If you haven’t already done so, please read the title of this post in a singsong manner. I hope that the rhyme hits you, and it sounds pleasant and whimsical. Did you do that? I hope you did, because there is nothing whimsical about the incoming changes. The patch notes are here, but let me give you a list of bold predictions to help you navigate these fairly significant changes.
BUILD THE BLADE OF THE RUINED KING: Normally I’m not a big caps person, but this is going to be a big change. This item was already pretty solid. Now, it gives you attack speed on top of a bunch of lifesteal and a great active. My guess is this item should single-handily bring champs like Jax and Irelia back into favor. It is perfect on anyone who benefits from sustain and attack speed, and even those who don’t. I think there’s potential for this to be the new Blackcleaver, for a little while, so be ready for it. Should it be “League of the Ruined King”? or “Get BoRK’ed”? There are things I like about both.
Side-note: Don’t stop building health. Other than buffing BoRK, health is still cheap and easy to throw down.
Want to dominate top? Stick with Garen and Darius: Do not let these “nerfs” fool you, these two are still going to be some of the biggest lane bullies in the game. Garen should be a little bit more vulnerable to poke, but remember, most Garens were only taking one point in their W and were still kicking all of our butts. The thing that makes Darius a huge bully is the fact that his pre level 6 game is so strong. He weakens you, tries to drive you out of lane, and then finishes you off once he hits 6. He was never the greatest team fight champ, and this nerf should further that trend, but he should remain the lane bully of choice.
Careful AP Nidalee, you aren’t as tanky as before: If you are building tanky Nidalee this nerf won’t hurt you too much because you are already a beast. If you are an AP Nid who is using a Tear of the Goddess for your mana item, and then rushing straight into a Deathcap, you might find yourself lacking a good chunk of the magic resist you used to have. Throw an early Chalice of Harmony into your build, and you should be fine.
Death to AP Tryndamere: This fad might take a while to fully die, kind of like the man himself, but the nerfs should literally make it a lot easier to kill him off in the early and mid game. Denying him Fury will actually make a difference.
Stick with Vi, we’ll see about Xin: Vi’s early damage should be weakened a little bit. This should hurt her in lane, but not in the jungle, where her ganks are her biggest attraction. Still a solid choice for those post level 6 ganks and for what she brings to team fights in the late game.
Xin might struggle a little bit. Old Xin could catch you, let you escape a bit, and catch you again. New Xin might not be able to catch you that second time. With that said, Xin is great at punishing champs who are out of position. He is amazing at working with CC from other champs. He will still be able to gank hard, but now should have to put some more care into his timing and working with his teammates.
Top Lane Taric: If you have followed this blog for some time, you know I am all about doing the unorthodox. I want to put this here because I love Taric, and I am convinced it could work. I think these changes will make support Taric weaker, but open the door for an itemized Taric to have even more power. With his W now also doing damage based on his armor, you can build him tanky and still do, sorry Phreak, tons of damage.
My recommendation is to first build a Nashors tooth and a Glacial Shroud. He needs that boost to his attack speed and CDR, mana and armor all allow him to do more damage. After that, a Rod of Ages makes you tanky while, thanks again to his new passive, allowing you to do even more damage. After that, I would build a Spirit Visage. This gives him the most frequent and one of the most potent heals in the game. Finally, consider more tankiness or something like a Muramana – to do even more damage.
Ok, I think I have made enough bold claims for one Friday. I hope that the new ping system is good, and it will be nice to actually be able to see projectiles such as Nid spears and Lux bindings coming at you. Speaking of seeing crazy things, let me know if you see any of my predictions come true, and definitely let me know if you try out bruiser Taric. If you want to see how my current claims, and the new patch, match up against what I saw on the PBE, that post is here. Now if you will excuse me, I have to head out into the early morning like an AP Trynd running from a Cho’gath – slowly and silently.