Massive changes coming to Summoner’s Rift

Massive changes coming to Summoner’s Rift

Big changes coming to Riot’s League of Legends in the preseason, developer blog post suggests. Longer laning phase, reworked runes, and more comebacks await us.

The last inside scoop we got at the upcoming preseason changes was almost a month ago. The update reveals multiple changes that address the laning phase, comebacks, runes, and endgame meta. The changes will be shipped to the PBE shortly, although things are still expected to change leading up to the preseason patch. The big patch will be 8.23.

The laning phase change points to the fact that Riot Games are aiming to increase the duration of the laning phase. In the current environment, one gank or bad matchup can cost your team a tower. The developers don’t want for that to happen anymore and have changes in mind. They have come up with quite a creative solution which comes in the form of “Turret Plating”  — an enormous shield that’s been planted in front of your turret.

The shield will have five layers, all of which will have to be taken down one by one. Only after all five shields were taken down will the turret start taking damage. Whenever a plate is destroyed, the resistance of the remaining plates increases. If the turret is being attacked by more than one person the turret will receive a defensive shield called “bulwark” for a short while after a plate was taken down.

Whenever a layer of the shield is destroyed, the team will be rewarded with a small amount of gold. Turret plating will only be active early-game and will disappear after the 14-minute mark. After that, the turrets will return to their current, shieldless state.

The second big change is to the Runes. We were previously informed that Riot was going to remove the stat bonuses from rune paths so that players were free to pick the runes that they want for specific champions. In the new system, they will implement a new way, which will allow players to pick their own bonus stats.

The bonus stats are set to include more adaptive damage, more HP per level, flat amounts of resistances, or attack speed bonuses. The system and the numbers are still being worked on and are bound to change, but it certainly looks like an improvement over the current stat bonuses.

Probably the biggest change comes in how the bounties are calculated. In the end, it means that the losing team is granted a clearer path to a comeback. First of all, bounties will now be displayed on the scoreboard, making it easier for teams to decide which enemy to shut down. Bounties will also not come solely from kills anymore, but will also increase with the amount of creep score (cs) the player has.

Additionally, bounties will be capped at 1000 gold, however, if the enemy’s bounty exceeds 1000 gold the remainder of the bounty will roll over to the next death. This means that a really fed champion could be shut down multiple times while still having a bounty to his name, thus rewarding a losing team.

In their final statement, the developers have given more details on how they want games to be ended more easily. This is supposedly the change Riot Games were working on for a while, although not much information is available on it. From what we know, the minions will be buffed earlier in the game as well as more cannons will be spawned.

In a similar fashion, jungle objectives such as dragon, baron, and the elder drake will spawn more frequently, giving teams an incentive to fight.

The updates that are set to hit the live servers in the next months are bound to bring big changes to the game.

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Kira: “I was very happy to play Galio”

Kira: “I was very happy to play Galio”

After a subpar start to the 2018 Season World Championship for Gambit Esports, team’s midlaner Mykhailo “Kira” Harmash took time to share their experiences at the most important event of the year.

In their opening match, the CIS representatives faced off against the Taiwan Regional Finals winners G-Rex. The 36 minute long match proved to be less than challenging for the team from Taiwan. To put things in perspective, Gambit failed to take down a single enemy turret in the entirety of the match.

Harmash and his team managed to bounce back in the second game against Kaos Latin Gamers. Gambit pulled a reversal and beat KLG in a 29 minute game. Kira’s Galio proved to be instrumental to his team’s success. GMB overcame the second hurdle for a much-needed confidence boost.

Tomorrow Gambit will face off against G-Rex and Kaos Latin Gamers again. Two teams with the best record in the group will progress towards the next round, for a chance to get into the main event.

After the dust has settled, Mykhailo “Kira” Harmash in a short interview talked about their team’s performance on the first day of the event.

Vie: You seemed like a completely different player on Galio than you were on Malzahar. How did that game go for you?

Kira: I’m really happy that on this server all skins are unlocked and that I could pick the one I really wanted. I was very happy to play Galio. I feel very confident playing him. There’s a lot of engage potential there and I actually feel useful for once. Unlike some other champions.

Vie: Tell me about your first game. It really didn’t go so well for you. What was the idea behind those picks?

Kira: We knew he had to play around top and mid. In the middle, I had to play a painfully passive game against my own wishes. At one point it was getting really frustrating because we could’ve easily killed Syndra there, gained a lot of vision control, and win the game thanks to our bot lane.

Vie: It looked like you will play around your bottom lane, but something collapsed there. 

