We’ve talked about the assassin reworks which, in some cases, drastically changed how the champions are played, however, that’s not all that changed. There were some small tweaks made to several assassins in order to tweak the numbers or encourage their intended build path.
Akali’s Passive, Twin Disciplines, is now a two hit wonder, where the first strike restores some health, while the second strike, if done within 4 seconds, deals bonus magic damage. After you use the first strike, it will reset after 8 seconds. The next ability to get updated is W, Twilight Shroud, now teleports Akali to a nearby location within 250 range and leaves a circle of smoke where she used to be, slowing enemies inside. When Akali is inside the smoke, she becomes Invisible and gains 20% movement speed. When you attack an enemy, you lose Invisibility for a moment.
Crescent Slash, Akali’s E, got it’s cooldown raised at higher levels. Compensating for it, 60% of the ability’s CD will get refunded if it kills an enemy. Basically, it’s similar to Annie’s Q. The ability’s base damage at all ranks, as well as AP and AD scaling have been buffed as well. Finally, the Ultimate, Shadow Dance, will now have charges when learned and it base damage, as well as AP scaling, has been nerfed. It’s cooldown is also flat 2 seconds at all ranks.
Tank Ekko in the Top Lane has been a thing for a long time due to it’s decent CC, dive capabilities, and good base damage, which allowed players to build tank items and still deal enough damage in a war of attrition instead of straight up assassin-y burst. Well, Riot doesn’t like that very much, so the changes are geared to fix it somewhat.
What exactly changed? Not that much, but it could be enough, it still remains to be seen. Ekko’s Passive, Z-Drive Resonance, no longer slows and the ability’s bonus damage has been raised at Level 1, with reduced scaling. Now, it’s 30 – 140, when it used to be 20 – 190. Next up, Ekko’s Q, Timewinder, had its AP ratio increased by 10%, to 30%. Finally, Chronobreak gets better with more AP. From what we could gather, while it used to scale with the the damage recently taken, now, the AP ratio itself will scale with damage you take. The more damage – the better scaling.
All four of Fizz’s abilities got touched in some way. His Q, Urchin Strike, had its mana cost reduced to 50 at all ranks, the cooldown at lower ranks is also lower at early ranks than it used to be. Also, using Q to dash through enemies will apply Seastone Trident. It seems like Riot is encouraging more aggressive use of Q to dive through people into the thick of things.
Seastone Trident, Fizz’s W, is the ability which received the most changes. Now, it’s mana cost will scale from 30 to 70 with ranks, the ability’s cooldown will also scale from 10 to 8 seconds with ranks. Now, Seastone Trident’s Passive causes targets to bleed over 4 seconds for magic damage instead of % of target’s missing health. When you activate the ability, your next auto attack will become empowered, dealing extra magic damage. If the target had a bleed on him for at least 2 seconds, the bonus magic damage is increased. Also, if you kill a target with Seastone Trident, it will refund you 20 mana and set the cooldown to 1 second. That is a great way to farm under turret.
Playful / Trickster is buffed slightly by reducing its mana cost. It’s now 90/95/100/105/110. Finally, Fizz’s Ult works a little bit differently now. It’s damage depends on the range it was thrown from, the base slow is lowered at rank 1, compensating at rank 3. Hitting an enemy with Churn the Waters no longer increases damage done to the target by 20%, however, Seastone Trident is applied to the target and anyone else hit by the Shark.
The Bug got changed a fair bit. The Isolation mechanic was moved to Kha’Zix’s Passive, Unseen Threat. Now, all abilities interact with Isolated targets. The Unseen Threat bonus damage has different scaling, getting stronger with Bonus AD. This is probably intended to encourage players to build more glass cannon instead of the Bruiser builds which pop up quite often. Taste Their Fear had its cooldown increased to 4 seconds, the bonus damage from Isolation increased to 50%, AD ratio increased to 140%. When the Q ability is evolved, the range of the ability and Kha’s AA is increased by 50. If you use it on an Isolated target, 60% of the cooldown will be refunded.
Void Spike no longer slows unless it’s evolved. Once it IS evolved, the slow will be 50%, up from 40%, if the target is Isolated, the ability will slow by 80% instead. Finally, bug boy’s ultimate, Void Assault, increases the invisibility duration to 1.25 seconds. When you Evolve your Ult, you will gain Invisibility for 3 seconds while you’re in a bush and out of combat. The effect will persist 2.5 seconds after you exit the bush. The internal CD for the same bush is 10 seconds.
From now on, when you attack from behind with Shaco, Backstab will will crit for 120-145% damage instead of the 20% bonus damage. Also, Backstab will now deal 200% damage vs. monsters. Backstab will have an internal cooldown of 3 seconds, modified by Cooldown Reduction. Shaco’s Q will teleport him nearby and turn him Invisible. The duration will scale from 1.5 to 4.5 seconds. The cooldown of Deceive will be 14 seconds, and it will cost 60 mana at all ranks. The ability will now scale with 100% AD and 50% AP. If you attack while Invisible or shortly after, the cooldown of the ability will be reduced by 3 seconds.
Concerning Shaco’s W, Jack in the Box, it will now scale with AP, where you get 1 second for every 20 AP you have, up from its flat duration of 60 seconds. The health of the boxes will now scale with Shaco’s level, and he will be able to place them from stealth, however, he will be briefly revealed if he does. The passive ability of Two-Shiv Poison will now apply Two-Shiv poison for to seconds and reduced the target’s Movement Speed by 20% while the ability is up. When the ability is activated, Shaco will throw a shiv that will apply Two-Shiv Poison for 3 seconds and deal damage, which will scale with both AP and AD + 3-8% of target’s missing health, based on Shaco’s level. Finally, the clone from Hallucinate will drop 3 mini Jacks in the Box on death, which will deal 20-75 damage, which will scale with 15% of your AP and make the target flee for a short time.
The Passive ability of Zed’s W no longer grants him bonus AD, the amount of energy it restores is increased from 20-40 to 30-50. The Shadow now lasts 4.5 seconds instead of 5. Shadow Slash’s Cooldown will now start with 5 seconds at level 1 and go down to 3 seconds at level 5 instead of the 4 seconds flat it used to be before. The ability’s damage is also nerfed from 60-180 to 65-165. Finally, Zed’s Death Mark gained a new effect, called Reaper of Shadow. It essentially steals AD from targets he kills with Death Mark. He can only benefit from one AD bonus at a time. The champ with the biggest AD value that you killed will be the one to buff you. Also, if the enemy buys more AD items since you’ve killed him, you will have to do it again to gain a stronger buff.
Okay, that’s it for the Assassin Update. Tune in for more info about the rest of the preseason changes, including the new Jungle, Armor Penetration changes and more.