Fans Complain Udyr Rework is Pandering to Chinese Players | RiftFeed
Is this the same old complaining, or is there a ring of truth to it?

Fans Complain Udyr Rework is Pandering to Chinese Players

News 07-08-2022 22:00
Udyr Geweih
Maybe horns are hard to animate, but consider the rule of cool | © Riot Games

The Udyr rework is finally coming close to being released, and Riot Games have released a trailer showcasing what his abilities will look like, and what his in-game model will be.

It's exactly the in-game model that players have a problem with, and have taken to various social media to discuss the differences in what we were promised, and what Riot plan on delivering.

What Was Udyr Supposed to Look Like?

According to his lore, Udyr is something akin to a druid, or a warg. Making his living in the forests and frozen tundras of Freljord, he is a rugged man, or large body proportions, and the body hair to match.

01 Udyr Banner
Was it just too good to be true? | © Riot Games

To complete his champion fantasy, something Riot Games insist is the most important accept of any champion, he is also covered in runic markings, akin to tattoos. All of this, and more, we were shown in various dev talks, showing the development of Udyr's rework, and we couldn't be happier.

What Will Udyr Look Like In-Game?

After watching the trailer showing what Udyr is capable of, we couldn't be happier seeing that Riot Games have gone above and beyond in his rework. However, there was something nagging us at the back of our minds, and upon seeing a post that started a thread of discussion on Reddit, we finally understood what that is.

As the creator of the post describes, Udyr's in-game model looks like he came fresh out of the womb, with no markings on his body that indicate a harsh life, such as scarring, or prominent tattoos, or even body hair usually found on burly men.

Instead, what we got is an Udyr that looks like he went through one of the powerwash simulations. Upon the deepening of the discussion, it seems that there are no champions in League of Legends that have body hair or any markings, which are usually frowned upon in China.

Udyr ingame model
We have Udyr at home. Udyr at home: | © Riot Games

Champions such as Gangplank and Graves, once League of Legends got to China, which is admittedly the largest concentration of LoL players in the world, have also lost these details that complete their champion fantasy.

Even Pantheon, the champion whose entire theme is being a man instead of a perfect, smooth, god, was only given body hair at fans' insistence. This pandering to Chinese cultural norms has been a sore issue in the League of Legends community for quite some time now, so fans tend to jump to every single thing to accuse China.

However, in the case of Udyr, with his rework originally designing him as shown, it's obvious some last-minute corrections were made, to change the champion, so it sells better.

Rijad Kamberovic

Graduating from Sarajevo university in 2020, with a Bachelor's Degree in Islamic Theology, I never believed that my fascination with comparative religions and their myths would mesh so well together with the fantasy genre of the video games I play....