Worlds Will be Played on Patch 6.18
Riot has officially denoted that patch 6.18 will be used for the 2016 World Championships in a month. As a whole, the patch only makes 16 changes to champions, all of which are fairly measured. That being said, there are a few substantive changes that may be hidden behind the guise of small numbers that we will review.
Lee Sin – Sustain Increase
Just a 5% bump on half of an ability? How much of a difference does this actually make? Lee Sin’s overbearing strength has always been his ability to choose his battles – his heightened mobility give him multiple chances to weave in and out of a single skirmish. The small 5% bump actually means a 100% increase at level 1.
Because Lee Sin players tend to max his Sonic Wave/Resonating Strike first, leaving his other abilities neglected at a level 1 state for the majority of the early-mid game, this change is actually fairly drastic. Doubling Lee’s sustain through early jungle routes will give him more jungle path diversity, and more opportunities to take battles by constantly being topped off on health. For opposing junglers, this means greater difficulty in predicting Lee Sin’s movements and in protecting one’s own jungle camps.
Combine this buff with the fact that international junglers love Lee Sin, and you’ve got to see the blind monk coming back into the picture.
Shen – Trading Diminished
The key change here is to the Twilight Assault. Shen really doesn’t have many sources of damage, unlike other top laners. It’s basically his Q, and eventually Sunfire Cape in some games. By lowering the damage by a full percentage point (50%, 25% relative change), Shen’s trading may be put into a point where he may be completely helpless against the metagame. Especially with Gnar still maintaining relevance and most melee bruisers coming back in, Shen’s previously close-to-even trading has been pushed just over the edge of viability. Grab your ankles ninja-friend!
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Taliyah – Pushing Power Reduced
Previous to Patch 6.18, Taliyah had seen an emergence into the competitive scene as a top 3 mid lane champion. In large part, this was due to her ridiculous pushing power early on in games. Other heroes simply could not match up with her indirect pressure. Weaker players could hide behind her constant pushing and avoid 1-on-1 interactions outright for the entire game. Don’t expect to see her picked by more than just the most mechanical midlaners at worlds.