The Yordle are a race of spirits who generally take the appearance of mammalian bipeds. They mostly reside in a mystical place known as Bandle City, though some of them have ventured out to live in numerous locations around Runeterra.
Twisted Fate and Graves fought Yordles in the past. While Graves is quite willing to attempt to capture Yordles for the apparent high bounty they bring in, Twisted Fate refuses because "messing with Yordles brings a whole heap of trouble."
Yordles come from self-contained pockets within the spirit realm, with no direct "mirror" in the material realm of Runeterra. The origin of this race on Runeterra is unknown but can be traced back to a prehistoric time when there were no civilizations on land thanks to the existence of Fizz, an amphibious yordle. Most would agree that Yordles resided on Valoran during its prehistoric times. At that time they were a nomadic race, travelling from one part of Valoran to the other. Records show they had presence in Ancient Freljord. They lived in tight neat family groups as well as near early humans. Because of their small stature, they were mostly prey for many animals. During prehistoric times they had tails and front canine teeth.
Overtime as human civilizations advanced, so did yordles' appearances and capabilities. To easily blend in human areas, yordles at one point started using an ability called "Glamour", which gave them the appearance of short humans.
To this day, most yordles stay inside the mystical spiritual realm known as Bandle City, only venturing out on rare occasions. There are numerous gateways across Runeterra that yordles, and other knowledgeable and perceptive individuals, are able to use to get to in and out of Bandle City.
What differentiates yordles from other magical folk is that their physiology is more consistent between its members.
Yordles are sometimes sexually dimorphic and much shorter than humans; both sexes rarely exceed 1 meter tall, with most averaging between 0.5 and 0.8 meters. Their skin texture ranges from being lightly covered in fur, to moderately fuzzy, to ultimately being excessively bushy. Their hands have four digits while their feet differ greatly depending on the individual (from four to two digit feet). Their fur tones run a much broader spectrum of colors than their human counterparts; some consider this to be a sign of the yordles’ attunement to Runeterra's magical nature; though scientists agree that this evolutionary trait is used by male Yordles (which tend to be more fuzzy) to attract females of their species (which tend to be lightly covered with fur). Their large eyes feature a large, circular iris with a vertically oval pupil, and they generally have inferior vision in the normal spectrum of light than humans. Yordles nevertheless have much better hearing, due to their large fox-like ears and are able to see into the infrared spectrum of light, whereas humans cannot. Furthermore, they are commonly characterized by their dependence on language, as well as their creation and utilization of complex tools.
Yordles do not age in the same way as beings of the material realm do thanks to being creatures of the spirit realm and therefore have different concepts of aging. In The Meaning in Misery, it was revealed Yordles also don't die.
The yordle race have shown the possibility to be amphibious, such example would be Fizz, though it is unknown whether it is his original form or one of his choosing.
Yordles can somewhat be considered spirits due to being native to the spirit realms. They don't need to breathe.
Due to their physiology, yordles are vulnerable to being imprisoned inside cages made of Runic Iron. Touching Runic Iron gives yordles an electrical-like shock, and will disrupt their magic.
It is unknown how new Yordles came to be. It appears new Yordles emerge from random wards of magic and came into certain model of family units with more "mature" Yordles.
In less enlightened parts of the world, a yordle's appearance could seem frightening or unnatural to mortals. Fortunately, they are adept at blending in, and often protected by a kind of supernatural glamour—subconsciously fading from the viewer's notice, or being masked as a less remarkable individual.
Yordles do not necessarily control their glamour, and may understand it in a variety of ways. The revered inventor Heimerdinger, for example, crafted unique technological devices for himself and Ziggs, to help them blend into Piltovan society. However, some humans are able to break this charm due to their more perceptive nature.
Yordle culture is gregarious and varied; they require far more social interaction than humans do. They generally are a peaceful and amicable race, often marked with streaks of joviality and light prankishness, with their personality most often pointed toward benevolence. Their desire for social interaction also drives them toward this ethos, as the mental health of a yordle is very much dependent on the positive company he or she keeps.
Yordles are attracted to Runeterra cultures and enjoy manifesting around certain human ideals. They tend to take on the aspects of the culture or area in which they reside, often coming to resemble genius loci. Thus, despite their predisposition towards benevolence, they are not uniformly kind or cheerful. In fact, a yordle who is kept in isolation for too long – especially from other yordles – or who resides in a culture defined by significant malevolence runs the risk of adopting the negative traits of their environment. These yordles will often twist their desire for social interaction into a desire to seek out others to inflict pain and suffering upon them, one extreme example being Veigar, the Tiny Master of Evil (though even then, it seems they tend towards bumbling evil or anti-villain behavior, rather than outright sadism and cruelty).
