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League of Legends: Ryze Skins’ Review – StrategyZero
Nov 062012
Ryze, the Rune Mage
Ryze, the Rune Mage

Ryze, the Rune Mage isn’t an archetypical wizard, transformed by the arcane power he wields his skins revel in his unique idiosyncrasy. Some skins take his peculiar image to fantastic extremes while others try to root it as much as possible into the realm of the believable. The power of the runes must be contained and their call is strong, too much too resist. So, if you are desperate for the power to make Ryze look like a true arcane master, read his skins’ review.

Young Ryze
Young Ryze Splash Art Young Ryze Model
Category: Exclusive (Retail Collector’s Edition Pre-order)
Price: Not Applicable
Concept: Ryze with normal tattooed skin, wearing white and black trousers.
Model: Major model changes for Ryze.
Particles: No new particles.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: Among ruins a mage casts a powerful spell. The context is simple and so is the setting. It works but the extensive blur over the background doesn’t let any details through. The idea is conveyed but with little depth. Much the same applies to Ryze: he can only be partially seen as he casts his spell. To a point, the spell is more relevant than he is. The colours are muted and even if the shading is quite good they aren’t even effective at displaying Ryze’s more conventional skin colour; as opposed to his classic blue and purple tones. The spell is rather impressive as it distorts the background’s view but around it there are quiet patches of empty black. Besides, the pose doesn’t reveal much of Ryze’s appearance. We can only notice some basic clothing and the scroll protector. Overall, a straightforward splash art with much technical merit but frugal in terms of a message.
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Conclusion: As a straightforward look at the Rune Mage’s early years and the spoils of his adventures Young Ryze is an effective skin. The new model displays his bohemian adventurer style with some golden jewellery and the natural presence of a few scrolls. The clothing seems conventional but it’s approached from a more aggressive and youthful mage angle that probably displays part of Ryze’s personality. The golden decorations may be a hint at the usual preference of mages to have trinkets of noble materials if the need for an enchanted item arises. The classic base can be felt beyond all this style but that’s understandable: the core is to remain while the surface changes.
Overall, it covers the usual wizard bases but with an identity that suits Ryze well. As an exclusive item, it’s a fine addition but nothing revolutionary.

Tribal Ryze
Tribal Ryze Splash Art Tribal Ryze Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 520 RP
Concept: Ryze with white skin and dark lightning-like tattoos.
Model: Major model changes for Ryze.
Particles: No new particles.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: A volcanic area or the scene of a meteor shower, a mage protects himself from the fire with a magical shield as predators close in on him. The setting doesn’t seem to make much sense. It implies that the extinction of dinosaurs is at hand but why Ryze is there is anyone’s guess. On top of that, the setting is rather barebones and there isn’t much to see except for an ominous sky, some rocks and dinosaurs.
Ryze shines with magical light. The colours are a bit dim but the use of light and shadow is very well realised. His lower body still looks a bit duller in comparison with the great impression that the upper body gives. Regardless, it’s an eye-catching portrayal that gives a reasonably good depiction of him while also attracting attention. The magic supports Ryze without stealing the show and reflects his power well.
All in all, while the context isn’t clear Ryze’s portrayal is attractive and the background does present some good challenges for his arcane power. At the very least, it’s an effective spotlight for Ryze.
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Conclusion: Even though the model changes are extensive the classic base is quite evident. Tribal Ryze aims at showing a different style that is aboriginal and closer to nature. In spite of that, the major changes are the fur clothes; the thick, leather parchment of his big scroll and the tusk earrings. There’s also the chalk-white skin with some blue tattoos on them so, in theory, there are sufficient changes to realise a new look. Regardless, they feel sparse and don’t work together to affect more than the surface. Worse may be that, despite what’s noticeably different, he still looks like Classic Ryze but with some changed colours.
When all is added together, Tribal Ryze is a skin with many changes that fail to work together in displaying a new style for the Rune Mage. It’s, technically, a skin that does quite a bit for its low price yet the modifications are ineffective in conjunction and so the result isn’t particularly novel.

