Edit: Added even more posts to the bottom! Weeeee!
Now that we've heard quite a bit about the S3 item changes, let's move on to what's changing in the deep dark jungle!Statikk's announcement of what is changing in the jungle come S3, as well as numerous additional posts on the subject.
Here is Statikk's original announcement covering what to expect in the S3 jungle.
"We’ve made some jungle changes in the coming patch, aimed mostly at easing the early game pressure on the lanes and opening up the roster of viable junglers. I’m Statikk, and I was the primary designer on the preseason jungle changes. Here’s an in-depth look at how we plan on accomplishing these goals.
Reducing early game pressure
Season Two opened up more opportunities for junglers to create early game action through ganking lanes. Although this had an overall positive effect on the game, the current rate and effectiveness of early jungle ganking (particularly through brush camping) applies an overwhelming amount of pressure to the lanes. This significantly reduces the number of champions that can lane effectively by requiring them to either be able to farm from a very safe distance or have a reliable means of quick escape.
To alleviate some of this early pressure, we want to make early ganking from the jungle a more difficult, conscious choice that will require constant monitoring of the risks involved. To accomplish this, we are increasing the damage dealt by jungle monsters. This means that junglers who gank early will likely be at lower health and not equipped with Boots of Speed unless they’re specialized or have made tradeoffs in other areas.
To combat this spike in jungle difficulty, we’re introducing several jungle-specific items to the game. For example, Hunter’s Machete is a great starting item which can be purchased at the beginning of the game to help you efficiently clear jungle. It also eventually upgrades into multiple build paths that include several of your favorite mid game jungle items such as Madred’s Razor and Wriggle’s Lantern.
Increasing Jungle diversity
In Season Two, strong junglers were typically characterized by high area-of-effect damage, utility skills, and early ganking presence. During the preseason, we want to increase the diversity of viable junglers by ensuring that champions with other strengths can also shine.
Firstly, we are going to reduce the emphasis on area-of-effect damage dealers by re-balancing more of the health and damage into the large monster in each of the camps. This allows single-target damage dealers such as Gangplank to have more competitive clear times.
Next, we’re also going to significantly increase the rewards (gold and XP) and scaling difficulty (health and damage that the monsters gain over time) of the jungle as a game progresses. This way junglers who shift their focus toward farming the jungle efficiently can acquire gold and experience faster. This opens up the jungle to many of the more damage-focused and gold-reliant champions like Master Yi who need to scale into the later parts of the game.
Lastly, as we mentioned earlier, we’re going to increase the damage dealt by monsters in the jungle. This should allow high-sustain junglers such as Warwick or Fiddlesticks to break back into rotation by giving them an edge over the competition.
The new items will also be a factor here by opening up build paths for champions who previously had poor jungle itemization such as mages and attack damage casters.
Quality of Life and Meta Adjustments
We are also making many other smaller adjustments to the jungle, including:
- Jungle monsters now attack the nearest target rather than attempting to chase their original attacker to make their behavior more consistent
- Wraith camp gold rewards have been reduced and golem and wolf camp gold rewards have been increased to better match their respective difficulty and convenience
- The wraiths have reduced attack range and the large wraith has been repositioned within the camp to force mid laners to commit more when farming them for extra gold
- The golem camps monsters have increased movement speed to make them less vulnerable to kiting, especially early on by the blue side bottom lane
Overall, we hope these preseason changes will make the jungle a place where more varied champions, roles, and playstyles are viable. We don’t intend to remove any of the junglers that are currently viable – only add to the lineup.
As usual, we’re open to making changes as things develop, and we want to hear your feedback on both new junglers and your standbys as you experiment. Don’t hesitate to leave us a comment once you’ve hit the Fields of Justice!"
Here are some of the relative red posts on the topic. All answers come from Statikk
[ So this means no leashing then ]: "No the leashing that currently happens on Live will no longer exist, but we've found that teammates still stick around as long as they can to apply as much damage as possible before leaving for their lanes -- still helps the jungler out a ton."
[ Can blue side still do golems before going to lane]: "They can still choose to do the golems before lane, it will just be now more difficult and thus be a larger consideration in terms of how much damage they are willing to take to incur this advantage."