Kira: PvPStejos didn’t call Diamond to top lane, because we wanted to protect our bot lane in case they start playing really aggressively there — like they usually do. Our coaches scouted them really well and told us exactly how to play this one. The execution of that plan was the problem. Especially in the middle lane.

Vie: G-Rex is still a major dark-horse, it couldn’t have been easy to scout them. Did they play the way you expected them to? 

Kira: I think it was what we expected. It may not seem like much, but it really helped that two of our guys have already played against one of them before. I mean Toyz (G-Rex coach). Some of the things never really changed since the Taipei Assassins days. We knew some things and we were ready for them.

Vie: Thanks for your time, Kira. Any parting words?

Kira: Thanks for watching, hope you enjoyed it. The first match wasn’t very good, the second one was a bit better. I think the next one will be even better and we will show some cool things. We will do our best.

PvP Bet Exchange

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First tickets for Worlds 2018 are about to go live

First tickets for Worlds 2018 are about to go live

And if history taught us anything, they won’t be for very long. Tickets for the first stage of League of Legends World Championship 2018 will be going on sale in just a few hours.

This year League of Legends will be returning to the world capital of esports, South Korea, for the most important tournament of the year. After one month of intense competition, a new world champion will be crowned.

Worlds will begin on the 1st of October with a Play-in phase, where champions of the wildcard regions will battle it out against the runner-ups from Europe, China, North America, and Taiwan. Out of twelve teams entering the play-in, only four will be moving to the next stage.

The tickets for the first stage of League of Legends World Championship 2018 will go on sale at 7 am CEST on Tuesday, 21st of August. A single ticket will cost 10,000 Korean won (roughly 7.79 EUR, or $8.93 USD) and will be valid for a whole day.

The play-in phase will be taking place at the LoL PARK, Gran Seoul, and has a very limited capacity of 450 spectators.

The group stages and the quarter-finals will be moving to Busan, the Busan Exhibition and Convention Center. More than 4,000 fans will be able to enjoy the games in the venue and support their favorite teams. Tickets for the group stage will go on sale at the same time, only a week later, on the 28th of August.

Every week will see the next stage tickets going on sale, with the quarter-finals on 4th of September and semi-finals on the 11th.

Group stage tickets will have a base price of 12,000 won (9.35 euro, $10.71 USD) for the Silver package, and 18,000 (14.02 euro, $16.07 USD) won for the Gold. The prices for the quarter-finals will go up to 18,000 and 25,000 won (19.47 euro, $22.32 USD), respectively.

Semi-finals, which will take place at the Gwangju Women’s University Universiade Gymnasium, will cost 20,000, 30,000, and 42,000 won, for Silver, Gold, and Platinum tickets, respectively.

Tickets for the Worlds 2018 Grand Final will go on sale 25th of September, and their price is yet to be announced. League of Legends 2018 World Championship finals will be taking place at the Incheon Munhak Stadium and will be seating more than 50,000 League of Legends fans to experience the final game of the season.

All the tickets will be sold through the Korean ticket platform Interpark. The platform supports English, Korean, Chinese, and Japanese languages. Buyers from outside Korea will have to pay a 2,000 won handling fee.

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BIG Acidy: “Playing in a team that expects you to play well is pretty stressful”

BIG Acidy: “Playing in a team that expects you to play well is pretty stressful”

The up-and-coming Estonian top laner Markus “Acidy” Käpp shared what it’s like playing for his first professional team — the German BIG.

The young talent joined Berlin International Gaming (BIG) earlier in May, one month before turning 18. Since then, Acidy helped his team take second place in Premier Tour 2018 Summer Hamburg where they finished behind the reigning German champions EURONICS Gaming and ahead of mousesports, SPGeSports, SK Gaming, and others.

With the goals set on the European Masters 2018 Summer Split, BIG isn’t pulling any punches.

Käpp told us about breaking into professional gaming, competing at the highest level, learning to deal with the pressure, his roots in the Baltic League of Legends scene, and sharing the top lane with his teammate Juho “NilleNalley” Janhunen.

Vie: How did you decide to pursue the path of a pro player? 

Acidy: I spent most of my time after school playing League. I’ve always loved the game and competing. Winning as a team is so much better than winning alone, so I decided to join a team to improve my team play and communication to become better as a player.

Vie: How hard was it to explain it to your family, friends? Were they accepting of your choice, or was there mistrust?

Acidy: My family didn’t like it at first because my grades in school were dropping and I wasn’t doing any physical activities. When my grades improved and they saw me going to some Baltic LANs they realized how much I like doing this. After that, they were pretty supportive of me. My friends, on the other hand, have become a small fan club now, they are always asking when I’m going to play or how I’m doing in soloq.