Uncle Ryze
Uncle Ryze Splash Art Uncle Ryze Model
Category: Regular
Price: 520 RP
Concept: Ryze dressed as Uncle Sam.
Model: Major model changes for Ryze.
Particles: New glowing stars on his arms for Overload’s passive.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: New eagle cry for Realm Warp.
Splash Art: The outdoor corridors of a building resist the harsh weather; which blows papers and chills the body. The fog lets what looks like a mast and sails suggest themselves under a light so dim that appears painted. The setting doesn’t say much and barely amounts to a place to frame the poster. However, the idea of depicting a champion as part of the setting instead of planting the character in the middle is original.
The portrayal isn’t encompassing enough to display Ryze’s entire look but there’s enough. The comic-like design adapted to the Rune Mage’s specific personality comes through clearly and the iconic display is as familiar as it should be. The ripped or folded areas as well as the lone kunai on the poster, added to the lighting, manage to give life to the static depiction.
The result is an original spotlight for a champion that ends up lost in a weak and unassuming background. The only part worth mentioning about the piece is the poster and for all its novelty it lacks a context to make its presence relevant. It’s certainly an interesting approach but the organization of the piece doesn’t let its lone and most salient feature to impress as much as it could.
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Conclusion: Uncle Ryze is a skin directly aimed at United States citizens and fans as other people won’t find much to like in it. The skin isn’t bad looking at all and does a good job at adapting Ryze to Uncle Sam’s style; though as a caricature. The clothes are easily recognisable as the colours of the star-spangled flag are evocative enough. The muscular, uncovered chest and the Bill of Rights on his back push the style into a less serious area. Finally, the glowing eyes are the sole hint at the magic that appears out of nowhere.
Overall, it isn’t a bad skin and it shows that some thought went into its implementation to make an effective recreation of its concept. However, its concept reduces its appeal; especially considering it’s almost a parody. Besides, the adaptation is quite barebones as it simply changes the surface and fails to connect with Ryze’s classic identity. Therefore, it’s a passable option if an Uncle Sam is as much as you are looking for.

Triumphant Ryze
Triumphant Ryze Splash Art Triumphant Ryze Model
Category: Exclusive (Win an official tournament)
Price: Not Applicable
Concept: Ryze as a trophy in the form of a metal statuette.
Model: Major model changes for Ryze.
Particles: No new particles.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: With a background that is a blurry mess this piece doesn’t provide a proper setting for its action. There’s a column and some other shapes but nothing concrete. There’re some people suffering the effect of the powerful arcane magic at the hands of Ryze but that also isn’t displayed well. The only thing worth paying attention to is Ryze himself.
The sharp lines, detailed textures, bright colours and fine shading make the basic spotlight attractive. The problem is that there are many areas that are either obscured or blurred and his pose doesn’t help either. It’s possible to get an idea of the look but the specifics require some effort. The magic doesn’t feel as vivid as expected and appears misty and diffuse.
This all makes the piece rather cumbersome as a portrayal and chaotic in general. The spotlight is accomplished but with evident problems. Therefore, while the sharp quality of the central area catches the eye the splash art doesn’t manage to share the attention it grabs due to the absence of other attractive elements.
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Conclusion: With a lighter blue tone for his skins and several golden highlights and gems Triumphant Ryze is a more regal take on the Rune Mage. The aspect is realized in its richness of decorations. Everything, even his tattoos, is lined with gold. The scroll roll and its straps are golden trimmed and finished with blue gems. In fact, as far as decoration goes it’s effective at changing Ryze’s style. The skin, understandably, still stays close to Ryze’s classic look but perhaps too close. The modifications are quite superficial and there’s nothing that manages to give the skin a different feel.
Regardless, as a trophy for tournament winners it isn’t a bad prize though it isn’t fantastic either. Therefore, it’s a nice skin if received but not worth taking great pains to acquire.

Professor Ryze
Professor Ryze Splash Art Professor Ryze Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Ryze dressed as a classroom teacher.
Model: Major model changes for Ryze.
Particles: New glowing runes on his scroll for Overload’s passive.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: The deep blur of the background isn’t just a disappointment but also particularly questionable given that distances are close and there’s much to see. From the headmistress’ portrait to the students’ photographs or the rich architecture it’s simply puzzling why such details are concealed by an inexplicable and also unsuitable fog. It also makes the proposed classroom less clear. The problems don’t even stop at Ryze’s own teacher table.
If we consider Ryze’s body then colours are sharp and vibrant which allow him to easily catch the eye. The simple clothes of homogenous colours appear more realistic than the dim skin and together they don’t match the almost sketchy spectacles. The magic makes for a good and focused effort in a demonstration of control and skill; something that is well reflected in the blackboard’s scores. However, as runes fly from the book to the space between Ryze’s hands the scroll on his back bathes in the background mist as if dipped into the surface of an invisible sea. The design of the scroll roll is evident but only due to its size and also lack of details.
In the end, we have another good portrayal of Ryze with a ridiculously foggy background. The obscured setting betrays all its relevance and richness of details which, ultimately, degrades the feel of the whole piece. At a glance, it’s a rather nice splash art but the abuse of the depth of field effect ruins the charm of the setting.
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Conclusion: Professor Ryze gives the Rune Mage a more conservative look that harkens back to the traditional studious arcane adept. A sensible set of clothes is in order and formal ones to be precise. Even though the look of the suit is, at large, simple the elegant approach is effective with classy shoes, trousers, jacket, waistcoat, shirt and bowtie, plus a scarf for a touch of snobbery, so that the strict teacher look is reached; finished with a cleanly trimmed beard and small round glasses. It’s the look expected from a particularly self-composed individual. It’s only that the giant scroll roller, blue skin and tattoos seem strange. Sure, the scroll roller is a fitting addition to preserve the parchment and the book hanging from the waist is a bit stylish for a suited man but added together they strike like too much. Thus, there’s a subtle inconsistency necessary due to the classic identity sipping through the seams.
All things considered, it’s an interesting alternative view of one of League’s most eminent wizards. For what its sets out to do, the skin accomplishes its objective. It changes the angle we look at the Rune Mage from but it’s the same wizard on focus; just with a fitting dose of meticulous care for his image. As a re-model it’s a good one but expensive for not offering any further changes. Still, fans of Ryze will find his Professor persona worth checking.

