Welcome to patch 7.14. This patch drops a lot of names we haven’t heard in a while, from Singed to Garen to Diana to… well at this point, we’re just rattling off the table of contents in random order. Many of these champions have been sitting in obscurity for a while, and we’re happy to dust them off.
We’ve got some shake-ups on the item front as well. The Thornmail update gives tanky champs access to Grievous Wounds, with Bramble Vest as a stepping stone component along the lines of Hexdrinker, QSS, and other “I build into a bigger version of myself” items. We’ve also taken the lethality items into the shop to ensure they’re offering assassins meaningful, satisfying choices.
And finally, we’d be remiss not to mention the shadow lurking on the horizon. Keep an eye out for Kayn, not that it’ll matter once he steps out from the wall behind you.
Nothing personal, kid.
Kayn, the Shadow Reaper will be unleashed on the Rift later during patch 7.14. In the meantime, learn more about the shadow and his scythe here:
Damage reduction on R increased.
Alistar has always needed to get up close and personal, but these days he has to stay there a bit longer to access the full extent of his crowd control. As a result, the Minotaur needs to be a bit tankier when he commits to a fight.
R – Unbreakable Will
Attack speed per level down.
Our goals today are the same as patch 7.11: we’re continuing to trim strengths aside from Caitlyn’s primary contributions (smart trap placement and juicy Headshots). Our previous changes to reduce the Sheriff’s sustained damage in the late game didn’t go far enough in this direction so we’re continuing along the path.
E now only applies to next three attacks, but does significantly more damage. Q mana cost down. W silence duration up at earlier ranks.
In theory, Vorpal Spikes is a lot of consistent power for a melee character. In practice, Cho’Gath’s low mobility makes it a struggle to land more than a few attacks on any moving target. We’re windowing Vorpal Spikes so Cho’Gath only needs to land a few attacks to get the full value, and adding a slow to the ability to give him a better shot at doing so.
UPDATEDE – Vorpal Spikes
Cho’Gath’s next 3 basic attacks launch spikes that damage and slow all targets hit.
Q – Rupture
W – Feral Scream
Passive’s attack speed now procs off spellcasts and increases with E rank. Passive attack now restores mana. Q cooldown reduced at early levels. W mana cost reduced at early levels.
Diana’s a champion with fractured identities, sitting somewhere in the middle of assassin and diver, laner and jungler. While this multifaceted nature works for some champions, we’ve seen what happens when an assassin gets to be tanky, or when a diver gets to blow people up. This makes Diana difficult to tune on a patch-by-patch basis, since we can’t responsibly balance Diana around a single identity without first giving her the tools to succeed in that role. (Read: she needs an update.)
In the meantime, it’s plain to see Diana simply isn’t fitting in anywhere. We’re tackling two aspects of Diana that hold true regardless of playstyle by alleviating some of her mana problems and better rewarding Diana for playing into her spellcaster/basic-attacker playstyle – the dual nature we’re happy to support.
Passive – Moonsilver Blade
Q – Crescent Strike
W – Pale Cascade
E – Moonfall
Passive’s movement speed down. R no longer grants Duelist’s Dance’s movement speed when near the target.
Playing around Vitals gives Fiora a lot of power, but her opponents are at too much of a disadvantage to stop her from doing so. When Fiora’s striking lone Vitals, the movement speed Duelist’s Dance provides often lets her escape retaliation. When Fiora goes all-in with her ultimate, the movement speed she gets allows her too much leeway to out-maneuver her opponent even before hitting any Vitals at all. In both cases, Fiora’s movement speed rewards need to be toned down so opponents have a fair chance to win the game of footsies.
Passive – Duelist’s Dance
R – Grand Challenge
Passive modernization (and buff). W now grants damage reduction and tenacity briefly after activation, E AD ratio per spin up.
Garen provides his opponents with a healthy amount of counterplay as his opponents learn to kite. This leaves Garen with not that much skill expression of his own, making the “skill” in “skill matchup” pretty one-sided. We’re giving Courage a skill check to make Garen a little less straightforward, letting the beastliest Garens flex their muscles and show off. While we were on Garen, we took this opportunity to modernize his passive by shifting it from a 3-tier model to one that transforms once around the end of laning phase.
All in all, we still think there’s more that can be done to make Garen more compelling in the future, so take these changes as the start of a larger Garen conversation.
Passive – Perseverance
W – Courage
E – Judgment
W cast range decreased.
We’ve begun a multi-patch project to assess which vision-granting abilities should give vision, and which ones just sort of… do (see below). In Ivern’s case, Brushmaker generally requires an ally to walk into it to be valuable, and so we think the vision granted makes sense; itís just castable at too high a range. We’re aware this has ramifications beyond Ivern’s ability to scout, and if the change results in a larger power-down than expected (this is meant to hit Ivern’s utility and safety) we’ll follow up accordingly.
