The Art of Peeling, or being a bodyguard, is a very important notion that needs to be learned by players especially those who prefer to play tanks and support champions. It has become even more important as the tank meta is here and Riot intends for it to stay. I've seen teams with multiple tanks all focus on trying to initiate or kill the enemy team and they leave their soft carries behind only for them to get sniped and killed because they have no bodyguards. I've seen players who have an idea on how to peel but do not know how to do it properly so they tend to fail in their attempts. This is what encouraged me to make a series on peeling. I am making this a two part series with one part detailing what makes an ability a strong peeling tool and the other detailing how to actually go about peeling.
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.
Players are rather hyped about the jungle changes that are coming which Riot hopes will bring up the effectiveness of jungle tanks. The first changes added were Gromp's passive being increased with bonus health, Bami's Cinder and the Cinderhulk items being added and a few champions receiving some jungle friendly buffs. These changes felt rather misguided as they do not seem to tackle the early game problems junglers would have with their first and/or second clears especially concerning safety and sustain. I felt that Bami's Cinder would be Quill Coat 2.0 in that it may be a useful item but it comes too late for it to make a difference for the tank jungler. By the time you get Bami's Cinder, most tank junglers would not have an issue clearing anyways and have little to no sustain problems. Also, needing to invest a lot to even obtain the item in the first place is quite a detriment and hurts your build versatility. To its credit though, it is a powerful item once you do get it and will help any tank jungler that gets behind on farm and definitely will have an impact in team fights. In a sense, Riot has buffed the mid game and late game of plenty of junglers by given them damage and presence.
The second slew of changes comes in the form of just flat out nerfing the damage of the most dangerous jungle monsters. This is a flat out universal buff for all junglers and, while bruisers will also be strengthened from it, tank junglers, especially the slow ones, will gain the most benefit from it.
Want to hear a good joke? Jungle diversity!
This article comes in after Riot decided to make changing between smites cost you gold. Now I totally understand and actually agree that it is stupid that you could have done that in the first place. It completely negated the idea of decision making and risk reward that Riot wanted to promote with these machete upgrades. If you purchased Ranger's Trailblazer you should have better clearing but worse ganks than if you had purchased Skirmisher's Saber or Stalker's Blade. However, even though I agree with the change, I do believe it is beyond stupid and unfair to push it out.
So I had some inspiration when I was working on my last rant video for a new mini-series. People in the comments ask me "How do you think x champion should be buffed/changed?" and it's come to the point where simple answers can't be given. Please keep in mind this is me just shooting ideas and it is in no way truly refined and it is more akin to shower thoughts than anything else.
I thought to myself, if I was charged with thinking of ways to buff Cho'Gath, what would I suggest changing or adding to him? Currently, Cho'Gath flounders because his kit is pretty outdated. He may be one of the more efficient tanks and have some of the strongest disruption powers but the era of burst, mobility and murder top lanes have pushed him far from where he used to be. Keep in mind that having an outdated kit does not mean the champion cannot function, it means that the champion has not been able to keep up with the changes that have been introduced to the game.
Unfortunately, Cho'Gath is such an old champion that he needs more than just a few changes if nothing short of a rehaul of some of his mechanics. I had two ideas for Cho'Gath, one being more reasonable and the other being potentially ridiculous but some people might enjoy it.