As Riot prepare to roll out the 15th patch of season 6 into competitive play, as always LCS analysts and pros alike will be scrambling to re-establish the meta before they step on stage. In this article, we will address the reasoning and the impact of each significant change and how it will likely affect the pro players we’ve seen rocking those champions on summoners rift.
Passive – Concussive Blows
DAMAGE 40-176 (at levels 1-18) ⇒ 26-196 (at levels 1-18)
Q – Winter’s Bite
DAMAGE 70/115/160/205/250 ⇒ 60/105/150/195/240
Braum has been a consistently solid pick, particularly against poke compositions. Players like OG’s Hybrid have been playing Braum to his maximum potential, making him a crowd control machine, with a damage blocking door/chair to boot. While his base numbers made him too strong from a damage perspective, the change wants to make a Braum more of a defensive shield for his carries, shifting damage away from his oppressive 2v2 potential. Braum will remain a top tier pick regardless thanks to his kit, regardless of the damage nerfs – thought the nerfs to Winter’s Bite will certainly make it less costly when FNC Yellowstar inevitably misses it.
Passive – Hextech Munitions
PACKAGE COOLDOWN 300 seconds ⇒ 240 seconds
Well what a surprise this is. Worlds are a little over 2 months away, Corki is cool and watching Corki using the package is exciting – better get him buffed before Worlds eh Riot!? His build path is still neat since Trinity Force is a must-buy item for the Yordle in the copter, but utility AD Carries are well established in the current professional meta, therefore it may be hard to see Corki being played anytime soon during the Ashe/Jhin/Sivir reign of terror. Riot will certainly do their damn hardest to make sure he makes his way on stage at the Staples Centre.
BASE ATTACK DAMAGE 61.37 ⇒ 58
Q – Rampage
DAMAGE 60/95/130/165/200 ⇒ 50/85/120/155/190
By the time solo-queuers had discovered the power pick of Hecarim top, he was already a well established pick or ban in higher ranks (his banrate in master + tier was 93%). It didn’t take long until the majestic pony was stampeding onto the LCS stage as well. Hecarim is likely to suffer the infamous “Kindred effect”, pounded into the ground until he is no longer capable of single-handedly snowballing games out of control.
E – Demacian Standard
PASSIVE ATTACK SPEED 10/13/16/19/22% ⇒ 15/17.5/20/22.5/25%
ACTIVE ATTACK SPEED AURA 10/13/16/19/22% ⇒ 15/17.5/20/22.5/25%
Welcome to the League of Rek’sai, where she does everything, better than anyone. This change focuses mostly will hopefully bring Jarvan into contention as a good alternative to Rek’sai. both possessing the powers to pull off strong early ganks, engage teamfights and the great mobility through the jungle… then again, IMT Huni may decide to stick a finger up to Fioras everywhere and take the cry of Demacia back to top lane.
E – Inspire
REMOVED INSPIRED MINIONS Can no longer target minions
Mantra E – Defiance
BONUS MOVEMENT SPEED 60% at all ranks ⇒ 40/45/50/55/60% (scaling with rank in E – Inspire)
Karma’s a bit… of an annoying champion to lane against. Back to Soraka you go, Adrian. With the changes to Cloud Drake in the previous patches, giving a movement speed buff to all your teammates, on top of an empowered shield was a bit too much. Cutting off the strength in rotation power from teams such as TSM, who utilised the skill of Biofrost’s Karma will likely give extra value to Cloud drake when the next patch drops.
Q – Null Sphere
DAMAGE 70/95/120/145/170 ⇒ 65/95/125/155/185
E – Force Pulse
COST 80 mana at all ranks ⇒ 60/65/70/75/80 mana
With Azir dropping out of the meta, and Viktor feel like a progressively weaker pick, Kassadin is quickly rising to anti-mage dominance. Whether in the hands of SKT Faker or SPY Sencux, Kassawin is quickly proving to be a strong pick once again. The balancing change will make Force Pulse less spammable at early ranks, given the prominence of mages in the current meta.
Passive – Void Shift
COOLDOWN 30/18/10/6 seconds (at levels 1/6/11/16) ⇒ 30/24/18/12 seconds (at levels 1/6/11/16)
SHIELD DURATION 1 second after taking damage ⇒ 0.25 seconds after taking damage
It’s the 3rd nerf in a row for Malzahar, yet he still feels far too easy and too strong. Here is a big nerf this time hoping we don’t see Malzahar so frequently in professional games. Even Pentakills on Malzahar feel underwhelming:
Q – Javelin Toss
MINIMUM DAMAGE 60/77.5/95/112.5/130 ⇒ 70/85/100/115/130
MAXIMUM DAMAGE 180/232.5/285/337.5/390 ⇒ 210/255/300/345/390
Cougar Q – Takedown
MINIMUM DAMAGE 4/20/50/90 ⇒ 5/30/55/80
MAXIMUM DAMAGE 8/45/125/248 ⇒ 10/67.5/137.5/220
RATIO 0.33 ability power ⇒ 0.4 ability power
HUNTED DAMAGE INCREASE 33% bonus damage to hunted targets ⇒ 40% bonus damage to hunted targets
Remember the last time you watched a professional game with a Nidalee in it? You should do… it’s pretty much every other game. Did you wonder how H2K’s Jankos was 3 levels ahead of the enemy jungler when both had the same kill participation? Jungle clear times, that’s how. The new change removes Nidalee auto attack resets between forms, making farming in jungle with her early on a bit more challenging. Not the end of Nidalee of course, just a justified nerf so we can hopefully see Jarvan participating in pro games as well.
R – Weaver’s Wall
COOLDOWN 160/140/120 seconds ⇒ 180/150/120 seconds
At this point Bjergsen has the hand of god, whichever unconventional pick he takes the rift seems to be in contention for a nerf right after he picks it. While Taliyah is still strong, the playmaking ability is slightly reduced and it’s up to pros to decide if the champion still is viable for professional games – though given the average tempo of LCS games, particularly in EU – it’s unlikely a 20 second cd at rank 1 will make much of a difference.
Q – Tumble
NEW: ROCK TUMBLER Now deals bonus damage to structures
CRITICAL CONSISTENCY Tumble’s bonus damage and Vayne’s basic attack no longer crit independently of one another. If one crits, so does the other.
Auto attack based AD Carries are straight garbage right now. These Vayne buffs may look like a decent attempt to sweep the Ashe/Jhin/Sivir meta aside, but sadly the current meta is all about utility or crowd control and Vayne possesses neither. Doublelift has to keep his trademark pick hidden for a while longer.
MOVEMENT SPEED 335 ⇒ 330
W – Sanguine Pool
COOLDOWN 26/23/20/17/14 seconds ⇒ 28/25/22/19/16 seconds
In other words, “you are too safe right now, probably you need to be gankable since you are far too strong”. Still obnoxious to deal with, still very strong, but this change is big and the cooldown reaches the levels of Zed’s Shadow which also hit him pretty badly. Midlaners probably won’t be affected too much by this change since LCS meta is fairly passive. Another patch for FNC Febiven to practice a champ that has brought him little success of late.
Q – Deadly Spines
DAMAGE 60/90/120/150/180 ⇒ 60/95/130/165/200
RATIO 0.55 ability power ⇒ 0.6 ability power
Back in the day, Sneaky’s support with the innovative Zyra/Ashe botlane dominated everyone, from Americans to Koreans. Ashe is good currently, why not make Zyra as well? LemonNation is participating this season in NA’s Challenger series… is it against the rules to promote him to play one specific OP bot lane comp?