8.1 Patch Notes Rundown

The start of Season 8 is here!

On the 16th, Season 8 will start. With the preseason ending in a Meta involving Fleet Footwork ADCs with Overheal building Relic Shield allowing Vayne to become a good all-around ADC, the end of the preseason seemed to be more worrying than the start of the preseason. However, hopefully, this patch will address that issue and we’ll be off to an enjoyable start of the season. In this patch, there were announcements towards support item changes to happen in a later patch, more information on this can be found here, and duo queue Challenger has been announced for the start of the ranked season, which while abusable, will hopefully make playing in Challenger a more enjoyable experience.

A link to the Official 8.1 Patch Notes can be found here!

What I would like to see:

  • Relic Shield Change. – Relic shield is a support item, yet ADCs have been getting away with building it for a long while now. It’s strange that Riot is ok with that to begin with, but the fact that it combines super well with Fleet Footwork and Overheal has made it abusable. Vayne is usually the way to tell if botlane is going how it is supposed to, and considering how well she’s doing in every matchup it is clear that there’s an issue.

We will be ignoring bug fixes in this rundown, as they were not intended to be part of the game in the first place. Furthermore, some other irrelevant details might be skipped.

Champion Changes:

After Brand’s recent buffs, he hasn’t been that weak at all, and he is very good in certain support matchups. Doubling the damage of his stacks is a huge deal, and I would not be surprised if Brand finds himself in a spot where he is very powerful as a support, however, while this will help Brand Mid too, I don’t think it will make it more viable as there are many better options in the midlane.

Nice little quality of life change. Evelynn is quite strong and doing quite well at the moment, I would not be surprised if she gets nerfed in a later patch.

Considering Graves maxes Q first, the Q changes are actually quite significant. On top of that, the W changes help him out a lot too, since even though the slow doesn’t last anywhere near as long. The fact that it will keep people where graves wants them for those 0.5 seconds is super beneficial.

While this damage lost is significant, it only applies to his ulted Q, and should therefore not hurt Heimerdinger too much.

This change seems strange to me. You will need 4 points in E to notice the difference, and while Kayle maxes E first, that’s still a fair bit. On top of that the basic attack damage being trimmed, while not hugely significant, will make a champion that already struggles in the early laning phase struggle even more. Kayle scales super well and doesn’t really need any help for later in the game in this form. However, as a champion she is not doing too well and I can’t see this helping her much. It’s hard to say, but this probably won’t actually make her that much stronger.

Skarner hasn’t been great lately, partly to the fact that there are better tank junglers out there that don’t get kited anywhere near as hard. While giving him mana won’t change that much, since Skarner gets plenty of mana from his spires anyway, increasing the stun duration and damage of his E might actually be enough to push him into a decent spot. This could make him viable, but I imagine Skarner will probably still not be that strong.

I have a problem with Zoe, since her counterplay resolves more around her misplaying than her target outplaying. Combining her Q with her R gives her enough range that she can hit people while she wasn’t even on that person’s screen to begin with. The change that they are implementing here doesn’t change that, and after a bit of testing it seems that with the R change, you can still QQ R on Zoe, as long as you press the 2nd Q right before pressing R. Riot might decide to remove the ability to do this completely later on. The W change reduces her damage a bit, and her E change will make getting hit by her trap AoE instantly a bit less likely.

Rune Changes:

While these buffs look nice, it seems to me that Predator is still a bit too inconsistent to be viable. The fact that the Adrenaline effect is unlisted baffles me, and seems as ridiculous as the argument behind it since the effect is actually important and relevant, and players might find a way to use it to their advantage making it rewarding. Calling that “overthinking” is a very short-sighted thing to do, plus it’s entirely unnecessary.

The primary tree changes are an indirect nerf to the tank supports, mainly effecting Alistar and Leona, which I am perfectly happy with considering the spot they are in. It seems to me like this way Resolve will be a bit better on bruisers, which I think is a good change. The Resolve Secondary changes will be a bit hit or miss depending on the champion, but overall I think this is a nice, but possibly unneeded change.

New Skins:

God Staff Jax