Hello readers! Hyjacked back once again for another PBE Roundup. The last few patches haven’t seen many changes, which is why you haven’t heard from me. Patch 4.10, however, has Riot getting back into the swing of balance and content, with gameplay updates to both Nidalee and Skarner and a slew of changes to Marksman and Support itemisation. Let’s take a look at what we’ve got in store for this next round of changes. Keep in mind, as always, that this is PBE content and therefore none of these numbers are set in stone.
- League of Draven ( passive ) tooltip now lists “tower” as granting a stack of Adoration, in addition to catching an axe, minion, or monsters.
This isn’t a very big change, but it’s nice to know that the crowd loves to watch Draven kill towers as well as people.
- Magic Resist per level increased to 1.25 from 0
It doesn’t take an analyst to know that Galio isn’t a very popular champion right now. This is a small change, and not one that will bring Galio back into playability, but it seems like Riot’s at least taking a look at our favourite gargoyle’s issues and maybe doing some slow and steady patching to bring him back into a good spot. Baby steps, Riot, baby steps.
- Sigil of Silence ( Q ) renamed to Sigil of Malice
- Sigil of Malice ( Q ) no longer silences.
Despite efforts to tone her down, LeBlanc is still a very dominant pick in the mid lane. According to Meddler in his forum post, they’re trying to remove long-range silences from mid-lane mages.
LeBlanc’s damage is still quite high, but I can get behind the phasing out of silences, as it affords some opportunity for counterplay and gets rid of some of the crazy snowballing that champions like LeBlanc enjoy.
- Ardent Blaze ( W ) bonus AD ratio lowered to .3 bonus AD from .6 bonus AD
This is a nice first step on the road to nerfing Lucian. He’s been basically uncontested as the best marksman in the game for quite some time now, and while I agree that some of his competition do need buffing up to par, I still think he’s a little bit too dominant to go unchanged. This is a fairly small change, but keep in mind that due to item changes coming this patch, more cast-oriented carries like Lucian are getting nerfed on an item basis, so we’ll see where this patch leaves him.
Nidalee has a huge list of changes, so I’m going to put a tl;dr, my analysis, and direct you to Repertoir’s continuously updating post over here on the PBE forums so that you can have a look, and put the actual changes afterwards.
In general, her gameplay pattern has been changed somewhat (though not too drastically), to encourage less of the spear-turret gameplay and instead support a feel more centered around kiting first and then going in for the kill. This has always been her general pattern, but it’s a much stronger feel in this new iteration of Nidalee’s kit. So, here’s the tl;dr:
Her passive, Prowl, has had its general movement speed decreased but has otherwise been buffed. She now moves faster towards enemy champions, and also has a new marking mechanism called Hunt. Whenever Nidalee hits an enemy with one of her human-form spells, she applies the Hunt debuff to the enemy, giving her cougar-form spells bonuses against that enemy and also causing her to move faster when going towards them.
Her human Q, Javelin Toss, has pretty much been nerfed across the board. I’m not going to pretend that I even feel a little bad for these damn spears; Javelin toss is one of the most frustrating spells in the whole game. A low-cost, low-cooldown, long-range attack that chunks out up to half of your HP is not fun or even interesting to play against. Don’t freak out though, Nidalee fans; the power from her javelins has been reassigned to other areas of her kit.
Her cougar-form Q, Takedown, has been nerfed in its regular state, but is a lot stronger when used against a Hunted target. It has also been changed from physical to magic damage, and Nidalee’s attacks gain extra range while the buff is active (which is a weird way of saying that the range of the attack has been increased). This spell is going to be a lot more potent as a follow-up, due to the extra Hunt damage and the fact that it will now benefit from the magic pen that you’ll probably be building.
Her human W, Bushwhack, has had a bit of changed functionality. Its base damage has been nerfed a bit, but it no longer shreds armour and MR, and instead now does percent HP damage over the debuff time. The removal of the resistance shredding is most likely because it applies the Hunt debuff which already pumps up your other damage, so if it also shredded resistances, the move would be double-dipping a bit on its damage boosting. Overall, though, Bushwhack has the same play pattern to it; you’re trying to hit someone with it before you fight them.