Zombie Ryze
Zombie Ryze Splash Art Zombie Ryze Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Ryze as a brain-eating zombie.
Model: Moderate model changes for Ryze.
Particles: New green particles for his abilities and green glow on his tattoos for Overload’s passive.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: Some towers and houses rise against and empty night sky. They are the sole witnesses of the nightmarish invasion. The context is simple but effective. The background offers only the barest of settings with the town barely suggested by the timid vision of a few structures. There’s even a shy fog on the foreground which may intend to excuse the diffuse background even if it helps with the eerie feel. What does abound is undead and also burning with supernatural flames. These animated corpses bring Zombie Brand to mind but that’s as far as the resemblance goes.
On centre stage we have Ryze as an undead mage. The glowing runes reflect the power at hand which is responsible for the circle around him which brings the invaders on. The lighting is very good with great use of light sources and excellent shading. The sharp lines display many details in both cloth and skin while the grimace on Ryze’s face is eloquent about the mage’s intentions.
All in all, this is an evocative piece with a background that is, frankly, weak. Ryze’s portrayal is quite impressive but the setting is thinly suggested as only the presence of other corpses is relevant. Regardless, it manages to present Ryze’s un-life effectively.
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Conclusion: Zombie Ryze is Ryze as a zombie but in a straightforward and superficial manner. There’s absolutely no doubt that it is Ryze. After all, it’s just him with pale skin, tattered clothes and with the upper part of a tombstone chained to his back. The idea that the zombie was restrained and broke free is good. However, that’s all that his aspect tells. All his classic elements are present but in a tattered state; scroll aside. The effect of decomposition, almost necessary for an effective undead corpse, is blatantly omitted; which is puzzling seeing how explicit it used to be pre-update.
The new green particles aim at better defining Zombie Ryze’s identity. They do have a washed out feel that suits the undead theme but there are residual blue tones; like in Overload’s shield, for instance. The effect works in communicating that his magic has been altered but it’s a simple effect that barely hints at the supernatural.
The result is shallow and more suggestive than demonstrative. Zombie Ryze is more a costume than a proper reanimated Rune Mage. The addition of green particles helps differentiate the skin but the watered-down model loses its horror appeal. It’s still a skin to be considered for Ryze fans but only if they don’t mind a weak zombie aspect.

Dark Crystal Ryze
Dark Crystal Ryze Splash Art Dark Crystal Ryze Model
Category: Regular
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Ryze as a demonic sorcerer.
Model: New model for Ryze and new glow for his crystal.
Particles: New red particles for his abilities and blue glow on his crystal for Overload’s passive.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: The diffuse background presents a chaotic setting. The structures may represent a florid architecture in some unspecified location but the reluctance to allow the setting to breathe makes it lose relevance. It does fill space and prompt questions but that’s as far as is can go. The other elements worth mentioning are the soldiers: one trapped in a rune prison and the other being attacked fully in the face. Although, his life energy seems to be absorbed, instead of receiving a burst of pure magic, which is something unexpected even if fitting.
The one responsible for all this is a demonic being with a rather cartoony depiction that isn’t really out of place. Colours are vivid and the elaborate design is clear. The horns exhibit complex surfaces, like the rest of the textures and the shading is quite good as well. The problem is that only the upper half of Ryze is visible and not even fully from the waist up as the energy conceals a good part. Perhaps there isn’t much to see in his body but the general human outline is lost and the complete absence of his lower body make him look like an evil jinn. As if that wasn’t enough, the blur that creeps from both sides and also his back doesn’t just degrade the background but also the brief portrayal.
This all makes the piece a letdown. The only relevant information is concentrated on a thin central band that doesn’t even reach from side to side. This area reveals only the uppermost region of Ryze’s physiognomy and the rest is ineffective context; except for the soldiers. Thus, this is a splash art that may catch the eye but has issues even accomplishing its most basic task.
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Conclusion: Dark Crystal Ryze treads close to the realm of the demonic while maintaining a familiar humanity. The aspect has much in common with a man turned into a devil by the corrupting force of an evil artefact: the eponymous dark crystal. The skin adds significant elements to deliver a clear devilish appearance that also leans in the territory of the arcane. The giant crystal in Ryze’s back is firmly secured to his body and his clothes are a little armoured. Although seemingly ready to face hostilities there’re some visible golden decorations as well as classy earrings; perhaps remnants of a lost humanity. The dark crystal also glows with an ominous and subtle energy as if demonstrating the power of its mere presence. The determination to protect a great power may give way to its rampant use or the mere change of a precious runic scroll for something far more dangerous. At any rate the price of how that power has changed him is clear. Alternatively, it could also be a demon simply stepping into the world of the living. The rich aesthetic not only communicates the message efficiently but it also inspires multiple interpretations of the concept which gives the skin’s a much welcome depth of meaning.
The combination of red and blue particles further emphasize the changes brought by this dark power. At times the red hues makes an ability feel different like Overload. At other times, the presence of blue almost trumps over the few red present and the skin seems too similar to classic as it happens in the other abilities. Regardless, there’s a noticeable albeit faint change that helps define the skin’s unique identity. Also, it’s worth mentioning that the explosion of the dark crystal when dying has been removed with the update.
In conclusion, Dark Crystal Ryze is a skin that is particularly rich in concept though not always as much in visuals. Even though the new model is evocative it also feels close to classic identity: which is in both cases an individual shaped by his use of powerful magic. The particles don’t always manage to stand on their own but they manage to support the theme. If you can forgive such inconsistencies, then it’s a great skin. It also demonstrates how important a good concept is despite the successes and failures of an implementation.

