2/9 PBE Update: Even More Tentative Balance Changes

Posted on at 12:54 PM by Aznbeat
The PBE has been updated! As we continue the 8.4 PBE cycle, today's patch includes more tentative balance changes and a small preview of in-client voice chat!
Continue reading for more information!

(Warning: PBE Content is tentative and subject to change - what you see below may not reflect what eventually gets pushed to live servers at the end of the cycle! Manage your expectations accordingly.)

Table of Contents


  • There is now an option for voice chat is now on the PBE, but does not seems to be working at the moment. There are no options customize just yet. Will keep an eye out for more on this feature!
  • Another set of skin bios are in today's update, example:
"NOTICE FROM THE DEAN: Darius is henceforth suspended from Academy grounds for behavior including (but not limited to) stuffing students into lockers, possession of dangerous weapons on school property, brawling, fighting, scuffling, fisticuffing, and dunking on fellow classmates during gym class."

Balance Changes

NOTE*: The PBE is a testing grounds for new, tentative, & experimental changes. Be aware that what you see below may be relative to other changes earlier this cycle! These are not official notes.

[Evelynn has other changes in testing on the PBE!]
  • Whiplash (E)
    • Damage reverted from 65/80/95/110/125 to  55/70/85/100/115
    • Empowered damage lowered from 105/125/145/165/185 to 85/105/125/145/165

[Fiddlesticks has other changes in testing on the PBE!]
  • Dark Wind (E) cost reverted from 70/80/90/100/110 to  50/60/70/80/90

[Gangplank has other changes in testing on the PBE!]
  • Parrrley (Q) cost increased from 40 at all ranks to 60/55/50/45/40
  • Remove Scurvy (W) mana cost reverted from 100 at all ranks to 80/90/100/110/120

[Gnar has other changes in testing on the PBE!]
  • GNAR! (R) 
    • [Mega/Active] AD increased from 70% to 100% 
    • [Mega/Active] AP increased from 50% to 100% 

[Kalista has other changes in testing on the PBE!]
  • Attack range increased from 500 to 525
    • VS Live: from 550 to 525

[Ornn has other changes in testing on the PBE!]
  • Bellows Breath (W)
    • Damage lowered from 10/12/14/16/18% of target max health to 10/11.5/13/14.5/16%
    • shield duration lowered from 4 seconds to 3.5 seconds

[Volibear has other changes in testing on the PBE!]
  • Rolling Thunder (Q)
    • [Q reverted to scaling with spell rank]
      • Movement Speed bonus reverted from [scaling with level] to 15/17.5/20/22.5/25%
      • Enhanced movement speed bonus changed from [scaling with level] to 30/37.5/45/52.5/60%
        • Vs Live: from 30/35/40/45/50% to 30/37.5/45/52.5/60%

Haunting Guise
  • Unique Passive - Essence Drain renamed to Unique Passive - Madness

Hunter's Machete
  • Reverted to live functionality.

Hunter's Talisman
  • Reverted to live functionality.

Liandry's Torment
  • Unique Passive - Essence Drain renamed to Unique Passive - Madness
  • Unique Passive - Torment bonus magic damage lowered from 1.5% to 1% 

  • Unique Passive - Subtlety renamed to Unique Passive - Touch of Death

Ominous Orb
  • Renamed from Orb of Shadow
  • Unique Passive - Subtlety renamed Unique Passive - Touch of Death

Pathfinder's Knife
  • [New item removed, TK, SB, and SS are back]

  • Renamed from Spellbound Orb

Tracker's Knife, Stalkers Blade, Skirmisher's Sabre
  • [Items are back, Pathfinder's Knife is gone]


The Twisted Surgeon (D+P Set Bonus)
  • Changed from [+8 AD or +13 AP, Adaptive, +5.5 Attack Speed] to [+5AD or +9 AP, Adaptive, +9% Attack Speed]

The Incontestable Spellslinger (S+P Set Bonus)
  • Changed from [+8 AD or +14 AP, Adaptive, +5.5 Attack Speed] to [+6AD or 10 AP, Adaptive, +9% Attack Speed]

