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League of Legends preseason 2023: Top lane overhaul, Spear of Shojin

League of Legends preseason 2023 changes up the jungle, reintroduces the Chemtech drake, adds new pings, overhauls top lane, and adjusts the MOBA's items

League of Legends preseason 2023 adds new pings, item changes: A white haired woman with claws surrounded by a black mist and two crow-like creatures

League of Legends preseason 2023 comes with some absolutely huge updates, changing up the jungle entirely and reintroducing the MOBA‘s infamous Chemtech Dragon. In addition to these heavy hitters, there’s a top lane rework, the new and improved ping wheel, as well as some huge item changes – yes folks, Spear of Shojin is back.

For many, the League of Legends preseason is a blessing and a curse. The downtime between Worlds and the start of 2023 provides the perfect testing ground for new mechanics but, given the hangover left by 2022’s Chemtech drake, you’d be forgiven for approaching this year with trepidation.

The Chemtech dragon was tested during preseason but was removed only a few weeks into Season 12 because it was, well, broken. Bad news is it’ll make a return in preseason 2023, but the good news is it has an entirely new kit – you can learn about that in our League of Legends chemtech dragon deep dive.

It’s not just the jungle’s most controversial gas-belching lizard that will see major changes. The role itself has new items in the form of adorable new pets, who evolve like Pokemon and play an integral role in the jungle strategy. For the full list of adjustments, check out our League of Legends jungle changes breakdown.

There’s a lot more on the cards, though, so here’s a rundown of what else will be coming in the League of Legends 2023 preseason, including new pings, new item changes, and an attempt to rejuvenate the top lane.

League of Legends Preseason 2023 adds new pings, item changes: A green dragon roars while standing in a sickly green alcove

Top lane changes

Lead game designer Matthew Leung-Harrison comments that the top lane has been “languishing a bit” and that the “role has lost some of its unique identities, especially after the teleport changes.

“We think that the teleport changes we made were good for the game overall, but top lane definitely paid the price for that,” he continues. “So, we wanted to find a unique angle for top laners to celebrate.”

Hoping to make top lane the richest lane in the game, solo lanes will now receive more XP (95% multiplier as opposed to 93%) and duo lanes receive less (22% bonus XP instead of 24.73%). Mid lane minion gold has also been reduced (all minions give one less gold before 14 minutes) to help top laners make a little more bank by comparison.

League of Legends preseason 2022 changes top lane, adds new pings: A white-haired woman of colour slams a huge aztec-style rock into the ground as her eyed and traditional tattoos glow blue

New pings

Coming into preseason, players are being given more ways to communicate than ever before – and no, they haven’t added voice chat so you can flame one another.

There’s some substantial updates to the existing ping wheel, and there’s a completely new one for vision (support mains rejoice!) The existing ping wheel now has bait, push, hold, and all in, allowing players to further communicate their future plans. These are located in between the existing pings. Think of it as a compass: push is to the north east, all in to the south east, and so on.

The new vision ping wheel has enemy vision in the centre, then a left hand option for vision cleared and a right hand one for need vision. You’ll also be able to see where pings come from with offscreen pings, which will tell you who pinged what, and where they pinged it.

Both of these feed into the new objective planning feature, which will allow players to better coordinate how they take objectives. Pinging an upcoming objective will trigger a vote system, allowing you to discuss whether or not you’re in a position to take down that monster.

Item Changes

Looking to “revaluate what it means to have a tank mythic item,” Leung-Harrison states that “we wanted to explore what it looks like to have mythics more regularly being purchased as a second item so that you are more freely able to itemise against your lane opponent.”

Three new mythics are being added to the game: Icathia’s Endurance, Radiant Virtue, and Goliath’s Ascendiary. These are intended to be built second, and increase durability over the course of longer fights, team-fight prowess, and scaling respectively. Turbo Chemtank and Sunfire Aegis have also been downgraded, and are no longer mythic items.

Iceborn Gauntlet is also getting a new lease on life, and will be used to control and debuff enemies. Rod of Ages makes a return to help out AP tanks and Battle Mages, meaning Catalyst of Aeons is back as well. If you stack your Rod of Ages fully you’ll gain a level, and Catalyst of Aeons also now has the eternity passive.

The controversial Spear of Shojin will also be making a return, granting a swathe of ability haste to help fighter-style assassins get back into the game. Ravenous Hydra has also been changed a little, making it better for splitpushers. Abyssal Mask and Randuin’s Omen have also been updated, providing magic resistance and critical hit resistance respectively.

League of Legends preseason 2023 adds huge top lane changes, item updates: A bipedal crocodile roars into the camera whilst swinging a huge glowing blue glaive

Ward changes

New allied ward tracking means that players can keep tabs of their team’s vision on the map. Expiring wards will now appear differently on the minimap, and if you ping an enemy ward a tracker is added above it so that you know exactly where it is and don’t decide to step on it accidentally. This tracker will be removed when the ward explodes.

It goes without saying that a lot of these changes are going to heavily impact the game. Giving top lane a little bit more oomph will hopefully see a resurgence in its popularity, and as a support main I am more than happy with the ward changes and new vision wheel.

For now we have League of Legends patch 12.18 to keep us occupied, as well as the all-new League of Legends Fright Night skins. If you’ve picked up one of these spooky cosmetics, we’d advise that you don’t check how much you’ve spent on League of Legends – it’s always the Halloween skins that drain the bank balance.