[Do these range changes include Dragon?]: "Yes this does affect Dragon. We had to also slightly reduce his Attack Range in tandem so that he would be able to more easily pulled out of his den by the team engaging him. Not sure of the full repercussions yet but I guess we'll find out. =)"
[ What is Machete ( the new jungle item ) exactly? ]: "No it currently costs 300g meaning you can start with 5 Health Potions (numbers subject to change before release).
The Hunter's Machete actually has no raw stats but instead increases your damage dealt to jungle monsters by a % and also adds bonus true damage to your basic attacks against jungle monsters.
The item then branches off into 2 upgrade paths one being Madred's Razor and the other being a new item focused more towards non-autoattack based champions called the Spirit Stone."
[ How does the new xp and gold compare to the other lanes? ]: "It's hard to sum up since it can vary so much based on jungler type and performance.
Most internal game end results have shown that strong farm junglers (especially when factoring in successful ganks and lane sharing/covering) can keep up in gold with the lanes and often end up with experience levels slightly between the solo lanes and the duo lane."
[ How will the new jungle items, Hunter's Machete and it's upgrades, influence laning? ]: "We tried to ensure that jungle items were non-optimal to laners. This doesn't mean that there's no possibility that someone may buy the AP Spirit Stone mid lane to help farm wraiths or do fast Dragons and Barons. We're open to the possibilities and will address problems only if they are actual problems."
[ Tell us more about Hunter's Machete and Spirit Stone ]: "Hunter's Machete's % damage increase affects all physical and magic damage done to monsters, so yes it includes most spells (unless they deal true damage).
The Spirit Stone itself provides Mana Regen and the upgrade focused more towards casters provides even more Mana Regen if you are looking for more of it."
[ What about champions who like to start boots? How will new item alter that? ]: "Not many champions can safely start Boots (nor do they want to). Champions that come to mind that could be added to your above list are Shaco, Cho'Gath, Xin Zhao, and Udyr. I'm sure there's others as well.Champion Specific Inquiries
Though if you are going for a quick early gank gambit (for example Wraiths -> Red -> Level 2 gank) you can probably open up the list a bit more, but that's certainly very risky.
Hunter's Machete is probably going to be the default start for most junglers.
Spirit Stone is intended be able to be bought on your first back if you've done a full Level 4 clear. It's currently sitting at a price of 800g."
[ What about Nautilus? ]: "Definitely keeping my eye on several cases like Nautilus. Because his utility and ganks are top of the line, his clears should certainly still be somewhat painful compared to junglers who don't bring those strengths.
We'll be taking a look at junglers across the board and making champion specific changes where necessary. Slightly buffing up the early game of tank junglers such as Rammus and Nautilus (who were in some ways overnerfed due to the current jungle meta) is certainly not out of the question."
[ What about Diana? ]: "Diana actually performs very well in the new jungle. She has access to very high sustained damage and she benefits heavily from the increased gold flow since she scales well with items."
[ What about Sejuani? ]: "Sejuani's an interesting case because like many of the tank junglers her early clear is very painful. At the same time, she scales surprisingly well with items and so she's proven to be powerful if she can navigate through her early game troubles. Will make tweaks where they are needed."
[ What about Karthus jungle? ]: "You'd be surprised because Karthus does an insanely high amount of single target damage once he isolates the big monster (after the small ones die to the AoE).
He also benefits heavily from the addition of a few new jungle items that are aimed towards AP."
[Does this mean Jungle Malz is now a thing ( since his pet can tank minions )]:" It's interesting since Malzahar's void pets now do tank for him.
When we first initially implemented the new leashing changes, champions with pets that could tank for them like Malzahar and Shaco would literally clear the entire jungle without taking a scratch. Since then, we've had to make jungle monsters deal some amount of bonus damage to pets and we're still trying to fine tune the number to make sure having pet tanks is an advantage but doesn't necessarily mean jungle invincibility."
[ What about Maokai? ]: "I've found Maokai to still be a strong choice, mainly because his Q provides him with a significant amount of sustained damage that not many people realize.
