TFT Patch 10.9 Champion and Item changes
Patch 10.9 has been live for a few days, and since then we’ve seen the game change entirely. This has been due to two new galaxies which you can read about here, Champion drop rate and trait changes which you can read here, and of course, the champion and item changes. All of these changes have led to many new compositions being viable, including some key champion changes we will look at today. Champions:
Tier 1 Champions:
Fiora Riposte Stun: 1.5/1.5/1.5 -> 1.5/1.5/3 seconds
Many of the tier 1 champion changes are focused on making sure that players who look for 3-star, 1 cost champion’s feel rewarded for their efforts. In this case, Fiora may now be a viable option to 3-star as a 3 second stun is no joke, and with items like Spear Of Shojin, Fiora can permanently stun units while also granting herself frequent invulnerability.
Graves Smoke Grenade Blind Duration: 4/4/4 -> 3/4/5 seconds
As of late, Graves has been one of the best one cost units in the game, due to his ability to shut off attacks of enemies. This change pushes players towards making sure they level graves up, while also giving him a bonus if you 3-star him. This change isn’t massive, but may affect how some builds play their early game. One adaptation to this is some players who play Blaster Brawlers, are re-rolling for 3-star Graves and Malphite before pushing for there expensive carries.
Kha’zix Taste their Fear Damage: 175/250/400 -> 200/275/500
Kha’Zix has heavily under performed so far this set, only seeing play in Void and Mech-Infiltrator compositions, both because he was the only option. Between this, and the Infiltrator changes outlined in this patch, Kha’zix receives a substantial buff that should make him feel a lot better moving forward. I’m not sure this makes players want to play more of him, but this may open up for some re-roll compositions involving him that want to utilize infiltrator.
Leona Eclipse Damage Reduction: 40/80/120 -> 40/80/200
Leona received multiple buffs this patch, due to the Vanguard buff. With this in mind, Leona was already strong and I expect to see her involved in a lot of compositions, including re-roll compositions. One that stands out that players are having success with is trying to 3-star Xayah, Leona, Fiora and Poppy, then adding in Kassadin and Irellia for Cybernetic, Blademaster, Celestial and Mana Reaver. This composition received many buffs and now with the Leona changes, 3-star Leona is going to be extremely durable.
Malphite Energy Shield: 40/45/50% -> 40/45/60%
Malphite was already in a strong place, but received a buff to 3-star this patch. Malphite will likely serve as the frontline for many re-roll compositions, as he both scales well with defensive items due to starting fights with a massive amount of health, and traits such as Sorcerer. Sorcerer re-roll compositions can utilize a brawler front line and increase Malphite’s shield, and Malphite covers one of the main weaknesses of Sorcerers, poor front line.
Twisted Fate Wild Card Damage: 200/300/500 -> 200/300/550
Twisted Fate so far has been the most desirable 3-star 1 cost unit this patch. With a increase to his Wild Card, Twisted Fate is one of the few 1 cost unit’s that can carry without perfect items, allowing him to be a lot more flexible than others. Comps such as Candyland (3-star Poppy, Leona, Zoe and Twisted Fate) have risen to prominence and many others utilizing 3-star Twisted Fate have as well.
Ziggs Bomb! Damage: 250/325/550 -> 300/400/700
The once feared Ziggs had some power brought back into him after receiving multiple nerfs at the beginning of this set. Although weaker then he was when Rebels was dominant, Ziggs should now be a more reasonable champion to pick up early, while also being better if you do choose to play Rebels. Not a massive change, but one that should make Ziggs on par with other 1 cost champions.
Tier 2 Champions:
Annie Health: 600 -> 700
Annie has been in an odd spot this set, designed originally to serve as frontline for sorcerer compositions, Annie has only seen play as a part of the Mech. This is due to some nerfs she received early on, and now that riot is attempting to shift power from the mech to the pilots, this change is welcome. Annie may still need some more tweaks in order to be viable by herself, but this is a step in the right direction.
Lucian: Will not target the nearest enemy with his Double Tap after dashing if his current target is dead
Although this reads like a bug fix, this is a massive buff to Lucian. Previously, Lucian would waste his ability semi frequently, lowering his overall damage and causing him to stand in place. This change allows him to simply put out more damage each fight including moving around fights more often. Lucian was already seeing a lot of play, but now expect him to be an even bigger priority for players looking to win streak.
