Dec 102015
 
Snow Day Syndra, Bard and Gnar
Snowdown Showdown 2015

Build your fortress of shining ice, strong and mighty, may its walls raise high.
Gather your friends, take cover and duck, don’t let the enemy get you with a snowball.
May the Poro King bless your battles, aim and shoot, may your sight be acute.
Snow day here, snow flies everywhere, having fun with friends is being a millionaire.
The day becomes dusk, we take refuge at home, warming up with a hot cocoa cup.
Tomorrow another adventure awaits, friends and enemies mix again, it’s just us on a new snow day.

Splash Art

Blue sky, blue clouds, even the ice fortress looks blue. Without a doubt, blue is the main colour and few things contend with it. Some trees defy its domain with dark leaves and clear snow as well as some more of said element nearby. However, sans some penguins in and out of ice, there’re only champions to see. As a setting, the background is largely filler to give the snow day a place.

The depictions vary greatly in quality. Not only that but the champions stay independent of each other and there’s no integration or interaction between them or with the setting. They could each be on their own anywhere else and their generic pose wouldn’t pose any problem. There’re some exceptions but, at large, that’s the feeling the piece gives.

Going into specifics, Gnar is depicted with bright colours that get diffuse as easily as looking away from his hand and left glove. The dull colours make little sense but the chased penguin adds a nice setup for his appearance.

Bard sits with a hot cocoa cup in one hand and a penguin in another. The idea is simple but works though not much of his look can be seen. On top of that, the colours are a bit dull and so his portrayal isn’t as striking as it could be.

Syndra is in a league of her own: her portrayal looks like a sketch. It’s not just that the colours lack any vibrancy but it’s also that the proportions seem slightly amiss and the look strikes as flat and devoid of life. The idea that she may be readying to respond to a snowball attack does little for the lifeless depiction.

All in all, this is merely a functional splash art. It shows the three champions against a sensible backdrop and that’s it. There’s little that makes the spotlight exciting or that shows something different about the champions or shared theme. By and large, it’s a disappointment.

Snow Day Syndra
Snow Day Syndra Splash Art Snow Day Syndra Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 1350 RP
Concept: Syndra in winter clothes wielding ice magic.
Model: New model for Syndra.
Particles: New snow particles for her spheres and auto-attacks as well as her abilities with and without the Transcendent bonus, recall and death.
Animations: New recall animation.
Sounds: New ice sounds for her abilities, auto-attack, taunt, joke, laugh and recall.
Rating: Star clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZeroStar clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZeroStar clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZero
Conclusion: Snow Day Syndra is a skin that gives a great first impression that is only reinforced afterwards with the spectacle it can provide. The winter clothes make Syndra look very elegant thanks to the simple but classic designs of her coat and boots which nicely contrast with the light-blue sweater and cap as well as her dark tights and gloves. The new hairstyle and hair colour add to the different personality but risk making her look like somebody else; her face seems different too. Regardless, even if conventional, the new appearance is appealing.
What starts good only gets even better once the impressive snow particles start exploding and their chilling sounds slash the air. The spheres by themselves look nice but don’t make eyes turn. They are just a change of element for Syndra’s magic. However, things change once they are put to work. There’s no doubt that a lot of work has gone into making her abilities and auto-attacks impactful as well as faithful representations of the snow theme. The complexity of the abilities’ visuals is palpable and the sounds make the cold aspect even more perceivable. It surely is a great example of how to make effective visuals supported with good audio. The recall is a fine addition that only serves to reiterate and underline the message that the whole skin has clamoured all along. Yet, it does so in such a fine and attractive way that it only can be a plus. Sadly, the animations department is devoid of any additions; recall excepted.
Without a doubt Snow Day is a skin with much to offer. The work that went into the particles is clear and yet Atlantean is also a skin with a wonderful presentation of its water theme. That’s why it seems strange that Snow Day offers just as much yet costs more. Syndra is no stranger to extraordinary displays of elemental magic and for a special occasion something exceptional is expected. It is delivered but at the same level as before.
All things said and done, Snow Day Syndra is a spectacular skin with a fine model, fabulous particles and exemplary sound. It’s a great demonstration of how much can be done with a traditional theme. It’s only the price that doesn’t seem to suit the skin. At 1350 RP, along a legacy tag, an extra effort is expected but that shouldn’t discard the fantastic features offered by Snow Day Syndra. Ultimately, it’s a great skin but expensive so fans should be aware that they’ll be paying more for the same amount of features as other skins of her. If it’s any consolation, it’s a set of features that is admirably done; as Syndra deserves.