Vie: Speaking of the Baltic scene. Do you think there’s any hope for it yet?

Acidy: The Baltic scene currently in general is pretty bad. There are lots of good players from the Baltics such as Puszu, HeaQ, Sirnukesalot etc. but not enough for the Baltic scene to be strong. They recently announced that Baltics will have a spot in the EU Masters, so maybe in a few years there’s hope for it but I doubt it.

Vie: What’s your opinion on the professional play so far? Is it exactly what you thought it would be like? How do you feel about the overall level of teams in the German league?

Acidy: In the professional play the most important thing is communication. I’m quite talkative in-game, so I didn’t have that problem when I first started out, but playing in a team with four good players that expect you to play well is pretty stressful.

Early on I would be so nervous that I died a lot to ganks because I was so focused on not dying in the lane that I would forget to ward or watch the map. Professional play has a lot higher highs and much lower lows. Beating a good team is such a great feeling and losing to a bad team just has you depressed for the whole day thinking about what went wrong. The Top 4 teams in Germany are at a pretty good level, but we’ll have to wait for the EUMasters to know for sure.

Vie: You have two top laners on the roster currently. How does that work?

Acidy: NilleNalley plays in the ESL Meisterschaft matches and in the upcoming LANs we split the games. I play blue side games and Nille plays the red side because of our different champion pools. I didn’t go to the Premier Tour LAN because I massively underperformed in important matches. So I benched myself so that the team could still go to LAN.

Vie: Isn’t it hard for the rest of the team as well, having to play with two different top laners every other game?

Acidy: It’s definitely hard, but [learning to adapt and] playing different styles is important for a team to succeed and do well.

Vie: There has been some talk about the Korean imports lately. Where do you stand on the subject?

Acidy: Europe has players from very different countries and cultures, so importing Korean players doesn’t really change much in a team, as long as they are actually good players. Being able to speak English well isn’t that big of a problem in my opinion since it can be learned pretty fast. For example, Huni and Reignover, they didn’t know English that well when they first came to Europe, but they are good players so the language barrier didn’t stop them from succeeding.

Vie: You just turned 18 a few weeks back, are you done with the school yet? What are your plans for the future?

Acidy: I still have one year of school left and I don’t have any big plans after that. At the moment competing in LoL is what I enjoy doing the most, Io i want to give it a real shot and see what comes after that.

Vie: Thanks for taking the time. Any shoutouts?

Acidy: I’d like to shout-out to my interviewer and all the readers of this interview.

Follow Markus “Acidy” Käpp on Twitter @Acidy_

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Climbing the ladder in 8.13

Climbing the ladder in 8.13

Navigating your way through the latest patches in League of Legends can be a daunting task these days. Here’s a who’s who on the Summoner’s Rift right now.

With the ever-changing metagame, it can certainly become hard to keep up with what’s what on the Rift and where’s the most direct route to the top ranks. So if you’ve been wondering which are the best champions in League of Legends as of patch 8.13 brace yourself — you’re in the right place.

Top Lane

Although meta is constantly evolving, over in the top lane champions that don’t get many changes usually tend to stay the most worth picking, at least early in the new patch. Garen would be a good example, not only because he managed to become one of the most stable champions in the game, but also because he’s a very strong contender in the top lane.

Garen’s nearly infinite durability is increased considerably with Resolve path, making him a real nightmare to face in the lane for many other champions. Not only is it increasingly hard to deal any damage to him, his ultimate ability — Demacian Justice — is a source of pain for his opponents as well. The Might of Demacia can punish the mistakes of his enemies with high true/magic damage, ending their lives in an instant.

Similarly, Fiora remains unchanged in 8.13, which combined with several nerfs on her opposition in the lane, makes her a feared champion over on the top side of the Summoner’s Rift.

Her strongest point still is her true damage dealing ability, in the eyes of her enemies making her a nuisance at best, and an unstoppable force at worst. With Conqueror rune converting damage to true damage, Fiora can amplify her damage even more, making her an unparalleled opponent in the 1v1 fights. For now, she remains a true duelist of the top lane, as well as a worthwhile pick.

Jungle

With no doubt, Nocturne became the big star of this patch. He managed to remain in the spotlight since patch 8.5, which would be a feat on its own, if not for the constant buffs applied to this champion. The changes made to his ultimate ability, Paranoia, make him one of the scariest (literally) junglers in the game. And now, for even longer duration. Even more so, considering the nerfs on other top-tier solo q junglers Xin Zhao and Graves.