Her cougar W, Pounce, looks like the most fun part of her new kit in my opinion. It does the same thing as live but with a bit less damage, but if you cast it on a Hunted target, Nidalee leaps 700 units towards her prey. This kind of gap-closing is going to really help with the dive-in feel that they’re going for with this rework. Also, Pounce’s cooldown is reduced down to 1 second when you score a kill or assist, helping Nidalee mop up fights.
Her human E, Primal Surge, has had its numbers tweaked a little and had the AP ratio decreased significantly. This is a well-deserved nerf, as the healing on it was massive, but there’s not really a lot else to say about this spell.
Her cougar E, Swipe, has had its damage nerfed, and rather than get extra damage from Hunt, it makes swiping a Hunted target take Pounce’s cooldown down to 1. It looks like doing a Pounce-Swipe-Pounce combo will go pretty nicely. Throw a takedown in there for flavour.
Her ultimate has had its cooldown reduced to 3 seconds to better encourage stance-swapping, and also automatically trains a rank at level 1, so Nidalee doesn’t have to wait until level 6 to have her all-in damage. This should enable her to have a bit more early kill potential, though as a jungle main, I can’t say I’m pleased at the slipperiness it gives her.
Nidalee- Detailed Patch Notes:
- Basic attack hit timing adjusted to better match visual
- Death Recap now properly differentiates between Javelin Toss and Takedown, and Bushwhack and Pounce
- (R) Aspect of the Cougar now has 4 ranks and is automatically trained at level 1
- UI elements added to support modified passive
- Movement Speed in brush reduced to 10% from 15%
- Movement Speed in brush is now increased to 30% while moving toward visible enemy champions within 5500 range
- Damaging champions with Javelin Toss and Bushwhack causes her to Hunt these targets for 4 seconds, granting Prowl’s increased Movement Speed toward them and enhancing her next Takedown, Pounce, and Swipe against them
- Nidalee ignores unit collision while Prowl and Hunt are active
- Nidalee gains vision of Hunted targets for the duration
Javelin Toss (Q)
- Minimum base damage reduced to 50/75/100/125/150 from 55/95/140/185/230
- Maximum base damage reduced to 150/225/300/375/450 from 137/237/350/462/575
- Minimum Ability Power ratio reduced to 40% from 65%
- Maximum Ability Power ratio reduced to 120% from 162.5%
- Now deals maximum damage at 1300 range rather than 1500
- Missile height adjusted at (slightly closer to ground as missile travels)
- Missile particle adjusted slightly
- Missile width reduced to 30 from 60
- Applies the Hunt debuff to enemy champions hit
- Deals 33% increased damage to Hunted targets
- Minimum base damage reduced to 4/20/50/90 from x/40/70/100
- Maximum non Hunt base damage reduced to 10/50/125/225 from x/120/210/300
- Maximum Hunt base damage introduced at 13/67/167/300
- Maximum non Hunt Total Attack Damage ratio reduced to 250% from 300%
- Maximum Hunt Total Attack Damage ratio introduced at 333%
- Minimum non Hunt Ability Power ratio introduced at 24%
- Maximum non Hunt Ability Power ratio introduced at 60%
- Maximum Hunt Ability Power ratio introduced at 80%
- Now deals entirely magic damage instead of entirely physical damage
- Nidalee gains 75 Attack Range while Takedown is active
- Ground duration reduced to 2 minutes from 4
- Debuff duration reduced to 4 seconds from 8
- Now only affects 1 enemy per trap
- Flat base damage reduced to 20/40/60/80/100 from 80/125/170/215/260
- Flat damage Ability Power ratio removed (was 40%)
- No longer shreds enemy Armor and Magic Resist
- Now additionally deals 12/14/16/18/20% (capped against neutrals) of the target’s current Health over its duration
- Now additionally deals 1% of the target’s current Health per 50 Ability power over its duration
- Cooldown reduced to 17/15/13/11/9 from 18 at all ranks
- Mana cost reduced to 40/45/50/55/60 from 60/75/90/105/120
- Team color indicators added to better indicate trigger radius
- Persistent pulsing particle adjusted for better visibility
- Applies the Hunt debuff to enemy champions hit
- Now moves toward the player’s cursor rather than Nidalee’s current facing
