In addition to the sleek splash art (viewed above), some of the more interesting changes affect balance, includes controversial changes the item Ardent Censor.
Ardent Censer is one of the most popular support items in the game right now, especially for those champions that give shields, heals, or both. The item has a unique passive ability of increasing the strength of shields and heals by 10 percent, while also enhancing the basic attacks of allies who are shielded or healed for six seconds with extra attack speed and on-hit magic damage.
Closely associated with Janna — who gives bonus attack damage when she shields an ally — the item has been deemed a must-buy, as it can change the laning dynamic completely. As it grew in prominence, Riot seems to think that it’s slightly over-balanced, and has toned down the scaling bonus attack speed. Instead of the bonus ranging from 20 to 35 percent based on level, it will be a flat 25 percent at all levels.
Some more changes to champions from Wednesday’s earlier PBE update
Zed, Vayne, and Leona received further tweaks to their previously announced changes. Zed’s shadows now last five seconds instead of 5.5, which is still a second longer than the current live value, and Leona’s Q cooldown time went from five seconds at all ranks to six, which is still a slight buff.
The most substantial change of the bunch belongs to Vayne, as her W received more true damage but smaller minimum damage in the late game, and her ultimate has a new effect that heals Vayne by 20 percent of the maximum health of a champion she kills while the ultimate is in effect — given that she’s attacked the champion within a three second window of time.
The new effect on Vayne’s ultimate was controversial, as she was already a good tank killer with true damage, but now she can keep herself alive by absorbing a large portion of the health of enemy tanks on top of that. As her kit rewards building attack speed with true damage and because she gets bonus movement speed when chasing down an enemy champion, the conditions of her added effect are easy to achieve and give her a substantial reward.
At the moment, it appears her changes have been reverted, but Rioter ricklessabandon said on Reddit the changes are “not completely gone,” and the decision had more to do with the patching schedule, and that they’ll pick it back up when there’s time.
The new game mode Invasion has been added
The new Star Guardian-themed game mode Invasion has been added to the PBE. The five-player cooperative PvE experience has players choose one of the Star Guardians to play through different encounters, ending in a final boss fight. The mode was introduced on Tuesday, and will presumably be added to League of Legends in close conjunction with the new Star Guardian skins.
Cover photo courtesy of Riot Games