When the Rift Herald was first announced, many people were excited for the new creature they had to kill on the map. As days, weeks, and months went by, people started to realize that the Rift Herald was more or less useless in most scenarios to target.
This inspired League of Legends to make some changes to the purple creature' in Baron's pit.
Previously Riot said:
"The Rift Herald now drops the Herald’s Eye as she retreats into the Void, lasting in your inventory for a few minutes and granting Empowered Recall while held. Using the eye before it expires summons the Herald back to the Rift under your team’s banner, sending her down the nearest lane as a structure-smashing siege engine. She says hello by ramming into buildings from a distance, dealing massive damage. From there, she’ll steadily smash it to rubble before moving onto the next objective down the lane."
tl;dr - Defeating the Rift Herald gives you an item that summons her and makes her a massively powerful siege minion.
With that being said, more details were announced about her and we've got you covered from her look, to your battle with her and what you can reap in terms of rewards.
"It’s long been a goal to update Rift Herald’s visuals and polish her sounds so she feels like a natural inhabitant of the Summoner’s Rift (void corruption notwithstanding)," said Riot Sotere. "The most immediately noticeable and probably most important change to the Rift Herald this midseason is her substantial makeover."
Previously the Rift Herald looked like this:
She won't just look different, she'll act and sound different, too. "Still photographs hardly do the new version justice," said Riot Sotere. "She also has a set of brand new animations, particles, and sound effects as well. Check her out on the Rift to see her full new ensemble."
Battling With the Rift Herald
Previously when you wanted to fight the Rift Herald, you would probably get smashed without the help of a teammate. You would definitely only be able to smash her eye with another person while that person gets smacked heavily on the leash.
According to Riot Sotere, they still aim to have the focus on two people having to defeat the Herald but have made it a little easier for solo takedowns. "While duoing her should still be the best plan of action for ease and speed, lone champions will now have the opportunity to kill her. Her attacks are more plodding, giving a solo artist the capability to sneak around her and land attacks on her achilles heel (or eye). She doesn’t punish players quite as much if they start opportunistic attempts at her. Generally, if you die from the encounter now it will be due to the enemy team swooping in. We’ve also made her quite a bit more patient with enemy aggro swapping, so she won’t leash outside exceptionally gamey circumstances."
Her attacks are no longer just boring and mechanical. Like the other epic monsters on the map, she now has a bit of movement and flair to her. "We also wanted to play up her epicness: Dragons, Baron, and even Scuttle Crab have some variation to their combat pattern outside of throwing autoattacks and running away. We wanted to infuse her with a little more spirit and life. She’ll now charge at the first enemy who angers her, significantly damaging and knocking away anyone who dares get in her way. At certain health thresholds she’ll also get enraged and launch a larger conal swipe attack. Both additional attacks are threatening, avoidable, and should help opponents discover the effectiveness of bopping her in the eye."
What You Get
As we previously alluded to, you would just get a buff on one champion that empowered minions. The game is changing in a big way with the new Rift Herald.
"Anyone on the team who slays the Herald can collect the Eye of the Herald when she is captured. This item will allow the champion to summon her within a short timeframe to have the Herald do their team’s bidding. While the summoning ceremony takes time, the results of a good use are devastating."
What results are we looking at? Well...
"She hates turrets. No one knows why. There are stories (that I just made up) that the turrets on the Rift memorialize the visage of the Herald’s enemies from the Void. Perhaps they just look like tasty treats, a nice fit for her high sodium diet. Regardless of why, once she’s set to do a team’s bidding, she’ll barrel down a lane, knocking aside enemy minions and charging at turrets as soon as she gets in range. That’s where the real fun and destruction begins," said Riot Sotere.
She's not going to be unkillable on the Rift, though. "While Herald can do decently pushing on her own, she is even more susceptible than she was in the pit. Hits to her eye do more damage, she can be stunned, and she’s generally not as tanky," said Riot Sotere. "If she is not protected by a squad of champions, the enemy will likely make quick work of her. But a team that picks their timing carefully and is dedicated to protecting the Herald could siege down multiple turrets. Importantly, the Herald mercenary does damage based on her current health. The more damage enemies do to her, the less she’ll do in return to enemy turrets."