- Base damage reduced to 50/100/150/200 from x/125/175/225
- Ability Power ratio reduced to 30% from 40%
- Cooldown increased to 5 seconds from 3.5
- Can now be used to jump to Hunted targets at up to 700 range by hovering the cursor over the Hunted target
- Killing a unit while in Cougar form reduces Pounce’s current cooldown to 1 second if it is currently higher
Primal Surge (E)
- Base healing adjusted to 45/85/125/165/205 from 50/85/120/155/190
- Ability Power ratio reduced to 50% from 70%
- Cooldown increased to 12 seconds from 10
- Now targets toward the player’s cursor rather than Nidalee’s current facing
- Base damage reduced to 70/130/190/250 from x/150/225/300
- Ability Power ratio reduced to 45% from 60%
- Swiping a Hunted target reduces Pounce’s current cooldown to 1 second if it is currently higher
- Cooldown reduced to 5 seconds from 6
Aspect of the Cougar (R)
- No longer grants 20 Movement Speed while in Cougar form
- Cooldown adjusted to 3 seconds from 4
- Base mana lowered to 200 from 203
- Base mana per level increased to 50 from 43
- Base mana regeneration per level increased to 0.18 from .1
Sivir’s mana game seems to be something that Riot can just never be happy with; it’s up and down quicker than a rabbit on a pogo stick. This patch is seeing buffs to Sivir’s mana per level and mana regen, with a slight nerf to base mana which is easily made up for by the per level increase. This should see her gain a bit of strength in the bottom lane and let her throw out a few more boomerangs than previously.
New Passive: Crystallizing Sting
- Skarner’s damaging spells apply Crystal Venom to enemy Champions and large monsters
- If Skarner attacks a target with 3 stacks of Crystal Venom he will deal an additional 20-105 damage and stun the target for 0.5/0.75/1 seconds
- After a stun, targets will not receive Crystal Venom for 6 seconds
Crystal Slash (Q)
- [NEW] Crystal Energy Bonus: Skarner now gains 3/4/5/6/7% Movement speed per stack
- [NEW] Auto attacks reduce Crystal Slash’s cooldown by .5s (doubled against Champions)
- Base physical damage reduced from 25/40/55/70/85 to 20/32/44/56/68
- Base physical ratio reduced from 0.8 to 0.4
- Bonus magic damage reduced from 24/36/48/60/72 to 20/32/44/56/68
- Bonus magic ratio reduced from 0.4 to 0.2
Crystalline Exoskeleton (W)
- Cooldown lowered from 16 to 13/12.5/12/11.5/11 seconds
- Base damage lowered from 80/120/160/200/240 to 40/60/80/100/120
- AP ratio lowered from 0.7 to 0.4
- Cooldown lowered from 14 to 12 seconds
- Cooldown lowered from 130/120/100 to 100/90/80
- Impale consumes all stacks of Crystal Venom and deals 50/75/100 damage per stack consumed to the target
Not satisfied by their previous attempt, Riot’s having another go at reworking the Crystal Vanguard. In general, the pattern for his changes is less damage, more stun.
The damage on all of his attacks but his ult has gone down, but he’s been given some extra utility in the form of a stacking movement speed bonus on his Q that comes free with the attack speed buff, and a new stacking debuff passive that builds up to a stun and a burst of damage at four stacks.
His old passive is gone from all of his attacks but his Q, but they’ve all had their cooldowns reduced to compensate. His W, Crystalline Exoskeleton, has had a particularly sharp cooldown decrease, which makes him a lot tankier, particularly in the late game. He also gets a little bit more burst from his ultimate, which consumes passive stacks for extra damage.
As a big fan of the crystal scorpion of sadness, I’m cautiously excited about these changes. I loved original Skarner and actually did have some fun with reworked Skarner, despite him losing a lot of his old champion feel. I’m hoping that these changes will sit him somewhere in the middle of overpowered and underpowered.
He’s getting a lot of his old stickiness back from his new passive, but his damage is down. He’s looking at going in a more tanky direction, but his utility might make up for it. The current meta isn’t too friendly to tanky CC junglers, but Riot has promised some changes to try and alter that environment a little, so hopefully they’ll deliver on that.
