Lucian & 3.10a

EDIT 8/22: The new patch and Lucian are live.

Riot announced that “…we’ve decided to split our next update into a few parts in order to mitigate risk. As such, this patch is titled 3.10a…”

I’m guessing that there will either be a patch 3.10b, or the next patch will be 3.11. I assumed we would see Lucian this time around, but he isn’t mentioned in the notes, and as of yet it doesn’t appear that this patch or the new champion are live. There are some more interesting changes to items this time around, along with the standard tweaks to particularly strong/weak champions. Also, we get to see some finalized information about Lucian in this Champion Spotlight:

This is a champion that I’m looking forward to, as I tend to play ADC quite a bit. I didn’t really do so well with the last ADC offering, Quinn, though I’ve seen her played well. Lucian’s kit seems more suited to my run and gun kind of play style, though he has the poke range that I prefer. I have points saved up for him as soon as he hits the store, so we’ll see if I really like him as much as I think I will.

I’m only going to touch on a few points from the notes, starting with a nerf to one of my long-time favorite ADCs, Twitch:

Twitch

Summary: Twitch’s Expunge now deals less damage at early to mid levels.

Context: Currently Twitch’s laning phase trades are too strong, even when he’s forced to pop Expunge before reaching full stacks of Deadly Venom. These changes should balance out the Plague Rat’s early game power without affecting his team fight potential.

Expunge

  • Base damage reduced to 20/35/50/65/80 (from 40/50/60/70/80)

I’m no pro, but I feel that Expunge is Twitch’s only source of damage in the early to mid game. Until you get a few AD items built up, the only real poke he has is to throw a poison vial and expunge. It doesn’t seem like this will be too much of a detriment, but why nerf the champs that don’t need it? Next up, everyone’s favorite teleporting asshole, Master Yi:

Summary: Highlander now reduces ability cooldowns per kills and assists by a percentage amount rather than a flat second reduction. This means Master Yi will never get a “full reset” to chain Alpha Strikes together even if he kills with his first Alpha Strike. Additionally, Master Yi’s attack speed per level has been reduced, while Meditate’s damage reduction at later levels has been increased. Wuju Style’s passive attack damage bonus is now higher at earlier levels and lower at later levels.

General

  • Attack speed per level decreased to 2% (from 2.75%)

Double Strike

  • Fixed a bug where the second strike would damage targets even when Master Yi was blinded

Meditate

  • Damage reduction increased at later ranks to 50/55/60/65/70% (from 40/45/50/55/60%)

Wuju Style

  • Passive attack damage bonus changed to 10% at all ranks (from 7/9/11/13/15%)

Highlander

  • Now passively reduces the remaining cooldown for Master Yi’s basic abilities by 70% on a kill or assist (instead of 18 seconds on kill or 9 seconds on assist)

We all complained about how horrible it was to fight AP Master Yi on the Howling Abyss. He was even pretty overpowered in mid-lane or the jungle on Summoner’s Rift. So what did we get after the re-work? AD Master Yi that was just as annoying and just as overpowered. These nerfs seem to balance him out to where he’s not gimped (good Yi players will still do well) but he isn’t the Q spamming powerhouse that any noob can pick up. At least, we can hope. Right?

There is a cool change where Riven’s Q allows her to hop walls on the 3rd cast, which I am totally ok with. Zac is being nerfed slightly, and after seeing some of the things he can do in any game mode, I’d say the nerf is pretty weak. Shen’s ulti is being nerfed in the fact that it can now be interrupted by root effects, though this probably won’t affect most Shens out there. Next up, Items:

Phage & Trinity Force’s Icy Passive

Summary: Phage and Trinity Force no longer have the “Icy” slow passive. Instead of a percentage chance to slow an enemy champion on hit, these items now grant movement speed for a short duration of time, along with even more movement speed on minion, monster, and champion kills. Frozen Mallet’s function remains unchanged, but its recipe has changed.

Context: Following the nerfs to Blade of the Ruined King, we wanted to create more tools to help bruisers stick to their targets. Ultimately we focused on in-skirmish mobility as a valuable and healthy stat for all champions.

Phage

  • UNIQUE Passive – Icy removed
  • New UNIQUE Passive – Rage: basic attacks grant 20 movement speed for 2 seconds on hit. Minion, monster, and champion kills grant 60 movement speed for 2 seconds
  • Combine cost reduced to 375 gold (from 590). Total cost reduced to 1250 gold (from 1465)

Trinity Force

  • UNIQUE Passive – Icy removed
  • New UNIQUE Passive – Rage: basic attacks grant 20 movement speed for 2 seconds on hit. Minion, monster, and champion kills grant 60 movement speed for 2 seconds
  • UNIQUE Passive – Spellblade
    • Damage increased to 200% base attack damage (from 150%)
  • Due to Phage’s price reduction, total cost is now 3628 gold (from 3843)

Frozen Mallet

  • Recipe Changed: Giant’s Belt + Pickaxe + Ruby Crystal + 950 gold = 3300 total gold
  • UNIQUE Passive – Icy retained

Really, these changes don’t make a huge amount of difference in terms of the effects of the individual items, they make for interesting changes in strategy. The “Icy” passive gives a percent chance to slow the target on-hit. This passive being changed over to “Rage” on the Phage and TF actually gives movement speed on hit and on kills, so it can be used more effective to chase down targets. Also giving the option to stack a mallet and a tf without having to build two phages is a nice touch, and with two separate passives it’s stackable. Seems like Bruisers are getting some love.

Full patch notes are here.