Mar 152012
 
Soraka, the Starchild
Soraka, the Starchild

Soraka, the Starchild is the iconic healer in League of Legends. She’s one of the original forty champions and one of the most played support choices. If you need advice to choose the best looks for a healing session, gaze into her skins’ review.

Dryad Soraka
Dryad Soraka Splash Art Dryad Soraka Model
Category: Regular
Price: 520 RP
Concept: Soraka dressed as a Greek tree nymph.
Model: Moderate model changes for Soraka and new model for her staff.
Particles: No new particles.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: Dryad Soraka’s splash art is quite eye-catching thanks to her dramatic pose and multiple light effects. In the background dark trees loom while in the foreground Soraka catches a light in her hands. A breeze sends her ponytail and cape flying but that doesn’t disturb her gazing with ethereal shining eyes. Although the background looks poor, Soraka’s depiction is excellent: it sets the mood of the piece and superbly portrays her; yet her eyes don’t shine in-game. From the light shining on her locks to the clothes folding in the wind, she emanates an air of mysticism that covers the whole piece. In conclusion, an very good splash art that only lacks a better background to excel.
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Conclusion: New staff, new clothes and a more human-like aspect are what Dryad Soraka actually delivers. Her in-human features do convey the tree nymph aspect but in comparison to her classic self the changes make her less astral and more earthly. These changes are, indeed, small but they are effective nonetheless. Not all is good as the skin tends to look a bit monochromatic due to the restricted colour palette used. Still, it’s a nice aesthetic that, while based on her classic look, provides an alternative, possible aspect for Soraka. On the whole, a nice skin for Soraka fans but don’t expect to see much dryad in this green healer.

Divine Soraka
Divine Soraka Splash Art Divine Soraka Model
Category: Regular
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Soraka before her de-evolution: the heavenly child of the stars.
Model: New model for Soraka and her staff.
Particles: No new particles.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: The background is dark yet a fitting frame for Soraka: a forest bathed by the light of the stars. Her body is meticulously depicted with many tattoos adorning it and several folds on her skirt. Her hair reflects the moonlight as well as her wristbands and flute. The flute, in particular, is a great addition that complements the piece by adding another aspect of Soraka’s personality. Even the weapon is part of the background as the attention is on showing Soraka’s communion with the stars instead of her battle prowess. Without doubt it’s a well made piece: it may not be the most flashy or perfect but it’s a superb portrayal of Soraka and one of the best splash arts available.
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Conclusion: Divine Soraka pretends to display Soraka completely devoted to her stellar union, as such she doesn’t exhibit any primitive traits: she’s a unique being blessed by the stars. In fact, the concept of a healer chosen by the stars is quite exciting but none of that astral essence is reflected on her look. At a glimpse, she’s just a tattooed girl, wearing a dress and wielding a staff. That doesn’t mean that she doesn’t look good, on the contrary: the dress is elegant and suggestive, without being revealing, the jewellery properly matches the staff’s design and the jacket exposes her decorum. The general aspect is gracious and appealing but there’s no divinity involved. Therefore, taken for what it is, human Soraka wearing a dress, the skin is actually quite nice even if expensive. However, if you truly expect it to deliver on the promise of full starry might, you’ll be disappointed.

Celestine Soraka
Celestine Soraka Splash Art Celestine Soraka Model
Category: Regular
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Soraka as a battle healer.
Model: New model for Soraka plus new model and particles for her staff.
Particles: New particles for Starcall, Astral Infusion, Equinox, Wish, auto-attack, recall and death.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack, recall and death.
Splash Art: The background barely reveals a battle taking place. Among the warriors, Soraka unleashes her healing magic in a daring and spectacular way. The setting ends up being mostly as a suggestion as not much is actually shown yet serves as a minimal frame. Conversely, Soraka looks simply stunning: from her sharp lines to the impeccable shading it’s an awesome portrayal. For instance, metal dents, magic sparks, cloth folds and even hooves’ scratches are a handful of details added to complement the depiction. In fact, every aspect of Soraka is greatly developed; even though the abrupt perspective complicates fully appreciating the shape of the staff. All things considered, it’s a wonderful portrayal that could’ve been perfect with a clearer and richer background. Still, it stands proud as one of the best portrayals available in League of Legends.
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Conclusion: Celestine Soraka is essentially the classic cleric ready to unleash healing magic to keep the party in good health. As such, the robe and moderate yet elegant decorations are effective at portraying the role. The clothes look good due to the patterns and refined style, all without compromising its suitability for a battlefield. The staff, in contrast, is certainly more flamboyant but manages to stay practical despite its elaborate ornamentation. Its added particles seem to intend to make it a central piece of the skin. Regardless, the star is Soraka and the staff stays as a nagging but good looking accessory.
The particles have much in common with the staff as they have the same result and style; though the game-play update has severely affected their uniqueness. In particular, Astral Infusion and Wish barely stand out, whereas Equinox is simply re-coloured and Starcall barely modified; also, it’s a pity that Salvation looks just the same. In that regard, the update seems like a step backwards. Still, the new particles for her recall and death are a nice addition. Her death, in particular, better communicates her astral theme and seems like a worthy addition to her classic self. On the whole, Celestine Soraka is a fantastic skin that delivers an appealing and fitting theme while compensating for its flaws.