The good thing about this second rework is that if the only thing Skarner is missing is damage, they can fix that very easily by just buffing his numbers.
- Rocket Jump ( W ) mana cost reduced to 60 at all ranks from 80
- Buster Shot ( R ) range reduced to 550 from 700
Tristana is another marksman that needs some buffing. Riot has given a bit in the form of a mana cost buff to Rocket Jump, but her ultimate’s range has been decreased pretty severely.I think that the reduction in range on Buster Shot might pave the way for more future buffing, as it’ll make it harder to overbuff her. Tristana has always been a tricky beast to balance, though, as her attack speed steroid makes her one of the more dangerous hypercarries to deal with if she gets ahead.
- Base damage lowered to 46 from 49
- Ambush ( Q ) stealth delay while not taking damage increased to 1.5 from 1.25 sec
- Ambush ( Q ) alternate stealth delay increased to 6 seconds from 3 sec
Twitch has somehow become a very strong pick in the bottom lane, despite not really having been changed at all. I suppose his visual update did wonders for the morale on people playing him. His base AD has been lowered and the utility on his stealth has been nerfed pretty substantially, making it a lot easier to stop him from hiding if you can get to him. This should help lower his overdominance but ideally keep him in a spot where he’s still a decently strong pick.
There are a lot of item changes coming in patch 4.10, mainly centered around itemisation changes for marksmen and some for supports. I’ll list them all and my takes on them here, but Xypherous and Ricklessabandon are doing a great job explaining their rationales and keeping up discussion in this forum post, so definitely check it out.
New Item: Ardent Censer
- Recipe: Forbidden Idol + Aether Wisp + 550g
- Total Cost = 2200g
- 30 AP
- 10 mp5
- 10% cooldown reduction
- Unique Passive: 8% movement speed
- Unique Passive: Your heals and shields on another unit grant them 25% attack speed for 6 seconds. This does not include regeneration effects or effects on yourself.
Hello there, healstick! This cool little number is a nice-looking item to pick up on caster supports that have shields and heals to put on their teammates. It comes with some nice stats for the kinds of champions it goes on and has a great build path that includes the two newer mid-game items. I can see this being built on people like Sona, Soraka, Lulu and the like. It’s a great item with a great effect on it, look forward to it.
New Item: Essence Reaver
- Build Path: Vamp Scepter + Pickaxe + 975 gold
- Total Cost: 2650g
- 50 AD
- 10% Life Steal
- 10% Cooldown Reduction
- Unique Passive: You gain 2% to 8% of damage dealt by basic attacks as Mana. Mana restore increases based on how much mana you are missing.
I’ve been waiting for this item for ages. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, it’s a mana regen AD item. Essence Reaver is on the weak side as far as AD goes, but the lifesteal and the CDR are pretty nice, and the unique passive is going to be great on high-cost bruisers like Yorick. My prediction is that this little beauty will usher in a return to glory of some of the mana-dependant bruisers and fighters, particularly in the top lane where mana is scarce. It’s also a great item for mana-dependant AD casters such as Pantheon and Talon and caster-oriented AD carries like Ezreal and Corki to be able to keep up their resources in lane. For a while now manaless champions have been a growing trend, so hopefully Essence Reaver will bring other champions up closer to their level.
Athene’s Unholy Grail
- Magic resist lowered to 25 from 40
- Mana regeneration per 5 reduced to 10 from 15
- Passive: Mana restore on kill or assist increased to 15% from 12%
Mikael’s Crucible is being reworked into a more defensive item for mana-hungry supports, so Riot wanted to make its counterpart, Grail, a more clearly offensive item. Crucible and Grail both build out of Chalice, so they don’t want Athene’s to be too strong and push people away from building Crucible. To that end, they’ve reduced the mana regen and the MR on it, but upped the kill/assist reward to encourage building it in offensive situations.
- Total cost increased to 1000 from 950
- Attack Speed increased to 25% from 20%
This change is aimed at the general trend this patch of buffing up attack speed items and also at homogenising the costs of tier 2 boots. It should be a bit of a buff to carries that like early attack speed, which is a strong trend this patch.
