Welcome to the next installment of Weekly League, where we detail some of the more major upcoming changes being tested or are in the process of being tested in the League of Legends Public Beta Environment (PBE). Though we won’t be able to detail all of the newest changes, we will discuss as much as possible.
Most of the changes are pretty much follow-ups from last week’s changes, but there are a few interesting developments nonetheless.
First off, Karma’s rework has officially been released for testing on the PBE. Though the Riot staff have detailed what would be changes, now, PBE testers can now test for viability and various strategies concerning the newly redesigned support champion. Overall consensus? A rework worth looking forward to. Both her new visual upgrade and ability reworks have been implemented, and she looks and plays fantastic.
So, what can players look forward to? Karma’s new passive is Gathering Fire, which lowers the cooldown of her ultimate, Mantra, each time she hits an enemy with an attack or spell. Her Q ability, Inner Flame, is a skillshot ability that deals magic damage and slows enemies in the area. If empowered through Mantra, Inner Flame becomes Soulflare, which increases the damage, leaves a marked area, and explodes into Area of Effect (AoE) damage after a short time. For her W, Focused Resolve, Karma can target an enemy, tethering a short beam to her target and dealing damage over time. If the tether is not broken for a short duration, the target is rooted. If empowered through Mantra, Focused Resolve becomes Renewal, which deals bonus damage and heals Karma. Lastly, her E, Inspire, shields an ally and grants the ally a speed boost. If empowered by Mantra, Inspire becomes Defiance, which deals damage to all surrounding enemies around the shielded ally, and additional surrounding allies are granted a shield and temporary speed boost.
As for the new upcoming champion Zac, after a few playthroughs, our impressions aren’t as positive. Zac’s skillset currently allows him to have some form of AoE damage in each ability. His Q (Stretching Strike) allows him to stretch a short distance and hit all enemies within range, while his W (Unstable Matter) allows him to explode and deal damage to surrounding enemies. For his E (Elastic Slingshot), he can charge up and fling himself a short distance, and then deal damage to all enemies within range, and for his ultimate (Let’s Bounce!), he can bounce up to four times, with enemies being knocked up and slowed if hit for the first time, and take half damage for multiple bounces afterwards.
The problem with Zac, as of now, is high ability cost for low damage. Zac currently runs on health to fuel his abilities (much like Vladimir or Dr. Mundo), and though his passive, Cell Division, allows him to regenerate 4% of his maximum health each time his abilities hit an enemy target, the regeneration rarely makes up the cost he paid to use his abilities. To note, his ability costs are based off of a percentage of his current health, not his maximum health, which does mitigate some damage. In a team fight, however, or even in 1v1 battles, you’ll be likely to take out most of your health by spamming your spells, leaving you vulnerable for your opponent to finish you off. Of course, once he does obtain Let’s Bounce, he does create situations in his favor, but his early game is currently quite weak. Of course, his Cell Division passive does have a second ability that can help him revive himself, however, his blobs are quite weak, and even AI bots were able to make quick work of a dead Zac before his respawn time.
In other champion news, Rumble’s ultimate, The Equalizer, is getting a major nerf: there will no longer be any initial damage. Of course, as far as I can tell, the duration of the ultimate as well as the slow effect are still intact, though many have complained that the exclusion of initial damage really lowers Rumble’s viability. To make up for this change, The Equalizer’s damage over time ratios have been increased (previously 100/140/180 (+20% AP) to 130/185/240 (+30% AP)).
Udyr is also getting quite a few changes, and some of them are buffs, while others are nerfs. His passive, Monkey’s agility, no longer has stackable increases for armor and magic resist, but now has a flat 5 bonus movement speed. His Q, Tiger Stance, has a reduced mana cost, and the damage inflicted is now magic instead of physical. His W, Turtle Stance, no longer restores mana, but you’ll be able to critically strike during this stance. In addition, mana costs for Turtle Stance have been reduced, and shield strength has been increased. For his E, Bear Stance, mana cost has also been decreased, and movement speed has been increased. The duration of Bear Stance, however, has been reduced, and you’ll be able to ignore unit collision as long as the active effect persists. Lastly, for his ultimate, Phoenix Stance, ability scaling has been dramatically increased, and procs during the first attack and every 3rd attack afterwards. When it is an active effect, however, ability power scaling has been decreased, it no longer grants bonus attack/ability power, but mana cost has also been reduced.
To keep up with the latest PBE stuff, you can check out the official League of Legends PBE forum here!