Let's be clear, it's not like AoE is now useless. It still allows him to effortlessly wipe out the small minions while focusing his efforts on the big one (something single target champions cannot do).
Out of all the jungler tanks, I still feel he is near the top and probably doesn't need any tweaks to stay competitive."
[ What about Nocturne? ]: "Nocturne is still strong because as you said his passive and his Q allow him to ambiently AoE down the small monsters and he has the consistent auto attack damage to take down the big one.
Depending on performance, we definitely intend on seeing junglers being able to have carry-like impact on the later parts of the game."
[ What about Hecarim? ]: "Hecarim actually has the type of damage needed to clear the jungle. What I've found is that he eats up a fairly ludicrous amount of mana trying to do it at a consistent pace.
Haven't really had time to do a full pass on his power level. He certainly has extremely deadly ganks, great team fight presence, and fairly good scaling with items. Considering those strengths, we'll see if we have to do some early game tweaks to make sure he stays viable.
Haven't made any changes to the health/mana runes on the big monsters at each camp, but that's certainly a lever we can pull if necessary."
[ What about Kassadin? Can he jungle now?? ]: "No not really. =/"
[ What about Volibear? Will this make him a better jungler? ]: "To be completely honest with you, I don't think Volibear is a good jungler both on Live and in the new one currently in iteration. He feels currently much better suited for Top Lane.
Unlike other champions where I feel there are small tweaks we can make to ensure they are viable in the new jungle, Volibear feels fairly off and would need some significant changes (both buffs and nerfs) to switch him more into a jungle role."
[ What about Fiddlesticks? ]: "Fiddlesticks has proven to be strong in internal tests. His level 1 can be a bit scary if you don't rune or mastery at all for at least some early mitigation, but other than that, he's pretty solid."
[ Trundle? How is he doing with these changes? ]: "Actually just hopped on the internal server to do a jungle run with him.
To say the least, it's pretty impressive. His passive and Q debuff provide him with fairly good resilience in the jungle and the single target changes have definitely benefited his clear speed.
Couple this with what I know about late game Trundle with items (hint: it's pretty scary if he ults the right targets...), I think he has a better place in this new jungle."
[ How about Jax? ]: "Jax is actually one of the champions I feel has possibly become overpowered with the changes.
He has strong clearing speeds (Counter Strike for AoE and Empower and his passive for single target) and decent resilience (Counter Strike dodging) in the jungle. His ganks are scary because of Leap + Counter Strike stun. He also scales monstrously with the increased gold for later game.
We're monitoring him very closely."
[ How about Fiora?]: "I feel Fiora is significantly weaker than Jax in the jungle.
She has no AoE at all so the smaller monsters are a non-trivial time sink for her. Her resilience is much lower considering she only gets to negate 1 attack as opposed to the many Jax dodges at each camp. Additionally her ganks are significantly less scary due to no CC."
[ Fine, what about Skarner then? ]: "I agree that Skarner's jungle clears may be a bit too mana hungry along with other champions such as Hecarim. If we need to reduce early mana costs for these champions to keep them viable, then we'll do it."
[ What about good ole Nunu? ]: "Nunu is about the same as he's always been. Decent clear time, super safe, high counter-jungle potential, and extremely potent ganks.
He's never scaled that well with items so that change to the new jungle doesn't benefit him greatly, but I'm sure he can find ways to still put that extra gold to use and further augment his team's AD Carry. =O"
[ What about Amumu? ]: "Amumu is still one of the fastest clearers despite being primarily AoE mainly because no matter how much Health we give the jungle monsters, Despair damage just scales with it anyway.
Amumu's early clear has always been unsafe and can be exploited. This will probably continue in the new jungle.
If Amumu makes it to late game with sufficient farm, he's really a monster. So the item additions and increased rewards certainly help with his mid to late game endeavors.
Overall, Amumu still seems like he will be very powerful."
[ What about Shyvana? ]: "Shyvana is still one of the fastest clearers but she doesn't do it safely. The increased gold and experience certainly helps her out since a farmed Shyvana can carry games."