- Life steal lowered to 8% from 12%
This is another part of the balance changes that Riot’s doing with lifesteal in this patch. I’m pretty sure that the objective is to try and homogenise lifesteal a little bit more so that players can make slightly more meaningful changes with buying lifesteal rather than just having one thing that’s definitely the best. Vampiric Scepter has had its lifesteal lowered to 8%, so the change to Bilgewater is there to reflect that.
Blade of the Ruined King
- Lifesteal lowered to 10% from 15%
- Passive: damage increased to 8% current health from 5%
- Active: damage lowered to 10% maximum health from 15%
- Active: Movement speed slow reduced to 25% from 30%
BoRK’s emphasis has been shifted from its active effect to its passive on-hit damage. This is another change aimed at closing the power gap between burst-oriented marksmen and sustain-oriented ones. People like Vayne and Tristana will enjoy the change.
- Combine cost increased to 1100 from 850
- Total cost increased to 3500 from 3250
- Attack damage increased to 80 from 70.
- Life steal increased to 15% from 12%
- Passive granting stacking AD and Lifesteal REMOVED.
- New Unique Passive: “Your life steal can now overheal you. Excess life is stored as a shield that can block 50-440 damage based on champion level. This shield decays slowly if you haven’t dealt or taken damage in the last 15 seconds.”
Bloodthirster has undergone quite a bit of change. First of all, notice that its AD has gone from 70 up to 80; that isn’t just balance for BT. In this patch, Riot is trying to make AD items come closer together in balance to each other, so Bloodthirster, Infinity Edge and Mercurial Scimitar are all being brought to 80 AD. This way, marksmen are making meaningful decisions based on the passive effects on their heavy AD items rather than just picking based on which has more AD overall.
The second main thing to notice about BT is that the passive stacking AD and lifesteal have been cut from it. This might come as a shock, as it’s long been what makes Bloodthirster unique, but the design reasoning behind it makes sense. BT has for a while now been kind of a win-more item; if you get it first, you win the lane because you start snowballing ahead with the stacking AD and lifesteal. Win-more items are kind of a design no-no, so Riot’s replaced BT’s old passive with a new overhealing shield that lets you lifesteal up past your normal HP, which is kind of cool. It keeps down the snowballing and brings BT to a more defensively-oriented place. I can definitely see it being built on some bruisers now as well as marksmen.
- Attack damage increased to 50 from 45.
This change is mainly just aimed at making the BF sword track resemble the Needlessly Large Rod track; the design team feels like 50 is a better benchmark than 45 for the first tier of AD item construction. This is a bit of a buff to early-to-mid-game marksmen, but not too much so as both sides of the map will likely be getting one.
- Total Cost increased to 450 from 400
- Attack speed increased to 15% from 12%
Riot’s looking at making attack speed a bit of a more appealing stat to invest in this patch by making it come in bigger doses early-game. Again, this should help out carries like Tristana in their early-game power levels, but not change their late-game standings (as none of the final-tier attack speed items have changed).
- Health lowered to 70 from 80
- Attack damage lowered to 7 from 8
- No longer grants flat health on hit
- Life steal increased to 3% from 0%
Hop in the time machine, Doc Brown, we’re back in season two. A while back, Doran’s blade was shifted from a percent lifesteal value to a flat HP value on-hit in order to tone down on early-game snowballing. However, in that meta, defensive and sustaining supports were very common. Nowadays with all-in fighting supports being so rampant, marksmen in lane need to get all their sustain from lifesteal items, and Vampiric Scepter is the only real way to do that. This change is aimed at giving people another option for early lifesteal in case they want to build into something like an Infinity Edge early.
- Total cost decreased to 700g from 750g
This is just a slight price readjustment, probably to make building Forbidden Idol and its higher-tier items a little smoother and easier on supports early-game.
- Attack damage increased to 80 from 70
Again, this is part of the effort to homogenise AD carry item tiers. Mercurial Scimitar and BT are getting the same treatment.
Locket of the Iron Solari
- Note: Unique Active will now use a recipient’s level to calculate shield strength if the recipient’s level is higher than the item owner’s level.
This is an interesting idea, but it makes a lot of sense. If a support wants to buy this item, it doesn’t go to as much use since the support’s level is almost always the lowest on the team. This will make the item put different shields on different people based on level, which will make the item worth a lot more on a lower-level champion.
