Are you using tenacity items?


I know it’s only been one day since the patch but the servers were up so quickly I’d imagine people were able to play a number of games yesterday. So, how are the new tenacity items treating you? Have you been buying them or just sticking to your trusty Merc Treads?

I think I’ve only purchased the Cloak and Dagger in any of my games so far, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised. I really like that it offers an opportunity to buy Ninja Tabi or the cooldown boots, which are really the only boots I tend to use on my DPS characters. Occasionally I’ll get ‘Zerker’s Greaves but that’s rare.

So far, I think the new items will mostly be for niche uses, like Gangplank. He gets a lot of benefit from Cloak and Dagger, where other champions would probably do better to spend the cash on more damage. I am a little worried that some of the tankier toons will benefit from it as well. I’ve already seen more Warwicks in Sorcerer’s Boots than I care to.


Hexdrinker and other recent item changes


At long last, here’s a post about the newest item, Hexdrinker. I can definitely see the need for such an item, and it seems like this could be an early step toward addressing the power of Banshee’s Veil against mages. Hexdrinker works as follows:

+35 Attack Damage
+30 Magic Resistance
UNIQUE Passive: If you would take Magic Damage which would leave you at less than 30% of your Maximum Health, you first gain a shield which absorbs 300 Magic Damage for 4 seconds. 45 second cooldown.

For a total cost of 1800 gold, it’s really not a bad item. I often have a hard time deciding on my early-game magic resist item for my DPS toons and this readily fills that spot. The shield actually works quite well for the mid-game (levels 9-15 in my mind). The 300 damage shield is just enough to keep you alive in most instances without feeling heavily unbalanced to play against.

The big problem I see with Hexdrinker is that it doesn’t combine into anything. That will probably come at some point (as leaked in the picture above), as we’ve seen with the Gunblade, but for now it can feel like a wasted slot, especially if an opponent gets ahead. A fed Anivia will blow through 300 damage without thinking about it, but if you’re playing some controlled and consistent games, this could be a good choice for you.

Speaking of Gunblade, there’s an item that got a huge buff. Both spell vamp and lifesteal got serious boosts, which is good. I never believed in Gunblade, but it certainly looks a little more attractive for a few toons. The other spell vamp item, Will of the Ancients, got a nice cost reduction and a vamp boost. Again, it’s an item I never think to use. I might have to find space in my Vlad build.

Sword of the Divine got a small buff, but who uses that item anyway. Oracle’s now has a little truesight eye over the wearer, which is really nice. I do wish it was a little more pronounced. If you put a ping mark on a target it can be hard to see, but then again, you’re probably marking them for a reason.


LoL: Patch Day 06/01 – Malzahar

Malzahar, Prophet of the Void.Patch Day is here once again, strangely enough the day after a national holiday, and with it comes the newest hero, Malzahar. As with many of the recent patches, this one also includes a load of tweaks for a number of heroes, the most significant of which is Teemo, but lacks any major reworks for the toons who most need it. This patch also added several new items to the game to help with the hybridization of many of the new heroes.

First up, let’s talk Malzahar. As mentioned in some previous, unsanctioned posts, Malzahar is a very strong caster, particularly in 1v1 situations. If your target doesn’t have cleanse, you can pretty much burn them down with a combination of your E skill, your Ultimate, and Ignite. You will find, though, that his damage output can be a little inconsistent if your targets aren’t under some sort of crowd control. Null Zone does great damage, but you need to pin your target on the spell to really maximize its potential. Even his silence can be a bit tough to land if your target knows it might be coming. That said, it’s probably a bit to earlier to judge his overall effectiveness for team situations. The fact that he has AOE silence makes him a great addition to a team, and being able to effectively shut down an enemy champion is pretty nice.

I’ll be covering the Teemo changes in a separate post, so let’s talk items. I was surprised to see the spell vamp removed from Haunting Guise, but the new item, Will of the Ancients, seems like a pretty nice (albeit expensive) replacement. I think it’s important to note, though, that Guise doesn’t make a lot of sense in most builds. Now you purchase it mainly for the spell penetration, which potentially opens up your boot selection. In most cases, though, you’d probably be better off going for a Void Staff. It’s no secret Riot wants to rethink the penetration system, particularly flat penetration, so discouraging flat pen items does make some sense.

As for the HexTech Gunblade, I think it’ll work well with quite a few heroes. I’m going to be giving it a shot on Shaco and Kennen this week as well as the obvious choice, Akali. Among the others that could benefit from a hybrid item, though, are Jax, Nidalee, Ezreal, Eve, TF, and Teemo. You might even start to see it on someone like Yi to improve his lanestay a bit.

All in all, I like this patch. No sweeping changes to the game, but some solid improvements and a cool new hero to add to the mix. Stay tuned for more impressions.


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