We’re in the midst of the preseason now, and it’s time for the first League of Legends patch update since all of the changes in Patch 6.22. As noted in the patch notes, there are less changes than long-time players may expect from the first patch since the preseason changes, but the balance team wants to give some of the larger changes some time to settle.
In this patch, there’s a significant update to Shyvana, as well as changes to a few mid laners, a whole bunch of bug fixes and the release of League’s new Ultimate skin. The League Client Update has also reached its open beta phase with this patch (try it out, it’s buggy but looks really cool), and there’s plenty more going on.
Here are the five things you really need to know before stepping onto the rift on Patch 6.23. For a list of all the changes, click here.
- Shyvana update
This is the first of what Riot is calling “opportunistic” updates — the idea being Shyvana didn’t need a full rework, but could use some tweaks that could make her feel better, specifically with her Dragon theme and flexibility with juggernaut items. You can read more about it here, but here’s the gist:
Shyvan’s ultimate (Dragon’s Descent) can no longer be interrupted, while her E in Dragon Form (Flame Breath) is now an exploding fireball instead of a damage cone. Her Dragon Form also now gives bonus health instead of resistances, increasing synergy with juggernaut items like Titanic Hydra and Sterak’s Gage.
Those are the buffs: to keep it all balanced, Shyvan’s W in Dragon Form (Burnout) no longer leaves a flame trail behind her, and the bonus armor and magic resistance from her passive has been nerfed. She does, however, have a new unique element of her passive that gives her interaction with other dragons on the map:
[NEW] OTHER DRAGONS' SCALES :: For each elemental drake Shyvana or her allies defeat, she gains an extra 5 armor and magic resist
2. Mid lane tweaks
The assassin update has led to ... mixed results from assassins, with control mages instead leading the way in the mid lane. This patch, there are nerfs to two high-performing control mages and a buff to one of the lowest-performing assassins.
The big change with Anivia is the interaction between her E (Frostbite) and R (Glacial Storm). A crucial combo for Anivia for years, it deals a whole ton of damage without much room for counter play. If a target has been touched by Glacial Storm, Frostbite will proc for a ton of damage — and in the past, you could even throw Frostbite first and then cast Glacial Storm before it reached the target to really make it impossible to avoid.
Now, what seems like a very good change for game health is being deployed: Frostbite will only deal increased damage to targets who have been hit by Glacial Storm only after the storm is fully formed. To help with that, Glacial Storm now also forms faster.
Malzahar has been one of the strongest champions in the game since the mage rework last midseason, in large part because of how difficult his Voidlings are to deal with. Now those Voidlings will deal more damage, but they won’t multiply quite as frequently.
With a heavier focus on chaining Malefic Visions for voidling success, Malzahar will have to set up minion waves to keep his swarm going - but opponents will have a far easier time stemming the tide by simply killing them.
Akali is the solo laner getting buffed, as the assassin rework left her quite weak relative to other laners. In come buffs to her passive, W (Twilight Shroud) and E (Crescent Slash).
Akali’s Passive AP ratios have been boosted, the energy cost on Twilight Shroud has been reduced, and both ratios on Crescent Slash have been increased. The main takeaway: Akali’s going to do more damage now.
3. Plant bug-fixes
After a collective freak out once they were announced, plants haven’t been all that bad, huh? Part of that is because of some of the changes made on the PBE since they were announced (less Blast Cones, consistent location spawns), but at least in my games they’ve added some fun interactions in the jungle.
There aren’t big changes for plants quite yet, but there are some bug-fixes this patch. Plants are now immune to lifesteal and critical strikes, Blast Cones no longer cause Hecarim to launch forward when using his E (Devastating Charge) instead of backward, consuming Honeyfruit no longer flags you as “in combat,” and the Scryer’s Bloom indicator textures are updated to be “less noisy and misleading.”
4. League Client Update even more available!
The LCU has had mixed results since release — a lot of it looks really sleek, but there are still some kinks (a friend has occasionally been unable to ban, and parts have been laggy). With the release of Patch 6.23, it’s moved to open beta. If you want to check out and play around with the client before it becomes The Client at the start of next season, now’s your chance. Replays have been added in all regions, too!
5. Elementalist Lux released
League’s latest Ultimate Skin looks really freaking cool. Elementalist Lux has 10 different forms that you choose between in-game. You won’t be able to play as all 10 in one game, but you choose as you are playing and it’ll help make each different game a unique experience.