With the Mid-Season Update, the face of League of Legends is quite likely to change. Out of the huge number of changes going live with the patch 7.9, we are choosing to start with the tank updates first.
Maokai has received a touch up both on his numbers and the way his abilities function, with the goal of changing his identity a little bit. First of all, his base health is reduced to 540, compensated a little bit by increasing how much it grows with levels to 95 instead of 90. His health regen is reduced to 5 from 7 and armor is increased to 30 from 28.7 too.
Maokai’s Passive, Sap Magic, will now have a cooldown of 30/25/20 seconds, which will get reduced when Maokai is struck by enemy spells by 4 seconds per spellcast. While before, his passive healed for his maximum health, it will now restore 10/30/50/70/90/110/130 flat, plus 4.5/5.5/6.5/7.5/8.5/9.5/10.5/% maximum health (at levels 1/6/9/11/13/15/17) and won’t trigger when Maokai is above 95% health.
His Q, now named Bramble Smash, will have its mana cost and cooldown unchanged. The ability’s cast time is streamlined to 0.35 seconds, damage remains the same, and the range of its knockback will now scale with the target’s distance from Maokai, making closer targets get knocked back a bit more. It will also slow the targets by 99% for 0.25 seconds instead of a scaling amount for 1.5.
Maokai’s W, Twisted Advance, will have its mana cost reduced to 60 with one point in the ability, scaling up to 80 mana, when it used to cost 75 at all ranks. The cooldown of the ability remains unchanged, and the damage will no longer scale with the target’s maximum health and AP. Now, it will deal a flat amount of damage and scale a bit with AP.
Sapling Toss will have its mana cost reduced to 60 at all ranks, cooldown reduced to 11, the lifespan of the Sapling reduced to 30 seconds. It will now deal 45/70/95/120/145 flat damage plus 6/6.5/7/7.5/8% (+2% per 100 ability power) target’s maximum health instead of flat damage scaling on AP. The ability will also slow for 35 for 2 seconds instead of 50 for 1 second. If an enemy steps on a sapling hidden in a bush, it will deal additional 100% damage, capped at 300 for normal and 600 for empowered against monsters. The saplings will also last longer in bushes.
Finally, Maokai’s Ultimate, Nature’s Grasp was significantly changed. Now, it won’t reduced the damage taken. Instead, it will function similarly to Nami’s Ultimate, though it will be much wider and shorter in range and immobilize enemies hit instead of knocking them up. The ability will also only hit the first target in the path of each of the five roots that will slowly roll forwards when you use the ability. The ability will cost 100 mana to use, have range of 2500, and deal 150/225/300 (+0.75 ability power) damage. It will root enemies for 0.6 – 2.4 seconds depending on the distance it travels for the first thousand range.
For a long time now, the only reason picked Sejuani if they picked it at all (which they didn’t, by the way) was because of his Ultimate. Riot Games are trying to make the champion more attractive with the Mid-Season Upgrade by shifting some of its power to his other abilities.
Sejuani’s Passive, Fury of the North, works by doubling his total resistances and adding 100 more as longs as he hasn’t taken damage from champions or large monsters for 9 seconds. For the first 3 seconds after Sejuani takes damage, the effect stays up. Also, when Sejuani stuns a target, it becomes Frozen and Sejuani’s next basic attack deals damage equal to 20% of the target’s maximum health, capped at 400 against monsters.
The champion’s Q, Arctic Assault, had its mana cost adjusted to 70/75/80/85/90, cooldown toned down in the early game to 13/12.5/12/11.5/11, and damage reduced to 60/90/120/150/180 (+0.4 ability power). To compensate a little bit, the knockup on the first target hit will now last 0.5 seconds and target around the first target hit will no longer be knocked up.
Sejuani’s W, Winter’s Wrath, will cost 60 mana at all ranks on a cooldown of 10/9/8/7/6 seconds. It will make Sejuani swing his mace in an arc and the last out in a line, similar to Yasuo Q or Taric’s stun. The first hit deals 30-35-40-45-50 (+1.5 maximum health) in a cone and applies Frost with a knockback. The second hit deals Deals 40/75/110/145/180 (+4.5% maximum health) damage in a line, applying Frost as well
Permafrost, Sejuani’s E ability will become usable when a target gains four stacks of Frost. For a measly 20 mana on a 1.5 second cooldown overall and 10/9/8 seconds at levels 1/7/14, it will deal 40/60/80/100/120 (+0.3 ability power) and stun the target for 1/1.25/1.5/1.75/2 seconds. On the targets with 4 Frost stacks, it will be a point-and-click stun.
Speaking of stuns, the champion’s Ultimate, Glarian Prison, will cost 100 mana on a 120/100/80 second cooldown. It will throw out a True Ice bola, which will stun and deal damage to the first champion hit. If the range between Sejuani and the target is greater than 400, it will become empowered, dealing 150/250/350 (+0.8 ability power) instead of 100/125/150 (+0.4 ability power) and stun the target, doubled for empowered bolas. Empowered bolas will also leave behind a storm, which will slow everyone in it by 30% and explode after a couple of seconds, slowing everyone inside by 80% for 3 seconds, dealing 150/250/350 (+0.8 ability power).
The last time Zac saw any serious play was several years ago, when it was the Jungler of choice for the star Cloud9 Jungler, William “Meteos” Hartman during the team’s initial rise to prominence. After the golden days of Zac’s power, he fell out of favor. Riot is trying to bring him back at least a bit with this update.
Zac’s Passive works in exactly the same way as before, so let’s move on, shall we? The champion’s Q, Stretching Strike was made much more interesting. Instead of simply lashing out and slowing any enemies hit and slowing them, Zac’s arm now stretches out, grabbing the first enemy it hits. He then grabs the next target he basic attacks and launches them towards each other. The ability costs 4% of Zac’s health and deals 50/70/90/110/130 (+0.3 ability power) damage and slows the target by 60% for 0.25 seconds on a cooldown of 12/11/10/9/8 seconds. When the two targets collide, every enemy in the collision range receive 50/70/90/110/130 (+0.3 ability power) damage.
Zac’s W, Unstable Matter, and most of the stuff about his E, Elastic Slingshot, remain the same. The only differences to E is that it will now cancel after 0.9/1/1.1/1.2/1.3 seconds and deal less damage at higher ranks, 80/120/160/200/240 (+0.7 ability power), spawning goo for each enemy champion hit instead of only the first target.
Zac’s most interesting ability is definitely his new Ultimate, Let’s Bounce. When channeling, he becomes immune to crowd control. The ability doesn’t cost anything to use and has a cooldown of 130/115/100 seconds. When Zac stars charging, he squishes himself to the ground and slows enemies above him by 30/40/50%. After 1 seconds, the ability becomes fully charged and Zac has a further 1.5 seconds to charge it again. If he doesn’t hold the charge for the full second, enemies in range just get knocked back. If you can charge the ability fully, however, Zac will suck up the enemies on top of him. Then, he will be able to reactivate the ult again and carry any targets sucked up with him, similar to Ryze Ultimate only for enemies at 700/800/1000 range, dealing 150/250/350 (+0.7 ability power) to any enemies in the landing area and slowing them for 25% for 0.5 seconds.
While it’s hard to say how playable the updated tanks will really be, all of them look to be quite strong. Sejuani’s two stuns and Zac’s ability to dive into the back line and bounce them out to the front, where his team can quickly focus them definitely sounds scary, however.