Announced today by League of Legends QA Analyst Ququroon, the changes to the champion portraits that take up a small part of your screen in each game will be hitting the PBE for testing. A massive, sweeping quality-of-life change to allow each player to have an additional way to make their skin purchases feel more meaningful, this change will affect every single champion skin in the game, but it'll only be changing the way that your individual champion portrait appears.
If you’re still a bit unclear on what exactly this change looks to do, Ququroon provided a helpful screenshot, seen below, that gives a visual of what the change will look like.
From the image above, you can see that Ahri’s champion portrait has been changed in-game to reflect whatever skin the player has equipped. Ququroon said that each and every skin in the game will get a new portrait to replace the old default image. While admitting that not every skin’s splash art looks the best, some of the skin portraits might not be as appealing as others. But considering how many skins there are in the game and how large of a change this must be, the diversity is more than welcome.
Along with the news, the Rioter stuck around to answer a couple of questions that readers undoubtedly had about the changes. The portraits of teammates and enemies on the mini-map won't be changed, so only you will be seeing the skin portrait for your champion.
If the changes sound like something you’ve seen before, it’s because the in-game portraits for Ultimate skins already had this feature. Ququroon said that this was indeed a feature that was previously exclusive to those expensive skins, and while they’re careful about removing unique features on these skins, they ultimately feel that the other hundreds of skins in the game will stand to gain much more from changes than the Ultimate skins have to lose, a sentiment that tons of players will likely agree with.
For now, there are no plans to add animated portraits, but there are some skin portraits that’ll change upon champions’ transformations. Gnar and Kayn are two champions that’ll get this treatment, but others like Nidalee and Elise transform so often that such rapid changes could distract from the game, so they’ll most likely not be added.
If everything works well with the changes on the PBE, the champion skin portrait feature is planned to be added with Patch 7.16, the one after the upcoming patch.