Updated on June 24, 3:00 p.m. (GMT+8): Fixed typo in quote.

Aurora is already very different from the rest of the League of Legends champion roster.

Not only is she Vastayan, she’s also capable of seeing and moving through the spirit realm.

Sensitive to large crowds, noises, and big group interactions, she sometimes feels overwhelmed by sensory stimuli. Inept at connecting with her peers, she escapes to the spirit realm and befriends spirits instead.

All Aurora abilities explained, with exclusive mechanics clarifications from Riot Games
Credit: ONE Esports, Riot Games
All Aurora abilities explained, with exclusive mechanics clarifications from Riot Games

Appearance wise, the Freljordian spirits she spends her time with may look creepy to the average person, but to her, they are adorable beings deserving of love and safeguarding.

Aurora is autistic — she gives visibility to this disability group in real life

In short, Aurora is autistic, the League of Legends development team confirmed with press. They also mentioned it in their Champion Insights blog post.

While this developmental condition can be identified and categorized in the real world, it’s important to note that “Runeterra doesn’t have a term to describe her,” Riot Games wrote. So in the fictional world, she’s just Aurora.

Aurora concept art which her splashart is based on
Credit: Riot Games

The second most important point to note is that she’s not meant to represent the entire spectrum of autism, which is extremely varied, said Lead Champion Producer Lexi “Riot Lexical” Gao.

“A lot of the devs on the team are autistic themselves, and they put part of their experience into her as a champion,” Riot Lexical continued. “In one version she’s almost like a power fantasy in a way, because she never has to live masking her autism. This is who she is, and she’s very unapologetically herself, which is awesome.”

“Aside from that, there’s also processes that went through, especially with our research group. We actually worked with a consultancy group as well. We figured there are things that our devs know of who they are, but there are other things that we should be aware of as well,” Riot Lexical added.

Official Aurora concept art compilation
Credit: Riot Games

“It’s been a constant source of talk, discussions, and trying to figure out every step of the way how to do this correctly.”

Besides engaging in thorough groundwork, the dev team also deliberated how much of their day-to-day autism experience they wanted to reflect in her, Senior Narrative Writer Elyse “apothecarie” Lemoine shared in Champion Insights.

They eventually boiled it down to the fact that the way autistic people’s brains work, the way they view the world simply “doesn’t match the expectations that others have.” This key principle was therefore applied to Aurora who “shouldn’t meet expectations — she should set new ones,” apothecarie concluded.

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