Riot reverts assassin buffs planned for LoL patch 12.11 as win rates creep up

. 28 days ago
Evelynn League of Legends
Riot Games

League of Legends’ recent durability update had assassin players up in arms, as the win rate for the class plummeted after all champions were given increased survivability. However, plans to buff the class have now been reverted, after their win rates have steadily climbed over the course of LoL patch 12.10. 

Assassins. Love them or hate them, they’re one of League’s most popular classes. But League’s Patch 12.10 ‘durability update’ saw their win rates suddenly plummet, after survivability was increased for champions across the board in order to control the game’s spike in damage.

In order to combat the assassin’s win rate nosedive, Riot’s developer team created a series of buffs to assassin-adjacent items and runes to go live on 12.11, with the aim of pumping some power back into the role. The buffs included changes to AD assassin items like Prowler’s Claw, Serpent’s Fang, and Duskblade of Draktharr, and to AP items like Rocketbelt.

However, lead designer Matt ‘RiotPhroxon’ Leung-Harrison revealed on June 7 that these changes had been reverted, and would not be appearing on live servers with LoL patch 12.11 on June 8. He explained in a Twitter thread that the team would be taking some time to “evaluate magnitude and direction of these changes post 12.11.”

What’s happening to assassins?

Directly after the durability changes went live, assassin win rates saw a huge drop. Evelynn, Zed, Rengar, Talon, and Katarina all declined in win rate directly after LoL Patch 12.10, dropping below 49 percent win rate globally.

However, those win rates have been slowly climbing throughout the course of Patch 12.10, something which Phroxzon attributes to the prevalence of assassins building bruiser/fighter items.

“Assassins building fighter items breaks their fantasy and strength/weakness profiles,” he explained in the Twitter thread, “and in elite, ~25 percent of mythic purchases on core assassins are fighter items.”

The changes to damage output have increased the skill expression of assassin champions, and their initial drop in winrate reflects that initial adjustment period. With their win rates beginning to climb again, Riot are holding off on any outright buffs until they’ve had a better chance to look at the overall power of assassins to make any more sweeping changes.

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