After last year’s mythic item update, the League of Legends player base was under the assumption that Riot couldn’t do anything crazier. While reactions were mixed at first, the mythic item system grew to be a crucial part of every champion’s toolkit and their unique abilities yielded some of the greatest highlight plays of all time. Eager to elevate the game once again, Riot has decided to make some of the most fundamentally game-changing adjustments of all time.
New Drakes on the Block
With their hit Netflix 9-part mini-series Arcane now fully released to the public, Riot decided to hone in on two of the most important combative elements in the show: Hextech and Chemtech. Hextech, the revolutionary technology introduced and utilized by in-game characters such as Jayce, Viktor, and Vi and the gem of the fictional city of Piltover, plays a pivotal role in the plot of Arcane. Similarly, Shimmer, the predecessor to Chemtech; an opposing force to Hextech; the pride of the underground city of Zaun; and seen used in-game by characters such as Warwick and Singed, also plays a massive role in Arcane as well as on the rift.
With more information on Hextech and Chemtech made public through Arcane, Riot has decided to introduce two new drakes to the old pool of four to spice up play on the rift. Where the old drakes minorly shifted terrain and gave various stat boosts, the primary appeal of the Chemtech and Hextech drakes is entirely unique. Their respective features are as follows:
- Standard Buff: Upon slaying the Hextech Drake, you and your teammates each receive 5 Ability Haste and 5% Attack Speed.
- Hextech Soul Buff: Upon slaying the Hextech Drake to claim the Soul buff, your Auto Attacks and Abilities will now have a lightning slow chain on a moderate cooldown.
- Terrain Changes: Accompanying the appearance of the Hextech Drake, are a few hextech gates. These hextech gates allow the player—after a short channel—to teleport across the river from both the top side and bottom side of the map.
- Standard Buff: Upon slaying the Chemtech Drake, you and your teammates each receive a ranging 1-5% damage buff against enemies with more health than you
- Chemtech Soul Buff: Upon slaying the Hextech Drake to Claim the Soul buff, you and your teammates will receive a second life briefly after dying. This second life is similar to the passive ability of the Guardian Angel item.
- Terrain Changes: Accompanying the appearance of the Chemtech Drake, are various gas zones spread across the map. In these gas zones, players become camouflaged to enemy players outside of a fixed zone—akin to that of Pyke’s and Akshan’s invisibility. Under camouflage, players are immune to regular wards, but can be identified by Scryer’s Blooms, Control Wards, and other enemy-revealing items/abilities.
A New Incentive to Play as a Team
Teamwork has long been something lacking in low elo League of Legends matches. Oftentimes, games are won through hypercarries and smurfs, and team play is limited to the occasional Baron and late Drake plays. Understanding the need for incentive at the lowest levels, Riot has introduced objective bounties!
To combat the hypercarry system and provide a comeback mechanic to teams doomed in the early game, Riot has introduced a system that rewards large amounts of gold to losing teams upon the completion of game-winning objectives. The basic awards and objectives are as follows:
- Claiming Baron/Elder Drake Buffs: 500g
- Slaying Basic Drakes/Rift Herald: 500g
- Claiming Outer Turrets: 250g
- Claiming Inner Turrets: 400g
- Claiming Base Turrets: 400g
As teams fall further and further behind, the system will scale up these reward amounts by up to 60%. The degree of losing is measured by four basic factors: experience, gold, dragon lead, and turret lead. The greater the gap between any of these factors across both teams, the greater the reward for completing the various objectives will be for the losing team.
These are only the major new features coming in preseason patch 11.23. To hear more about rune changes, item changes, and new skins also coming in patch 11.23, visit Riot’s official patch notes.
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