Riot Games has another jungle shakeup planned for League of Legends' next preseason period, and this time, it's doing something completely new. An overview of some of the work-in-progress jungle changes shared this week confirmed that Riot intends to add pets to the jungle, pets that'll help junglers clearing out the jungle itself while also empowering champions to some degree. Riot's full plans have not been laid out, however, so we only know of teases so far to hint at what might happen.
The plentiful jungle changes were talked about first in a Lol Pls video focused on the next preseason period and a couple of upcoming champions. These pets stem from planned changes for the jungle items themselves which Riot said don't currently offer a lot of excitement or readability when it comes to things like Red Smite. Riot won't be returning to the days of Spirit of the Elder Lizard or Wriggle's Lantern but will instead try out a new strategy via these pets.
"These pets will help you do little things in the jungle like clearing or taking down epic monsters (think old Sated Devourer puppy)," a post on the League site accompanying the video said. "As you jungle, you slowly raise and feed your pet until they've grown up enough to be able to empower you."
Two early images showed what sorts of things Riot is looking at, though the devs clarified that the concepts were very early in development and that things would look different when the idea was fully realized. One image shown below had a tiny wolf walking behind Mundo in the jungle while another showed how Riot used stand-in effects for the part where the pet empowered the player.
"Our earliest prototype was a jungle wolf that followed you around and whenever you killed a camp, Ahri's foxfire missiles shot into the wolf's mouth," the post explained. "At a certain point the wolf got really, really small (unlike our love of it) and attached to your head. Then a recolored version of (soon-to-be-outdated) Udyr's Tiger Form glowed on you while Aatrox's ult activation sound effect played repeatedly (and globally oops)."
As for what that buff does, Riot isn't saying just yet, so we'll have to wait until closer to the preseason period when that and more questions will be answered.