Here's a draft of item changes I've been theorycrafting about.
I've tried to fix three most prominent issues with support itemization:
- , being the only item with team-wide utility, outclasses other gold generation items with its active
- Gold generation items force the dilemma between preferred gold generation method and desired final item, as they all have only 1 final build that doesn't always suit their needs
- needs a better build path for supports, who don't have that many free item slots
- Items like , and are way too situational, while items like or are just flat out underpowered
- With the nerf to blue buff, becomes a must-have, outclassing every other midlane item in CDR, mana renegeration and magic resistance (Chalice is the go-to laning item in mid lane). This makes situational pciks such as Morrellonomicon a great risk and renders items like Banner of Command downright useless
- Wannabe initiators such as Skarner and Udyr lost access to and would love to have it back
- is too weak in its current state due to poor slot efficiency.
- +350 health, +20 armor, +10% cooldown reduction
- Aura - Legion: Nearby allied champions gain +25 magic resist. (1100 range)
- Active: Shield yourself and nearby allied champions for 5 seconds, absorbing up to 50 (+10 per level) damage. 60 second cooldown. (600 range)
That was the first step - remaking the build path of Aegis of the Legion. Right now it's painful for a support to assemble the whole thing, since supports are short in free item slots, so I incorporated the Kindlegem into the build. It's intuitive (CDR doesn't appear out of nowhere) and more comfortable for supports.
Health regen aura is a remnant of, which was at first a lifesteal aura item, separate from the first version of Aegis. Making Locket strictly anti-burst allows for an alternative Aegis upgrade:
- +200 health, +30 armor
- Aura - Valor: Nearby allied champions gain armor equal to 20% of your magic resistance.
- Aura - Legion: Nearby allied champions gain +20 magic resist, +10 health regen per 5 seconds. (1100 range)
Just like Locket protects from AP burst, this item is suited against AD-based sustained damage. Its aura is exclusive with Legion, making purchasing both a waste. You want a Runic Bulwark when the enemy team is AD-heavy or not bursty enough to make use of Locket and you're stacking a big chunk of both resistances.
Overall it should be a strong pickup on true tank champions. Due to reliance on MR from other sources, this item requires a thought out build and cannot become a go-to defensive item for junglers.
shares the passive with Bulwark, granting bonus armor from MR to its owner. It's meant for tanky champions who will itemize heavily for both resists.
- +15 armor, +10 health regeneration
- Passive - Valor: Gain armor equal to 10% of your magic resistance.
This alternative should be interesting for all AD champions in duo lanes. Item is slightly cost-ineffective due to the gold gain, but it should allow more flexible laning setups. With this item, we may see this enabling melee carries in duo lanes. An example of champion this item is suited for would be Pantheon, Xin Zhao or even Darius.
Note: I've added Rejuvenation Bead to the Targon's recipe to allow for some alternative starting items for supports. Same goes below forand .
AP / Utility support items
The problem of the old Talisman of Ascension is that its active outclasses the other two gold generation items. That's why I've decided it would be a good idea to make this item available for every support and every wannabe-initiator (Udyr and Skarner come to mind).
This version of the item would be still a strong utility pickup while solving the issue of disparity between gold generation items. As it's supposed to, it grants less stats than the gold is worth, but in this form should be a good pickup for any champion like Udyr, Skarner or Alistar. The tank stats are minimal, if not even too weak - the health amount could be bumped up to 450 or so. the item has very low efficiency for manaless champions.
This solidifies the Coin route as the one for mana-intensive "true supports" like Nami. In this shape the item would be attractive for unusual supports such as Anivia.
Passive alternative, still preserving the spirit of the original with the cooldown reduction and mana regeneration. Basically it allows you to become a wannabe Sona. Or even more Sona than before, since it amps up your own heals as well.
This aura should probably be exclusive with the one from Spirit Visage.
A way for supports to build Ability Power in reasonable amounts, alternative to. Passive can be altered to stack AP from different sources such as Tribute procs - the end result should be that this item is the AP support's Deathcap.
So, what does that change?
Summary of support itemization changes
Given 6 options to go for, the following situations suggest purchasing appropriate options:
- You're a tanky support like Leona who has no built-in targetable shields, but needs to protect your carry from burst damage.
- You need durability to survive enemy burst and consider shielding yourself while diving.
- Your team is AD-heavy and could use a lifesteal boost
- You're playing a Pantheon support or some other unorthodox AD pick
- There's some heavy CC on the enemy team and your carry needs an on-demand
- You're a mana-hungry support and tend to run low on this resource
- There are champions on your team that could use a heal boost, such as Dr. Mundo
- You're a heal-oriented support like Soraka and want to amp up this ability
- You picked an AP support that relies on landing skillshots, but lacks innate CC or wants to add a new form of it
- Your team needs slows to kite the enemies
- You want to stack a lot of Ability Power to make use of your scalings, for example on Lulu
- Your team is AP-heavy and could use a little boost of this statistic
Madred's Razors need love. As it is, it's just too weak to be taken into consideration. My approach was to emphasize the control aspect of Wriggle's Lantern and include the Bloodrazor for wannabe carry junglers such as Master Yi.
