Along with all of the new games, ways to play, and other announcements that Riot made during their 10 year celebration, they also revealed the next champion coming to the Rift. They have yet to release details of Senna’s playstyle or abilities, beyond the fact that she will be the first Marksman Support. However, between her reveal video, backstory and things Riot have done in the past, some decent guesses can be made.
Just like any other character that has been featured prominently in the lore of the game, players have been wondering if they might make a playable appearance at some point in the future. With how compelling the story of Lucian and Senna is, it was only a matter of time before they decided to bring the other half of the pair from the page to the rift.
In the video that was shown during the event, her first action upon being freed is to shoot Lucian with her oversized rifle, protecting him from Thresh’s Death Sentence. Protecting an ally by shooting them is fairly standard to expect from a “Marksman Support” but it is what comes immediately after that is most interesting. Thresh’s hook bounces off of the shield created by Senna and reflects back at him, striking him in the chest. Now, this could just be the creators of the video making an artistic choice, but it seems more likely a hint of what could be the core of her kit.
Much like Fiora with her Parry, Senna may turn her opponent’s abilities against them, reflecting damage, Crowd Control, or both back on the caster. This adds an entirely new depth of gameplay, which is something Riot loves to do. Until now, players only had to be aware of a single ability on one champion in terms of if their ability might backfire on them. Now, if this becomes a reality, Senna could cast this on any of her allies, forcing all of her opponents to be much more careful with the choices they make.
While she is the first Marksman Support to join League, there is a character with a similar identity in Overwatch – Ana. The Support Sniper can shoot either allies to heal them, or enemies to damage them, with her basic attacks. Though this same mechanic is unlikely in league, as healing with every auto attack would be fairly overpowered, they could follow this idea with an ability. Lulu is a support that already has the option to buff allies or hinder enemies with the same ability, and something similar could be used here. This mechanic adds a lot of power to a champions kit, since it increases the number of abilities that they can cast. However, it also presents the challenge of increased decision making, since using it for one purpose triggers the cooldown for both. This high risk, high reward style is something that Riot seems to be pushing with their recent champions, and Senna will likely follow the same path.
Lover’s Duo 2.0
Another option is based more on something Riot has done once successfully in the past – Champion pairing. Xayah and Rakan have been some of the most played Champions at higher levels in their respective positions for quite some time now. While each is strong on their own, the decision by Riot to give them an additional boost when played together has added another element altogether. If Riot ever plans to repeat this mechanic, it’s hard to imagine a better time than this. The story of Lucian and Senna has been one of the most compelling in the game, and his quest to rescue her soul from Thresh’s lantern has always been the characters driving force. Now that they are back fighting side by side once again, it would be strange if they weren’t given some sort of small boost when laning together.
There is still some time before Senna’s full kit is revealed, and she is expected to be live on the PBE in just over a week. When it is, some of these elements will likely be present in one way or another, as well as some things that have never been seen before on the rift.