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Riot wants “more power spikes” with League of Legends ADC changes

If you're an ADC main in League of Legends Season 13, things have been pretty rough, but Riot is changing up items coming into Split 2.

Riot wants "more power spikes" with League of Legends ADC changes: A woman with a huge, blocky pink and silver sniper rifle, wearing a blue combat jacket and a beret looks down the scope in a plush green area

Being an ADC in League of Legends is rough right now. Control mages can blow you up in an instant, tanks can soak all of your damage and walk away unscathed, and the lane feels like a single kill leads to a full-blown snowball. As a support who has watch her duo pop off time and time again, yet still lose the game because of others’ poor play, it feels like AD Carry is missing the ‘carry.’ Riot agrees, and as a result it’s looking to give ADCs “more power spikes” in Split 2 – and that’s what I want to hear.

In a lengthy gameplay preview discussing both ADC items and the overall state of runes, game designer Simon ‘Zhanos’ LeBlanc Bastien gives us a deep dive into what to expect coming into League of Legends Season 13 Split 2 on Wednesday May 15.

Riot admits that, when it removed the MOBA‘s Mythic items, ADC was the role that lost out the most. “At the time we weren’t quite ready to make the larger changes we knew that the ADC item system needed, so we made smaller changes to get the class into a decent spot for the beginning of the season instead.” This, however, left ADC itemization in a “sub-optimal spot for a few patches,” which was reflected in player feedback.

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As a result, the team has changed up several items, dropped ADC items’ offensive scaling stats to two or three, and upped the crit damage on some legendaries to 25% instead of 20%. The aim here is to “create bigger spikes every time a new Legendary item is finished. Our goal with these changes is for item combinations to feel like they truly enhance your champion in larger spikes rather than slowly building little bits of power up over time.

“The Mythic and recent post-Mythic ADC system gave every stat you needed on a lot of items, giving a smooth power progression through the early and mid game for the role,” Zhanos continues. “This was powerful, but meant leads were less meaningful and item spikes felt uneven.

“By uneven we mean that on the first item purchase, items were too strong for us to be able to make the second purchase reasonably powerful. Simultaneously, the first item spike wasn’t strong enough for ADCs to be on par with other roles in terms of strength. Now that first item spikes will be slightly weaker, we can budget for the second item to feel more powerful, and for each consequent purchase to feel just as powerful.”

A screenshot of a League of Legends blog post where Riot Games discusses changes to ADC itemization in Season 13 Split 2

Using Phantom Dancer as an example, Zhanos notes that the item currently gives you attack damage, attack speed, critical strike chance, and movement speed, as well as its Spectral Waltz passive. With the new system, it’ll instead grant “upfront 60% AS, no AD, and it no longer has a passive.

“This allows us to make it slightly cheaper and have even more movement speed, to really cement it as not only the best way to gain a ton of [attack speed] but also a great way to stay mobile, both in and out of fights.”

Riot is also making some changes to movement speed to make it feel a little more up to scratch, and is currently testing some changes to on-hit builds. You can read the full blog post here.

Riot wants "more power spikes" with League of Legends ADC changes: A woman wearing a huge white which hat with golden trims sits on a pumpkin blowing a candle-like gun in a spooky graveyard setting

It’s hard to imagine what these changes look like in-game, but I’m cautiously optimistic. I think pulling back and focusing on the core ADC fantasy – movement speed, one-shot crits – is exactly what we need right now. At the moment, it feels like you’re better off running anything but a marksman in the botlane because you don’t survive long enough, can’t move fast enough, and can’t output enough damage. All of the above looks like it can solve this – if it’s implemented correctly.

With patch 14.10 on the horizon and the all new Split 2, I’d suggest taking a look at our LoL tier list to make sure you’re locking in the best champs for the job. Alternatively, if you, like me, like to look flashy while stomping your lane, we have a rundown of what’s on sale in the League of Legends Mythic shop – Prestige Bewitching Miss Fortune is a must.

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