This article will focus purely on balance changes for champions, with a further explanation on if their spot has changed in the meta. Also, the % number values will no longer be a part of future breakdowns since all they really did was making it harder to read the changes. Thanks for the feedback!
W – Parallel Convergence’s passive on-hit damage changed to 3% (+1% per 33 ability power) of the target’s missing health (from 5% (+1% per 55 ability power)). Also, now deals a minimum of 15 damage to minions and monsters.
Anyone who has played League the last 2 patches knows that there’s a new king of top lane: and his name is Ekko, the boy who abused CDR and efficient tank items like no other.
This change is aimed at reducing how much damage Ekko can deal without buying any AP items, although it also increases AP Ekko’s assassination potential by a fair bit when reaching a high amount of AP. The 15 damage minimum is just to guarantee that jungle Ekko’s clear speed isn’t affected too much.
E – Phase Dive’s base damage reduces to 40/65/90/115/140 magic damage (from 50/80/110/140/170). AP ratio increased to 0.4 (from 0.2).
Another nerf to his base damage while increasing its ratio in order to decrease Tankko’s strength without hurting AP Ekko too much.
Add the nerf to Feast, Grasp of the Undying, Corrupting Potion and Iceborn Gauntlet to these nerfs, and Tankko’s power should have been reduced considerably. He might still be picked in competitive play thanks to his safe laning phase and high amounts of utility, but he will no longer have the power to bully opponents that he shouldn’t win against in the first place.
E – Righteous Gust’s mana cost reduced to 60/65/70/75/80 (from 70/75/80/85/90). Movement Speed increased at earlier levels to 30/35/40/45/50% (from 20/28/36/44/52%).
These buffs aim to lighten the load on his horrendous mana issues early on, and give him a bit more utility in the early-game as well.
Galio has been on the receiving end of small buffs for quite a few patches now, yet it seems that simple numbers increase aren’t enough to overcome his archaic kit. Perhaps with the AP itemization update he will finally rise from the shadows and become something more (looking at you Hextech Protobelt-01).
Passive – New Destiny’s on-hit ratio reduced to 0.7 – 1.0 total attack damage (from 0.75 – 1.1). Bullets on crit decreased to 6 (from 8) and each crit bullet now deals 140% damage (160% with Infinity Edge).
Right now Graves just deals too much damage while building mostly mixed offense/defense items. This change will hopefully fix this, decreasing the damage a crit-less Graves will deal (and the health he’ll gain back through lifesteal) by 10%, and hopefully pushing Graves into a squishier and more crit-oriented build.
Q – Caustic Spittle’s Armor/MR shred increased at early levels to 20/22/24/26/28% (from 12/16/20/24/28%).
Contrary to popular belief, Kog’Maw is still a force to be reckoned with, especially in non-competitive play where poor communication and lack of coordination allows this void puppy to freely puke on all of his opponents without a care in the world.
This buff is to compensate for the W nerf that I will cover after this and also to give Koggles a reason to actually rank Q before level 13.
W – Bio-Arcane Barrage’s base on-hit damage reduced to 4/8/12/16/20 magic damage (from 10/15/20/25/30).
This is a big nerf to Kog’s damage in the early and mid-game. At level 9, Kog’s W will deal 1/3rd less damage than he did in 6.7, although now he can shred a decent amount of the enemy’s MR with his Q, so maybe it will balance itself out as long as he hits his skillshot first. No more “press W and afk” for the Kogster (well, at least not until he gets some items anyway).
R – Highlander’s cooldown increased to 85 seconds (from 75), the duration decreased to 7 seconds (from 10) and the duration extension on kill or assist increased to 7 seconds (from 4).
Considering they’re flat-out removing Devourer in the next patch and changing Guinsoo’s Rageblade as well, I find it weird that Riot’s still nerfing him due to the strength of these items. If after patch 6.9 goes through and Master Yi happens to somehow be in a much weaker spot than before, will they revert these nerfs? Highly unlikely, this is Rito we’re talking about after all.
These nerfs are aimed at increasing the downtime of Master Yi’s moments of power, while trying to preserve his current clean-up potential. Overall, Yi will have less opportunities to be Yi throughout the game.
W – Strut’s attack speed duration increased to 4 seconds (from 3). Cooldown increased to 12 seconds (from 8) and applying Love Tap no longer extends the duration. However, cooldown now begins on-cast and applying Love Tap while Strut is on cooldown will decrease its cooldown by 2 seconds (scales down with cooldown reduction).
Lots of changes to this single ability, but overall all this means is that although you will no longer be able to theoretically have Strut permanently on by switching targets over and over (which is very hard to do properly and not always possible), you will have Strut up a lot more often, increasing MF’s windows of power during the laning phase.
She’s still a bad pick in the current meta because she’s immobile and just not very good at killing tanks, though if the meta shifts towards squishier and more damage oriented comps then her Bullet Time will increase exponentially in value.
W – Vicious Strikes’ lifesteal increased to 14/16/18/20/22% (from 9/12/15/18/21%).
Despite Olaf’s ability to bully tanks early-on thanks to the sticking power from his Q and the true damage from his E, he could still fall behind and even lose lane versus them due to their high base damage and the stacking of health+armor countering his kit, not to mention the sustain they would get from Grasp and Feast.
With those two masteries nerfed and with this big buff to his sustain in lane, Olaf should once again come out as the victor when brawling in match-ups that he was supposed to win in the first place.
R – Ragnarok’s passive Armor/MR bonus increased to 20/30/40 (from 10/20/30).
How many times have we seen an Olaf die in teamfights before he even reaches the backline? Too many, that’s how many. This small buff should give him a bit more time to get his damage items before he has to build defensively.
Overall, I think this should push Olaf back into viability. Whether he will be picked competitively or not, that remains to be seen.
Q – Flamespitter now deals 100% damage to minions.
With tanks clearing entire waves with a single spell rotation, Rumble was struggling to keep up the pressure in the laning phase. With Flamespitter now dealing full damage to minions, this not-so-little yordle should return to his former glory, piercing the heavens (and everyone’s health bars) both in teamfights and in the laning phase.
R – The Equalizer’s cooldown reduced to 110/100/90 seconds (from 120/110/100).
This small buff should make it slightly less punishing to use Rumble’s ult in lane instead of in a tp gank bot lane or in a dragon fight.
Expect to see Rumble in competitive play soon. If not in this patch, then in patch 6.9 where Zhonya’s gets buffed and dragon becomes a more valuable objective.
- Proc damage decreased to 100% base attack damage (from 125%).
A simple but needed nerf, Iceborn Gauntlet should now only be picked for its CDR and the slow field, instead of being a generalist item. Not only a nerf to tanks, but also to blue Ezreal.
Expect to see this item to fall off of many champions’ core builds and to become a more situational buy.
- Total cost decreased to 3600 gold (from 3700).
- Combine cost decreased to 525 gold (from 625).
- Attack damage decreased to 65 (from 75).
Decent nerf to its stat efficiency, Mercurial Scimitar should now be picked less often as a generalist item and picked only when the active is truly needed.
You’ll still see this item most of the time though because let’s be honest: its active is just too good.
- Health per charge decreased to 125 (from 175).
- Mana per charge increased to 75 (from 50).
Riot really went all-out with nerfing the tanks’ sustain options this patch. Unfortunately this also affects some non-tank champions that need this item to survive the laning phase (like Fizz and Irelia), but it’s a needed nerf. Plus the extra mana is nice.
Hopefully this will give more room to the older sustain options to shine (like Doran’s Shield and Cloth+4) while still preserving this item’s usefulness in prolonged trades during the laning phase.
Article by OuterRaven