Patch 8.8 is on the way and the official patch notes have been posted!
Continue reading for more information!
Here are the full Patch 8.8 notes (be sure to check regional editions for slight variations!):
Welcome to patch 8.8! As we move towards the middle of the season, the next few months will be jam-packed with a bunch of events (MSI, the launch of Clash, and start of the summer split to name a few). This puts a lot of pressure on specific patches, so “big patch, small patch” is gonna look like “medium patch, medium patch” for a little while.
That being said, there are some pretty big changes this patch! First, we’re taking a look at a duo of champions who we’ve struggled to handle. As we tried to make LeBlanc and Ahri less frustrating to play against, we ended up shifting them too far away from being assassins; instead shaping them into mages that kite opponents with mobility and crowd control. This patch, we’re trying to push them back into an assassin playstyle, while keeping some of the fairness gains of their prior updates. We’ll have to keep an eye on them in the coming patches, but in general they should excel at bursting priority targets and snowballing that lead into a win.
GLHF, and we’ll see you on the Rift!
First things first, this is a partial revert of the changes we made to LeBlanc during the Assassin Update. At the time, we had two goals for the update. For assassins as a whole, we wanted to give champions more time to play against assassins. For LeBlanc specifically, we wanted to reinforce her identity as a combo-based assassin who cared about the order in which she cast her spells. In LeBlanc’s case, we feel that we’ve missed the mark on those goals, and we’re turning back the clock on some of her changes.
Those two goals can most be exemplified by two abilities: Passive – Sigil of Malice, and R – Mimic. However, neither of these changes have quite hit the mark, so we’ll be reverting them, and making some tweaks to the rest of her kit for balance purposes. More on the changes to each ability below.
UPDATEDPassive – Mirror Image
At the moment, no matter how far ahead she is, LeBlanc needs to stick around for around 2 seconds to have a shot at killing a target. It feels pretty awkward having the right thing to do often be holding off on using your abilities (until your passive has cooked).
Q – Sigil of Malice
W – Distortion
E – Ethereal Chains
UPDATEDR – Mimic
LeBlanc’s reworked ult was supposed to give her more interesting combos by allowing her to choose which ability to duplicate. In practice, however, it allows her to go all in and still have Mimicked Distortion to get far, far away if mistakes were made.
A lot of players enjoy to play Ahri as an aggressive, snowballing assassin who specializes in isolating a target and eliminating them. With her reach and playmaking potential allowing her to surge into other lanes, she wants to rack up kills around the map and lead her team to victory. At the moment, Ahri getting ahead just isn’t the terrifying prospect it should be. We’re upping her ability to prioritize all of her damage onto one champion so she has a better chance of going from fed to victorious.
In exchange, that’s going to mean Ahri has to give up some safety. As it is, the bonus movement speed attached to her Q allows her to toss it out just to avoid ganks. Making that Movement speed buff harder to access—and changing up her sustain model—should make her easier to punish in lane.
UPDATEDPassive – Vastayan Grace
Q – Orb of Deception
W – Fox-Fire
E – Charm
R – Spirit Rush
Irelia’s laning phase is pretty weak, but if she makes it to late game she’s extremely strong. We’re trimming her late-game power by decreasing her ult’s base damage, and giving her more consistent lane strength in exchange .
Q – Bladesurge
E – Flawless Duet
R – Vanguard’s Edge
Azir’s ranged waveclear allows him to avoid punishment in his tougher matchups, while giving him more time to harass in his stronger matchups. Less waveclear should force him to make harder decisions about when to trade.
W – Arise!
He’s too tanky! Cannot do shit when he’s so tanky.
W – Stand Behind Me
As players have learned how to position themselves preemptively to use Galio’s ultimate well, it’s become pretty clear that it’s available too often.
R – Hero’s Entrance
For a ranged champion, Graves has to get pretty up close and personal to contribute, and right now his baseline tankiness isn’t enough to consistently sustain that.
R – Collateral Damage
Janna is just too effective overall.
