Every new patch brings something different to the Rift, offering fresh item builds and shifts to the current champion picks or bans. Although patch 6.18 is specifically focused on the competitive scene, it has brought certain champions to the forefront of the game. So who are the strongest champions to look out for this patch?
Here’s everything that changed in League of Legends patch 6.18.
Jinx: the Loose Cannon
Thanks to the turret changes in patch 6.15, Jinx has become a popular pick for those looking to snag that all-important first blood tower bonus. Jinx’s great early game allows her to take objectives quickly and efficiently, while her high DPS and mobility from her passive grants her various opportunities to crush opponents in team fights. The combination of Runaan’s Hurricane and Fishbone’s rockets makes for some massive damage, which only heightens as the game progresses. Her ultimate, Super Mega Death Rocket, allows Jinx to steal objectives, execute champions from across the map and help other laners when needed, making her a valuable asset to the team. The Rift’s resident psychopath is certainly in a very strong place.
Riven: the Exile
Riven is a champion who hasn’t received much love until fairly recently. Patch 6.17 made significant changes to her ultimate, increasing Wind Slash’s overall minimum and maximum base damage. The Exile is already a very strong champion and this buff will most definitely increase her popularity going into patch 6.18. Her combination of high mobility, burst, AD scaling shield, and her ability to 1v5 with just a couple of kills make Riven a tricky champion to deal with. Her full combo may not be the easiest to land, but if played well she can be an absolute nightmare for the enemy team.
Zac: the Secret Weapon
Zac has slipped under the radar the past few patches, but we’re finally starting to see his long-awaited return. He’s an extremely underrated champion who used to be very strong back when Riot buffed his Elastic Slingshot range back in patch 5.16. However, the product of Zaun has only recently started to reemerge as players start to utilise him once again. Zac still has the best ganking potential in the game and can really help his team secure some clean victories. His high damage output, fantastic diving potential and overall tankiness make Zac an excellent addition to most team comps.
Soraka: the Starchild
Soraka is currently a top ban across all ranks except bronze. This isn’t too surprising considering how much sustain she has with her runes and items. Killing an enemy champion when Soraka is present can be very difficult as she can heal her teammates so effectively. Her ability, Starcall, gives Soraka high amounts of sustain and provides her with a great chasing/getaway tool, while dealing a lot of damage. The Starchild’s healing capabilities are so strong that she isn’t even required to be near the battle to save her teammates from imminent death. Playing against this traveling healer is always a challenge.
Annie: the Dark Child
We are seeing a lot of mages coming to the forefront of the meta, which is great for Annie as she has enough burst to simply one-shot them. The voodoo child is a great counter pick for many of the popular carry champions we are seeing in the current meta. She has a very strong laning phase, excellent snowballing potential and can really hone in on dangerous targets when team fighting. Annie’s a great pick in patch 6.18 and is a relatively easy champ to master.
Kha’Zix: the Voidreaver
Kha’Zix is a very strong carry jungler who doesn’t require that much farm to do exceptionally well, simply because his ganking potential is so strong. Void Assault allows Kha’Zix to sneak into lanes and kill his targets before they can even react. His clear in the jungle may be pretty average at best, but it’s by no means bad. This is thanks to Void Spikes giving him AoE damage, which he can use to kill the smaller monsters before using Taste Their Fear to quickly dispatch the lone buff. Kha’Zix can also solo dragon very early on thanks to this added isolation damage, instantly granting his team an instant advantage.
Malzahar: the Prophet of the Void
Malzahar a very strong champion in general and can deal high amounts of damage in teamfights, but what really makes the Prophet of the Void shine is his lockdown. Malzahar can easily shut down popular bruiser picks like Irelia and Darius with ease by utilising Nether Grasp to suppress his enemy, killing them before they can pose a threat to his team. He also has a solid laning phase and can quickly push waves with the help of his Voidlings, making it difficult for his opponent to farm as they lose creeps to their turret.
Lee Sin: the Blind Monk
Being the jungle’s flashiest resident, Lee Sin has become a rare sight in the competitive scene. This is due to teams optimising around early-game pressure and picking junglers who can retain more health after clearing. It looked as though the resident Monk would be taking an early retirement. However, Lee Sin’s Iron Will now has a five per cent increase at all ranks, nudging his sustain up a notch to keep him healthier in the crucial early levels. This will allow Lee Sin to support his team more if fights break out and give him better all-round survivability. With most junglers being target by various nerfs, the Blind Monk is in a pretty good place.
Aurelion Sol: the Star Forger
Aurelion Sol has been all over the place in terms of his strengths and weaknesses, but he now seems to have settled on the strong side of the spectrum. The introduction of Hextech GLP-800 allows to Aurelion Sol to utilise Celestial Expansion without draining all his mana thanks to the Eternity passive, while the active fires a spray of icy bolts that explode, dealing magic damage to all enemies hit. This gives the celestial dragon a great amount of pushing power and makes it very difficult for his opponent to farm. He is also an excellent roamer thanks to the bonus movement speed from Comet of Legend, which gives him plenty of opportunities to secure that all-important first blood tower. His combination of tanky items and consistent damage from Celestial Expansion can make him very difficult to deal with.
Akali: the Fist of Shadow
Not only is the Fist of the Shadow a good counter pick to the increasingly popular Yasuo, she is also a fearsome champion who can snowball out of control. The latest changes to Hextech Gunblade make her even harder to deal with, especially for those who happen to be playing immobile champions. Her ultimate, Shadow Dance, allows her to pick up kills when roaming or shut down squishy champions with ease. The patch 6.18 nerfs to Yasuo will only increase her play rate, and we can expect to see a lot more of Akali in the future.
Who are you climbing with in 6.18? Let us know in the comments below.