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League of Legends: Corki Skins’ Review – StrategyZero

Corki, the Daring Bombardier is hardly a common yordle: not only does he not look like one but he also is unusually infatuated by his copter; or copters. What he lacks in clothes variety he tries to make up with copter choices making for all kinds of results. When the time comes for a sortie, you can be up to snuff with this skins’ review so as not to look like a nugget.

UFO Corki

Category:
Promotional (given when signing before January 14th, 2010)

Price:
Not Applicable

Concept:
Corki flying on a stylized dish UFO.

Model:
New textures for Corki and new model for his copter.

Particles:
New trail particles for the copter.

Animations:
No new animations.

Sounds:
New alien engine sound.

Splash Art:
In spite of some thick brushstrokes and a perceivable lack of detail the background provides a good setting. An airbase in a desert area releases three fighters which in turn further four, according to the trails, missiles to catch a, presumably, escaped flying object. With a bit of Area 51 sprinkled for effect the context is attractive. The blur and inferior quality of the background aren’t though. The former doesn’t convey movement effectively and the latter diminishes the impact of what could make the escape significant.
Corki’s portrayal also feels a bit sketchy in places. Enough of him is visible as the perspective is well chosen for that effect. It also makes viewing the UFO copter easy. Back to Corki, his clothing isn’t clear but there’s enough to get an idea of the brief displays that he usually gets in-game. The long moustaches flow playfully with a texture that is soft yet also simplistic. Along with the helmet and goggles they identify Corki and also become the most relevant elements on display; along with gloves of effective yet unconvincing shading.
The interior of the copter is full of relevant elements ranging from a fire extinguisher to screens and buttons of many shapes and colours. The uneven depiction is clear when comparing certain items to the control yoke. The surface of the copter shines under the sunlight. Inexplicably, the right area is submerged in darkness yet the colours are reasonable. The most detailed area is to the front, except for the central cannon which has a concave that seems made out of cheap plastic or candy. Elsewhere lights are brilliant, dents abound and the metal appears dirty and marked. The surface is decidedly uneven and the trail left behind is a bit rough for what should be bright energy.
All in all, the uneven nature of the piece doesn’t prevent a good portrayal of Corki and his copter before a suitable background. The modern angle chosen works within the visible scene but may not be the best introduction to the fantasy style prevalent in-game. Regardless, even if it’s a splash art with problems it’s also an effective one.

Rating:
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Conclusion:
UFO Corki is a interesting skin that gives new colours and a new aircraft to the pilot. Corki doesn’t look much different as his clothes just get new colours but keep the same style. The UFO, for lack of a better denomination, is stylized past the point of comicality and well beyond into the absurd. Such an extreme design has its merits but pushes the meaning of the name well into the metaphorical. At least, the new particles are a fine addition that adds some visual flare to this peculiar skin. In conclusion, UFO Corki is a nice skin but it can hardly be called impressive or extraterrestrial.

Ice Toboggan Corki

Category:
Legacy, Legendary

Price:
1820 RP

Concept:
Corki flying an ice toboggan.

Model:
New textures for Corki and new model for his copter.

Particles:
No new particles.

Animations:
No new animations.

Sounds:
No new sounds.

Splash Art:
A sky with some snow and flags is what the mess of white points and diffuse effects seem to aim for. While the idea is realized, to an extent, it looks rather rough and disappointing. Corki’s depiction isn’t much better as the shading and even lines looks awkward. Moreover, the toboggan looks like a screenshot of the 3D model; due to how the curves are done. Overall, an unprofessional splash art that should have no place in League of Legends.

Rating:
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Conclusion:
Ice Toboggan Corki gives the helmet a new coat of paint and firmly plants him on a toboggan. The result is hardly amusing as we end with a floating toboggan with some sort of machine gun attached to the front. Not only is the skin quite a stretch but it also isn’t particularly witty or even attractive. Add to this the high price and we end up with a product that has no answer to a simple question: why buy it? Ice Toboggan Corki isn’t just a victim of League of Legends evolution, it’s also an idea that seemed good in theory but isn’t in practice.

Red Baron Corki

Category:
Legacy, Legendary

Price:
1820 RP

Concept:
Corki flying a biplane-inspired copter as a tribute to Manfred von Richthofen.

Model:
New textures for Corki and moderate model changes for his copter.

Particles:
No new particles.

Animations:
No new animations.

Sounds:
New propeller sounds.

