The jungle has gone through its fair share of meta changes this year in League of Legends, and it looks like it might go through another big one before Worlds arrives this fall according to the latest PBE update.
Master Yi, Rengar, and Kayn—three already very popular junglers—received a set of very large, intimidating buffs in last night’s PBE update. The buffs are mostly utility-oriented, rather than direct increases in damage, but they’re big. They’re very big.
Kayn’s buff is probably the most significant of the three champions, because it’ll be usable in the most situations for him. His Shadow Step, that very irritating ability that allows him to walk through walls and escape many near-death encounters as well as chase down enemies, is about to be much stronger. Its base duration is going way up, starting now at eight seconds and scaling to 10 seconds, which is a three-second increase at rank one from its current five seconds.
Those three seconds can mean the difference between life and death, for both Kayn and his enemies. That means he’ll be able to spend about 60 percent more time than before in walls, which is quite the dramatic increase. Not only that, but when he’s in Shadow Assassin form he’ll now gain an 80 percent movement speed boost when using the ability—up from the previous 70 percent. That’s another big buff, but not quite as large in scope as the base buff.
Master Yi’s is almost as important. Meditate, the ability that heals himself over time and reduces incoming damage, is about to be a lot stronger. Its cooldown is dropping from 35 seconds to 28, a seven-second reduction, and the damage reduction the ability provides is going up from 50 to 60 percent at rank one. That’s another very strong early-game buff, just like Kayn’s, and it’ll definitely impact Yi’s overall strength. He’ll be able to use Meditate to get away with a lot more than he previously was able to.
Rengar’s buff, while not quite as relevant as Yi’s Meditate or Kayn’s Shadow Step buff, comes for his ultimate ability. The only reason we don’t consider it quite as big of a deal is because his ultimate is ready a lot less often than either of those abilities for Kayn and Yi, but make no mistake, it’s still a big one. The amount of time he’s able to remain camouflaged during Thrill of the Hunt is going up by a whopping eight seconds at max rank—a 40 percent increase. Not only that, but the ability’s cooldown is dropping by 20 seconds at rank one, which is arguably even more significant.
We don’t typically come right out and say that a normal balance change will throw a certain champion into the meta or knock them out, because frankly it’s hard to tell with the usual, smaller changes. These are far from small changes, though, and there’s a very good chance all three champions will see even more popularity than they already do if the buffs make it to live servers with Patch 8.17.