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In League of Legends, there are quite a few champions that don't use mana. I am wondering if there are any pages or posts that explain why Riot chooses to create a champion that doesn't use mana? What is their rationale behind the choice?

Energy Cost

There are champions like Shen, Kennen, and Akali that use energy, which is kind of similar to mana in limiting the spamming of abilities (although you don't buy energy items like you do mana items).

Health Cost

There are also a few like Mundo, Vlad, and Morde where their abilities cost health - that kind of makes sense to me - at least there is a cost to using abilities.

No Cost

But the champions that really puzzle me are the ones like Riven, Garen, and Katarina. It just doesn't make sense why they get to use their abilities for free, and never have to spend gold on mana related items.

Kha'Zix versus Rengar

And most recently - Why does Kha'Zix need mana, and Rengar doesn't? Is there a rhyme or reason behind Riot's decision to build mana into Kha' but not Rengar?

I'm just wondering if there any posts or releases from Riot that explain this, or maybe even a champion spotlight where they explain it?


Thanks to help from @Brian Colvin I was able to track down a few forum posts. I'm updating my post because someone locked it, but I still think the information is valuable, and I have no clue where else to ask the question but on stack exchange.

Morello answered a question in the forums that somewhat touches on this subject:

The reason is manaless champions need to be balanced specifically to not use any (besides health) attrition in their gameplay. Infuse is an example that removes attrition from characters designed to have it. For example, giving Kog'Maw infinite mana is much, much more broken than making Kog'Maw manaless and gating his ultimate in some other way.

Another person asked a question about manaless champions, and Morello answered with this:

...I do agree mana gives another balancing point to champions. You have to design manaless champions to have other attrition (melee does since it's more risky, health costs, more cooldown considerations, etc) but they can be made functional if you're smart about it. Vlad's definitely the antithesis of this paradigm though, as he gains resources over time.

I didn't find anything too concrete, but I do thank @Brian Colvin for taking the time to point me in the right direction. I'd give you upvotes if I could!


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closed as off topic by dbemerlin, murgatroid99, Emerica., kotekzot, pixel Oct 15 '12 at 13:55

Questions on Arqade are expected to relate to gaming within the scope defined by the community. Consider editing the question or leaving comments for improvement if you believe the question can be reworded to fit within the scope. Read more about reopening questions here.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Hi BrianH, I have voted to close this question as it would be extremely difficult to answer without direct input from somebody at Riot - questions about 'why' a games developer did something the way that they did are generally off topic here for this reason. – kalina Oct 15 '12 at 13:56
I'm not asking someone here to answer why Riot did something. I am asking someone here if there are posts, videos, or other releases from Riot that explain why. I put that at the top and bottom of my question. – BrianH Oct 15 '12 at 14:08
Search for posts by Morello on the LoL forums to find out more on champion design. I remember a post not too long ago explaining Katarina. – Brian Oct 15 '12 at 16:38
@BrianColvin Thanks so much for pointing me in the right direction - I wish I could give you upvotes! The Riot forums are so hard to search through, so you were able to help me narrow it down a lot. Thanks again! – BrianH Oct 16 '12 at 2:21
@BrianColvin I found some of you other answers (That were great answers, btw! esp. the one about the elixirs) and upvoted you there :) – BrianH Oct 16 '12 at 2:26