League of Legends ‘Patch’ Preview

Riot Games previewed some of the major changes coming to League of Legends in the upcoming patch, Lots of buffs are coming with this patch along with an interesting rework in the death streak system.

Let’s start with the Might of Demacia. Garen is getting a few buffs aimed at increasing his utility and defenses. One of the big complaints is that Garen has no closing ability.

Morello addressed this issue stating, “You’ll find a slew of changes throughout some of his other skills giving him increased utility, increased closing power, a little bit better defensiveness.”

Leona, who was unchanged last patch, is getting a few buffs improving her cooldowns and mana costs. Leona’s ability to get in the middle and disrupt the enemy team was handicapped by her poor cooldown reduction and mana pool and Riot hopes that the buffs will get her “in a really good spot.”

Finally, Riot addresses the issues plaguing Pantheon, who had previously been nerfed down to Twitch level. Quite frankly, Pantheon had been nerfed to a point that made him unplayable, mostly due to Riots inability to balance Heart seeker Strike. He has constantly been the topic of hot debate revolving around this skill. Riot admitted it was a “notoriously hard to balance skill,” and they attempt to fix this skill by making it more of a melee, caster, dps-over-time type skill. In order to accomplish this the cooldown and channel time have both been reduced allowing you to stick on targets. Spear Toss can now crit when below 15% from certain death. The final change is a reduction of channel time on Grand Skyfall. Hopefully, these changes help fix the problems with Pantheon.

Aside from buffs, Riot is also reworking the death streak system in relation to assists. The goal of this rework is to make support characters who’s primary focus is getting assists more valuable when killed by the opposing team. For example, a character like Soraka, who may go 0/8/25, is worthless when killed in the current system. In the rework, assists still won’t reset your death streak, but enough assists will begin to add up as if they were getting kills. This is, by far, my favorite change in the patch. Support characters are incredibly important in team fights and, though their score may not reflect it, they can be the difference between winning a team fight and getting aced. In the right situation, an assist is just as important as a kill and this new format emphasizes that.

Lastly, Riot is targeting Fair Play, by making it so suicide via tower or minions won’t reset your kill streak or increment your death streak. In response to these abuse cases Morello admitted it was a “cool trick”, but “pretty bad gameplay”.

Watch the Patch Preview

Overall, it’s nice to see a patch that focuses on buffing characters. The much needed Pantheon buffs have arrived and it definitely looks like a step in the right direction. As for the death streak rework, it looks like it’s definitely going to benefit players in terms of fair play.

What are your thoughts on the patch preview? What would you have liked to see done?