Pirate Ryze
Pirate Ryze Splash Art Pirate Ryze Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Ryze outfitted like a classic buccaneer.
Model: New model for Ryze.
Particles: New particles for Overload.
Animations: New animation for Overload, standing idle and joke.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: Simple but effective: a pirate finds a chest full of gold coins. We can’t really delve deeper than that as the dim background hides most elements with a preposterous fog. Not only does the Moon and clouds seem erased but also the buildings near the port and the couple of pirate companions; one who appears very familiar and the other a complete stranger, as if there weren’t pirates enough to invite. The chest, despite its elaborate design also suffers from the diffuse aspect prevalent everywhere with gold coins that see their glitter weakened. The sole exception to this abuse of depth of field is Ryze.
The Rune Mage does find one leg omitted and the boot of the other blurred but the rest is clearly on display. The shading is finely done with sharp colours that show good highlights and textures. Some surfaces could show more detail but the general look works well: metal glints, hair looks a bit waxy and the cloth is a bit simple. The coins falling from his hand are also blurred but it makes more sense to hint at their movement; even if that’s not as clear as it intends.
Overall, this is a splash art that may not have the ambition of a pirate captain but that, at least, does its job well. The portrayal is clear and evocative and so the pirate depiction is given within a fitting concept. There’s room for improvement but the basics are covered while also grabbing one’s attention.
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Conclusion: Pirate Ryze is straightforward yet also not as simple or pedestrian as it initially looks. The model is quite elaborate with particular attention to classic pirate attire. From the recognisable clothes, stripped trousers, long shirt, coat and leather boots, to the iconic eye-patch, golden earring and bandana the buccaneer appearance is obvious. There’s a small amount of classic remains so that the cannon, stepping in for his scroll, looks preposterous and the blue skin doesn’t fit well. Fortunately, the tattoos and his voice are a good match. Overall, it’s a stylized costume that does a good effort to transcend being superficial.
With that in mind, the skin adds a few fitting animations and particles to reinforce the corsair theme. Overload shoots a magic ball from the cannon on his back which allows his main ability to stand out. For his joke Ryze drinks from a bottle of rum that used to substitute the book on his hand and now merely materialises from thin air.
With the update gone are the daring pose he stroke with Rune Prison or the sips he took from his bottle when standing idle. Both were small but noticeable changes that added to the distinct theme. Although the look is more refined and polished now there’s still no relevant connection between the pirate aspect and the magic display.
On the whole, Pirate Ryze is a good skin that tries but not enough to differentiate itself from being a simple costume. There are some additions to further define his corsair identity but they are few; others have been entirely removed. As the usual magic display directly clashes with the pirate aspect the result is more superficial that the skin deserves. Therefore, as a costumed mage the idea is reasonable and even appealing but fails at reaching deeper waters.