Snow Day Bard
Snow Day Bard Splash Art Snow Day Bard Model
Category: Regular
Price: 1350 RP
Concept: Bearded Bard in winter clothes and aided by penguin meeps.
Model: New model for Bard, chimes and meeps. New glow for his flute, meeps and chimes.
Particles: New particles for his abilities, meeps, auto-attack, taunt, joke, dance and death.
Animations: New walking and recall animations. New animations for his meeps.
Sounds: New sounds for his meeps, abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Rating: Star clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZeroStar clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZeroStar clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZero
Conclusion: Demonstrating a great adaptability to the winter season Snow Day Bard is a charming skin that appeals in every aspect. The bearded Bard in winter clothes isn’t revolutionary but works and the ice shards for chimes don’t impress either. However, the fantastic penguin meeps and the delicious cocoa shrines make for quite an appealing presentation. The penguin travellers through the Magical Journey corridors are another example of what the skin can achieve. The rest of the particles rely on snowflake patterns and chilly sounds and while suitable they seem to lack the ingenious approach of the meeps and shrines. The recall is an exception as it shows the friendly relationship between Bard and his meeps and that is palpable in their personality.
The general feel of the skin is attractive and fills the Snowodown bill well. However, it does feel uneven. In areas, it’s the usual suspects: winter clothes and snow particles. In others, it’s imagination and charm as the cocoa shrines, penguin meeps and Magical Journey demonstrate. It’s not that the snow looks bad, on the contrary, but it pales in comparison with the inventiveness showed elsewhere. Even the new ice skating animation seems subtle in comparison. Additionally, the inspiring magical feel of Classic Bard seems toned down and only resurfaces in specific touches.
Ultimately, Snow Day Bard is a good skin but it can feel uneven. It has some wonderful additions and others that despite being good fail to make an impression. The problem is that while the skin adapts Bard in full to a Snow Day the price seems to be set because of the champion’s complexity more than the extra steps that the skin takes. At 1350 RP a skin needs to do more not do what can be done and justify the expense in how vast the landscape was. Therefore, Snow Day Bard is a charming skin but also expensive so a sale is recommended.

Snow Day Gnar
Snow Day Gnar Splash Art Snow Day Gnar Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Gnar dressed in winter clothes with a polar temper.
Model: New model for Mini and Mega Gnar plus his boomerang.
Particles: New particles for his abilities and auto-attack.
Animations: New recall animation for Mini and Mega Gnar.
Sounds: New sounds for his abilities, auto-attack and recall.
Rating: Star clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZeroStar clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZeroStar clip art used in skin reviews at StrategyZero
Conclusion: Dressed in winter clothes Snow Day Gnar makes the Missing Link lose part of his primal adorability but retains his cuteness. The blue fur can strike as strange initially but most of the elements that make Gnar appealing remain. The difference is that it changes from a wild style to something more civilized. The fact that he wields a small ice axe only serves to reinforce the civility. Mega Gnar seems simpler in comparison keeping the same bestial aspect but with a bluish, polar coat of paint. The cap and scarf aim at adding some more of the theme and the appeal of Mini Gnar but it seems like too little.
The particles are, for the most part, essentially a re-colour of the classic ones. There aren’t any new designs for Mini Gnar and the same can be said about Mega Gnar. The only exceptions are Boulder Toss with its ice-encased penguin and GNAR!’s thin ice spikes.
Ultimately, it all comes down to an appealing yordle that behaves more childish than primitive and that exhibits a bad temper that only captures a fraction of his appeal. The winter theme doesn’t come through in all changes and there are few instances where it’s really fine. That doesn’t make Snow Day Gnar bad at any rate but it can only be a good skin with potential to be more.

Conclusion

Overall, this is a good set of Snowdown Showdown skins. The ones that stand out the more are the most expensive ones: Snow Day Syndra and Bard. They offer a vast array of changes yet all within the realm of what’s already present. There isn’t anything new only changes to what already exists. The adaptation is quite good in both cases but for seasonal skins there’s a missing extra that would set them apart as something unique.

Snow Day Gnar is more modest in comparison but still covers the required modifications to represent the new theme. It could be said that it’s not as ambitious a skin as the other two; even if there’s room for more at its lower price. Regardless, it’s not a bad skin at all.

All in all, these Snow Day skins are fine options. They offer a sensible amount of changes and even if they don’t manage to go an extra league in their executions the result is appealing in all three cases. The theme is nothing groundbreaking to start with but they manage to provide something appealing in each case. If you’re searching for some snowy or icy fun then they have a few tricks up their sleeves to offer.

  2 Responses to “League of Legends: Snowdown Showdown 2015 Skins’ Review”

  1. I definitely agree, especially with the Syndra skin, the icy particles and sounds are very noticeable and fun to play around with but the skin does make her look and feel somewhat like a different champion. The recall is a good tribute to what she her underlying look is normally but the skin does lack a certain uniqueness that i cant quite put my finger on. As for Bard the chimes dont impress and just feel sorta recolored, it shines in certain areas but falls short in others as well. Thanks for your thoughts and reviews on the skins i really enjoy reading what you have to say and definitely take your reviews into consideration before making my purchase.
    P.S. The skins are definitely worth with the release sale in my opinion (Bard/Syndra)

    • Not at all, we are glad you find the reviews useful.

      We agree, the skins aren’t bad per se but they just don’t manage to feel as special as they could or other are. The release sale makes them a more reasonable option but the fact remains that they still lack something extra that moves them from really good to great.

      An appropriate price would’ve helped but as previous Snowdown skins demonstrate it’s not just a matter of value. Is about adding some touches that make the skins display their theme in a different more attractive and interesting way. It was done before so it’s a pity that it couldn’t be repeated.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

(required)

(required)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.