Reaper Soraka
Reaper Soraka Splash Art Reaper Soraka Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 1350 RP
Concept: Soraka as a harvester of souls.
Model: New model for Soraka and her staff.
Particles: New particles for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Animations: New recall animation.
Sounds: New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall plus processed voice-over.
Splash Art: Is this an empty night sky over a rocky land, devoid of life, or simply darkness surrounding devastated earth? The setting is mysterious but also lacking meaning due to its ambiguity. Soraka looks clearer as the land trembles before her power. Her dramatic pose catches the eye and still allows a good view of her appearance. The lighting is good and her depiction detailed even if her right arm seem too out of focus despite not being that far; like her left hoof. Dents, scratches and tears give an air of plausibility and decadence that seems appropriate. Nevertheless, the heavily restricted colour palette, used for the whole piece, means that the elements barely stand out and only the light attracts attention. This results in a good portrayal of Soraka framed by an insipid background in a view that seems unnecessarily dim.
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Conclusion: In theory, the idea of having a healer styled as the Grim Reaper seems original and innovative. Conversely, maybe there’s a reason why it hasn’t been done before. It could be because the task of a healer and a reaper are diametrically opposite. To say that Soraka doesn’t look good and different would be amiss. However, the idea of a reaper seems imposed on her and, ultimately, doesn’t fit her nature at all.
Visually, the appearance is sensible and well done. The model is ghastly yet elegant and has a sinister appeal. The particles are nice too, with their creepy ghosts, but they are nothing out of this world. In practical terms, they seem like a dark re-colour of the classic ones; which is a letdown.
The sounds aren’t impressive but they fit the theme with some nice, eerie effects. The tune used for Salvation is particularly attractive though and Equinox manages to stand out. Unfortunately, the processed voice-over merely keeps things consistent as her healer quotes clash with the theme.
When all is added together, we find a skin with a preposterous concept for a healer with an execution that is acceptable but that fails to convince. The changes do their job but they feel insufficient: they don’t develop the theme so as to enable Soraka to embrace her ominous role. Therefore, Reaper Soraka is a skin that tries to be something special but stays as a curiosity unable to captivate. Better left for dedicated Soraka fans.

Order of the Banana Soraka
Order of the Banana Soraka Splash Art Order of the Banana Soraka Model
Category: Regular
Price: 750 RP
Concept: Soraka wearing fresh, casual clothing wielding Order of the Banana staff.
Model: New model Soraka and her staff.
Particles: New banana particles for her auto-attack.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: As a shared splash art five champions need to distribute the spotlight in equal parts and, for the most part, that’s accomplished; though the effect is diluted. The setup is believable but some elements stand as predictable. The idea of a costume party is well chosen: it allows the champions to stay together while also adding multiple references as miscellaneous items: like the Urf banner, the banana skin or the champion head balloons.
The selfie angle seems like a way to standardize and even freeze behaviour. A photograph in the middle of the fun is reasonable but it would’ve been more interesting to see how each of the champions behaves and what they do at the party. The spotlight is effectively shared like this and the champions manage to instil some of their personality with their poses but the feeling remains that more could’ve been revealed.
What can be an irking element is the ever depressing situation of Amumu. While his sadness is a defining characteristic he appears to have been left out of the fun instead of being a victim to his moods; as would be expected. Perhaps if he was in the party but unable to partake in the fun, hiding in a corner, it would be a better representation, and probably less cruel, of the champion’s nature.
The shading and lines used in the piece are correct even if the colours can look waxy in places. The aesthetic is stylized but in a fitting way that doesn’t detract from the picture. What does affect it negatively is the arbitrary and profound depth of feel effect. It might be a camera with a narrow focus but it also seems to clearly display certain elements from the background which are surrounded by fog, because they might be relevant, and not others; regardless of how believable that might be.
All in all, it’s a correct piece that does a good job at displaying five champions in a relevant setting. The composition is good, some elements are unsurprising and the impact of each champion is weakened but, ultimately, it works.
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Conclusion: Although enticing, Order of the Banana Soraka is a simplistic skin. All the potential of the concept remains in the name and staff because the Starchild only wears some clothes fit for going to the beach. Of course, the skirt is elegant, the hat classy and the top quite sexy yet it all fails at adding up to an interesting concept. In a few words: it’s just sexy humanoid Soraka. The Order of the Banana idea is only thinly displayed in the fruits on her hat besides the all too eloquent but somewhat plain staff and auto-attack. Therefore, Order of the Banana Soraka is a skin of polar characteristics. The concept is mostly wasted but the appearance is attractive; as long as we only consider her sex appeal. Ultimately, it’s a skin with good looks but little with regards to the Order of the Banana.