- Total cost increased to 3800 from 3700g
- Attack damage increased to 80 from 60
- Active: can now also give Movement Speed to Ranged champions.
In addition to the 80-AD change, Scimitar now gives ranged champions a movement speed boost on use as well as melee champions. We might start seeing this item a little more against CC-heavy teams, as it’ll be a little bit more worth its slot and gold on marksmen.
- Recipe now: Chalice of Harmony + Forbidden Idol + 870 G
- Total cost increased to 2450g from 1600g
- Mana regeneration per 5 increased to 20 from 10
- Cooldown reduction increased to 10% from 0%
Crucible is being reworked as more of a pickup for mana-hungry supports rather than just a generally good option. Where Athene’s Unholy Grail is the offensive upgrade to Chalice of Harmony, Crucible is the more spell-spamming direction to head in. It’s looking like it’ll be better for mana-hungry champions, but not worth buying on anyone else, which might see a bit of an increase in champions like Ashe who rely on long-cooldown CC.
- Ability power increased to 80 from 75
- Mana regeneration per 5 lowered to 10 from 12
This is a slight buff to the ‘nomicon, making a bit more worth its slot in your inventory. I don’t expect any major changes from this, but a few more champions might build it.
- Attack speed slow reduced to 10% from 15%
- Movement speed slow REMOVED. 0% from 10%
This is a risky change. Randuin’s Omen has, for a long time, been basically the best armour item in the game. Now, keep in mind, it’s still pretty good. However, the movement speed slow part of the passive has been removed, which will make it much harder for bruisers to close the gap towards kiting marksmen. While some kiting marksmen do need an easier way to fight bruisers, I am a little worried about people like Lucian getting way out of control with this. Fortunately, the active slow is still on Randuin’s, so if they can get close enough, Bruisers do still have a bit of pin-down.
- Life Steal: 10% –> 8%
Vamp Scepter is being nerfed to make it less of a dominant choice in bottom lane. BoRK is the only top-tier item that’s suffering from this change, though. Bloodthirster’s lifsteal has gone up, and everything else has remained constant.
- Attack speed slow reduced to 10% from 15%
This is just echoing the charges to Randuin’s.
Youmuu’s Ghost Blade
- Active: Now lasts for 6 seconds for ranged champions, up from 4.
Apparently, this and the change to Scimitar are both trying to remove ranged/melee splits where the design team doesn’t think they make sense. I’m a little worried about all these changes and what they’ll be doing to kiting carries, though. Not many people build Ghostblade on marksmen, but that might change with this patch. At least summoner heal is being nerfed a bit.
- Total Cost decreased to 1100 from 1175g
- Attack speed increased to 20% from 18%
Zeal’s buff is in the same vein as the change to Dagger; basically trying to make it so that attack speed is a more attractive buy early on, but keeping end-game attack speed levels unchanging so that people don’t hit diminishing returns on their late-game buys.
Heal (Summoner Spell)
- Movement speed duration lowered to 1 second from 2 seconds
With all the buffs to kiting marksmen in this patch, this is definitely needed to prevent kiters from running rampant all over teamfights without a care in the world.
World Cup 2014 Skins
The 2014 World Cup is being celebrated on the Rift! There are five new skins coming out to commemorate the World Cup. This year’s lucky recipients are Maokai, Alistar, Gragas, Twisted Fate and Lucian. The skins look pretty cool so far, head over to S@20 for a closer look.
Draven’s moved on from his career as a gladiator and has made it to the TV screen. Check out Primetime Draven coming later this patch.
Skarner’s getting some pretty shiny texture updates to go along with his new new kit. He has a new animation for his stun passive, as well as updated textures for his other spells and skins.
Futbol Ward Skin
There’s a new football (or soccer ball on NA)-based ward skin available to go hand-in-hand with the new set of skins.
Role Summoner Icons
There are six new summoner icons based on champion roles that are being added this patch. I think they look pretty awesome.
Updated Spell Icons: Tryndamere, Skarner and Nidalee
Nidalee, Skarner and Tryndamere are all getting new spell icons this patch. They all look pretty nice in my opinion, they’re a bit of the way down this same page that I keep linking.
As always, thanks to Moobeat at Surrender@20 for patch notes and images. See you next time!