Game News

League of Legends pre-season ditches Spear of Shojin

Published: 14:09, 16 October 2019
Riot Games
League of Legends - Mountain Drake
League of Legends - Mountain Drake

Riot Games are reinventing the way League of Legends is played with pre-season 10 as they are changing the way lanes look, how dragon buffs work, Spear of Shojin is gone and Rift Herald can now respawn.

League of Legends Season 10 may make the game seem fresh even to the veterans or break it entirely, due to the sheer amount of changes to core mechanics on Summoner's Rift.

First up, there is the change to top and bottom lanes as they will get small alcoves, similar to the ones found on Dota and Dota 2 maps. There are no vendors to be found, however, but it should provide some new interactions. For example, Blitzcrank and Vayne will get openings to kill enemies even if they are on full health prior to getting grabbed.

Spear of Shojin users will likely be sad that it's gone but the mechanic will remain on the map, elaborated in the drake change section below. On the other hand, the RNG nature of drake spawns means there are no guarantees a Renekton or Riven will get those juicy cooldowns for basic abilities.

Elemental Drakes will have wildly different mechanics, compared to what we have now. The third drake that spawns will change the landscape for the rest of the match and said drake's element will be the only one that spawns from that point on.

In short:

  • Infernal drake will burn the brush around buff camps in the jungle and break their walls. 
  • Ocean drake will do the opposite and sprout new brush, on top of causing honeyfruit to grow in the jungle.
  • Cloud drake will create speed boost areas in jungle and river
  • Mountain drake will cause more walls to pop up around the map for easier interaction and more choke points

Furthermore, elemental drake buffs will be slightly different:

  • Infernal drake buff remains the same
  • Ocean drake buff now only regenerates health
  • Cloud drake buff grants cooldown for the team's ultimate ability
  • Mountain drake buffs the team's armour and magic resistance

League of Legends - showcase of several champion splash arts

  • Image: 1 / 10
A man with an axe running through a forest in SCUM

Teams can now stack up only three elemental drake buffs. Killing four drakes will provide Dragon Soul which will give them a buff based on the dominant elemental drake:

  • Infernal dragon soul will cause players' attacks to explode every three seconds. Explosion damage scales with AD, AP and HP.
  • Ocean dragon soul causes players' attacks to trigger healing and resource generating effect. It is weaker when triggered by minions
  • Cloud dragon soul gives your team Spear of Shojin effect - reduces basic ability cooldowns when hitting enemies with attacks or abiltiies
  • Mountain dragon soul will provide a shield that behaves like Malphite's passive . It scales with champion's AD, AP and HP.

Elder dragon buff will no longer scale with the number of slain drakes but it also has an additional effect now. If the burn effect from Elder buff strikes a target on low health, it will be executed. Beware of poke compositions.

Assassins will get new Lethality items to choose from and support items will no longer require a purchase for upgrades. The former will provide the one-shot enthusiasts with additional options with builds while supports will now have more breathing room when it comes to spending their gold.

As for keystone runes, the usual suspects are getting changed: 

  • Conqueror will no longer provide a portion of true damage but rather boosts to adaptive force.
  • Kleptomancy will now prioritise giving players elixirs in the early game instead of gold so hyper-fast power spikes will happen more rarely
  • Aftershock's flat resistance bonus will be lowered so squishies remain squishies but the reduction will be compensated in another way for tanks

All these changes are coming to live servers with patch 9.23 in November 2019.

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