Program Soraka
Program Soraka Splash Art Program Soraka Model
Category: Regular
Price: 1350 RP
Concept: Soraka turned into an automaton.
Model: New model for Soraka and her staff. New glow for her staff
Particles: New particles for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Animations: New recall animation.
Sounds: New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall plus processed voice-over.
Splash Art: The intense blurriness of the background prevents a clear look that would identify the various elements that comprise a futuristic city; or so can be gathered by the diffuse suggestion. Truth be told, it seems like there’s a lot to appreciate and like in the setting but the opaque presentation is so annoying that it is frustrating to try to enjoy the wasted potential of such a suitable context. Even the hand extended for help is diluted in the pervading mist.
Soraka doesn’t have such problems, thankfully. At least, for the most part as her legs, tail and hair do blend into the fog. The central area is clearly shown and encompasses most of her. The lines are sharp with detailed shading that allows the reflections to add life to her artificial existence. The glow on her head and staff is quite moderate yet attractive while the softness of the colours makes her surface resemble plastic instead of metal; which is an interesting choice. Unfortunately, there are places where the colours and lines appear sketchy like the union of the handle and tip of her staff or her left palm and forearm. Also, her articulations are evident so the way her left arm reaches to her staff means that it looks unnaturally curved. The pose is interesting showing care with a synthetic tint but that’s mostly suggested as there’s little action going on; at most it’s starting.
The result is a piece that gives a good first impression but also a mixed feeling. There’s potential to display the activities of a heal-bot but everything is weakly stated. Much of the sci-fi context has to be dug and guessed among a pointless mist that pollutes the central figure. It’s clear who the main attraction on the piece is so the depth of field effect should convey distance instead of occluding the setting to guide the viewer by the hand or worst: saving on work. More than pointing to where we have to stare at we need splash arts that give a relevant context to paint the full picture of each fantasy instead of patronising with their subtle hints or economising. Sadly, this is an example of to the contrary despite the nice portrayal.
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Conclusion: An impressive new model backed by excellent particles and sounds makes Program Soraka a fascinating gynoid. The two-layered body consists of a main structure with metal plates attached to it. Arms and legs naturally extend as part of the body taking on a sturdy shape that keeps ample mobility. The soft curves and efficient design are a refreshing take on the artificial. The horn remains a bit out of place despite the different design for the head. It tries to incorporate it as a match for a half halo but isn’t really linked to any specific function. Regardless, the aspect respects the outline of Soraka while adapting her physique to synthetic form. The wire hair is a good touch but the tail seems unexpected and unnecessary. The new staff echoes the classic scheme but with some fantastic particles that make it a piece of wonder.
Speaking of particles, they have a distinct but colourful appearance that the sounds reinforce perfectly. The technological aspect is incorporated to make Soraka an effective heal-bot. The triangular design is used with moderation and circuit patterns abound in different configurations and colours. The tinkling, metallic texture of the sounds adds the necessary artificial feel transporting the electronic style to the aural field. The classic structure of the sounds is noticeable but tinted with a pleasing artificial effect. Something similar happens with the deep processing of the voice-over: it’s synthetic yet familiar to a point; a good balance. The recall does a great job at finishing the skin as a tech-wonder; though it does bring to mind Galactic Azir.
All things considered, fans of synthetic healers will find that Program Soraka is a finely crafted skin. Model, particles and sounds are wonderful and show that a skin can present an attractive theme when the changes are good on their own but also work together to add up to a complete whole. The absence of new animations isn’t really felt though it could’ve made the change deeper. In the end, it’s a fantastic skin that does just enough for its price but every single area is exceptional.

Star Guardian Soraka
Star Guardian Soraka Splash Art Star Guardian Soraka Model
Category: Regular
Price: 1350 RP (742 RP, 45% off if you own Pajama Guardian)
Concept: Soraka as a magical girl wielding the magic of the stars with her familiar Shisa.
Model: New model for Soraka and her staff plus new glow for her horn, dress’ gems, staff and sparkles around her.
Particles: New particles for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Animations: New animated wings plus new animations for Wish, high speed run and recall.
Sounds: New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Splash Art: Night sky and a strong beam of yellowish light is all the setting there is. Then there’s Shisa, Soraka’s familiar, with a lot of attitude practically standing on one of her wings. Shading is simple but good and the fuzzy feel of the fur is nicely done; though the eyes lack vibrancy.
Soraka enjoys a fantastic depiction with great use of light and shadow despite the simple pose. Even if her legs are a bit too dim her entire body is softly shaded and appears delicate yet well delineated. The shape or her left foot is hinted and looks weird as either hoof or human foot. Additionally, her wings are a bit too fuzzy to the point of being diffuse but the body makes great use of the chosen style; even if it appears simpler than surrounding areas. Her hair moves in capricious curls but appears metallic and polished as if waxed. The horn looks like plastic, golden lining is dull and her staff appears unnecessarily dim. Regardless, the overall feel of her portrayal is one of serene star magic which suits Soraka’s personality extremely well.
All added together, even if Soraka’s portrayal is imperfect it’s quite appealing. It shows great use of shadow and light with a delicate softness that suits her perfectly. Her familiar also appears with ample space though in-game Shisa doesn’t collaborate much. Regardless, this is a rather nice portrayal that would welcome a more elaborate context to make Soraka fully shine.
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Conclusion: With less overt yet still noticeable animalistic traits Star Guardian Soraka transports the Starchild to the magical girl realm. Sharing some of the celestial feel of the original Celestine Soraka it’s obvious that the skin aims at instilling and distilling as much star power in Soraka as possible. That’s always done in a delicate and suitable way for a magical girl. The dress in white and light blue with golden linings and iridescent gems follows the mahou shoujo style with delicacy. Her hair long and curled at the bottom is a rather good match that furthers the delicate feel of Soraka. The staff’s changes match her outfit and replace the quarter Moon for a wing attached by a star-shaped gem which gives her a symbol to be identified with. Her horn is made softer as well as the shape of her hooves which are nimbler and leaner. Regardless, they look awkward with the boots. Perhaps the pretence of animal feet should’ve been dropped or they should’ve been clearly shown if the animal aspect of the stars is to be relevant enough. As it is, the skin stands on a middle ground that makes the animal traits visible yet tries to disguise them. What is undoubtedly a good touch is the glow of the horn. With its changing, different colours it’s a nice display of celestial power.
Particles conform to the classic design but with colourful and florid star shapes. Auto-attacks step away from this a bit with a wing followed by golden fat stars and feathers that explodes like a little sun; which is rather attractive. Salvation reuses the golden stars and feathers as well as adding blue circles and a swirl of gold and blue behind Soraka. This makes the passive rather eye-catching yet also fittingly playful. Star Call expectedly shows a star descending but one followed by a trail of smaller ones that land on an ornamented circle on the ground. It explodes in colours made out of many different stars so that it makes for quite an spectacle for an often used ability. The Rejuvenation part of Star Call makes the star bounce on the ground towards Soraka with a thinner trail of stars and gives her an appealing blue glow so that it’s fitting and consistent. Astral Infusion is subtler as the heal is a soft golden glow brought by swirl of gold all accompanied by small stars. It’s all rather brief and subtle even if aptly done. Equinox sees an explosion of light on the floor that encircles an area around an interesting star lit from below and surrounded by small, fat stars and blue circles. They revolve towards the centre until they explode up in a large star of light that glows upwards. Rooted enemies are held down by a star on the ground that lights up towards the enemy. Equinox’s ground lights stand out with a distinct style that gives the ability an identity that fits within the theme. For Wish the best is reserved: large, rounded stars fall on targets with a thick trail of gold as Soraka rises up like an angel with long, white wings. The trail dissipates in a blue light with smaller stars of different colours as the wings disappear leaving feathers behind. The angelic touch is nicely presented in the ultimate but the star touch side can seem diminished in comparison even if it’s good enough. The attractive wings are also used for her high speed run, used in homeguard, which reinforces the angelic side that isn’t as evident in most of her actions.
Sounds rely on different kinds of twinkles and whistles. The high speed run and Salvation have similar sounding whistles of magic with soft twinkling. Auto-attacks use a whiz to release the wing which explodes with a soft ringing. Star Call shows playful but clearly magical whistle that is repeated after a cushioned but impactful explosion. Astral Infusion is a brief magical whistle. Equinox uses more playful magical whistles until the stars explode in a crystalline twinkle. Wish uses a bell ring that is a bit low yet vibrant and conveys power with clarity. Out of all the abilities, Wish stands apart from the overdose of twinkles and whistles but there’s nothing really memorable; auto-attacks also feel different even if not impressive.
Animations are few but attractive. Wish stands out the most for making not only the ultimate special but also Soraka’s heavenly power feel more patent and potent. The wings also appear in the high speed run which sees Soraka flying like an angel flapping her four wings and followed by her familiar. The wings at the waist of her dress also react to her actions though they take second place in comparison to the evasive larger ones; which should’ve probably been a permanent addition to the model or used across more actions to present the angel side better. The recall takes from all of these characteristics and sees Soraka transforming to her winged form and then simply disappearing which adds to the angel theme but not to the starry concept.
All added together, Star Guardian Soraka is a skin that starts feeling astral yet slowly reveals its angelic tendencies. This dichotomy isn’t entirely integrated into the skin so that her animalistic traits make no sense before the angelic characteristics which end up seeming more relevant. The skin ends halfway between Classic and angel with celestial touches clearly inspired in Celestine Soraka. In spite of these problems, it’s an appealing skin that manages an unfocused yet appealing heavenly style that is simply torn between astral and angelic features. With more focus and some extra work to leave the Classic blueprint behind Star Guardian Soraka could be an excellent skin. As it is, it’s still pretty dazzling.