W – Brushmaker
Self-slow on W decreased in intensity.
Defensive Ball Curl’s self-slow is proving a bit too painful for Rammus players, so we’re tuning it less aggressively. Plus, with this patch’s Thornmail update having less synergy with the Armordillo’s passive (less armor and less armor scaling on the new Thornmail), the Armordillo could use a buff anyway.
W – Defensive Ball Curl
New passive grants movement speed when passing by other champions. Base and scaling health increased. Q base damage down, AP scaling up. W now grounds enemies within it.
Singed isn’t on our VGU list for the near future, so we wanted to find opportunities to bring Singed’s existing abilities into 2017. The big issues we wanted to address: his build inflexibility and his struggles against slippery champions.
Empowered Bulwark meant that Singed relied on mana items for efficient durability. Instead, we’re giving him higher base durability and letting him itemize more freely. His new passive ensures Singed has the stickiness and closing power a growing melee champion needs.
While Noxious Slipstream should assist him in getting to opponents, Singed is still harshly countered by slippery champions. Mega Adhesive grounding those standing within it should give Singed more of a chance to get to those champions.
Finally, we’re shifting Poison Trail’s damage from base values into scaling so Singed can feel good about building damage when snowballing, rather than always feeling best about Righteous Glory.
NEWPassive – Noxious Slipstream
Q – Poison Trail
W – Mega Adhesive
E – Fling
R – Insanity Potion
Mana regen increased at early levels. Q heals more; charge model updated. E cooldowns higher early; lower later. E deals more damage and stuns for the same duration at all ranks.
While Taric’s ult makes him one of the best supports in the late game, the penalty he’s paying in the early game is currently too steep. Starlight’s Touch is lackluster at early ranks, but prioritizing it can feel like a trap since its mana cost shoots through the roof for the 10-healing-per-charge each rank provides. While the core concept of Starlight’s Touch remains the same, we’re updating most of the details to make it a much more satisfying part of Taric’s kit.
We’re also upping Dazzle’s payoff. It’s a fairly difficult ability to land, and for how vulnerable Taric becomes when Dazzle misses, he deserves to win trades a bit more convincingly when it connects.
Q – Starlight’s Touch
E – Dazzle
Mist Walker base damage down early game. Maiden of the Mists health up late game. Mist Walkers more responsive, graves more consistent.
Yorick does quite well in the early game, but the Shepherd of Souls falls off pretty hard as the game goes on. We want to support his mid-to-late-game split pushing fantasy, so we’re giving the Maiden more late-game durability and a lower cooldown to increase her uptime.
Passive – Shepherd of Souls
R – Eulogy of the Isles
Mid-Patch 7.13 Balance Update
The changes here were made partway through patch 7.13. We’re re-posting them here for anyone who missed ‘em in the update to the 7.13 patch notes.
Now provides health. Now applies Grievous Wounds to attackers
Against champions and teams that lean on heavy healing and regeneration effects, tanky melee types sometimes feel like they’re actually hurting their team by serving as convenient health batteries. While mages have Morellonomicon and other carries have Executioner’s Calling to help focus down healing-oriented threats, we wanted to make sure that melee champs can at least force high-sustain damage dealers to look elsewhere for their healing.
Thornmail’s redesign makes it a strong answer to healing-heavy comps, but its price point is too high for it to serve as a timely reaction to an out-of-control threat. We’re introducing Bramble Vest to make the Thorns passive available at lower gold investments. This is a paradigm you’re probably familiar with on other items: Hexdrinker into Maw of Malmortius, Quicksilver Sash into Mercurial Scimitar, etcetera.
Ancient Coin Line
Quest reward now grants movement speed to approaching allies instead of an early skill point.
While an early skill point was a unique and novel reward for Ancient Coin’s quest, it also didn’t line up well with what Coin’s core users want to do: guide their team into and out of fights (your Rakans, your Jannas). We’re replacing it with a more familiar effect that provides supports the means to serve as “GO HERE” guideposts for their teammates, giving them the edge when determining where a fight goes down.
Build path updated. Grants more health.
Randuin’s is the item to buy when you’re looking to counter crit-focused champions, but even then, it’s a bit weaker than it ought to be. We’re giving Randuin’s a bit more bang for the buck and changing its build path to make it easier to to pivot away from (or toward) as the situation warrants.
Recommended Items Pass
We’ve updated the default recommended items pages for a bunch of champions (mainly supports) to reflect some of the item updates from across the season.
We originally introduced lethality to give us finer control over flat armor penetration’s impact at various points in the game and to separate assassin items from those of other physical damage dealers. As they exist today, lethality items are generally on the weak side and aren’t offering assassins real choice in their builds (just rush Ghostblade every game).