Each yordle takes on aspects of the culture in which they reside, and often represent a sort of character archetype. Below is a list of the known yordles, their residence, and what character traits they embody.
Amumu is thought by some to be a yordle. Whether he is or not, he wanders the deserts where Shurima once stood, forever alone and mourning a forgotten tragedy.
Fizz lives near Bilgewater, and has taken on an amphibious trickster theme, helping the local sailors as often as he plays pranks on them.
Gnar was frozen for millennia in the Freljord and now wanders about as a primitive caveman-like creature, exploring the land with simple wonder interspersed with savage fury.
Heimerdinger is a highly-esteemed member of the Piltover, known as a brilliant-if-eccentric scientist, inventor, and pioneer of hextech.
Kennen is the oldest member of the Kinkou Order in Ionia, and operates as a lightning-wielding ninja, helping keep balance in the land.
Kled is rumoured to have fought in every war Noxus ever waged. Whether or not that's true, he's certainly a cantankerous warmonger who seems to perpetually be itching for a fight.
Lulu was profoundly impacted by her experience in the mystical Glade and now wanders Runeterra trying to find it again, spreading her whimsical nature-themed sorcery as she goes.
Poppy was a protege and dear friend of Demacia's founder, Orlon, and now seeks his heir, unaware that her journey is fulfilling her destiny as his heir, the hero of the hammer.
Rumble still resides within Bandle City, and has proven himself as a hotheaded mechanic with a talent for MacGuyvering impressive (if slapdash) creations from scrap.
Teemo is Bandle City's scout, upholding his self-appointed code with a cheeriness that belies the harsh actions he takes.
Tristana, the Bandal Gunner, defends her city with her unfaltering courage, endless optimism, and oversized cannon.
Veigar, once a talented sorcerer, was enslaved and tortured by Mordekaiser for years in the undead tyrant's realm. He now wanders Runeterra as a tiny dark lord, though despite his nominal evilness, most of his actions seem to be ultimately benevolent.
Vex is the resident yordle of the Shadow Isles, with a disposition as gloomy as the Isles themselves.
Ziggs left Piltover to terrorize Zaun instead, where he is free to cause mayhem and create ever-bigger explosions to his heart's content.
The origin of the word "Yordle" came from a dream that Paul 'Pabro' Bellezza had. He had a dream about Yoda and Yaddle from Star Wars, and woke up saying "Yordles".
Yordles were previously divided into Yordles and Meglings. The yordles were often seen furry in appearance, while the Meglings had blue skin. Since the "Yordle Unification Pass" development project, both sides of the same race have been unified to share similar features.
While originally envisioned as a human child Amumu has been described as a Yordle for most of his presence in the game. His current state is left intentionally ambiguous, with characters in his lore commenting on the possibility of him being a yordle while others scoff at the idea.
Amumu might have been the first and the last Yordle emperor of Ancient Shurima.
Yordles have been shown to use a visual transmorgrification charm to look human, which may have a role in the ambiguity of his identity.
According to a recognition scan made by Vel'Koz, a Yordle's physiology appears to be "99% fur, 1% glee."
All Yordles have encountered Tahm Kench at various times. This is because of their races specific nature that makes them more perceptible to inner demons when socially outcast. When not, they are hard to be manipulated, which is why almost all Yordles are seen by this demon as rivals.
Some say Yordles know secret ways through Runeterra others cannot perceive.
Xayah states that Yordles are often erronously thought to be related to the Vastaya, or that humans mistakenly label them as Vastayan.
A while back we stated the Yordle Unification Pass of 2014 (The Y.U.P.). This kicked off with Heimerdinger. He followed some unintentional design decisions from Ziggs and Lulu. However, at the same time we sat down to do some comparisons of Yordles as a whole and are touching here and there upon a Yordle style guide of sorts. We haven't been able to yet to write in stone any hard and fast rules, but we have gotten general aspects decided upon. Such as Yordles needing actual ANATOMY, not just being potatoes with huge heads. Another touching on how we possibly want to explain the furry/non-furry aspects of some Yordles versus others. We're still scratching our heads on the finer points of that, but we've got the informal ideas settled.
Either way, as we crunch along, you'll see Yordles becoming more coherent as a race, at least from a visual side of things where the Champion Update team is concerned. There are also larger discussions about background and other narrative stuff, but we deal mostly with visuals obviously. As we crank through these characters you'll see some consistency emerge. We have a couple that are in our sites currently which will be touched on in due time!"
These species were only mentioned, but were never elaborated on.
Lippertick Apple ·
Salamander Dew ·Unnamed Species