Pajama Guardian Soraka
Pajama Guardian Soraka Splash Art Pajama Guardian Soraka Model
Category: Regular
Price: 1350 RP (742 RP, 45% off if you own Star Guardian)
Concept: Soraka as a magical girl wielding the magic of the stars with her familiar Shisa, in a pajama party.
Model: New model for Soraka and her staff plus new glow for her horn, dress’ gems, staff and sparkles around her.
Particles: Star Guardian particles for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Animations: Star Guardian-like animated wings plus Star Guardian animations for Wish, high speed run and recall.
Sounds: Star Guardian sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Splash Art: Diffuse but cosy, we can reasonably expect the pyjama party to take place in a bedroom but the armchair in the middle hints at a living room or perhaps some other room that is being trashed in a pillow fight; there’s also a bookcase on the right. Fitting, no doubt, but with everything so diffuse details about the environment are lost. Worse yet is that those which are visible like the board game on the floor, biscuits on a bowl and toys lying around are disappointingly sketchy.
Amidst this feathery chaos we find a selection of Star Guardians donning their familiar-inspired pyjamas. The portrayals are uneven, the farther away the champions are the blurrier they get. On top of that, colours are saturated and they lack vibrancy which give the portrayals a lacklustre feel. Take for instance the highlights on hair strands: they look rather dull while the hair looks flat-out waxy. The good news is that each champion has some room to show a bit of their personality. Truth be told, each Star Guardian manages to stand apart from the others in more than looks. Regardless, their actions could’ve been more tied to their personality and their portrayals less partial. We are dealing in subtle tells from the poses instead of clear messages coming from what and how they do things.
In general, this is a splash art that joins five champions in a sensible setting and manages to show them in a good light. Portrayals could show each identity better and if we talk about the quality of the depictions and the background then it’s simply a letdown. This results in a functional piece which could’ve been much more interesting.
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Conclusion: Due to Soraka’s unique physique her pyjama takes some unusual shapes which can almost make it look like a costume. Her familiar isn’t well represented but her curled hair, additional wings and winged staff make for a rather angelic look; which is all owed to the base Star Guardian skin. What Pajama Guardian does then is provide a costume-like look for Soraka that looks like a pyjama as much as it looks like cosplay. This ambiguity may actually be to the skin’s benefit as combat in pyjama, usually, isn’t ideal; some get up angry so it could work.
All in all, Pajama Guardian Soraka is part pyjama and part costume with the ups and downs such dual nature entails. The skin has its cute appeal which works with Soraka but there’s too much reliance on the highlights from Star Guardian. This makes the original Star Guardian Soraka the better of the two. Pajama Guardian is a extra for fans that want a little more.