The 8.13 patch may also open doors for the big return of Kindred. His big re-entry was marked in the Korean pro league, LCK, namely picked by KT Rolster’s jungler Go “Score” Dong-bin.

Kindred is best known for dominating jungle for a period of time after his release, followed by a massive nerf-hammer dropped right on top of him. Even though he’s been getting constant buffs in the recent patches, he wasn’t quite ready to resurface as the top tier jungle champion. Not until patch 8.12, that is, because as of now, Kindred is back to being one of the best jungle class champions in the game.

Mid Lane

Zed, while not being a popular choice in the competitive scene, remains one of the biggest champions in ranked solo q. And that’s for a good reason.

Almost every game you will see Zed getting either picked or even more likely, banned. For one thing, The Master of Shadows is really fun to play, and even more than that, he is immensely powerful. So much so, that he is likely the single best middle lane champion on the Rift currently. At least when it comes to solo q.

As an assassin, Zed provides high single-target damage, which combined with his inane sneaky playstyle and high mobility make him especially annoying to play against. Not only can he go in, deal an insane amount of damage and retreat virtually unharmed, he has incredible roaming potential, making him a threat all over the map. Considering that marksmen put more stress on farming as of the last patch, Zed can put his skillset and playstyle to use, take advantage of that and punish the greedy ADC’s.

Another good pick that will let you win games from the mid lane is Zoe. Even considering the changes we’ve seen to her recently, Zoe remains a constant threat inside and outside her lane.

Marksman

Draven always was a popular pick in the bottom lane, especially in the solo q and that remains to be true in the current patch. The fiery champion, that is best known for his aggressive playstyle is favored by many veterans in the bottom lane.

He’s very powerful during the laning phase. Draven can easily suppress his opponents in the lane with not just his abilities, but powerful basic attacks. That, combined with his passive ability, League of Draven, allows him to farm faster than any other champion in the lane, making him the best marksman on the Fields of Justice.

Similarly to Kindred, Jinx is looking to make a return to the top levels of the game. Even though she was considered to be one of the best hyper carries in League of Legends, she faded away for quite a while. With her Q ability, Switcheroo!, seeing a buff in this patch, its rocket crit damage getting increased to 220%, Jinx will be taking her rightful place as of the best champions in her weight category.

Support

Fiddlesticks went a full circle as a champion in League of Legends. It started off in the jungle, then moved to the bottom lane, even had a brief (and not very welcome) stint as the top and mid lane champion. And as of 8.13, it’s ready to return to the support position.

With plenty of control under its belt, Fiddlesticks can be painfully annoying to play against. Not only can he punish his enemies for making mistakes or overextending, but paired with a high damage partner, they can bully almost any other duo pair.

And if being a supportive support isn’t really your thing and you’re looking for the strongest support champion to play right now, don’t look any further than Brand. Not only can this support deal plenty of damage, but he can legitimately carry his team. Even though originally made to be played as a mage in the middle lane, The Burning Vengeance is now most viable in the bottom lane.

But don’t let that fool you, he’s as strong as he ever was. Fireballs make for an easy and effective way to harass your opponents, and a strong laning phase for support Brand could lead to an extra carry for your team in the mid/late game. Just like Fiddlesticks, paired up with a high damage output champion like Draven, Brand can keep his enemies under their own turret for the entirety of the laning phase.

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Foxdrop: “My future is really up in the air right now”

Foxdrop: “My future is really up in the air right now”

With the dust settled, but memories still fresh in his mind, we sat down with EU Masters’ favorite member of the casters desk.

After two weeks of intense League of Legends action, many of those who tuned in for the European Masters 2018 would recognize Dan “Foxdrop” Wyatt. Although relatively unknown as a caster outside of his home region in the UK, Wyatt has secured himself plenty of fans after his time in the international competition. He quickly proved himself able to go toe-to-toe with the best talent in the scene, working together with LCS veteran Trevor “Quickshot” Henry, as well as many others.

Wanting to get to know him better, we invited Foxdrop for a chat. We discussed his road to the EU Masters, experiences there, the future of the UK scene, and what’s next for the up-and-coming caster.

Vie: First things first — I feel like most EU Masters viewers may have seen you before, but couldn’t necessarily put a finger on it. Shed some light on that, what was your road to the caster desk like?

Foxdrop: I’m a Youtuber and Streamer normally. One day a year ago, pretty randomly, the ESL Premiership (UK’s regional league) needed a caster and I expressed interest. Did a bit more casting, became a regular on the Prem this year, and got into the Masters.

