Shurima has risen and so its children return to protect it. Taliyah has trained hard under expert tutelage but the time for each sparrow to fly eventually comes. Now that she’s left her nest she displays all her hard-hitting might and love for her land. She realises that she’s still learning though but she can still teach a lesson or two for those most impudent to stand against her. So, if you meet her in your travels, surely adapting to each new culture she encounters, don’t forget to give her a pebble. She can do a lot with it and maybe she’ll teach you to do something with it too. As for which cultures she likes to explore, that’s what the skin review is for.
|Concept:||Taliyah as an iceweaver.|
|Model:||New model for Taliyah and new caribou for her recall.|
|Particles:||New particles for her abilities, auto-attack, laugh and recall.|
|Animations:||New recall animation.|
|Sounds:||New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall. New quotes when moving, attacking and new interactions with Freljordian champions.|
|Splash Art:||Snow and caribous, that’s all the context we have for Taliyah’s appearance. Granted, taking care of a herd of furry animals is enough to grab one’s attention. Regardless, the setting is simple and empty and there’s only an impending avalanche in the distance to give meaning to Taliyah’s actions. She may be protecting her animals but it’s a rather barebones presentation. With that said, the intense depth of field effect is ridiculous as the caribou’s are drowning in a mist. Ice and snow aren’t interesting and while Taliyah’s efforts in keeping the herd are visible around them they fail to stand out as the whole of the background is so homogeneous.
Taliyah herself makes a clear contrast with the rest of the piece due to her bright colours and more detailed depiction. Depth of field is still abused, as her right arm and hair reveal, but the rest of her is detailed enough; the snow over her clothes and the calf are good touches. Although there’s a certain opaque feel to her portrayal where colours are never as bright as they should; like the dim gem in her tiara or the golden earrings. Add to this the inexpressive face and careless, to say the least, way of sliding and stakes don’t seem to be particularly high; yet she doesn’t seem to be enjoying herself either.
Overall, this is a splash art that makes a sensible but lacking presentation of Taliyah and her herd of caribou. The idea isn’t bad but the depiction lacks vibrancy. The result is a piece that works but that isn’t as effective as an exciting presentation card as it might’ve intended.
|Conclusion:||While the transformation from stoneweaver to iceweaver is interesting it’s also natural and even predictable. The obvious similarities between rock and ice allow Taliyah to make an easy transition from one element to the other without too much work in the adaptation. Sadly, that does show in the skin; which for its price isn’t a good signal. The Freljordian clothes are nice and the washing of her physical characteristics isn’t surprising; even if she’s only supposed to be visiting the region. It’s not a real problem as moving from desert to tundra and adapting to a different culture is prone to show evident physical changes. Regardless, everything is rather conventional and timid. No relevant change is present only superficial adaptations. The same applies to the all-new particles and sounds. The ice is effectively presented but it feels just like blue rocks. The similarities are too obvious and so the new personality is weak and lacks any significant features to define it. Even the recall struggles despite the presence of a caribou; which isn’t used anywhere else so it can seem unrelated.
Actually, the real problem isn’t that the skin doesn’t accomplish its shy transformation from stone to ice. It’s that the result is too close to the original and also doesn’t define a personality by itself. In essence, it’s the same Taliyah but with a change of colour and sound. It’s too barebones and simple a transformation to feel unique as all its appeal is drawn from the classic persona. The new quotes do try to alleviate that but can only do so much on their own.
In conclusion, Freljord Taliyah doesn’t truly feel Freljordian. It’s instead a simple change to ice powers that feels identical to the classic ones. The ice never feels as such and the change of clothes is ineffective in displaying a different culture due to how generic they are. Overall, this is an expected simple release skin. It doesn’t go far from the classic base and seems to do an effort to keep everything as close to the classic self as possible. In that regard, it is a success. As a skin with a unique personality, it needs more work.
|Concept:||Taliyah as a classy stoneweaver.|
|Model:||New model for Taliyah and new glow for her cloth strips.|
|Particles:||New particles for her abilities, auto-attack, high speed run and recall.|
|Animations:||New recall animation.|
|Sounds:||New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.|
|Splash Art:||The setup is pretty simple: a lake surrounded by carved rocks in the form of waves. There’s a statue of Mega Gnar which, despite how diffuse it is, looks photorealistic. Besides some rocks for the champions to stand on, except Taliyah whose feet aren’t visible, we can only comment on how clear and fresh the water looks. It’s a setting for the champions to be present but there’s no content or meaning in it.
The champions appear in a way that part of their personality is visible in their stance. Xayah and Rakan hold hands to represent their link, Gnar is mildly curiuos, Taliyah is confident, Jarvan IV serious and Ezreal cocky. Each portrayal is eloquent enough about the look of each champion. Taliyah, being at the forefront shows the sharpest colours with an appealing soft glow on her strips; Jarvan IV and Gnar’s transparencies are more solid. Ezreal manages to show a nice glow to represent his powerful magic but Xayah and Rakan look a bit dull with washed out colours.
All added together, this is a shared splash art that takes the shared part to heart. Each champion gets a good share of the space available but the composition is content with simply showing each one. The setting has little significance and each champion is only able to display a bit of personality in their stance. The result is a splash art that works at the basics but doesn’t aim at anything else.
|Conclusion:||In spite of the good first impression given by the model, SSG Taliyah is simply a more stylised interpretation of the Stoneweaver. Clothes are richer with nice wave patterns and glowing, translucent strips of cloth; which makes them quite eye-catching and attractive. It’s just a change of clothes but one that shows a classier, perhaps even aristocratic, Taliyah.
Particles show that the core hasn’t changed. Her rocks change to bluish tones and are ornamented with wave decorations like her clothes, still they are stones. The result is a more fantastic display of stone magic but one that, despite looking classier, is still the same as in Classic. The blue glows help with the style but it’s clear that we are moving across the same surface without delving any deeper.
Sounds are, expectedly, that of breaking rocks but soft and more brittle than the solid feel of Classic. This matches the visuals well for a classy take on stone magic. However, there’s nothing really new.
The recall is half display of stone magic and half reference to the associated SSG player. As such, one part is more fitting to the League fantasy than the other.
All added together, it doesn’t take much to say that SSG Taliyah is Blue Taliyah. The core is certainly unchanged: that of a stone sorceress. The approach is classier and more stylised but that’s only the surface. It’s fitting and attractive however, hardly as special as a legacy skin in this tier warrants.
For a release skin, Freljord Taliyah is no surprise. It’s another skin that forgoes a distinct personality in favour of keeping close to the original identity. The feel of the ice is identical to the rocks and the clothes fail at showing the Freljordian culture. The result is a skin that lacks flavour and whose actual appeal is the one given by the classic style. All in all, it’s a different aspect but also a superficial take on a Freljordian iceweaver.
SSG Taliyah is a classier and more stylised interpretation on the Stoneweaver. The core is untouched but the surface changes with an attractive but shallow new take. For such a special, legacy skin the approach seems rather timid despite the appeal that it evidently has.