Ryze Whitebeard
Ryze Whitebeard Splash Art Ryze Whitebeard Model
Category: Regular
Price: 750 RP
Concept: Ryze as a fairy tale wizard.
Model: New model for Ryze.
Particles: New glowing gem on his scroll for Overload’s passive.
Animations: No new animations.
Sounds: No new sounds.
Splash Art: A group of friends make a campfire and share a quiet time on their travels. A lake enchants the view with its moonlight reflection and only cartoony soil makes it company with regards to setting. It’s simple for a background but works. The stars of the piece are the merry men that follow the soil’s cartoony depiction.
There’s a knight petting his poro which draws the attention of the bowman; perhaps. That doesn’t distract the knight from having a firm grasp on his cup but the one responsible for the pouring of spirits can’t take his eyes from the wonders at the fingertips of the wizard. Even though there’s a clear disconnection between some of the champions, Varus and Ryze seem to be on their own more than part of the group, there’s interaction between most of them. This links them together and also allow a view that goes round them covering their activities. The portrayals differ in quality with Braum and Varus having more elaborate shading than Gragas and Ryze who appear to economize on details despite being part of the central scene. Additionally, it’s difficult to get a good look at the two champions closer to us and legs tend to look sketchy as well as some gear and Varus’ right hand. The cartoony feel pervades the whole piece, mostly, and where it doesn’t fit feels out of place as if borrowed from a better piece.
In the end, the composition of this splash art is great. Simple but effective, it gathers all the champions and allows a rather good look at them all. There are problems with how close some are and how uneven the depictions are. Besides, the setting feels too simplistic and even neglected around them. Overall, it’s a splash art that does a good job at offering a group view of the champions despite some annoying flaws.
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Conclusion: The appearance of an old and wise wizard from a fantasy realm suits the Rune Mage perfectly. Ryze Whitebeard adopts a decidedly stylized and even cartoony aesthetic but that only works to the skin’s benefit. The appearance is familiar and distinct including classic elements like the pointy hat, a long beard, scrolls of various kinds, a mysterious tome, a potion, a magical staff and a wand. A cloak is missing as well as some other classic items but Whitebeard effectively looks like a travelling wizard which suits the wanderer aspect; despite lacking the vibrancy of the splash art. The classic particles don’t appear out of place though a bit more blue could’ve been added to certain elements to better connect appearance and magic. Ryze’s raspy voice suits the elder sorcerer without problems and so the new style is adopted without significant inconsistencies.
All things considered, Ryze Whitebeard is a direct but appealing skin. It largely relies on its fantasy wizard aesthetic as its sole feature but it’s something well done, albeit not perfectly, which is iconic as well as welcomed in a fantastic setting. For fans of Ryze and wizards, it could be one of the best skins; as far as re-models go.

SKT T1 Ryze
SKT T1 Ryze Splash Art SKT T1 Ryze Model
Category: Legacy
Price: 975 RP
Concept: Ryze dressed in a flashy, contemporary way while carrying a huge trophy.
Model: New model for Ryze.
Particles: New blue-yellow particles for his abilities, auto-attack and recall. New glowing lines on his clothes and trophy for Overload’s passive.
Animations: New recall animation.
Sounds: New recall sounds.
Splash Art: In terms of background, we can guess that the few flashes and lights around the champions intend to reflect an arena where they have proved their skill and ended triumphant. That’s all guesswork because there’s nothing concrete to reveal it. Although there’s little room for a setting, what is available is mostly filled with empty colours.
The rest is the shared display of the six champions. Colours are saturated but the excellent use of lighting allows for a contrast that makes the depiction full of detail, in places. There are simple surfaces, especially on the outskirts of the piece so it’s the champions on the centre that tend to receive the best work. It’s enough to compare how much of each champion is displayed and occluded to find the areas in-between where details are lacking.
Kalista manages to insinuate herself quite clearly while enjoying some great use of light. The highlights on the golden speak and the transparent ones on her back also catch the eye; better than the sketchy jacket. Alistar appears a bit simple in the large surface of his body but the head is sharply depicted. Metal and hair are nicely shown but cloth disappoints. Ryze stands in centre stage and is the only one whom more than posing is also displaying his magical might. Still, his face can seem cartoony and his legs foggy. Much more pronounced is that effect on Azir. In spite of the daring pose his back is mostly and empty shadow so there isn’t much to see. Only his outline and most salient features are noticeable. Elise seems to be web-slinging into action but the intense lights dull the colours of her body. Still, the evident contrasts manage to make her face clear. Renekton is the one whom struggles the most to catch a share of space. His face looks good though it’s not as vibrant as other areas of the piece. His body, is submerged in a blur that conceals what isn’t visible but also what is; like his arms. The blade is surprisingly hidden in darkness, which may make some sense, but is a letdown.
Overall, this is a splash art that provides an uneven distribution of space for the champions. Large ones struggle in small areas while smaller ones receive full depictions. It’s not just that, the portrayals themselves are also uneven with sharp areas against blurred ones. The composition isn’t bad at all. The daring and dynamic call to action is a classic choice that works well in any team. However, the result doesn’t take advantage of it and seldom organizes the champions in ways that make the most of their unique personalities. It shows that its an abbreviated display of champions and so the portrayal suffers for it.
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Conclusion: At a glance, Ryze seems to be a fanciful gamer with an ostentatious fashion sense. That’s before something ridiculous is spotted hanging from his back. If we are to assume that he has won a tournament then this could be the case of Ryze taking the trophy and running with it; literally. As preposterous as that seems nothing about the skin even tries to offset such absurdity. Sure, the trophy is quite detailed and believably modelled but makes little sense to carry such a weight like that. Especially for a gamer, a more sensible alternative could’ve been found.
Moving on to the clothes, the trousers are unremarkable except for the baggy bottoms. The large tongues of the snickers connect with them in terms of size but, as the previous item, the trainers aren’t special. The jacket is quite colourful but reasonable as long as we forget the flamboyant front with golden trimmings and a large logo. The gloves are extravagant and make no sense except for a way to catch attention. The headphones are a bit large but reasonable enough and the sunglasses surprisingly stylish and practical; colour aside. The strip of cloth hanging from his waist seems completely out of place. The laptop does fit the theme but hanging it from the waist seems a bit too precarious for something so precious. At least the recall makes better use of it though it goes into unnecessary drama. The blue-yellow particles remind too much of the classic style but manage to add a bit of personality to the abilities. Fortunately, the lines that light up when runes are accumulated set the skin apart with its eye-catching design.
Thus, as a gamer, Ryze mostly fits the bill if it weren’t for the irrational trophy carrying. The clothes are rather flamboyant but for the most part deliver the intended message. It’s only that in the process of placating the classic design some unreasonable choices have been made that aren’t even interesting despite their lack of viability. Add the weak particle changes and SKT T1 Ryze can’t get past alright.