Looking at the options, Youmuu’s Ghostblade (roaming power) and Duskblade of Draktharr (damage proc, vision denial) should be competing for an assassin’s first buy as the pure-offense Dirk upgrades. In practice, Duskblade is behind the curve on pretty much every front. We’re leveling the playing field between the two blades in terms of build path, cost, and stats to create a more compelling choice.
As a result of this work, Ghostblade is reclaiming its monopoly on movement speed among armor penetration items. But, with mobility removed, the Dirk items need a different way to help assassins carry advantages forward. Changing lethality from enemy-scaling to self-scaling fills this gap while advancing our original goals by pushing it further away from bot-laners (who tend to be lower level).
Final note: Dirk’s upgrades have generally lost attack damage and gained lethality. The idea here is similar to our durability work in midseason: siphon strength out of the generalist stat (attack damage) and into the specialized stat (lethality).
Passive updated to grant your next ability bonus damage after killing a unit.
The Headhunter passive rewards assassins for premeditated trades and kill attempts, adding a chunk of damage to their combos if they last-hit a minion or monster before going on the offensive. It also serves as a wave or camp clearing tool for champions with area-effect abilities, enabling the roaming Dirk’s movement speed previously encouraged.
Bonus context: Headhunter is basically Dirk’s original passive with a facelift. Where the previous version was a smaller, persistent effect best suited for ranged poke and harass (proccing off basic attacks and single-target spells), this one’s a larger effect on a cooldown that triggers off any damaging ability. Headhunter is better aimed at assassins than the original and should be more rewarding for them to play around.
Inheriting the changes to Serrated Dirk. This is a pretty significant buff to clearing speed!
Duskblade of Draktharr
Builds out of Caulfield’s Warhammer instead of B. F. Sword and grants cooldown reduction. Cost decreased. Lethality up, attack damage down. Nightstalker proc scales with level instead of lethality.
Duskblade has the harshest build path of any Dirk upgrade as well as a passive that’s most effective in a glass cannon build (which leaves assassins susceptible to being blown up in fights before they can get their combos off). Both these factors make it unattractive as a first purchase, leaving Youmuu’s as the only option for every AD assassin. To make Duskblade more competitive, we’re giving it Youmuu’s cost and build path, and ensuring Nightstalker stands on its own even if Duskblade’s the only lethality item an assassin gets to buy.
Grants even more movement speed. Lethality up, attack damage down.
Doubling down on Ghostblade’s identity as the mobility-oriented Dirk upgrade, now that it’s the only one that grants movement speed. It already offers every damage stat a physical assassin wants (attack damage, lethality, and cooldown reduction) so we didn’t need to do much else here.
Edge of Night
Grants health instead of magic resist. Lethality up.
Edge of Night faces steep competition with Maw of Malmortius and Mercurial Scimitar in the “magic resist items for squishy champs” space – a competition it tends to lose. We’re switching the MR to health so assassins can buy Edge and Maw or Scimitar, making it viable against all-physical-damage teams in the process. This does come with a downside: the health makes it harder to maximize the Giant Slayer bonus from Lord Dominik’s Regards (especially if The Black Cleaver’s in the mix as well).
Medium sized Krugs can now be Smited!
Medium Krugs do enough damage and have enough health that Smiting them isn’t really a waste of cooldown, so we’re giving you the ability to do so.
A number of abilities in League of Legends grant vision, whether through a debuff on the champions it hits or a summoned object that grants vision around itself. Abilities like Hawkshot obviously should give vision, because that’s their job. We’re starting from removing vision from some summoned terrain – like Pillar of Ice – which are primarily used for other purposes (disruption in this case), yet also give vision for some reason. Brushmaker, on the other hand, generally requires an ally to walk into it to be valuable, and so we think the vision granted makes sense; it’s just castable at too high a range. Overall, we’ll looking at vision-granting abilities in future patches in order to create more consistency around the “uh-oh, they can see me!” experience.
- Trundle’s E – Pillar of Ice no longer gives vision around the cast area
Ivern’s W – Brushmaker cast range changed to 1600 ⇒ 800
- Anivia’s W – Crystallize no longer gives vision around the cast area
Attack & Ability Queueing
Many abilities are meant to get champions within striking range of their foes. In these situations, we often add an attack command at the end of the ability so champions aren’t standing around awkwardly after closing in on an enemy. Based on how input queueing works in League, however, this attack command overwrites any attempt to queue a second ability during the original ability’s cast time. We’re modifying a bunch of abilities so the hidden attack command no longer overwrites spell queueing attempts, but will still work if a second ability isn’t cast. Let us know if you think we’ve left something off the list!