Splash Art:
The deliberate small selection of colours manages to give the setting a more dramatic effect. However, it also makes it simpler. There’s enough smoke and water, both tinted by explosions, but there isn’t enough that shows where it all comes from. The idea seems to be some major battle in the skies but a lone plane seems insufficient to dye the whole scenery. The fact that the background doesn’t show anything concrete makes it feels like filler; even though the feel of something bigger is present.
The quality of Corki’s portrayal, along his unmissable copter is rather rustic and even sketchy. The colours are rough which give a gritty feel to the copter. That’s used to great effect on the metallic surface of the copter and missiles: which show paint severely scratched as if they’ve seen their good share of battle already. The bursts appear surrounded by tangles of fuzz which is less convincing. Corki’s waxy colours appear transplanted from a different piece; like the flying cases. These colours give the impression of a draft or the composition of two pieces of evidently different quality.
All added together makes the splash art seem rather bare and basic. The water looks nice, like a painted photography, but the sky, like Corki, appear significantly inferior. The copter and the missiles have a nice gritty feel but that isn’t echoed by anything else on the piece; as if they are on their own. The result is a splash art of mixed quality that is only acceptable as a basic spotlight.

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Rating:
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Conclusion:
In theory, Red Baron Corki is a fitting and interesting concept for an ace aviator. Moreover, in practice the skin doesn’t look that bad in spite of the huge re-use of assets from the base model. The propellers on the front gun are nice while the design effectively recreates the feel of a biplane; though the Red Baron preferred a triplane. Regardless, it’s a skin that, while nice, had no place at such a high price point. The idea is good but the changes so minimal that it’s simply unable to fill the legendary label. It could be said that Red Baron Corki reflects the quality of times gone by, but even then a little more could be expected from something that calls itself legendary.

Hot Rod Corki

Category:
Legacy

Price:
520 RP

Concept:
Corki as a pilot with a knack for hot rods.

Model:
Moderate model changes for Corki and new textures for his copter.

Particles:
No new particles.

Animations:
No new animations.

Sounds:
No new sounds.

Splash Art:
The background may be considered a sunset but the fact that darkness seems to be advancing from the left of the piece seems a strange choice. Corki looks alright as a simple caricature. The copter fares a bit better with fine lines and nice shading on its upper-left. On the lower-right, the smoke coming from the missiles, which propel the copter in hot rod style, make the colours more diffuse than they already are. To sum up, it’s a passable depiction with obvious uneven quality but with an attractive composition.

Rating:
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Conclusion:
Hot Rod Corki is an unusual skin in that it centres the changes on Corki instead of the copter. The result is rather lacklustre but, at the very least, reasonably priced. Corki gets a younger and fresher image to match the flame job of the copter and the net result is different from his classic incarnation; to a point. The copter essentially looks the same so while the skin refreshes the visuals it doesn’t improve or modify them much. To sum up, Hot Rod Corki is marginally different and hardly innovative. However, if you’d like a lively alternative that keeps most of Classic Corki intact then this is your best choice.

Urfrider Corki

Category:
Regular

Price:
975 RP

Concept:
Corki flying on Urf the Manatee.

Model:
New model for Corki’s copter.

Particles:
New particles for critical hits and Missile Barrage.

Animations:
New swimming animation for Urf when moving and new dance.

Sounds:
New gatling sound for auto-attacks plus Urf grunt for Valkyrie and critical hits.

Splash Art:
Another background, another disappointment: the shades of grey show dark sky with explosions of gunpowder but it does little more than fill space. Corki is depicted with a fitting cartoon style but Urf appears in watercolours so the difference is noticeable. Furthermore, the Gatling gun’s perspective makes it look flat. Still both Urf and Corki look adequate and make for a useful portrayal. On the whole, it does its job but not with flying colours.

Rating:
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Conclusion:
Urf Rider Corki is a joke skin that fares better than most due to a few extras that make up for a questionable execution. That is, Corki is completely lifted from Classic Corki, pure and unadulterated. Maybe Corki’s model was finally completed, as it isn’t usually shown in full, but even in that case it doesn’t change the stated fact. Fortunately, Urf manages to take centre stage being as faithful to his classic image as possible: only the missiles and Corki stand in the way. Moreover, Urf throws his spatula on critical hits and moves his flippers as if swimming when moving. As is often the case, the mount does all the job but this time also takes all the credit. Urf Rider Corki is a good skin solely because of Urf so if you’d like a silly but fun manatee to take for a ride you have a perfect candidate here.

Dragonwing Corki

Category:
Regular

Price:
975 RP

Concept:
Corki piloting a copter inspired by the dragon dance and equipped with fireworks.

Model:
New model for Corki and his copter.

Particles:
New particles for his abilities, auto-attack and critical hits.

Animations:
New laugh and recall animations.

Sounds:
New fireworks sounds for his abilities and recall.

