With several nifty new and returning items for tanks and mages and a retouch of several less popular carry items, the Preseason is looking spicy.
Patch 12.22 is here and with it, we are officially in the 2023 Preseason. Riot has been busy lately - we saw a new champion, the return of the infamous Chemtech drake, new jungle stats for the monsters and even pets for junglers (so at least someone in the game won't flame them). However, the change that would likely make the biggest impact on the game is what 12.22 did to the item balance. Between several new items, returning favorites and tweaks to several existing options things can get seem overwhelming - and that is why we are here. Here's our take.
Fresh off Ornn's Forge
Jak’sho, the Protean: The item of choice for those who want to stack resistances, Jak'sho starts with a decent array - 400 HP, 30 Armor/MR and 20% Ability Haste. However, true to its name it grows as the game goes on, giving you +5 to both resistance for every completed legendary and a stack of +3 armor and MR per second you stay in combat. At eight stacks, you ascend, getting another 15% on both and a minor damage burst. This is the item if you expect long teamfights against mixed damage. However, we can definitely see building a Bami's Cinder or a Sunfire Aegis first.
Radiant Virtue: Having a similar build path and the same base stats as Jak'sho, Radiant Virtue is for tanks focusing on HP and protecting their teammates. It gives you 100 HP for every completed legendary and its passive gives you an extra 10% HP and heals allies nearby for 2% per second for 9 seconds after you cast your ultimate, with a 60-second cooldown. On a team with good coordination,this is amazing in big fights.
Heartsteel: If you are more interested in having a gigantic HP pool, however, Heartsteel offers an alternative. Its stats are decent - 800 HP, 200% HP regeneration and 20 Ability Haste, with an extra 1% max HP and 6% size per completed legendary item. Its passive, however, is where things start getting juicy - after 3 seconds next to an enemy champion, you get a charged attack doing 125+ 6% of your max HP physical damage, and the attack gives you 10% of that bonus damage as permanent max HP. This passive has a 30 seconds cooldown per enemy champion, so it can trigger several times in a teamfight. Pair this with items that scale off your max HP and you're off to the races.
Back from the Spirit Realm
Rod of Ages: One of League's iconic items of old makes its return, offering its usual scaling goodness. It starts with 60 AP, 300 Health and 400 Mana and, as it is built from the returning Catalyst of Aeons, recovers 8% of pre-mitigation received damage as mana and 8% of spent mana as health, with bonus move speed if you recover a lot of health or mana at once same. However, it also adds a +4 AP and +20 health and mana for each of the next 10 minutes for a total of 100 AP, 500 health and 600 mana. At that time, you also get a free level (you are still capped at 18, of course) and increase the catalyst passive with 50%. With its lower cost in 12.22b, this looks great on the likes of Kassadin, Swain or Anivia.
Spear of Shojin: An old favorite of AD casters, it seems pricey at 3400 gold for 65 Attack Damage, 400 Health and 20 Ability Haste, but it also give champions bonus ability haste for non-ultimate spells - 8+8% of bonus AD for melee and 6+6% for ranged champions, halved for immobilizing spells like stuns or roots. In addition to that, champions can get up to 15% move speed (10% for ranged) as they lose HP. While it isn't quite as strong as it used to be, it could still be valuable for Renekton, Fiora, Riven and Jax players, among others.
Improved Items for Every Lane
Several existing items saw significant changes as well. Most have been geared towards tanks, who may have several new build paths. Frostfire Gauntlet is now built off Sheen, while Sunfire Aegis and Turbo Chemtank are now legendary rather than mythic - all three now only give armor or magic resistance, but not both. Randuin's Omen gives less flat AD but once again reduces critical damage and slows with its active. Abyssal Mask, meanwhile, is built with the Catalyst of Aeons and gives its passive as well as offering higher base stats.
Carries, meanwhile, may have fun with the reworked Tiamat, Ravenous Hydra and Navori Quickblades. The first two now have their splash damage determined only by whether it is a ranged or melee champion and not with range, and Tiamat also give you damage and omnivamp stacks as you kill minions, monsters and champions. At full stacks, you get an extra 24 AD and 4% omnivamp - but every death causes you to lose half your existing stacks. Meanwhile, the Quickblades are now an alternative to Infinity Edge or Guinsoo's Rageblade (and cannot be built with either), giving up to 20% more total damage scaling with your crit chance and a 15% base skill cooldown reduction on every autoattack if you have at least 60% critical strike chance. Spicy.
- LoL Patch 12.22b Patch Notes | Champion Updates in Preseason 2023
- 2023 Aram Changes - Everything You Need to Know
- LoL Preseason 2023 Changes | Jungle Pets, Chemtech Drake, Items & More
It's looking like a pretty fun Preseason. Of course, we expect that Riot will tinker with these changes in the coming patch, but it is shaping like a good time to be a toplane player!