W – Zephyr
In her early patches, Kai’Sa was struggling to get through the laning phase, so we boosted her laning phase with some buffs. As players continue to learn how to play her, we’re stripping that strength away.
Q – Icathian Rain
Lissandra does strong things—in the right situations. Right now she’s struggling, so we’re giving her more opportunities to do those things.
Q – Ice Shard
R – Frozen Tomb
Nautilus is struggling a bit, and we want to try to give him strength that will help him find success in all of his historical roles (top, jungle, and support). His identity as a giant anchor-thrower should be pretty relevant in each of those lanes, so that’s a good place to start.
Q – Dredge Line
High waveclear in mid lane is particularly worrisome in two cases: when it over-enables a champion to roam and affect side-lanes, and when it allows a hard-scaling champion to avoid fights until late-game. In Ryze’s case, we’ve got both problems at play, so we’re making his waveclear more expensive to keep up early game.
E – Spell Flux
Sion doesn’t currently sacrifice much damage in order to max E – Roar of the Slayer instead of Q – Decimating Smash. In return he gains strong ranged poke, which is making him a dominant pick not only in top lane, but also mid in some matchups. There are times when it should make sense to max E first (ranged harass, using the slow to make Q easier to hit), but we want to make this less of a clear-cut choice.
Q – Decimating Smash
Tahm Kench is good at protecting allies by hiding them in his belly, but the high durability his E grants him means opponents don’t feel great about the damage they land on him instead of his allies. Dialing that back should help him feel more fair to play against.
There’s also something a bit more complicated here, and that’s the bonus movement speed Devour gives Tahm Kench when running towards enemy champions. Because “towards” has a lot of leeway, in scattered teamfights “away from the person who is killing me” often means “towards some other opponent”, which is allowing Tahm Kench too much escapability for both him and an ally.
W – Devour
E – Thick Skin
Taliyah has become a prized pick, thanks to her ability to shove and roam. We’re pulling back some of her waveclear, but also decreasing her tankiness so that assassins can be a more consistent counterpick against her.
Q – Threaded Volley
Piercing Arrow is Varus’ most iconic spell, but it’s pretty underwhelming in many of his current builds. We’re not looking to change the way he builds, but we do want to create more incentives for him to care about charging his Q, even when he’s building on-hit. Given that he was pretty balanced before, adding a whole new active requires us to trim some power elsewhere.
Passive – Living Vengeance
W – Blighted Quiver
We’re looking to buff Vi, but also think it would be cool if she could sneak back into top lane (fun fact, Vi was designed as a top laner before becoming a jungler). By bringing some of her cooldowns and costs down and upping her health regen, we’re aiming to give her more strength in solo lanes as well as in the jungle.
Passive – Blast Shield
Q – Vault Breaker
E – Excessive Force
Xayah is currently able to coast through hard matchups and get to her strong mid and late game too easily.
Passive – Fury of the Xer’Sai
Archangel’s Staff is spiking too early, so we’re decreasing some of its ability scaling before it upgrades to Seraph’s Embrace.
Lethal Tempo still isn’t doing well on most champions, so we’re increasing the strength of the effect.
The decision-making surrounding trinket swaps is currently a bit more complicated than it needs to be. By making swaps more consistent and decreasing the number of potential swaps, we’re hoping to make the gains from those swaps more clear.
REMOVED Sweeping Lens
Trinket Swap Rules
Homestart gives too significant of a defender’s advantage to champions who never cross into the river. Defensively, champions can run out to the brush near the river, retain the movement speed buff, and easily run away from any invaders – who lost their movement speed bonus once they set foot in the river. We’re changing the movement speed buff to fall off a bit closer to your side of the map to make early aggression slightly more likely to succeed.
- Fixed another way where Warwick’s Q could double-cast. We’re pretty sure it’s the last one.
- Cannon minion gold value now correctly scales past 87 gold
- Clones can now correctly be feared by Volibear’s Majestic Roar
- Fixed a bug where Tiamat counted towards procs for Electrocute or Phase Rush.