Splash Art:
The background is too diffuse but still manages to display the celebration in all its splendour. The city, or town, feels rather empty due to the perspective yet the setting is well presented. Corki and his copter are very nicely depicted with ample use of lighting and great shading. The copter shows dents and scratches proper of use and there’s good use of blurriness on the missile to the left. The copter seems a little too short and small to carry Corki and certain parts are too dark and empty in comparison with others. Regardless, it’s very good portrayal backed by a fitting background so it feels like a nice piece, overall.

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Rating:
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Conclusion:
As far as the model goes Dragonwing Corki seems like a good but unimpressive skin. Corki is fittingly dressed and the copter has an appealing but brief dragon design but nothing else really catches the eye. That all changes once he gets to the action: his particles are an amazing spectacle. Not only are the bright sparks and stylized explosions attractive but the sounds perfectly complete the picture. Thus, the skin attracts thanks to a fantastic amount of visual flare. On the whole, Dragonwing Corki is an incredible skin that catches the eye and doesn’t let go. Unless you deem fireworks an ill substitute for missiles and bullets this is a skin that you shouldn’t miss.

Fnatic Corki

Category:
Legacy

Price:
750 RP

Concept:
Corki as a modern copter pilot.

Model:
New model for Corki and his copter.

Particles:
No new particles.

Animations:
No new animations.

Sounds:
No new sounds.

Splash Art:
With some effort, the background could represent the illuminated entrance from which the glorious team emerges. Unfortunately, it’s all so blurry and lacking in detail that it’s only a guess. The champions escape from the diffuse surroundings with effort. Their stances make it all feel quite dramatic but also somewhat exaggerated. In fact, it seems to unexpectedly evoke a poster from the eighties with all the nostalgia and excesses that implies. Moving onto the champions themselves, none make a convincing display of their classic personality. There are hints here and there but, for the most part, they seem to be out of character. Ultimately, this splash art accomplishes its basic premise of providing a dazzling display of the champions but in a confusing and chaotic way.

Rating:
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Conclusion:
Corki’s concept easily adapts to modern technology and the more refined copter and gear suit him well. The problem is that beyond the refinement there is nothing else. Essentially, it’s the same pilot behind the same aircraft. This makes the skin interesting for what it offers but lacking in depth. In conclusion, it’s not a bad option for updating Corki’s use of technology but just for that.

Arcade Corki

Category:
Regular

Price:
1350 RP

Concept:
Corki as futuristic pilot and the copter as a pixel-fuelled spaceship.

Model:
New model for Corki and his copter.

Particles:
New particles for the copter’s jets, busters, abilities, auto-attack and recall.

Animations:
New animations for auto-attacks, recall and barrel rolls when flying around.

Sounds:
New sounds for his abilities, auto-attack and recall.

Splash Art:
The background is a pixellated mess that barely reveals a planet, assumedly, made out of voxels. With that in mind we might guess that the action takes place in outer space and anything beyond that is raw imagination.
Corki and his new copter-ship float in this sea of low resolution. The ship is actually clearly displayed with clean surfaces that look more like plastic than metal; yet they suit the playful theme. The design incorporates glowing energy on the wings which is taken advantage of but the cockpit’s glass strikes as too dull and opaque. The pixellated blasts are a mixed bag. On the one hand, they suit the overall idea. However, their dim, at best, glow and simplistic appearance make them boring. Also, the close perspective doesn’t allow a clear view of the outline and shape of the ship.
There isn’t much of Corki to be seen. What is plain to the eye is the large stylised moustache, the almost photorealistic helmet and the plastic visor. There’s a tiny mouth and nose underneath and a small body that grasps a pair of joysticks. The buttons are well done on the left of the ship but the directional pad on the right looks sketchy.
All in all, this is a piece with problems that manages to be appealing nonetheless. The 80’s style of the splash art suits the theme and the portrayal of Corki and his new ship are rather good; though not flawless. The background is a disappointment and the fact that there isn’t much on display doesn’t really help either. As everything is so close and in the face it’s difficult to get a general view of things. Regardless, it’s a piece that presents a good spotlight; as it should.