While Ryze’s skins faithfully stick to his classic appearance there’s still room for interesting concepts. The recommended skin is Ryze Whitebeard thanks to its iconic fantasy wizard appearance. The familiar and appealing style suits the Rune Mage without problems and provides an alternate take that draws from more traditional fantasy. For fans of wizards Ryze Whitebeard is a very nice option.

Apart from straight up re-models, it’s also worth recommending Dark Crystal Ryze. It takes the Rune Mage’s untraditional aspect and furthers the concept with a taste of dark magic. The demonic appearance stands out and makes explicit the lethality of his power. It’s certainly a skin with a distinct style and even though particles are only re-coloured it helps to communicate its premise.

Zombie Ryze is a skin worth considering for fans of horror; despite being legacy. Said horror is rather tame but the supernatural angle is present and helped by the green colour of the particles. There’s ample room for improvement but, at a basic level, the concept is realised. For what it accomplishes, Zombie Ryze is a good skin.

Also legacy is Pirate Ryze. Essentially a joke it manages to suit Ryze particularly well. The Rune Mage and corsair persona have more than a few points in common even if they aren’t fully integrated. Besides, the skin adds some animations and particles to further develop the buccaneer identity and place farther from a costume. While the combination of magic and seafaring isn’t perfect Pirate Ryze is a nice option to consider.

Simpler skins like Uncle Sam and Tribal Ryze have a very focused appeal. They aren’t bad skins, yet their concepts are either specific or generic; respectively. The adaptation is also quite simple and direct in both cases so there isn’t much to look forward to except for what is evident to the naked eye. If that’s all you are looking for in the skins, then they manage to deliver.

Both Young and Triumphant Ryze are skins that aren’t widely available. Regardless, there’s little reason to worry about that. They are interesting, especially Young Ryze as a look at his early years, but also quite straightforward. What is visible is all the skins manage to offer. They are nice to have around but there are much more ambitious and satisfying skins to choose from.

The team endorsement skin is SKT T1 Ryze which, overall, passes for a gamer with a flashy fashion sense. The adaptation works but also makes concessions to follow the classic style which make him carry a cumbersome trophy for little reason. Finer options could’ve been found and the style could’ve been less exaggerated and the particles more vivid. Still, for what it aims at it manages to get close enough.

  38 Responses to “League of Legends: Ryze Skins’ Review”

  1. Galio and Viktor please?
    My favorites 😀 I also want to know if Galio’s legendary is worth it. I’ve seen it and already want to get, just want to make sure it’s worth it.

    • Both, already in the list and accordingly bumped.

      Gatekeeper Galio is quite a nice skin in terms of looks, particles and ultimate. The new ability and auto-attack animations are quite similar to the classic ones though there is a subtle difference; still the auto-attack seems practically identical. However, the skin doesn’t have new emotes or recall as it’s older than Battlecast Prime Cho’Gath.

      If you are a Galio fan then it may be worth it but be mindful that the level of quality isn’t on par with recent offerings.

  2. Have you figured out if Dark Crystal Ryze’s death animation is different? Sounds interesting.

    • Sorry we left a notice like that, we forgot to check. We’ve updated the review, thanks for the notice.

