Runeterra’s epitome of masculinity has gone through an extreme makeover, but worry not – he has still retained his toned pectoral muscles and luscious hair. Most would probably agree that his aesthetic profile has only been perfected more, however, his actual skill kit has gone through some drastic changes that may not favor everyone.
In short, his abilities now require more thought from the player himself, as well as counter-play from the opposing team, while still retaining relatively similar skills. Let’s run through them one by one, then give an overall prediction on the champion’s position in the meta.
After casting an ability, Taric’s next two basic attacks each strike at 1.75 attack speed, deal bonus magic damage based on level/armor, and reduce the cooldowns of his basic abilities, applying in greater effect to Starlight’s Touch.
This passive is actually similar to his current one, encouraging the staggering of auto attacks between each of his spell casts. Now though, his passive adds a significant amount of damage. At level 11 with 2 armor items, we’re looking at about 100 bonus damage per auto. Combined with Iceborn Gauntlet and no additional damage items, his passive will be dealing roughly 400 damage at that stage in the game before resistances (within a period of 1 and a half seconds…)
Q: Starlight’s Touch
Taric heals himself and all nearby allied champions, with the amount increasing with every stored charge at the time of cast. Charges store once every 15 seconds, up to a maximum of 3.
This heal is an AOE heal around himself, synergistic with his Passive and W. Practically speaking, in combination with his passive, he should be looking to use this ability once every 2 seconds in the midgame. It’s an ability that scales not only with ability power, but also with bonus health; that being said, the bonus health scaling is rather small, so the base numbers will be mostly indicative of the heal’s power. It’s not going to be as substantial as Soraka’s heal, but it may be used to greater effect in a small AOE focused skirmish.
Taric shields himself and the target allied champion for 2.5 seconds, blessing them with Bastion and causing his abilities to be replicated on them while both are near each other, though the effects do not stack. Taric and his Bastion-marked champion gain bonus armor, and only one target can be marked at a time.
Think of this as a tether that is the defensive version of Kalista’s, that can also be recast constantly. It allows for all of his abilities to be mirrored by the tethered ally, so it makes the possibility of a 5-man heal or ultimate much more likely in a tightly packed team fight. The numbers here are actually fairly impressive, and the cooldown is only 15 seconds. If you thought Taric was tanky before the patch, he’s about to make his teammates equally tanky (though one at a time).
Taric projects a beam of starlight towards the target location, erupting after a 1-second delay, dealing magic damage to all enemies hit and stunning them.
In essence, this skill feels like a low range Xerath Q that will stun his opponents. Trying to coordinate the trajectory of Dazzle with Taric’s Bastion’d target will make for some interesting (and likely frustrating) gameplay. Like his other abilities, this one scales with his tankiness, and actually does quite a sizable amount of damage (50% of AP, 30% of Bonus Armor, 240 Base Damage Max). His previous stun was probably better in most cases though, since point-and-click crowd control abilities in League of Legends are truly at a premium.
R: Cosmic Radiance
After a 2.5-second delay, cosmic energy descends upon Taric, granting invulnerability to him and all nearby allied champions for 2.5 seconds upon impact.
This is Kayle’s ultimate in an AOE around himself and his Bastion target, but with a 2.5 second delay. Rather than being a life-saving tool, I see this as primarily a secondary engage tool. It will be most easily used when following the initial dive, mitigating a whole bunch of retaliatory damage from the opposing team. The delay is just low enough though that if you cast ultimate right when Zed applies his mark, you will mitigate the detonation damage.
Rating and Insights
But actually, Taric gets about a 7.5/10. As a support, he will likely experience the same problems as before, where it is tough to find an engage from the open, while also being poked out by long-range lane matchups.
Where he may thrive is as a tank top laner. His skills are actually fairly strong, even without taking advantage of the AOE bonuses, and his passive really takes the cake in trading. Further, his scaling matches perfectly with Sunfire Cape, Spirit Visage, and Iceborn Gauntlet, the core build for top laners as of this current patch.
His ultimate is going to be a total game-changer for many team-fights, especially when most compositions are so front-loaded with damage (think 3 AD carries, 1 support, and 1 tank), and enabling your carries to fully dive the opposing back line may completely control the flow of teamfights. As long as this champion can find a relevant place to lane, he will find a secure spot on a variety of team compositions for his plethora of team-fighting bonuses.