League of Legends

Overpowered Season 10 LoL item nerfed just 48 hours after release

by Andrew Amos
Riot Games

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Season 10 of League of Legends has brought along some of the biggest updates in the game’s history, but the newly introduced Sanguine Blade proved to be so strong it was nerfed after just 48 hours on the live servers.

Preseason in League usually means a hotbed of updates for Summoner’s Rift, and there were plenty of major changes for the game’s ten year anniversary. The new Elemental Rift and Drake system has changed the way players look at the map, while a bunch of item categories were reworked.

One such update was the Lethality item update, which saw two new items get added to the collection. Umbral Glaive became a cheap replacement to the expensive Duskblade of Draktharr, while Sanguine Blade was the armor-shredding substitute for the now-removed Spear of Shojin.

While it brought some fresh changes to assassin build paths, Sanguine Blade proved to be powerful on almost every AD-based champion in the game. To stop the item’s terrorizing reign on the Rift, Riot has implemented a hotfix just 48 hours after its release to tone down some of its power.

Riot Games
Riot Games
Sanguine Blade pre-nerf was one of the strongest items in League of Legends.

Gameplay designer Mark ‘Scruffy’ Yetter noted that the item had been nerfed on the first set of balance hotfixes for Patch 9.23 on November 21. 

The new Lethality item will now cost 100 gold more, upping its price to 3100. It will also give less attack speed, now only scaling to as much as 80% instead of 100% when isolated.

None of the item’s base stats have been touched, but it has lost some of its gold efficiency through the stat nerf, bringing it in line with other Lethality items.

The reason why Sanguine Blade was so strong was because of how cheap it was, and how good it was for solo laners and junglers. If you never approached more than a couple of enemies at a time, you would get a massive attack speed steroid to help decimate objectives and duels.

This meant that to deal with Sanguine Blade users, teams had to send multiple members across the map so the item passive wasn’t as strong, leaving them at a disadvantage across the rest of the Rift.

For junglers, they could buy the item and get a boost of attack speed and damage to help them shred through their jungle and get back to ganking and taking objectives. It was a must-buy item on a lot of champions, and often dictated which teams would win the game.

Riot Games
Riot Games
Tryndamere is one of the best users of Sanguine Blade.

The changes to Sanguine Blade weren’t the only updates made shortly after the release of Patch 9.23. Ezreal has received a slight buff, after losing his primary keystone Kleptomancy in the preseason update hit the ADC hard.

He has gained a small amount of base HP and mana, and his Q damage has been buffed by five at all ranks. While it’s not a massive buff, these things stack up on champions like Ezreal, who is heavily reliant on his spells.

Kleptomancy’s replacement keystone, Prototype: Omnistone, has also been buffed. The cooldown between swapping keystone has been reduced by one second at all levels, meaning champions will be able to cycle through different runes quicker.

More changes are set to be on their way for the latest League of Legends patch, and we will keep you updated as they come in.