So let’s continue our journey into the rest of the planned changes for this upcoming season (which will start a month earlier than normal on Dec. 6).
With Part 2, we’ll be taking a look at the rest of the Assassin changes, item adjustments, a new stat, and potential game changing impacts to Stealth.
If you haven’t checked out Part 1 yet, it can be found here.
Assassin update continued
In addition to the four major Assassin champion updates that we covered last week, Riot’s balancing team will also be making smaller changes to six other Assassin champions.
While these will not be as large in scope, there will be some quality improvements for both players and opponents.
We’ll also be seeing a few new items and the introduction of a new stat for Assassins.
Minor champion updates
While these will not be as large in scope, there will be some quality improvements for both players and opponents. See below for the TL:DR on what is changing.
Some upfront damage will be lowered on his basic spells, but that will be adjusted by a much more potent Ultimate ability now.
Fizz’s Shark from Chum the Waters will now grow in size based on the distance traveled.
Zed has always had issues with counter play in the past, and Riot is taking this time to once again adjust their favorite shadowy Assassin.
Expect some lowering of basic spell damage (just like Fizz), but with a new passive added to Zed’s Ultimate. Upon killing an enemy champion with Death Mark, Zed permanently gains a portion of their attack damage for himself.
Akali has been in a rough spot for years now.
Her kit can be abusive when it’s overtuned, but lacks the capability of providing any substance when she falls behind (which is often the case). To help bring some team functionality back to Akali, she will now drop a Twilight Shroud at her original location whenever she uses her Ultimate to blink.
Riot currently feels like the isolation damage in Kha’Zix’s kit is being underutilized. To help boost that feeling of a solo Assassin, Riot will be making changes to Q,W, and R evolution.
Our favorite clown on the Rift will also be gaining some quality of life improvements. Shaco’s clone will now drop three Jack in the Boxes when summoned.
In addition, when Shaco’s clone dies, any enemies in the nearby vicinity will be feared.
These changes to Ekko are more to adjust his current identity crisis.
Ekko has largely been built as a tankier champion this season, a character trait that Riot prefers not to see on Ekko. Ekko’s passive no longer slows, but Chronobreak triggers Parallel Convergence as Ekko travels back through time.
New stat for Assassins
Current Assassin builds revolve around stacking as much armor penetration as possible to utilize the burst on their kit most efficiently.
Riot feels part of the problem with Assassins is the inability to counter-play that burst. Well, say goodbye to armor penetration and hello to Lethality.
Lethality will replace all armor penetration on current items. While the stat will behave similarly to armor penetration, the penetration will now scale with your opponent’s level.
This makes the stat less snowbally in the early game, but provides equal power in the late game.
Assassin item changes
With the change to Lethality taking place, Riot will be adding some new Assassin items as well as upgrading some now outdated ones.
Poacher’s Dirk will encourage Assassins to invade the enemy jungle. Meanwhile, Sorcerer’s Bane will provide Assassins with another tool to defend against mage burst (click image to enlarge).
Stealth mechanic update
If you’ve played League of Legends for a few years now, you’ve probably come to the conclusion that Stealth is still a work in progress.
It very much has been since the days of Evelynn stacking Sunfire Capes and running around for minutes invisible. Riot is taking this offseason to make some distinctions with Stealth.
Stealth will now be separated into two discrete categories. Short-duration effects (Wukong dash and Akali shroud) will now be considered true stealth.
Meanwhile, long to moderate-duration effects (like Rengar ultimate and Evelynn Passive) will now be considered camouflage.
CamouflageThis is what Riot considers “strategic” stealth. It’s used to navigate large portions of the map unseen, covering large gaps in vision.
It is essentially the same “stealth” mechanic that is currently on Evelynn, but will be extended to Rengar and Twitch now.
InvisibilityThis will be considered “tactical” stealth by Riot, and is the more common of the two “stealth” mechanics.
Invisibility effects shouldn’t last long enough to cover large portions of the map unseen, but rather be close quarter gap closers or escape tools.
Champions, like Wukong and Leblanc Passive, will use these mechanics.
Wards and stealth
Now that Rengar and Twitch are in the camouflage camp, Riot is able to give power back to stealth champions!
Vision Wards have been updated into a more focused anti-vision tool: Control Wards.
Control Wards still grant their own vision, but also provide strong vision denial — they reveal and disable nearby enemy wards and traps — but they don’t reveal invisible champs.