Janna's identity crisis and aura items are negative for League of Legends
When it comes to champions and balancing in League of Legends, Morello is the man to talk to. I've had the chance to talk to him on numerous occasions, and I walk away impressed every time. I'll never forget the time he told me what makes Lux OP is her shield. I started looking at champions differently after that.
In short: I find Morello's thoughts on champion design and item balancing very insightful. NewsofLegends.com recently had a thread with Morello that focused on Janna and her Tailwind Passive, Auras and Aura items.
With Janna, Morello wants to rework her passive because she's picked predominantly for her passive, which makes the whole team faster without any interaction to do it. Janna has great disengage and one of the best ultimates, but if she's best known for her 3% global movement speed aura, then there's a problem.
When asked 'why nerf it,' Morello responded, "Because I think Janna's Passive (especially when talking to pro teams) is a major contributor to her overall power, but the wrong way for it to be there." Morello continued, "Let's pretend for a moment, that Janna is OP sometime in the future. If, in fact, this passive is doing a lot to contribute to that, wouldn't it be better to hit here first so that we could leave her abilities and other disengage (Janna's real identity) intact and unmolested?"
The issue with Global Passives are that, like Janna's teamwide +3% movement speed, it applies regardless of any situation. If later on the skill was too strong and needed to be nerfed, it would become worthless. If buffed, it's too strong and keeps the problem of warping gameplay with no interaction. Morello compared Janna's passive -- which can't form interesting combos -- to Taric's, which he considered a positive example.
"A positive example of this would be where Taric's Aura can create windows of strength/weakness for lanes to capitalize on. The lack of Taric's Aura when he Shatters is gameplay with the aura."
Morello would also like League of Legends to become less aura-friendly over time. However, he won't try to remove auras until there are other ways for supports to feel like they're helping their team. The problem right now is that there's no interaction.
"It's hard to ever think '+125 MR for your team' is ever even a strategic decision -- you just get it every game because, how could you not?" stated Morello. "The reason we're leaving this stuff alone, though, is because it's a good way to help your team. Unless/until we create an alternative and clean method to do so, these will remain."
One of the most popular support items in the game, Runic Bulwark, has been removed from the game in the most recent PBE patch notes. The goal was to reduce the burden of buying an Aegis/Bulwark every game. So they're having Aegis build into Locket of the Iron Solari. Locket will now build from Aegis and Gold, have more health, armor and cooldown reduction, in addition to keeping the UNIQUE active of Aura - Legion. This is an effort to push Aegis and Locket into more of a "strategic niche of team fight area-effect damage reduction."
You can read the full thread with Morello HERE.