      After checking we noticed that the animation is the same except for his dark crystal which shatters. It’s not much of a difference but it’s something.

  3. Champion Ryze => Triumphant Ryze

  4. In your opinion what is the best ryze skin out of all of them?

    • Ryze’s skins could do with some extra elaboration but, from them all, if you want something serious then the best is Dark Crystal Ryze. The demonic angle suits him rather well as if his power is coming from an evil source.

      Professor Ryze is an option for something believable yet not so gloomy. If you want something less serious then Pirate Ryze is an interesting skin. However, don’t expect it to make too much sense.

  5. I enjoy your skin reviews, and thanks for making them. However, I think the Dark Crystal Ryze skin has a new animation for walking. Please check it out 🙂

    • Glad that you like the reviews.

      We made a side by side comparison and there doesn’t seem to be any difference. Did you notice anyting in particulary that stood out?

      • Strange you did not find anything difference. It seems like a very small walking animation change…
        I noticed his animation is a bit more “blocky” or chunky. Especially his right arm, it seems to sway unnaturally. I do think there is an animation change, but it is very small. Hope this helps.

        • Could be that the walk looks different due to the new model. Perhaps it had some minor modifications to adapt the movements for the new model. We’ll check again in-game to make sure and update if we find noticeable changes.

  6. I enjoy your skins review,and thanks. May I ask when can I buy the pirate ryze?msorry for the broken English :P.

    • Don’t worry, all is understood. Pirate Ryze is a legacy skin from the Harrowing event. It’ll most probably be available for purchase again around Hallowen; by the end of October. There’s the possibility that it could appear in some special event or a bundle that’s less probable.

  7. What do you think of the new ryze? Green particles for zombie and red for dark crystal.

    • The Ryze champion update seems to add a polished model with new animations but reusing most of the previous particles; which does make sense. It’s an improvement and the re-coloured particles for Zombie and Dark Crystal almost a necessity if they pretend to stay at their price. Things seem updated to modern times yet we fail to see an improvement with respect to what is expected nowadays.

      With respect to the old Ryze, the champion update is a clear enhancement. In comparison with the technical merits of recent champions Ryze seems to be merely catching up with the times.

  8. Why do you seem to constantly refer to Ryze by his old title? I thought Riot were more than clear about his title now being The Rune Mage. Also, in the intro of the review, you indirectly mention the name of the ultimate he no longer has. Was that an intentional reminder? I’m mostly asking because of the old title.

    • We checked yesterday and right now to make sure but Riot hasn’t updated their own page with the new Ryze information. The old tittle was an oversight but the mention of Desperate Power was a reference to his old self. The desperation aspect also ties in with his new incarnation which is always desperate to contain the runes and save the world so we though the double entrendre fitting. We’ll fix the title to the new one; thanks for the notice.

      • Ah, I see.
        Also, shouldn’t forget to mention how pleased I was to see the review up so early, I was thinking it would be available next week. It was also a very lovely review, of course. Looking forward to the Pool Party skins now, and the Project skins after!
        And speaking of the Project skins, I am very curious what you think of the Ashe one. It’s another legendary, and I think this one actually makes an effort to stand out unlike the Yi one. Maybe I am just biased because I hate Yi (I don’t even play Ashe though) but I adore Project Ashe.

        • We always try to have reviews soon after the skin or update has been released but it’s not always possible. Your images did help a lot, especially with the limited skins, so thanks for your help.

          Pool Party skins ready, on to PROJECT now. We like PROJECT: Ashe and it’s certainly bounds better than Yi’s in features. However, we find the result a bit monotonous with a very restricted colour palette and a rather strict design. It’s good but it would be great if the hood and cape, and perhaps some other little effects, could be toggled on and off by the player; like DJ Sona changes forms. It would add a unique customization aspect that would make the skin unique. After all, a legendary skin is supposed to be something special.

          It’s a good skin and we like the potential it has. However, we find that it simply restricts itself in ways that make little sense. In fact, you could say that it’s a virtual or cyber frost archer. That’s fine but it should try harder to define a unique identity for the skin. It can incorporate a few classic elements but a legendary skin should feel like a whole new version of the champion. We don’t think PROJECT: Ashe reaches that far. What’s available is good but we’d say that not good enough.

  9. can you plz recomend me one of this skins for a ryze main,and if there will be a soon future skin for him?

    • We have no information about a future Ryze skin except for the SKT skin that is coming soon. We’d recommend Rogue Mage’s fans to get Dark Crystal Ryze because of its distinct sinister style. You can get it on sale unlike the legacy ones which are the only other skins that also change the particles’ colour.

      In the legacy area Zombie or Pirate may be worth checking if you like what they offer but they aren’t that special despite being tied to an event. As far as re-models go Whitebear is an option for a fantasy wizard look.