Winter Wonder Soraka
Winter Wonder Soraka Splash Art Winter Wonder Soraka Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 1350 RP
Concept: Soraka as an ice sorceress.
Model: New model for Soraka and her staff plus new glow for her staff.
Particles: New particles for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Animations: New recall animation.
Sounds: New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Splash Art: Ice, snow and more of both is all the setting we have. There’s a vague hint at an ice castle far away but no specifics about the surroundings are visible. We have a couple of snowmen on sight, too. The one nearer seems to be made of ice instead of snow while the other one seems a tad familiar and ridiculously diffuse. Given that he’s the only meaningful element in the background it’s disappointing.
Soraka is clearly visible with great use of shading which allows the surfaces to be interesting despite the dim, saturated colours. The idea of an ice sorceress is eloquently presented with her staff and tiara appearing reasonably magical. The ice bird cast from her hand is a nice touch to add to the fantasy. It’s a pity though that many areas of her body look like a draft. The magical spirit of her portrayal would certainly benefit from vivid colours and a vibrant presentation.
All in all, this is an effective splash art. The background is a disappointment but the portrayal is rather good despite its issues. A good layer of polish would help bring to the forefront the muffled charm that this piece evidently has.
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Conclusion: Winter Wonder Soraka makes a good job at transforming Soraka into a human or elf sorceress. From the tiara with a glowing ice horn to the Caucasian features this is a skin that embraces the transformation. A remnant of her classic physique seems to remain when looking at her boots. Perhaps the skirt should’ve been fully closed to conceal her legs and leave such a characteristic behind. The problem is that it seems like the adaptation was arbitrarily truncated. That said her elegant dress with fur lining and ornamented staff give her a royal style which is quite nice.
Particles are straightforward, though. They employ snowflakes in large quantities with the occasional display of ice. Regardless, it can’t be denied that both Starcall and Equinox with their large and evocative designs catch the eye. Other abilities are more subdued and tied to classic. This particularly applies to healing effects which all look golden despite the appearance of snowflakes. While the need to separate offense and defence is understandable perhaps some blue frosty effects around the golden ray of healing would’ve better communicated both aspects. Her passive, Salvation and auto-attack, despite being somewhat direct, are appealing.
Sounds rely on the expected frosty crunchiness proper of the theme with a touch of classy twinklings, at least for Starcall and Equinox. Healing entirely resorts to twinklings which further detaches the abilities from the ice theme. Auto-attacks sound too muffled despite their snowy feel.
Her new recall is direct: Soraka summons ice statues. There’s no subtlety to it all but it also is quite apt for an ice sorceress to display her command of her powers in such a way.
Overall, Winter Wonder Soraka is a good skin. There aren’t any important flaws and the few problems the skin has could be solved with some extra polish and a few changes. At any rate, the lack of significant features is what leaves the skin feeling good but unable to reach greatness. For fans of Soraka, Winter Wonder is nice if they don’t expect to be impressed.

Conclusion

Regardless of being a classic and popular champion, Soraka remains relegated to only a few skins. Celestine Soraka is the recommended purchase but not just for her more elaborate work. The skin offers an attractive and well executed theme that further develops her usual role in battles. Sadly, the game-play update made significant changes to the style of the particles and now they are missing their unique style.

A more expensive but also enchanting option is Program Soraka. If you ever wanted to turn the Starchild into a proper heal-bot then this is the best option. The skin has the expected changes in the basic areas but each one is finely crafted and it all amounts to an accomplished gynoid style. If you like synthetic life then Program Soraka won’t disappoint.

An alternative that doesn’t work as well as it should is Reaper Soraka. The concept feels forced and the implementation does just enough to present the theme. More is necessary to recreate such an antagonistic role for a healer and so the skin is different but not really attractive.

Star Guardian Soraka has much to owe to Celestine as her heavenly power shows. There’s also a patent reliance on the classic design which the skin seems unable to let go of. Fortunately, the classic astral power works with the angelic features even if they never fully integrate. Nevertheless, the skin manages a style that is quite appealing.

Pajama Guardian Soraka has her wearing a pyjama that can easily pass for a costume. Still, appealing parts end up being borrowed from Star Guardian which makes the original the better option. What Pajama Guardian offers, is a nice extra for Star Guardian fans which suits Soraka and looks rather cute.

Winter Wonder Soraka is a good skin. There are no real flaws but also no distinct features that make the skin stand out. There are a few problems but nothing important. Therefore, fans of Soraka will find in Winter Wonder a nice skin if they don’t mind not being impressed.

From her release skins, Divine Soraka is the better of the two as long as you consider it as a graceful, human healer version of Soraka; instead of a child of the stars blessed with heavenly power. Besides, it seems somewhat expensive for just model changes.

If sex appeal is what you are looking for then Order of the Banana Soraka is the best option. It barely delves into the main topic of the Order of the Banana but as far as attractive looks go the Starchild’s aspect is quite good.

Dryad Soraka isn’t a bad option either, it’s rather close to Classic Soraka but it still has its distinct identity. Take it as an earthly version of Soraka that isn’t striking yet doesn’t disappoint at all.

  70 Responses to “League of Legends: Soraka Skins’ Review”

  1. Dryad Soraka will be on sale (260 RP) tomorrow.

    Do you think it’s worth it?

    • In its current state it’s just green Soraka and when she gets the visual re-work she will still be green Soraka; according to Freljord and Sherwood Forest Ashe. There is the possibility that they re-work the skin to be more dryad-like but as it’s a re-texture it’s improbable.

      Divine Soraka is the better option unless you really enjoy the dryad reference or prefer Soraka in green. As a re-texture Dryad Soraka is plain and not particularly appealing.

  2. Soraka’s visual overhaul. That takes All of Soraka from two stars to four or five, because her particales are simply amazing!

    • Remember that skins are judged in comparison to the classic skin. Therefore, while Classic Soraka has improved a great deal, thanks to the visual rework, Dryad Soraka is still a re-texture and Divine Soraka a re-model. The questions then are: how good do they look and are they worth their price?

  3. The new splash arts for both classic and Dryad skins are fantastic. I was actually considering buying the dryad skin until I saw it in-game, on the enemy Soraka. I was disappointed. I don’t think it is, in any aspect, an improvement of the regular skin. First of all it is definitely too green (this, you mentioned). Is it the wrong green or just a lack of nuance? I cannot tell but the result doesn’t feel right. The other thing that bothers me a lot is the shape and texture of her hair. The pony tail is basically a cone of green with a waxy, shiny aspect that looks terrible. Moreover, the hair seems stiff for it does not move quite naturally as Soraka walks and attacks. I know that hair is a difficult business in 3D-models but it doesn’t look as bad on the regular or divine skin as it does on the Dryad Soraka skin.

