lands (on an enemy champion, minion or jungle monster), Ivern and any of his allies can right click that target to be pulled to it. This works over obstacles and sometimes over long distances. Again, I don’t know whether or not your allies can do this if the target is a minion or monster, as opposed to just a champion. If so, this may prove extremely important in the coming Worlds – representing hugely increased mobility to every member of a team simply through the presence of Ivern.
If you (like me) get easily exhausted by complicated descriptions of abilities and interactions and effects, fear not! Ivern’s E ability couldn’t be simpler. It’s just a shield that explodes, damages and slows. And you can cast it on allies. And you can cast it on your ultimate. Simple.
His ultimate, “Daisy!” (never forget the exclamation mark) summons a giant golem to fight for Ivern. Like Yorick’s “Maiden of the Mist,” this cuddly rock monster fights for you until it has been killed or until its fairly long lifespan has expired. It also quickly regenerates health, meaning that Daisy can stick with you for quite some time. Not only this, but Daisy’s strong desire for a cuddle means that she will knock-up any enemy champion on the third hit. She will follow them around until they are all cuddled-out (ie. dead). That’s how golems show affection evidently.
Ivern’s crowd control and supportive strength mean that he will be picked as a utility carry. Although he can end up dealing good damage with his AP scaling on every ability, that won’t be his job in future team-comps. He is one of those champions that simply makes everyone around him stronger- an augmenter as opposed to an adventurer. And he looks like Treebeard. What more could you wish for?Related: eSports, ivern, League of Legends, MOBA, Riot Games