Context & Notes

1) Here's Riot August with a changelist and context on Rengar for 2/9:
"A number of bug fixes coming tomorrow (2/9)
Fixed a bug where Q would hitch Rengar's movement on activation
Fixed a bug where the correct Q CD would not display while ferocity was active.
Fixed a bug where Q would be lost if it was being held when ferocity activates. The Q buff is still removed, but the cooldown will be set to 0. 
Leap speed decreased slightly (by about 10%)
Fixed a bug where Rengar's bonetooth necklace's bonus AD mult was multiplying itself. (This is effectively a nerf. Bonus AD from 5 stacks is now correct at 25% (from 33%), may need to buff the bonetooth mult in the future as compensation, but we expect that Rengar's current burst is tuned a bit too high). 
Leaps that hit while Q is primed now play the Q hit SFX.
Was able to fix a number of Q bugs you guys called out. Thanks <3 
The bonetooth bugfix nerfs Rango's lategame AD. We think his damage might be too high however so will test without compensation for the time being. 
PLEASE GIVE FEEDBACK ON THE LEAP SPEED CHANGE IT IS NOT INTENDED TO BE A NERF. Was surprised to hear that some Rengar players wanted their leap to be slower in order to make the in-air bola combo feel smoother. If this change actually achieves that it seems like a win-win. Rengar feels better to play and opponents have a tad more time to react. If this change makes him feel worse I'd be likely to revert it. Let me know."
2) Here's Meddler with his quick gameplay thoughts for 2/9, including thoughts on Zoe, Summoner spell cooldowns, keystone developments, and more:
"Hey all, 
Usual Disclaimers 
These posts will often contain talk about future work we're doing, or planning to do, that isn't yet guaranteed to ship. The nature of the work could change or, depending on what we discover, projects mentioned may get put delayed or even stopped. If you'd like to see a Tweet whenever a new one of these posts goes up: https://twitter.com/RiotMeddler 
To state the obvious, Zoe's been a controversial champion. She creates some really fun moments and does some really unique and interesting stuff. She's has also been a source of a lot of player frustration and remains too powerful. We've been chipping power off her in various ways, overall though they haven't made enough of a difference. We'll be nerfing her quite a bit harder in 8.4 (next patch) as a result. In retrospect this is a situation where we should have made larger changes earlier and we need to get better at figuring out when to go from smaller tuning to larger changes in cases like this. We should also have been talking more about our thoughts on her as well, even if that sometimes wasn't more conclusive than exposing a lot of the debate going on amongst us here. 
Likely changes for 8.4: 
  • Q: Only applies her passive damage on primary target hit. That reduces her wave clear, particularly ability to kill caster minions with one Q, reducing her power from gold and ability to shove/roam as easily. It also makes it harder for her to harass through a wave and makes it easier for allies to block Qs intended for sleeping allies.
  • W: Is no longer able to drop teleport. Teleport creates some cool plays, and is the only real out of combat drop to be had. At the same time though its power is generally significantly higher than the options and it doesn't present opponents with good ways to play around it either (which is particularly important with randomly picked effects).
  • E: Drowsy can now be cleansed, preventing the sleep from happening. That makes Cleanse, QSS, Mikael's noticeably better responses to her. We originally thought that the appropriate degree of cleanse countering Zoe E was to have the player choose between being able to reposition faster before falling asleep (cleansing the slow) or breaking the sleep once it hit. Having seen Zoe get a lot of play since her release though it’s clear at this point cleanse effects ought to be a stronger counter, rather than a partial one.
  • E: CD increased, giving more windows where she can't threaten lethal as well and/or can be engaged on.
  • R: Bug fix, but one that's potentially power impacting: Was granting the ability to move through units for the entire game after the first cast, rather than just for a very brief period when she returned to the cast point. 
As you've probably noticed, there's no nerf to her Q damage in that list, though that's certainly a point of a lot of player frustration. We're confident the above changes are both a significant power reduction and changes that, regardless of whether we do or don't also nerf the Q at some point, are improvements to Zoe's play pattern. If we did follow up with a Q nerf, or if the above ends up being too heavy a hit, we'll also need to look at appropriate places to give Zoe power (she's pretty dependent on her Q burst to function). That could involve things like making W's damage contributions more meaningful later in the game. 
Summoner Spell CDs on the Scoreboard 
The display of those is currently bugged, making them much harder to read than they should be. On CD Summoners should show as much greyer/dimmer like they previously did. We're testing a fix for that at present, should be in the next patch at the latest. We'll also be reverting the orientation change, so Summoner spells are again shown vertically rather than horizontally. 
Keystone Development 
We're still working on that new keystone for the Resolve tree (probably) previously mentioned. Some aspects of it are still in flux, one thing that's looking promising (though also not yet guaranteed) is having some of its reward be some dual percent pen (both some % armor pen and some % magic pen). That makes it appealing on champs with mixed damage types, helps out its users against tanky front lines and helps distinguish it from other sustained damage keystones. 
One challenge that goes with that is then ensuring that keystone's best users aren't exclusively ranged champs, getting another % scaler on already high offense builds, and/or champs building full tanks looking to multiply their base damages. We're looking at mechanics like a trigger on proximity to enemies, scaling with offensive stats etc as a result. 
Following on from a question from earlier in the week: Lissandra. She's got a couple of issues. She's too weak and her passive's not interesting or satisfying to most players. We'll be taking a look at her sometime in the next few patches (8.6 ish?). Minimum target there is to offer her some more power. It's possible we also end up improving or replacing her passive, don't want to make any promises there that we might not be able to deliver on though, beyond that we'll be at least looking at it. 
Next Week 
Amongst other things planning to talk about a couple of other requested topics from this week: 
  • Marksmen play patterns and thoughts on what's healthy/unhealthy
  • Mastery curves and how we think about them when designing and balancing"
Check out [THIS PAGEfor a comprehensive list of the new content & changes currently on the PBE as a part of this cycle or catch up with the individual update links below !

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