    I really hope Riot will release a new skin for this old but excellent champion.

    • Indeed, Dryad Soraka was, and still is, mostly green Soraka. It does alter her aspect, but not much, and the limited colour palette sure makes it look rather plain. It’s better considered as an alternative take of Classic Soraka than a distinct idea.

      Hair is definitely something difficult to model and animate. The key is to be able to efficiently model an element composed by thousands of smaller objects. Too complex and render performance plummets, too simple and it looks unrealistic; it’s all about balance.

      Let’s hope that the promised new skin, that would’ve been released along the visual rework, doesn’t take too long. For such a popular and classic champion the amount of skins she has is really underwhelming.

  4. Do you think celestine will be on sale soon? since they are putting steel legion garen and others for sale despite the balance changes they are doing on her?

    • Theoretically, balance changes have nothing to do with skins sales. Celestine Soraka still has eleven new skins queued before her to go on sale. Regardless, sometimes they skip a few due to events or other reasons. Considering the slow rate at which new skins are discounted it could very well take quite some time until it’s on sale. Athough, remember that skin sales are highly unpredictable and we might as well see a super sale or other event that changes the panorama.

  5. Doesn’t Celestine Soraka have a trail of glitter behind her whenever she walks?

    • The glitter may be what emanates from the bottom of her staff. Everytime she moves it there’s a trail of ‘stardust’ left behind. It’s certainly a nice touch.

      • So shouldn’t it be added to the review?

        • We have it listed as ‘new particles for her staff’ and it’s also mentioned in the conclusion. Perhaps we should be more clear about it. We accept suggestions.

          • Ah, I thought staff particles referred to the swirly patern “in” her staff and the cross shaped stars during her autoattack.

          • The intention was to denote all particles added to her staff. The new auto-attack particles are listed separately.

  6. Hey there, if I’m not mistaken Celestine Soraka has new sounds as of patch 4.17 for her abilitiws and her recall. The skin is trully amazing before and after her kit rework but still I think it’s worth mentioning if it has new sounds 🙂

  7. Dear lord that new Reaper Soraka skin…is Riot serious? That model looks nothing like Soraka and ecen though it has a sinister theme she still says “Live” “For Life!” and all her other heavenly lines…I already got a bad impression of that skin :/ what do you about it from the pics in Surrender at 20? Looks very simple compared to Celestine model-wise.

    • It could be something special but we agree that between healer and reaper there’s a long distance. Celestine also has some nice particles added to her staff and death; even if the visual upgrade flattened the rest. Therefore, Reaper has much to do to stand out.

      We’ll have to wait and see. It could be surprisingly good but a lot of work will be needed.

  8. When will you be updating the reviews?
    It still says new particles for starcall and such and i want to know of the skin got better/worse with the rework.

    • We have updated the review, shortly after the visual upgrade, and Celestine Soraka definitely got worse. The visual upgrade made her particles practically a recolour of the classic ones and they’ve lost their unique designs. The skin is still quite good but nothing like the spectacle it used to be. That’s why it went from five stars to four.

      The others remain the same as they only had model changes.

  9. What are your thoughts on Reaper Soraka now that is avaible? Love your reviews. Thanks!

    • We’ll have a review published shortly but we can say that it seems like a skin with evident ups and downs. It could be a worthwhile purchase for dedicated fans of Soraka but it’s not as well done as one would expect at its high price.

  10. Hi Zero! Reaper Soraka is actually a legacy skin, not a regular one. http://na.leagueoflegends.com/en/news/champions-skins/skin-release/tremble-reaper-soraka

    It goes back into the vault on the 21st. ^^

  11. I really do love the new equinox as it conveys the feel of a Grim Reaper but for the price, I just don’t think its worth it as I have to forgo it.

    • Reaper Soraka has some good touches but at its price it needs to make a more consistent effort to stand above average.

  12. Order of the Banana Soraka is out! Could you do a review of it? (:

    • We’ve come for the Banana Oracle and we’ve been given permission to do so. Behold: the Order of the Banana.

  13. The Conclusion section of the new Order of the Banana skin mentions a “sexy human Soraka”, though I am not sure how accurate that looks considering her untouched blue-purple skin.
    On the skin itself, I am personally not a big fan of funny/jokes skins, but this one certainly amuses me. People had been wanting a Soraka skins where her autoattacks are literally bananas and it finally arrived. I think the name is more of a joke than anything else, and her casual clothing goes great with the theme. I think priestess-like clothing would be unfitting for a funny skin, even if it would go with the supposed “Order” theme.

    • We agree that the intention of the skin isn’t serious but we still aren’t convinced on the easy choice of casual clothing. Indeed, priest clothing would be too much and would clash with Celestine. However, Soraka could’ve worn a makeshift robe or maybe one made of banana skins. The problem is that the Order of the Banana concept isn’t well established.

      It’s still a attractive skin but, skin and, maybe hair colour aside she look just like a young woman. Divine already covers that so the skin should’ve developed its theme more. She could’ve looked human anyway but the skin needs something that establishes the concept in a general sense. Take away her staff and the Order of the Banana name makes no sense.

