What's that? That's the sound of the second 2015 buff barge, departing from... buff island? Look, we don't know where the buff barge actually stays in its off season. All we do know is that Sometimes this thing docks somewhere, takes on a bunch of friends, and then sails off for the high seas.
Anyway. What this actually means is that we've got a lot of changes aimed at champions who have received less attention in the past few months (or dozen months). Mind you, we're not going to be making a habit of this (power creep is a deep rabbit hole, but the summary is that constantly buffing weak champions means we're just throwing out a lot of power without a functional direction) and we're not in the business of just buffing for the sake of buffing, but felt we could at least give these girls (and guys and Bards) something directionally correct.
NOTE: It's a new Teemo (yes, Teemo) skin promo. Name is most likely the Omega Squad Teemo, legendary tier. Click the quotes to hear them out (skin VO, from the site). The green helmet on left from helmet bro one is Teemo's.
On 03/25/15, starting at, 01:30 Pacific time (09:30 UTC), ranked queues will be disabled in preparation for patch 5.6. At 03:00 Pacific time (11:00 UTC), the servers will be shut down and all games currently in progress will end in a draw and stats will not be recorded. We estimate the battlegrounds will be unavailable for 3 hours.
On 25/03/15, starting at 04:30 UK Time (04:30 UTC), ranked queues will be disabled in preparation for patch 5.6. At 06:00 UK Time (06:00 UTC), the servers will be shut down and all games currently in progress will end in a draw and stats will not be recorded. We estimate the battlegrounds will be unavailable for 3 hours.
So the Cinderhulk was released and sweet lord did it make an impact. I've been trying out as many tank junglers as possible and even some of the defensive oriented bruisers to gauge the impact the item has had. The item traded early game efficiency for damaging power and the item pushes the late game of tanks to come out earlier and as such was a buff to mid-late game tanks. It doesn't help the early game woes of any champion but that is a moot point when a proper leash can boost the jungler, a few jungle monsters were nerfed and, if your opponent plays a tank too, you are less likely to be invaded.
I personally feel the item was a boost to all tanks in the game but a much bigger boost to the tanks who were already good and/or had a monstrous late game. A few tank junglers still need a bit of a boost and many others are either moderate or strong but outdone hard by the uber tanks at the moment. Still though, as with every other time I've made a list, this is my opinion and it can change when more information is learned or when the inevitable changes to the champions are introduced.
I also have to mention that just because tanks have been reintroduced into the game does not exactly mean that diversity has been gained. We are in a transition point at the moment when the last batch of must-pick junglers are making their way out (through nerfs or otherwise) and we might just start seeing nothing but the same tanks be played once it becomes widespread either through solo queue or because LCS players start spamming them. I don't think we can ever truly expect competitive diversity in champion picks but hopefully we can gain some strategic role diversity such as picking between an assassin or a tank for a different type of team composition.
We're still effectively planning to make that change to Darius' ult. We decided today it would be better to have the ult refund 0/50/100% of its cost though, rather than having its cost drop (still allows ult chaining, but also means an OOMDarius can't ult which is something we'd like to preserve). Since we're right at the lock point for gameplay changes for the next patch we'll need to shift these changes a patch later to make that modification.
Ashe is actually getting a few small changes that include a new passive sometime this year. We'll probably be ready to talk about it in detail in a month or two. Sit tight until then, Ashe players. There's a new passive coming.
Current thinking is that we'll test out a reduced CD on his ult (given it's extremely high and was made that long back when teleport wasn't as accessible a counter as it is today). Still talking about whether we might want to test anything else in conjunction with that or not.