Items to try
The Preseason three patch for League of Legends has finally gone live as of this Tuesday. It is the single largest change in basic gameplay since at least the start of Season Two, in no small part because it adds 23 completely new items to the item shop while reworking ten and completely removing another ten. 12 of these new items have active abilities which almost doubles the number of active item abilities in the game from the previous 15, and includes many abilities that target allies rather than enemies, granting even greater tactical flexibility to item choices.
Masteries to see
The masteries pages have also changed with the new patch, most notably the utility mastery tree. It retains most of the same options as before and has added new ones, allowing summoners to gain gold each time they attack an enemy champion or start with some basic items as two examples. It also includes a mastery that lowers the cooldown on active items to further promote the additional variety offered in the item shop.
Jungle to farm
The updated jungle in League of Legends has also been refined to be more dangerous for junglers early on by increasing the damage the jungle minions inflict and making it more difficult for other players to kite those minions for the jungler, but granting increased rewards in experience and gold. It also refocuses the health and rewards more fully on the largest minion in each respective jungle camp to allow champions without area-of-effect damage capability to be able to jungle more quickly than before, especially with the new Hunter’s Machete item to increase the damage done to all non-player minions. These changes make the jungle a significantly more dangerous place for most junglers while simultaneously giving them the tools they need to get more out of the jungle itself rather than having to rely on making appearances in the different lanes to keep up in gold and experience.
The little extras
Other changes with the patch are comparatively minor in effect, though noticeable. The amount of gold gained from last-hitting minions has gone down slightly outside of the jungle, but the amount of gold earned simply by being in the game over time has gone up by a similarly slight amount, making a difference in creep score less game-breaking than before. The League of Legends game HUD has changed as well, showing the summoner what level he has raised his champion’s skills to at a glance and moving the minimap to provide more information with less clutter across the entirety of the screen. The largest change visually was to the item shop, which has a new interface to display item categories more quickly with one menu rather than a series of scaling menus.
Reactions to the changes are mixed, but as Morello stated, “This is an initiative we believe will add even more strategic diversity to League of Legends, and introduce new gameplay to master. “