Vie: For many, it may have been their first time seeing you cast, but the overall response from the community was really great. Ballpark it for me, how great of an experience these past few weeks have been for you? 

Foxdrop: Dude, this event has been ridiculous for me. My main goal when I got into casting was to mostly just have fun and be “me”. I’m so happy that people were able to feel that and enjoy the games too, honestly, it made the whole thing unforgettable for me.

Vie: It’s been more than a year now since you first joined the ESL Premiership caster desk. What does it say on your business card these days — “YouTuber” or “caster”?

Foxdrop: Good question, I’d probably still call myself a YouTuber. It’s my main source of income, it’s what I spend most of my time doing, and what I’ve been doing for the longest. But that might change soon, who knows.

Vie: Looking back at the EU Masters — and it was pretty subtle — but I got this lingering suspicion that you may have been rooting for the UK. So what’s the verdict? How happy are you with UK’s results?

Foxdrop: Haha, I did my best to keep that a secret! Overall I’m happy with how the UK performed. I think I was expecting more from Misfits Academy but considering the UK scene is very small, no complaints.

Vie: I had an opportunity to chat with H2k’s Veteran on the subject and the topic shifted towards the highest placing UK team not actually having any UK players. What are your thoughts on the subject? 

Foxdrop: This is a tough topic. exceL don’t have any UK players but the organization is probably the most invested into the UK scene — the only team with a gaming house, that salaries players and staff, etc. The team is still a domestic product at the end of the day. It’s hard to say though, it’s a very tough topic to break down.

Vie: Do you think xL’s success could lead to this unhealthy habit of relying on the foreign imports rather than investing in local talent?

Foxdrop: It could lead to that situation, in which case I think the rules would need changing. Thing is that the UK does produce talent, it’s just that they go overseas because that’s where the money is. So with more infrastructure, more money, I don’t think exceL’s situation would become the norm.

Vie: Let’s talk Origen — that has to be as close as you can get to the concept of “smurfing” in professional League. And they haven’t dropped a single match since their debut game, too. How do I put it, this has to be bullying, right? 

Foxdrop: The story of Origen is one of the more interesting pieces coming from the EU Masters. They’ve looked far from solid in their games which is a good testament to the strength of the regional Leagues — but Froggen. Froggen is 100% smurfing. That guy is insane.

Vie: There were quite a few teams that really showed up this tournament. Which teams did impress you the most? Did anyone catch you off guard? 

Foxdrop: Illuminar has to be the most impressive team. Considering making playoffs was considered good for them, going to the finals and smashing GamersOrigin in the semi-finals was exceptional. KlikTech also exceeded expectations — it’s impossible to quantify the strength of regions without international tournaments, but the Balkan bros definitely proved their worth.

Vie: Now that the dust has settled, how well would you say the top EUM teams would fair against the LCS level teams? How big is the gap between the two leagues?

Foxdrop: I think top European Masters teams would struggle against LCS. Gamers Origin and MAD Lions would probably stand the best chance, but even they would be underdogs in a BO series against the lowest LCS teams.

Vie: Does that say more about the current level of the LCS teams or the shortcomings of the EU Masters teams? 

Foxdrop: I would say it says a bit of both. Historically speaking, you would need a really bad team to get relegated out of LCS, or a really good team to get promoted. I think GamersOrigin or MAD Lions are close to that but not sure that the bottom LCS teams are that bad right now. At least in EU.

Vie: We got to see a lot of new, young talents who don’t get so many opportunities to play on the international stage. Any future stars we could be seeing in the LCS soon?

Foxdrop: There were a lot of standouts in my opinion. Tynx from GO stood out a lot. Milica and Sacre from Kliktech too. Icebeasto from Illuminar. Selfmade and Werlyb from MAD. A lot of good players.

Vie: Some of these young players have insane macro, but they might be lacking in any other aspect. Do you believe the national leagues, where the level of teams can vary tremendously, is the best environment for these players to grow? 

Foxdrop: I think the regional Leagues that have good infrastructure are a good place to develop and grow. Not to mention it’s where the LCS teams scout their players, increasing your chance of being picked up. France and Spain are the best examples of those Leagues in my opinion.

Vie: Mid-Season Invitational is almost upon us. Hit me with your boldest prediction.

Foxdrop: NA makes the finals again.

Vie: Okay, so what’s next for Foxdrop? 

Foxdrop: My future is really up in the air right now. The next few weeks will determine a lot. Whether I stay and focus on Youtube and streaming, whether I go and do more casting. Really hard to say right now, but I definitely want to cast more.

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