The League of Legends patch 10.14 notes have been revealed, preparing players to face significant changes in the game. Champions that are constantly showing up in the LoL Esports scene will see balance changes to allow a more diverse meta. Balancing aside, the patch also includes a plethora of new skins and chroma keys.
As per usual, we will begin with the nerfs and buffed champions, that are supposed to shake up the meta and bring some interesting plays into the stage.
Buffed champions include Alistar, who will be receiving a cooldown decrease in Pulverize (Q), and Karthus, with a base health and movement speed increase, a damage increase in Lay Waste (Q), while damage to monsters has decreased, on top of Defile’s (E) mana restore being constantly active. Kha’Zix received an isolated target bonus damage increased in Taste Their Fear (Q), Riven’s passive bonus damage has been increased, with lifesteal and critical strikes also applied to damage, and Sejuani, for Jankos’s doom, has received a buff on Permafrost (E). Lastly, Zed’s Living Shadow (W) had a missile speed increase.
Champions that will receive a nerf include Ezreal, whose Arcane Shift’s (E) cooldown has been increased, to avoid continuously running away from brawls. Pyke has been significantly nerfed, with his base magic resistance growth and armor growth decreased, Bone Skewer (Q) mana cost, cooldown and base damage decreased, Ghostwater Dive’s (W) movement speed reduced to 40% in all ranks, and Phantom Undertow’s (E) base damage increased. Trundle’s Frozen Domain (W) had its bonus attack speed decreased in the early game, while Varus had the maximum bonus damage of Piercing Arrow (Q) set to scale, and Hail of Arrows (E) decreased in the early game base damage.
Both recently reworked champions, Volibear and Wukong, remain targeted by the balancing team. Voli’s base attack speed has been slightly decreased, while Frenzied Maul (W) has been reduced to half when targeting monsters. Wukong remains a strong champion, but the nerf will decrease the duration of Cyclone (R ) in hopes to make him less overpowered in team fights.
League of Legends is releasing eight new champion skins from the series Conqueror, Arcanist, and Infernal. Find the cosmetic changes below:
10.14 patch notes - Quest’s Thoughts.
On patch 10.14, many champions widely picked in the current competitive meta were nerfed by the Riot balance team. Ezreal, Varus, Trundle, Wukong, Volibear were all met with nerfs, but I do not believe that they’ve fallen off the competitive meta completely, as not only the areas of their kits that were nerfed aren’t significant enough to completely remove them, but they will also continue to outperform other marksman champions in the bot lane (i.e. Sivir, Draven, Twitch).
So how do I interpret these nerfs? The nerfs to Ezreal and Varus will mean that while they’ll still be highly contested in both competitive and in solo queue, champions like Kalista, Kai’sa, Xayah (when paired with Rakan), and Ashe will also see more gameplay. Nerfs to Trundle, Wukong and Volibear aren’t as impactful to their gameplay, but I do predict that Volibear will be more of a top lane champion as to a jungler, due to the loss of his sustain in the jungle.
On the side of the champions that got buffed, the most notable champions that I want to point out are Zed, Alistar, and Karthus. With the cooldown on Alistar’s Q, Pulverize, reduced by two seconds at all ranks, I do believe that it’ll fare quite well in the current meta, especially with champions like Leona making a comeback in competitive play.
While the changes to Karthus were intended to make him a great mid laner again, I don’t believe that they’ve hit the mark to enable him as a mid laner (i.e. the nerfs to his ultimate). He will continue to either struggle against or does not provide any other merits compared to other top tier mid champions in the current meta (i.e. Syndra, Orianna, Twisted Fate, etc).
Zed’s known to counter much of the aforementioned top tier champions in the mid lane. Because of it, Zed was even picked in Challengers Korea, where Griffin’s mid laner, Naehyun, picked Zed to counter FireRain’s (HyFresh Blade’s mid laner) Twisted Fate. In a recent interview, the mid laner for DragonX, Chovy, commented that he did watch the CK game between Griffin vs HyFresh Blade, and he himself is even practicing the champion in solo queue as well.
With Zed’s W speed nerf being reverted from all the way back in patch 3.13 and his cooldown on it being reduced, I do believe that he will be picked more as a niche pick in competitive, just like how Naehyun picked it to counter FireRain’s Twisted Fate. And with it, I also believe that his pick rate will go up in solo queue as well, opening the doors to other champions getting picked to counter Zed.
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