      • Quite late but I would like to add one thing. While I hadn’t noticed it at first, Soraka has quite the unusual ears in that skin, which further opposes your statement for her looking human. It isn’t that easy to notice unless you zoom in on the skin in-game, where it is still obstructed by her hat, and in the splash art they blend in with her hair due to the shading, despite their size. One could wonder at this point why the horn went missing, as it is the only trait from the original Soraka that is not retained in this skin, most likely because of the hat.
        I’d also like to add that between this Soraka skin and Divine, it is annoying how you would have to pay extra RP just to get less revealing clothing and have her be fully human-looking. They are both technically Soraka in a dress (so is Reaper, but that is another story), but one is cheaper and adds new auto-attacks while the more expensive one doesn’t add anything to justify its price in comparison. Divine is supposed to be a serious skin while Order of the Banana a funny one, but I personally see it as a casual one instead. As you said, Soraka ready for the beach. Divine on the other hand doesn’t takes its concept into account well enough (especially for the price) and is just a new model.

        • Completely agreed, between Order of the Banana and Divine is difficult to decide which skin wastes more potential. Besides, it’s never to late to fix errors and improve a review so thanks for the feedback.

          Her ears are noticeable at closer inspection even if the intention is mostly to make her look human. Considering her blue skin, human-looking is a bit of a stretch. We changed to humanoid to clarify that the idea is to make her look human while retaining some alien characteristics.

  14. I believe that Order of the Banana Soraka has a small particle change on her Q, before it lands and you see a mark. I might be mistaken though.

    • We checked the release image which shows that exact action and couldn’t find anything different. It could’ve been added after the release; it wouldn’t be the first time it happens. So, we’ll give it another look when we can; thanks for the notice.

  15. Zero, You should do a review on the three new skins coming up, Mecha zero sion, Program soraka, and program lissandra. From what I’ve seen, they look pretty good.

    • Indeed, we agree, they do look quite good. We are working hard to have the reviews ready once the skins are released.

  16. Any idea when you guys will have a review on Program Soraka?

    Also do you think there will be more champs with Program skins?

    • We’ll have a review ready shortly.

      We think that, like in other skin themes, more Program skins are to be expected. Especially because the concept is attractive and the implementation is quite good. No reason for Riot to ignore a product that sells; or so can be supposed. With things as they are, there’s nothing certain but it seems feasible.

      • Hey Zero, I have Celestine, should I buy Program as well? What are the pros and cons between the two skins? (price isn’t a factor for me)

        • If you like sci-fi then Program Soraka is quite a good skin. We found that the skin stayed a bit close to the classic design though it added its own synthetic style all over. We would’ve preferred to see something extra, like animations or a break of the classic scheme, to make the Program identity unique. It’s certainly a great skin for a heal bot. It doesn’t really reach excellence but its four stars are well earned; price aside.

  17. How do you feel about the new Star Guardian Soraka skin?

    • It’s suitable and the line’s aesthetic seems clear. We haven’t seen much of the skin but what little we’ve seen seems to be good.

      • I have to admit I’m a bit torn about the new batch of Star Guardian skins. On the one hand, the models are of very high quality and unlike last year’s skins, these 5 Star Guardians feel more individualistic and self-centered. Still a team, but more unique. And yet it feels like there were some missed opportunities, particularly with Syndra being the legendary to better round her SG persona, and perhaps choosing a different approach to Ahri, or a different champion altogether. All of the skins, perhaps except for Ezreal, look like two or three stars.

        SG Soraka, however, looks like an amazing skin with just a few flaws. In terms of model it looks absolutely fantastic, unique and is actually one of the largest deviations from classic Soraka, except for the staff perhaps. Particles are also unique, and the skin theme just naturally fits Soraka without the addition of any other quotes. Finally, recall, homeguard and ult animations really round out the identity to create a striking angelic healer. Perhaps her familiar could have been featured in one of her abilities, and her body should probably disintegrate upon death like Celestine Soraka’s, but even with these small flaws I feel like it is a solid four stars, and perhaps if they add just a bit more polish it could very well get to a 5-star review. Just my two cents from what I see so far.

        • We haven’t seem much from them but we agree that there are things to like and others that aren’t as good as they could’ve been. The identities seem more distinct as you mention and also they appear more superficial in certain cases. Perhaps the ambition of the concepts show too clearly the dissonance with the limited scope of some of the implementations. There are clever choices and others that simply work well. There’s also a perceivable feel that going for quantity instead of quality takes its toll on a group of skins.

          • Now that the skin’s been out for a while and is about to be up for release, what do you think about it? Also, it’s confirmed that the new Star Guardian skins will be getting recall music. Thoughts? What would you rate the skin at the moment?

          • It would be a good touch to have music in the recall to make the Star Guardians more interesting. We like the new Star Guardian skins and, in fact, they manage to be appealing beyond their limitations. There’s a noticeable amount of wasted potential due to the restricted implementation of the concepts in the non-legendaries. Still, the result is quite nice.

  18. it’s a trivial detail but i like the touch of it very much and it wasnt mentioned in the review,
    but star guardian soraka’s horn is iridescent and changes colour every few seconds 🙂

    • It’s a good touch indeed, good point. Iit’s something relevant that we should add to the review. Thanks for the information.

  19. I’ve been looking through the sales schedule, and noticed that Order of the Banana Soraka will be on sale this month. It’s a skin I was interested in, but Star Guardian stole my heart even though I know it won’t be on sale for a couple of months. Do you think it’s better to buy OotB, or just bite the bullet and go for SG?

    • Order of the Banana Soraka is a charming skin but there isn’t much of said Order, in fact. The charm is on Soraka’s look and that’s mostly it. It’s an alright skin but nothing near Star Guardian. The difference in price explains a bit but there’s also the good execution and fitting concept of Star Guardian. We would recommend to wait for a sale on Star Guardian at any rate. Full price it’s an expensive skin but on sale, for a Soraka fan, sounds like a good option.

  20. Hii, just letting you know, they’re pushing out added music to all star guardian skin recalls now. Also, do you think the borders + icon from the First Star Edition of the Star Guardian skins are worth the extra 425 RP? I’m contemplating on getting it or not, since it’s limited edition.

