Riot Games is delivering on its recent promise to “slow the pace” of League of Legends combat in update 12.10 with its ‘champion durability update’. As part of patch 12.10, the MOBA game‘s developer aims to increase champion survivability to allow for more counterplay and create opportunities for longer 5v5 teamfights.
Riot says that it believes “League is at its best with fast paced, high-intensity combat; but now that it’s gone too far in that direction we need to rein it back a bit.” League of Legends update 12.9 released recently on the PBE and featured several nerfs to champion damage, but this planned update is set to buff champion durability across the whole roster in line with Riot’s goals to slow the game’s tempo down.
The team states that it doesn’t believe any particular champions or items are to blame, but that damage is too high across the board. Their plan is to increase the survivability of all champions with buffs to base health, as well as increasing the health, armour, and magic resist per level values. To ensure that this increased durability doesn’t cause fresh issues, it is also planning to nerf Baron, turrets, and mana regeneration.
Riot emphasises that it isn’t “trying to create a meta where there are no kills by 15 minutes,” and that it understands that high-kill games are enjoyed by many players as well as making for exciting pro matches. The devs say that while aspects such as good play being rewarded with outright kills rather than forced recalls is inherently more satisfying, the low survivability that is currently present in League of Legends has “downsides which outweigh these positives”.
In particular, the post outlines the detrimental effect that fast time-to-kill has on game clarity. With champions dying quickly, it can often be difficult to ascertain what killed you, and team fights can become “abrupt and confusing”. Riot comments that it wants to create more opportunities for players to engage in more fully fledged 5v5 team fights and skirmishes, which allow for more impactful decision making and high-skill individual plays.
The team is also quick to address the viability of burst damage dealers, and says “we believe that champions should still be able to be burst killed, especially when out of position or playing poorly”. The goal is that high-burst champions should still be able to kill squishy targets from full health if they use their full kit correctly – or using only part of their kit if they have already gained a large advantage in levels or gold by outperforming their opponents over the course of the game. Riot goes so far as to say that it believes champions requiring their full kit and having to hit ‘skill tests’ such as Zed’s triple shuriken to secure kills is more satisfying in the long term.
Riot lists four key points for players to expect once the update hits:
- Players will feel that their champions are dealing and taking less damage
- Burst champions must commit more resources or be further ahead to get quick kills
- Bigger windows of opportunity for counterplay
- Skirmishes and teamfights will last longer
Riot says they will be keeping a close eye on these durability changes to avoid “a meta where tanks become unkillable, burst champions are rendered obsolete, or where pro play becomes a snoozefest.”
League of Legends patch 12.8 is out now, and we have the full LoL 2022 patch schedule for you as well so you know what else to look out for. There is still no guarantee that the League of Legends MMO will ship, however.