Is the gold-per-10 nerf working?

Jarvan dragon slayer

This latest patch saw a nerf to the gold-per-10 items in the game across the board. The items had become so core to several character builds and proved to be strong enough to merit making the passive gold gain unique to each item type. Does the nerf seem to be working?

In my experience, it’s not. While I see fewer champions taking gold-per-10 items, the champions for whom it was strongest still stack them. I think Jarvan is a perfect example, especially considering the nerf he caught this last patch. Despite the changes to both his skills and the items, I still see Jarvan totally control games, mostly because of the farm he can sustain all throughout the game. I still see him stack a Heart of Gold and a Philosopher’s Stone, too, which gives him incredible lanestay.

I’m not seeing the items on quite so many characters, which I guess is a good thing. Still, I’d like to see the nerfs targeted at the champions the items benefit most. This gets back to an idea that I’ve mentioned before – overpowered mechanics that only the best players can benefit from and overpowered mechanics that everyone makes use of. The gold-per-10 items seem to be that second type. What have you seen since the patch?


How does tanky DPS feel now?


This patch was supposed to address some of the issues with Tanky DPS characters. There were health nerfs and shield nerfs, but from my perspective the game doesn’t seem much different. Tanky teams are still able to drag out what appear to be landslide wins.

Does tanky DPS still need a nerf? Sound off in the comments.


Jarvan is growing on me

Jarvan dragon slayer

When I first started with Jarvan I was convinced he was awful. I was having trouble landing Demacian Standard, his Dragon Strike combo felt clumsy, and his ultimate screwed my teammates as often as it helped them. I’m not willing to say I’ve sorted out all of those issues, but things have definitely gotten better.

For starters, I’d encourage anyone to ignore Phreak’s build. If you’re going to lane, it’s important that you be able to harass, and harassment is much easier with a reliable skill. Most players are fairly active in lane, so his Demacian standard can be tough to land. For that reason, I take one rank of Standard and his shield and focus on leveling Dragon Strike. The damage is pretty solid, but more importantly, it’s easy to land. With a good lanemate or careful play in a solo lane I was typically able to snag a few kills.

That said, the Standard/Dragon Strike combo still feels very clumsy. It is possible in some cases to cast Standard and then Dragon Strike before Standard lands. Also, Standard has a fairly long cooldown. If it doesn’t land in the right spot, you might be stuck wishing it was off cooldown.

My opinion on his ult is basically the same as it has always been. I think it’s a bad idea. It’s situational at best, the damage is negligible, it is easily countered with Flash or any of the dash skills, and it is fairly buggy around terrain. I actually watched my character walk over the Cataclysm from the outside and get stuck inside the ring earlier today because pathing wouldn’t let me walk elsewhere.

On the whole, I think there were some interesting ideas for Jarvan, but most of them don’t work in practical application. He’s not bad but he’s also not great and the clumsiness of his main combo and his ult mean I’ll probably leave him on the shelf.


Jarvan spotlight impressions

The Jarvan spotlight went live last night, giving us the first look at Jarvan’s skills in action. He does indeed look a lot like Xin Zhao – Riot even used Xin’s in-game badges as stand-ins for Jarvan’s own. I’m not thrilled to see yet another tanky DPS added to the game – the playstyle for those individual champions is usually fun, but I don’t really like what it does to the metagame.

There are a few interesting moments in the spotlight that I think are worth pointing out, just so you can get a sense of what to expect from Jarvan today. Take a look at the 2:12 mark, where Phreak goes after Morgana solo. Morgana ults with plenty of mana to land a Binding/Soil combo when her stun goes off but…her stun doesn’t go off. Phreak casts Cataclysm just as Soul Shackle should stun him and he negates the stun, picking up a kill. I can’t say whether or not this is intended, but it seems Cataclysm takes you out of targetable space for a moment, and that’s not a good thing.

Phreak showcases another frustrating Jarvan encounter roughly 30 seconds later as Warwick, Singed, and Morgana attempt to gank him. He uses the Demacian Standard/Dragon Strike combo to break Warwick’s ultimate. Granted, I think it was mostly luck here. There’s no way he could have known the moment Warwick would ult to properly time Dragon Strike, especially considering how close Warwick got before ulting, but it is interesting that the knockup can be used in that way.

Also, let’s consider for a second the types of skills Jarvan has at his disposal. He’s got a dash (non-targeted, which means it can be used for initiation and escape), a knockup, a passive armor/attack speed buff, an active armor/attack speed buff, a shield, an AOE slow, and a second dash combined with an AOE cage. None of those skills has a particularly long cooldown, either. Honestly, I think he has way too many mechanics at his disposal.

Servers are up – get to playing and let me know what you think.


Jarvan skins and bundles announced

Jarvan’s out today, and with him comes four new skins for purchase in the League of Legends store. For the Jarvan lovers among you, you can pick between Commando Jarvan and Dragon Slayer Jarvan.

For the rest of us, this patch gives us a chance to play as Loch Ness Cho’gath and Hextech Anivia. I love both of these skins. The splash work for each is fantastic and frankly, if they look that good in game I’ll be hard pressed not to buy them.


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