Riot Games launched an expansion for Legends of Runeterra last week, but it got a little buried — both in the sense that there was a Hearthstone expansion making news in the digital CCG world, and that that it literally has a subterranean theme.
Rise of the Underworlds adds 43 cards to LoR, along with three new champions and a new keyword. The three champions are Ekko, Pyke, and Rek’sai, and they’re also available to be picked in the Lab, along with Swain and Shyvana. The new keyword, Lurk, strangely doesn’t trigger when it’s played or on the board. Instead, followers with Lurk will activate when they’re on the top of your deck, granting +1/+0 to your Lurkers when you attack. There’s a new challenge, Beneath the Surface, that introduces the Lurkers and their keyword.
The expansion arrived alongside Patch 2.11.0, which added a lot more than new cards. Riot “packaged together a number of live design opportunities that we’ve identified over time” — in other words, there were a lot of card changes, and Riot hopes to establish a better cadence in the future. Ideally, there wouldn’t be a live update alongside a batch of new cards, so Riot will be “closely monitoring the impact of our changes and try to respond very quickly if we aren’t hitting our goals.”
This update also updates the prologue, to help new players get more easily get a feel for LoR by introducing the various modes, improving the pace of progress, and offering more rewards. The next update, 2.12.0, will bring the summer event to the game, while 2.14.0 will be highlighted by the next expansion. Finally, there are seven new archetypes in the Expeditions pool, featuring the expansion’s new champions and strategies, as well as new cards in existing archetypes.