  10. The Zombie Ryze skin is, in all honesty, pretty boring in all aspects. Moving along, should I buy the SKT T1 Skin? Is it worth the money considering the particles and the model alike?

    • We agree that Zombie Ryze has been polished to the point of making it watered-down. It still has its own style but the undead aspect could and should’ve been more developed.

      With regards to SKT T1 Ryze the particles mostly have new colours with a clear base on the classic style. The model is a change of clothes with a modern aesthetic that is different from the usual fantasy adaptation that the Rune Mage has but that looks evidently stylised. Truth be told, it’s not a bad skin but there are more interesting options.

  11. Should I get the Dark Crystal Ryze skin or the Whitebeard Ryze skin.

    • Depends on whether you prefer a demonic sorcerer or a high fantasy wizard. The difference in price stands, in part, for the new red particles that Dark Crystal Ryze has; Whitebeard reuses the classic ones. Overall, both are good skins at their price tiers. It’s mostly a matter of which concept you like the most.

  12. I know this is out of topic but, is it worth it to buy an ultimate skin and an epic skin for one hero, because I bought the whole Star Guardian Skin pack and that included Lux but I wanted to buy Elementalist Lux also, not that the Star Guardian skin is bad, its actually very great I mistakened it one time for being a Legendary skin, it’s just Elementalist Lux comes with 10 skins in one. P.S. I don’t have trouble with money.

    • Technically, we find Star Guardian Lux superior to Elementalist in the sense that the former better defines a distinct identity for Lux. Elementalist is quantity over quality so that it’s the same Lux but with a wide array of different flavours. With regards to her sorceress side it’s the natural yet also more direct evolution. It’s a good skin if you appreciate it for what it can offer. However, even if money isn’t a concern, an ultimate skin should strive for enough depth to presents its concept in the best possible way. While variety is clear it’s also true that elements tend to feel shallow.

      If you play Lux a lot and don’t mind Elementalist’s issues then it’s a skin with much to offer. It will feel familiar in a sense but it does have some nice features to appreciate. It really depends on how much you play Lux and if Elementalist has a sufficiently appealing concept and execution. It certainly isn’t a bad skin but its approach can be questionable. After all, within the extent of an ultimate skin there’s ample room for better developing each form; which is what the skin should’ve done.

      • Dude I have another Question. What server do you play in and What’s your IGN and Rank and what role do you prefer the most. (I prefer to be an Assasin Specialy Rengar farm and A fighter specialy Yasuo. Sorry for Off topic Questions, We can chat in skype if you want.

        • We usually base reviews on the content in the NA server in the understanding that it’s the default server. We don’t play much nowadays and certianly not at a competitive level. We do play ocassionaly to keep up to date with the game and be able to make reviews with knowledge of the current standards.

          In terms of role we usually didn’t have to pick one as we have always been advocates of Dominion and other casual game modes that allow for lots of fun and little worry. Truth be told, we find the classic SR gameplay quite rigid and static because there’s too little variation.

          For example, in Dominion you could build a support offensively and be competitive; to a point but still. Everybody could get kills and enjoy the mayhem. In SR everything has its place and time and if anybody makes a mistake it can cost you the match. As you can imagine that seldom has nice consequences in the mood of the players. We prefer to relax with some fun game mode. Enough worries already in the real world.

  13. I’ve noticed none of Ryze’s reviews point out where the glowing textures are located when he uses his abilities. For instance, Classic and Tribal still have the glow on their tattoos, while Professor and Whitebeard have it located on their scroll and magic staff, respectively. Also, Uncle has the glow on the shoulders in a 3-star pattern(I think it’s 3 stars…). Given that information, would it make the skin/s a bit more appealing?

    • To be fair, we didn’t notice most of them so thanks for the information. From the sound of it, they are small changes that help better delineate the identity of each skin but we don’t see them as significant enough to alter the rating. We’ve added the information to the reviews because they are a relevant even if not significant feature of the the skins.

  14. Quick question,which would you recommend,dark crystal ryze or skt t1 ryze?

    • We’d recommend Dark Crystal Ryze. It’s quite a nice skins that gives a rather effective different identity to the Rune Mage’s arcane proficiency. SKT T1 is also a good skin but it’s casual style doesn’t fit as well in the fantasy of the game and champion. Besides, despite some good touches, the skin doesn’t fully accomplish a distinct identity.

  15. Hello! there seems to be a mini sound effect when Pirate Ryze cast q, a click sound to be accurate.

    • We checked and didn’t notice anything diffeerent in any of his abilities’ sounds. Do you have a video or any other resource where we can check it?

  16. It mentions that pirate ryze has an animation change for rune prison, but I can’t seem to find it on the youtube videos of the skin compared to the classic skin.

    • It could’ve been removed after the visual upgrade. We checked and you are right, only Overload has a new animation, not Rune Prison. A pity, thanks for the headsup.

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