Rating:
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Conclusion:
Although Arcade Corki is a clear tribute to Space Invaders it eschews its primitive look by modernising not only the spaceship but also the pixels themselves. The spaceship’s model retains the expected 80’s glamour but with contemporary lines and measured colours; as opposed to the usual bright kaleidoscope. Corki follows suit with a matching helmet and visor as well as long, blonde moustaches that seem a bit too similar to the visor. The detached weapons are a modern aspect of the design that makes it quite appealing. The particles for the jets and guns also add to that appeal striking a good balance between old and new.
The new glowing pixel particles are very well done. They are evidently pixellated but also display complex designs that result in elaborate effects. Granted, some effects are simpler than others yet no ability looks simplistic; even though they don’t reach the spectacularity of other skins. It’s also true that Missile Barrage could’ve been more impressive. It looks good but doesn’t have the punch expected of an ultimate. The chip-tunes are a great support for the visuals. They embrace the low-fi nature proper of the theme while staying attractive. There aren’t any that are of particular note yet they manage to round the skin well. The recall is a clear and effective homage while the new animations for the busters when attacking and the barrel rolls when flying add much welcome diversity to the usual actions and cement the skin’s identity.
All things considered, Arcade Corki is a fantastic skin that brings out all the pixel-fuelled nostalgia it intends with a fitting layer of modernism over it. There’s a good balance in incorporating vintage elements adapted to a more contemporary style. This makes the skin evocative and attractive as well as a great option for fans of old-school games and the Daring Bombardier.

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Corgi Corki

Category:
Regular

Price:
1350 RP

Concept:
Corki piloting a Pembroke Welsh Corgi with wings.

Model:
New model for Corki and his copter plus new fog and stars underneath.

Particles:
New particles for his abilities, auto-attack and recall.

Animations:
Animated dog legs and scarf plus new dance and recall animation.

Sounds:
New sounds for his abilities, auto-attack and recall.

Splash Art:
Even though cats and dogs are separated in individual splash arts they are merely two sides of one single piece. In fact, each half of the piece makes little sense until the whole scene is assembled. In that case it becomes a straightforward competition that pits cats against dogs in a simple scenario. The best part is the many cameos visible around the four main champions. Left, right and centre it’s rather pleasing to scour the background for familiar faces.
Speaking of which, each of the four champions that star are well depicted. Colours are bright and surfaces detailed. While some furs can seem too fuzzy and some textures are unconvincing the result is sufficiently appealing. All this visual splendour is unable to give much meaning to generic portrayals which almost always fail to reveal anything relevant about each champion. At best, they have a fitting pose but the champions simply don’t show much, if any, of their personality.
All in all, this is a shared splash art that suffers from being simple. The best parts are the numerous cameos in the background and the visual quality of the portrayals. The champions, even if they have room to do so, don’t show much of their personality. Besides, dividing the piece in two splash arts makes each individual half lack context.

Rating:
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Conclusion:
Corgi Corki is far from comedy gold and surely not original. Changing the copter for a living creature has already been done with Urf; which allowed the skin to benefit from one of Leageue’s running jokes. Corki Corki doesn’t have such shallow yet existent context. Thus, the skin seems whimsical for the sake of it. The model shows the full extent of the skin’s intentions. It’s colourful and ridiculous but there’s nothing funny about it.
Particles are reduced to rainbow trails, flurries of stars and classic weaponry modified to look like toys. There’s the appropriate use of paw marks to add the dog angle to abilities but that’s the sole contributor to the theme. Thus, the collection of particles seems chaotic.
Sounds support the toy angle with a reused sound plus a few barks and panting. The problem is that, just like particles, sounds are also disconnected and without a linking theme.
The result is a skin that simply feels made up of a few good ideas which lack cohesion when put together. There’s a dog angle, rainbows, stars and a repeated joke. This leaves the skin with some appeal, individual areas could be interesting but the whole is less than the sum of its parts.

Conclusion

Most of Corki’s skins seem to have been left behind in terms of quality, especially considering current releases. Therefore, it’s quite satisfying to count with Dragonwing Corki: a skin with a fantastic display of style that is by itself a spectacle. The distinct model added to the charming particles and sounds make for quite a show that is sure to appeal.

Another skin that continues with the trend of giving a good show is Arcade Corki. More expensive and less spectacular in some aspects it still makes for quite an attractive nostalgia trip but with a suitable modern take. The result isn’t always as impressive as it could be yet it communicates its message very well so there’s much to like in it.

A skin that follows on the footsteps of Urf is Corgi Corki. While there’s a visible dog angle the skin lacks cohesion and ends like an addition of ideas that seemed good on their own. The result has some appeal but there’s a clear lack of focus.

Additionaly, Urf Rider Corki is a unique skin that remains fun thanks to the manatee’s hard work; though it can remain comical for only so long. Finally, Hot Rod Corki is the remaining available alternative and while it’s certainly cheaper it also shows much less work and desire to shine.

Only legacy and limited re-models, for the most part, remain and though they have some charm they mostly show their age. There is something to like in each of them but they have been left behind by the newest and more ambitious offerings. Therefore, UFO, Ice Toboggan, Red Baron and even Fnatic can be, at best, acceptable skins.

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