Sona Aria of Perseverance Cleanse: All debuffs -> Only stuns
Sona Aria of Perseverance Heal Amount: 100/150/200 -> 150/200/300
Sona received a mini rework of this patch, taking away her ability to remove things such as Red Buff healing reduction, or disarms and instead moved her power towards healing. This makes Sona much better at being a mass healer, and will likely make her see more play in compositions such as Sorcerers due to her ability to keep a frontline alive. Of Note, Mana Printer Sona (Stacking Chalice of Favor) remains unchanged, and will continue to be an enabler for compositions needing a lot of mana.
Rakan Grand Entrance Targeting: Farthest unit within 3 hexes -> Farthest unit within attack range + 1 hex
This is a very minor change to Rakan, but is purely a buff. Unless Rakan’s attack range is change, this is the exact same range, but with Rapid Fire Cannon Rakan will now jump to the backline. This does give Rakan compositions something to do with extra recurve bows.
Yasuo Last Breath Targeting: High Item Unit -> Farthest unit within attack range + 2 hexes
Yasuo’s targeting also received a mini rework this patch, making him no longer able to jump across the entire map. This is a substantial nerf, as Yasuo can no longer jump to the backline at the start of a fight, targeting the stacked carries. Expect players to move away from Yasuo, except for potentially in 6 Rebels or 6 Blademaster, where they need him for his traits.
Tier 3 Champions:
Master Yi Chosen One Healing: 8%/10%/15% -> 12% at all levels
Master Yi received a shift in power in this patch, making him substantially stronger early on but less of a raid boss at 3-star. Between this and the Yasuo changes, expect to see less of the Blade Bros comp from the last patch, but expect a lot more of him just added into comps. This is a buff towards Rebels and 6 Blademasters, who both play Yi but do not intend to 3-star him.
Rumble Flame Spitter Damage: 250/400/800 -> 350/500/1000
Just like Annie, Rumble has struggled to find a place besides as a part of the Mech. With the Mech receiving nerfs, Rumble needed a buff to compensate and this should help make him see a little more play. Due to Rumble’s awkward traits, expect for him to pop up only in compositions that are looking for the demolisher trait, such as one’s with Gangplank.
Tier 4 Champions:
Jinx Rocket Magic Damage: 100/175/750 -> 125/200/750
Jinx received a minor buff this patch, but this likely won’t affect her viability. Jinx is a champion that heavily relies on her items, and her primary struggles come from not being able to get transformed. These changes don’t help Jinx’s issues, and I do not expect Jinx to see anymore or less play moving forward.
Tier 5 Champions:
Aurelion Sol Mana: 30/80 -> 40/120
Starship: 20 mana per second -> 40 mana per second
Aurelion Sol received a few changes this patch to how his mana works. This is just a buff, as it now only takes 2 seconds for him to start using his ability initially, and now he can cast again a second sooner. These changes make mana items on Aurelion Sol worse, but unneeded and instead opens up another item slot for him. These changes are very big, and with all the incidental buffs to Rebels in this patch, Aurelion Sol is back.
Gangplank Mana: 75/175 -> 100/175
Gangplank Faster Impact Upgrade: 1 second -> 0.3 second delay
Gangplank had fallen off after his changes a few patches ago, but with the additional 25 initial mana, he may be able to see a little more play. This change makes it so he more often cast his ultimate without dying, without a Guardian Angel. Faster Impact was an upgrade very few players were willing to purchase as it offered very little, with this change it should have a near instant impact and is now substantially stronger.
Xerath Abyssal Bombardment Damage: 350/450/2000 -> 300/400/2000
Xerath Abyssal Bombardment Splash Damage: 50% -> 25%
Xerath joined Teamfight Tactics last patch, and proceeded to dominate with his high damage combined with Dark Star. Both Darkstar and Xerath received nerfs in this patch, and although he should be less crazy powerful, Xerath is still strong. Xerath still has a lot of damage in his kit, but should be less of an instant win then before. Of note, Xerath received a third nerf due to his reliance on Quicksilver, which was also changed.
Quicksilver Shield duration: 15 seconds -> 10 seconds
Quicksilver has been one of the strongest items in the game for a while, allowing players to protect their carries from crowd control for almost the entire fight. This change still makes this item very strong, but should open up room for other defensive options and more counter play against carries.
Patch 10.9 has been a big one so far, and it seems the meta is shaping up nicely. With so many changes, a lot is left to be discovered. Have any thoughts on the patch? Let us know in the comments or on the official Backlash twitter.