    • We were told about the new recall music but were suprised that it wasn’t present when they were released. It’ll be an added touch of style that’s welcome as the Star Guardians do seem to be posing in silence in the recall.

      We aren’t fans of borders and icons to be frank. If you could get them just from playing the game it would be a little incentive to play more. However, they offer too little to be paid with actual money. Besides, once in-game, they lose all relevance. Take into account that there are many good skins that can be bough on sale for 487 RP so the border + icon is almost as expensive as a skin. In our view, it’s better to save the money and get a skin you like. The border and icon won’t make the skin any better it’s only a nod to exclusivity that doesn’t really matter much.

      If you are a great fan of the Star Guardian skins you may consider getting border and icon. However, take into consideration that you would be paying a lot more for each skin. Being limited edition is probably made to add value to what doesn’t really have much. You can only use one icon at a time and you can’t feasibly be changing it all the time. Besides, there are a lot of other great skin that won’t have a border and they aren’t really worse for that. Truth be told, no matter how we look at it, we can’t see real value in border and icons paid with money.

  21. Hi Zero, I’m not sure if you noticed or not, but Celestine Soraka have new recall animation, just a bit. They added like glittery winds during her recall… I was wondering if you could update that to the review.

    • Indeed, the whirlwind around her also glitters with celestial magic. We added that effect in the review as new particles for her recall which are a nice even if small touch. Overall, Celestine Soraka isn’t what it used to be but it’s still nice.

  22. Hii~ I was hoping to get an opinion – what skind do you recommend out of all of these? I love them all, but I can’t choose!

    • Celestine Soraka is the skin we recommend. Especially on sale, it offers a lot while keeping the essence of Soraka. For something different and more elaborate you could consider Program or Star Guardian but we’d recommend to get these skins on sale. Their price is high so while they are quite appealing they also command a high price.

      • Taking price out of consideration, what would you recommend? I’m up to blow any amount of money on a skin for her :p

        • Without taking money into account it’s a matter of which concept you like the most. All three skins are quite well done and deliver on what they promise. Still, Program and Star Guardian, being in a higher tier to Celestine, offer more as they are more elaborate.

          We don’t think you can go wrong with any of these skins. They are have their appeal and a good adaptation. Regardless, check the reviews for the specifics with regards to the best features and their issues. While they are good skins they aren’t perfect.

  23. Hi Zero, it’s been awhile since I got a skin for Soraka (Celestine) all thanks to you. I was considering to add another one for her. I’m considering either Reaper Soraka or Programm Soraka.

    Honestly I am a bit bothered over her ‘Nice’ & ‘Kind’ healer theme Idk why I see her as too dependant on her team it makes her look kinda ‘helpless’ when shes not healing/aiding anyone idk mybe it’s just me. I do however appreciate her sense of sarcasm in her Taunts and Jokes.

    Anyway, since Halloween is coming up and Reaper Soraka is going to be available again I was considering to purchase it. The thing I like about Reaper Soraka is that the theme shows her in contrast to her ‘Nice and Kind’ healer theme.

    She still Heals and supports her team but with the added Voice filter it actually makes her Quotes pleasing to hear and make it seems like shes sarcastically saying them (idk how to explain it but it just pleases me like she knows her team needs her and shes saying it mockingly lmao). I just love her sense of Sarcasm

    The particles & sounds are really nice too, it actualy shows her Haunting & Dark side instead of the cheerful bright colour particles.

    Programm Is really enticing too, again the Voice filter actually pleases me mybe I’m just tired of her natural voice lol. Her model looks pleasing and surprisingly ‘Thicc’ for a robot XD. The particles arent that interesting but the Icon when an ally needs healing sure does stands out.

    What do you think Zero? I might be more into Reaper as it is limited and surprisingly not popular (I dont see anyone using Reaper Soraka for quite a while).

    • From what you say you seem to prefer Reaper Soraka over Program. We prefer Program as it seems to be a better realised skin but you should like the skin you get. If you like Reaper, then go for it. Just make sure that it’s worth the purchase as it won’t see a sale being legacy.

      • First of all, I’m sorry if I rant too much and sounds so self absorbed. It was not my intention to be annoying or anything.

        Secondly I may consider Programm just because I forgot it could go on sale for a half price. Thanks for sharing your thought Zero hope you have a good day.

        • No worries, we are glad to help. It just seemed like you answered your question yourself. Sometimes explaining something to somebody else helps see it in a clearer or different way.

          We can see the appeal in Reaper because it’s so different to her classic self but we also notice a disconnect between the healer and death dealer aspect. With Program it’s all more consistent: heal bot.

          As you wrote so enthusiastically about Reaper it seemed like you like it better than Program. We can perfectly have different opinions. After all, each person has their own preferences. No problem with that. If you need help with anything else just drop a line.

          • Most of the time I just needed a second opinion on what I wanted to buy and whos better to get opinion from other than you. And as you may noticed I do post my comments/questions here a lot meaning I really appreciate & trust your opinion.

            I perfectly understands and Thank you again for taking the time to write back to me I appreciate that.

          • Thanks for the kind words. We are glad to help so don’t hesitate to drop us a line whenever you like.

  24. Hello, Zero!

    I’d like to know if you have any plans to review Divine’s Soraka chinese splash art, as it’s the one in use at the moment.

    • Eventually, we are trying to do all we can with the site so that it doesn’t become out of date. However, it’s not been easy so far. Sorry for the inconvenience.

  25. Hi Zero 🙂

    From what has been shown, what do you think about the new soraka skin?

    • As most frosty skins go it seems to cover the usual ice magic on top of the classic design with warm clothing added. In other words, we find the adaptation too straightforward. We have only given the skin a brief look but it seems to try to have an ice healer theme which seems to end up pushed to a side in favour of direct changes.

      That’s not to say that it’s a bad skin. However, for what ought to be a legacy skin, we find it not special enough.

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