- Aatrox’s Q – Dark Descent
- Amumu’s Q – Bandage Toss
- Darius’s E – Apprehend
- Ekko’s E – Phase Dive and R – Chronobreak
- Elise’s Spider Q – Venomous Bite
- Evelynn’s E – Ravage
- Irelia’s Q – Bladesurge
- Kha’Zix’s Q – Taste Their Fear
- Kindred’s E – Mounting Dread
- Lee Sin’s Q – Resonating Strike
- Maokai’s W – Twisted Advance
- Pantheon’s W – Aegis of Zeonia
- Poppy’s E – Heroic Charge
- Rek’Sai’s R – Void Rush
- Talon’s Q – Noxian Diplomacy
It sucks to be working your way up the Ranked Flex ladder with a group of friends, and then suddenly have your group become invalidated because someone happened to advance into the next tier before the rest of the group. This was happening a lot for groups around Diamond, where restrictions really started tightening, so we’re relaxing the high-MMR restrictions originally placed on Flex parties.
Rotating Game Mode
Dark Star: Singularity runs from 7/14/17 12:00 PT to 7/18/17 04:00 PT and 7/21/17 11:00 PT to 7/25/17 04:00 PT. Play as Dark Star Thresh in a 3v3 match on the Cosmic Ruins, which features a Dark Star Thresh announcer and chilling music.
- Hook or Flay opposing players and Abyss Scuttlers into the black hole in the center of the map to gain points.
- You’ll fly further the more damage you’ve taken, but you can’t die from health loss.
- The first team to 100 points wins the round, and the first team to win two rounds wins the game.
The Singularity calls. Will you answer?
2016 SKT T1 Skin Updates
The 2016 SKT T1 skins have each received custom audio effects! In addition, water effects have been added to SKT T1 Nami’s loading screen art.
- Fixed a bug causing the first raven of Swain’s R – Ravenous Flock to visually spawn from the blue side fountain
- Phantom Dancer no longer prevents some champion abilities (primarily stealth effects) from ignoring unit collision when no enemy champions are nearby – the condition for Phantom Dancer’s own immunity to unit collision
- Rek’Sai now properly marks targets for R – Void Rush even when the damage is completely blocked by a shield
- Blast Cones no longer fizzle when triggered by a burrowed Rek’Sai at maximum attack range
- Fixed a bug causing Ashe’s Passive – Frost Shot bonus damage to apply to inhibitors
- Fixed a bug where several forms of loss-of-control effects (Fear, Flee, Taunt, Knockback, and Charm) weren’t properly cancelling Anivia’s R – Glacial Storm
- When Zilean tries to walk into range to activate Passive – Time in a Bottle on an out-of-range ally, he’ll no longer cast his most recently-used ability instead once he gets into range. Something something time joke.
- Zilean’s E – Time Warp cast range indicator has been reduced to match the actual range
- Lucian’s Q – Piercing Light cast range indicator has been reduced to match the actual range
- The second hit of Sejuani’s W – Winter’s Wrath no longer counts as a separate spellcast
- Raptor’s Cloak is now purchasable on Howling Abyss. Not technically a bug, but felt like one since Banner of Command builds out of it.
- Twitch no longer gets stuck as visually translucent if Guardian Angel triggers during Q – Ambush’s camouflage duration
- Practice Tool’s “Lock XP” button now properly displays the ‘toggled’ state while active
- Fixed a bug causing the profile page to sometimes display a lower ranking than your highest one
- Fixed a bug where LeaverBuster and surveys would fail to show after Honor votes
- Players on low-spec mode now see the celebration for earning 3+ Honor votes
- Fixed a bug where Honor 1.0 buttons would still display at the end of game screen
- Fixed a visual bug where a blue bar would appear in the transition between the Honor vote and the end of game screen
- Reinder Kog’Maw’s vintage loading screen border now properly displays for original owners of the skin
- SKT T1 Nami’s hair no longer twitches at the start of one of her idle animations
- SKT T1 Ekko’s W – Parallel Convergence no longer uses base VFX when Ekko’s shield absorbs damage or when its bonus damage against low health targets procs
- SKT T1 Olaf’s Q – Undertow on-hit particles no longer become a massive disco if Undertow hits a moving target
- Re-added Freljord Taliyah’s voiceover for W – Seismic Shove
- Restored custom audio effects for Heartseeker Orianna’s basic abilities
- Mecha Zero Sion’s custom VO now plays on kills
- Snow Day Ziggs’s joke audio no longer restarts toward the end of the animation
- The Star Guardian beginning-of-game music no longer overlaps with DJ Sona’s music at the start of a match
- Candy King Ivern no longer steals Jhin’s taunt sound effects during his taunt animation
- Snow Day Syndra’s Q – Dark Sphere ground snowflake VFX now properly displays on Medium or lower settings
- Gothic Orianna’s model textures no longer change slightly depending on whether she’s currently holding The Ball or not
- The Mechs vs. Minions ward skin no longer has a confusingly bright shadow in champion select’s ward skin selector
Upcoming Skins & Chromas
The following chromas will be released in patch 7.14:
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