How Wrong Were We? League of Legends Season 4 Revisited
Posted: Feb 05 2014
About two months ago we wrote an (admittedly premature) article about what to expect in Season 4 of the fabulous game we call LoL. Well, let me be the first to say we couldn't be more wrong. Ok, I guess I could've been more wrong because stealth is back somewhat, although in much less of a fun aspect as I'd imagined. I'll touch on that later. First, let's recap points 2 and 3 from the previous blog.
Supports may end up being underpowered"
Holy shit, I was wrong. First, it's actually easier to carry a game as a support main now than an ADC. In fact it's not even close, all you have to do as an ADC now is last hit minions, avoid being terrible positioned, and just hit things your support is decimating (up until they let you conveniently get the kill). As a huge Leona fan, this season has honestly been a blast. About 95% of bot lane's success is now decided by the support. The sad repercussions of this surge is that there is quite a large gap between OMGWTFPWNT supports (Leona, Thresh, Annie) and basically everyone else. That doesn't make them unviable as forum QQ'ers will lead you to believe, but if you want to have true fun in bot lane, you've got to pick one of the holy support triumvirate.
So, why has this happened? The obvious answer is the huge buffs to support gold throughout the game, and to a lesser extent the ward changes not forcing you to buy 100 wards in 20 minutes to light up the map. Take Annie, for example. Besides having to buy a Sightstone, you essentially have enough gold to buy mid-lane Annie items at almost the same rate. There's nothing like doing 75% of a champion's HP in a Tibbers stun as a support. You're welcome, Caitlin. Leona can now pretty quickly get hugely tanky. Seriously, I barely even care about my HP. As long as my W is up the enemy can't even really attack me since my ADC will just get a double kill that route, or at the very worst trade an ADC kills for a support kill.
The bottom line is, with enough gold, supporting is actually a ton of fun. This is one of the better changes made this season, although admittedly Leona is a bit over the top right now. In solo queue you don't see people threatening to feed if support (lol), people actually enjoy it now. And speaking of gold influxes remedying the playerbase's reticence to play roles, let's talk about the jungle.
"Jungling will become tedious"
Ok, this one was even more wrong. The last adjective I'd use to describe jungling in LoL right now is tedious. Attempting to carry as a support right now, while much more doable then previously, still has its downsides. You still need a competent ADC, and your lane can get camped the entire game with no counterganks. Right now, the absolute best way to carry through solo queue is just to play one of the many top tier junglers. Vi, Wukong, Kha'zix, Elise, Gragas, it doesn't matter. Again, the gold increases here really made this the opposite of what I'd expected. Level 1-3 is the only thing close to being "Tedious" and even that's a stretch. Riot buffed the creeps, but ultimately with all of your extra gold and pretty awesome jungling item, you clear the camps as quickly as ever and now roam around with better items and setup devastating ganks. You can seriously W into bot lane as Wukong post-level 6 and almost single handedly get a double kill.
The roaming pressure of most junglers right now is so high that it really allows for a lot of dynamic play. I'd have to admit, jungling is easily the most fun and engaging role in the game right now, at least for me. In previous season there just weren't that many people who could or even wanted to jungle. Similar to supports, and perhaps even moreso, jungling has really become a much more engaging and rewarding role this season. Another good change.
What snuck up on us?
1) Top Lane Overlords.
The full-build-tank-but-do-tons-of-damage top laners are a bit ridiculous right now. They're nerfing some sustain like the Perseverance mastery, but you should never build 0 damage and hit harder than someone that built full damage. I think that sort of goes without saying.
2) Teemo. Fucking Teemo.
Can't stand this guy anymore. I already couldn't stand him but it's just so over the top now I feel completely justified. The only thing more stupid than a bruiser going full tank and doing more damage than an ADC is Teemo. He's an absolute monster in solo queue because of his shrooms and his generally annoying laning phase. Either we need a limit on mushrooms, a better way to deal with them, or just delete this fucking champion altogether. Basically no one but the troll picking him enjoys that champion, from Bronze to Challenger. This is NOT what we had in mind when we said "Stealth is back!"
3) ADC's are..meh
This point sort of ties in with point 1, but we're honestly shocked at just how lackluster ADCs have become. They're glorified turret killers. I suppose with all this extra gold, huge scary supports, high income junglers, and unkillable tank death dealers it shouldn't come as a surprise. Basically everyone can do ADC damage with better mitigation or a more diverse kit. Sure, it changes once you get 5 items and you can actually do damage, but the high mobility and high mitigation flooding the game right now just really crushes the ADC. I'm not really complaining, since we've had seasons of ADCs gibbing entire teams, so sit back, auto that turret, and enjoy getting carried for once.
As usual, most of what was suspected for this season ended up either not happening or took an unexpected turn. We're sticking with our original assessment that this season, in general, was an upgrade. And for any players looking to find a good, entertaining, and informative stream, check out wingsofdeath's twitch.X