Xypherous has posted a rather nice sized update to the Season 3 Itemization preview. This time going to even more details and giving some examples.
IMPORTANT: Xypherous is now doing a Q&A on the official forum thread. You can check out all the posts as he is answering questions in our red tracker. We will also roundup all the Q&A tonight in the News Roundup.
Today Im going to talk about Armor Penetration and its effects on the scaling of our Attack Damage Casters class.
Lets take a look at one of the core items for this class The Brutalizer:
- +25 Attack Damage
- UNIQUE Passive: +10% Cooldown Reduction
- UNIQUE Passive: +10 Armor Penetration
The Brutalizer has long been the trifecta of Attack Damage, Armor Penetration and Cooldown Reduction that these characters lean on for early game dominance. However, Flat Armor Penetration as a statistic overall has been pretty overpowered in compensation for the fact that items with the stat dont typically scale at all into the late game. This turns these characters into early-game gambit characters, out to dominate the early game as quickly as possible before they become irrelevant.
To adjust for this, were making two major changes:
1. Flat Armor Penetration and % Armor Penetration values are generally being lowered, but now Flat Penetration is calculated AFTER % Penetration
For example: Lets say I have 50% Armor Penetration and 20 Flat Armor Penetration versus a target with 120 Armor.
Currently, on Live, I would ignore 20 of his armor via Flat Penetration (100) and then 50% of the remainder, leaving him with 50 Armor.
After this change, I would ignore 50% of his armor (60) and then 20 of the remainder, leaving him with 40 armor.
In this manner, we can make sure that penetration values can be cost-effective for both late game and early game because now you have an option to synergize the two statistics together if you need to pierce large amounts of armor.
2. Brutalizer builds into more than one thing
The Black Cleaver
- +45 Attack Damage
- +10% Cooldown Reduction
- +10 Armor Penetration
- Passive: Dealing physical damage to an enemy reduces their Armor by 5% for 6 seconds. This effect stacks up to 5 times on the same target.
Lets dig down into this item a little more. First off, the Black Cleaver now triggers off all physical damage. This means that spells and abilities can trigger the passive. In fact, lets look at a couple of our AD casters and see how this item works differently on them:
Pantheon, the Artisan of War
Spear Shot: Will trigger Black Cleaver once on a single target.
Aegis of Zeonia: Will not trigger Black Cleaver, as it does magic damage.
Heartseeker Strike: Will trigger Black Cleaver three times in a cone, as it does physical damage to the target three times.
Grand Skyfall: Will not trigger Black Cleaver, as it does magic damage.
Garen, the Might of Demacia
Decisive Strike: Will trigger Black Cleaver once, on a single target.
Courage: Will not trigger Black Cleaver, as it does no damage.
Judgment: Will trigger Black Cleaver up to 6 times, in a circle around him, as it does physical damage 6 times.
Demacian Justice: Will not trigger Black Cleaver, as it does magical damage.
So now, AD casters attempting to deal with highly armored opponents have a way to partially nullify the armor of targets they choose to fully commit to with all of their skills. However, they make a trade-off here; while Black Cleaver is highly effective at negating the effect of enemy armor, the Cleaver itself does not provide all that much Attack Damage as a whole. So your skills will be slightly less effective on targets with high health and low armor, simply because theyll be doing less overall damage. Black Cleaver is incredibly effective at shredding targets with lots of armor, but doesnt really do well trying to kill a mage with Rod of Ages, for example.
What about Last Whisper? How does this work with Last Whisper?
Last Whisper grants you % Armor Penetration while Black Cleaver reduces the opponents armor.
Lets look at an enemy with 400 Armor. Black Cleaver will reduce their armor by 25%, leaving them with 300. Last Whisper will allow you to ignore 40% of the remaining 300 armor, which means their effective armor against you will now be 180.
We hope that this change helps create a smoother scaling curve for many of our AD casters without causing them to utterly dominate and kill everyone. While these changes allow them to ignore armor much more effectively, the characters in question will be making heavy tradeoffs by simply not dealing as much raw damage as they could have with a B.F. Sword build against soft targets. Additionally, these iterations of The Brutalizer and The Black Cleaver allow our more spell-focused ranged carries like Corki or Graves to have a viable alternative to Last Whisper that will give them great utility if they find themselves on a team with lot of physical damage characters.
Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more!