- Snow Fawn Poppy’s recall and spell SFX have been restored and no longer use base SFX
- Seams have been minimized on Pool Party Graves and all of his chromas when on lower graphics settings
- Seams have been minimized on Renektoy chromas when on lower graphics settings
- Seams have been minimized on Arcade Miss Fortune chromas when on lower graphics settings
- Texture compression is now more consistent across Darius’ chroma pack
- Sandstorm Ekko’s hourglass and Chrono Blade are now better attached to his model during all of his animations
- The orb during Reaper Soraka’s Recall has been restored
- Santa Draven’s Q – Spinning Axe landing location’s particles are no longer overlapped by on-ground area of effect abilities’ particles
- Pool Party Lulu’s Pix attack projectiles are no longer missing their trail particles
- Nightbringer Yasuo’s and PROJECT: Yasuo’s Q – Steel Tempest ground particle no longer clips into the ground on elevation change
- Iron Solari Leona’s R – Solar Flare decal will no longer be improperly rotated on lower graphics settings
- Q – Light Binding for Elementalist Lux no longer fade out prematurely when compared to other Lux skins
- Dreadnova Darius’ idle VFX have been restored
- Particles during Woad King Darius and Dunkmaster Darius’ critical attacks are no longer misplaced
- Unique particles have been restored for Cosmic Reaver Kassadin’s Auto Attack on-hits and W – Nether Blade
- Unique particles have been restored for all of Conqueror Karma’s spells
- Blood Moon Twisted Fate’s Recall animation no longer has missing pixels
- The catling that Meowkai holds in his hand has been found and safely returned to him!
- Snow Day Graves’ eyes now properly follow his head’s movement during all animations
- Nami’s laugh VFX once again play properly when emote is used
- Leprechaun Veigar’s W – Dark Matter VFX once again have rainbows!
- Star Guardian Soraka’s homeguard VFX once again properly overlay the champion’s model
- Freljord Taliyah once again has basic attack on-hit VFX when hitting structures and jungle monsters
- SKT T1 Ryze’s crowd cheers have been restored in his Recall animation
- Shiny VFX are no longer missing on Ashen Lord Aurelion Sol’s sunglasses during his joke animation
- Secret Agent Xin Zhao’s recall SFX have been restored
- SKT T1 Ekko is no longer missing VFX during his joke, taunt, dance, and death
- Steel Legion Garen’s Villain Mark is now at the same height when comparing it to enemy and ally perspectives
- Battle Boss Malzahar’s recall VFX have been restored
- Lancer Paragon Blitzcrank / Lancer Rogue Blitzcrank’s Recall is no longer missing lightning effects VFX
- Astronautilus’ helmet VFX no longer linger after W – Titan’s Wrath has expired
Points of Interest from the 8.8 PBE Cycle
With MSI 2018 right around the corner, Conqueror Varus will be available this patch:
[Will have a limited edition loading screen border included in bundle available 4/26-5/21]
New chroma for Badlands Baron Rumble will be available sometime this patch:
Badlands Baron Rumble
New Summoner Icons
A slew of new summoner icons will also be available this patch!
We have eight new cute champion that are similar to the Blue Essence Emporium’s Mystery Minis icons champion icons seen during preseason.
A summoner icon featuring the new Conqueror Varus will also be available:
MSI 2018 Summoner Icons
Several new MSI esports icons will be available during MSI! [Note: Only the teams who qualify for MSI will have their icons/emotes available for purchase.]
MSI 2018 & Team Emotes
During MSI 2018, new emotes will also be available, including a general emote, as well as team emotes which will match the team summoner icons:
(note: while we have a lot here, remember that qualified teams are typically the only emotes to reach live servers for release!)
New Ward Skin
The 2018 Conqueror Ward will be available this patch:
2018 Conqueror Ward
MSI 2018 Login Theme
With MSI right around the corner, a new MSI themed login will be featured on the client: