Two days after Teamfight Tactics' development released patch 9.16B, next week's update was teased. According to Principal Game Designer, Stephen Mortimer, patch 9.17 is tentatively buffing, nerfing and reworking over a dozen units, items, and interactions. Oh, and a new five-cost unit will be entering the arena as well...Pantheon.
At first glance, it appears that the development team isn't quite satisfied with the current state of Shapeshifters and Wild in the early stages of the game.
Nidalee, Warwick, Jayce, and Shyvana --all generally associated with one another as players try to make coherent beginning compositions-- are scheduled to receive buffs. Generally passed over for stronger Brawlers, Knights, and Nobles, the tweaks will (hopefully) provide more balanced and diverse player vs. player battles as the game starts out.
One Shapeshifter that is in a little too good of a place at the moment is Swain. The part-man, part-raven, part-Shapeshifter, part-Imperial and part-Demon can fit into almost any team composition that has an open slot or wants an added bit of oomph. Patch 9.17 is scheduled to knock him down a couple of pegs, although the specifics of the nerf itself is unknown.
Balancing out healing
Historically, a mechanic that has caused frustration within the game's community and an obstacle for the development team to try and tackle is the ability for units to regenerate health over the course of a battle. Units can either heal themselves naturally via abilities, with certain items or just have the Noble tag. Items that can prevent that altogether or drastically mitigate the amount (Red Buff and Morellonomicon) are highly contested and are deemed must-haves.
In the upcoming 9.17 patch, the team is looking to make changes to how these items operate. The Noble tag is being nerfed as is Bloodthirster, Hextech Gunblade, and Grievous Wounds. Without having additional context behind the supposed nerfs, it's difficult to assume how the developers want healing to function long-term. But, what is known, is that they feel the current iteration isn't working.
The full list of tentative changes coming to Teamfight Tactics in 9.17 which is scheduled to go live on Wednesday, August 28 can be found in Mortimer's tweet above.
Tim Rizzo is the editor and a reporter for Inven Global. He joined the company back in 2017.