This change needs to be paired with granting Madred's Razors increased gold from monsters - this should allow wannabe carries to start stacking up profit from that item a bit sooner. I think something like 10% would be alright.
- +45% attack speed
- Passive - Maim: Basic attacks deal (100 + 3*stacks) magic damage (25% to champions) and heal (10 + stacks) on hit. Gain a astack on every champion kill, assist, or jungle monster kill.
- Active: 20% increased gold from monsters.
With stacking damage from jungle camps, this becomes the best pickup for carry junglers such as Tryndamere and Master Yi. This item is what the old Wriggle's should have been.
- +200, health, +20% attack speed
- Passive - Maim: Basic attacks deal 100 extra damage to monsters and heal 10 health on hit.
- Passive: 20% increased gold from monsters.
- Active: Place a Stealth Ward for 180 seconds (4 charges)
Sightstone is already utilized by junglers such as Elise or Lee Sin; this version of Wriggle's Lantern focuses purely on jungle control instead of increased damage.
With those stats I believe this item is completely fine. It's barely slot efficient, since it has half the health of.
In its current state, has become a must-have for every mana-using midlaner, aside from few champions who prefer rushing DFG instead. AUG outclasses every other mana regeneration item and every other CDR item - and if that wasn't enough, for most mages it's also the best possible source of MR.
First step would be to even out the playing field in the laning items department.is right now too good and has no real alternative. The way to change it would be to introduce alternative mana regeneration and MR laning items that could compete with Chalice, allowing for other options than AUG to be chosen.
That's wherecomes into play. It's more or less a blue buff substitute, granting some mana renegeneration as well as cooldown reduction. Unlike Chalice, it doesn't provide MR, though. It builds into solid items such as or .
Right now Morellonomicon is a worse Athene's Unholy Grail. AUG has way, way better mana regen, same CDR amount and grants a significant amount of MR.
What Morellonomicon needs is a small boost to its build path - mana regen, in particular. Building from Meki Pendant should even out the playing field.
All WotA really needs is slot efficiency, which is achieved by adding an amp tome to the recipe and increasing the AP by 20. As of now champions like Mordekaiser will rather aim for Hextech Gunblade which gives more desirable statistics.
I kept the mana part to balance its cost on manaless champions (Vladimir being the abuse case), allowing mana users to start building this item with Meki Pendant.
Well suited for pet-based champions such as Elise and Heimerdinger with the armor bonus. The item is now quite expensive, but slot efficiency makes it a much better pickup, since it's not really an item to be rushed.
Any sort of balancing should be done by increasing the price, not decreasing the statistics. This is how this item needs to look like in its final form to be considered by people, especially since the Promote active has questionable value as the game goes on.
First step in fixing the domination of Chalice was introducing Meki Pendant as an alternative mana regeneration item. Next one is creating an alternative source of magic resistance.
- +50 ability power, +50 armor, +50 magic resistance, +10 mana regeneration
- Passive - Mana Font: Increases your mana regeneration by 1% per 1% mana you are missing.
- Passive: Your basic attacks deal 100 bonus damage to towers. This effect cannot occur on a tower more than once per second.
- Active: Prevents the closest enemy tower from attacking for 2.5 seconds (120 second cooldown). This effect cannot be used against the same tower more than once every 7.5 seconds.
Ohmwrecker, in this iteration, becomes "The laning phase" item. You get some magic resistance and mana regen from Chalice, armor and AP from Armguard, extra damage to towers to punish roaming opponents, and, finally, the "I don't like your turret" button.
Its main purpose is laning against roamers such as Zed, Fizz or Nidalee. Once they leava lane, you can use this item to quickly bring down their towers.
- +250 health, +40 ability power, +10 mana regeneration, +30% cooldown reduction
- Passive: Increases the maximum Cooldown Reduction to 50%.
Soul Shroud becomes the alternative regen/CDR item with unique characteristic of breaking the CDR cap, bringing it up to 50%. It's the best pickup for utility mages and some supports - it requires dumping some significant gold into it, but taking half of base cooldown of Crescendo can be very strong.
The definition of AD Carries in this draft is "champions who build critical strike chance". That would be not only ranged carries, but also melee ones such as Yasuo, Master Yi or Tryndamere.
Those champions desire highly slot-efficient items and statistics such as Attack Damage, Attack Speed and Critical Strike Chance. The problem for melee champions, though, is that they get blown up way too quickly by AoE spells. The whole art of positioning that the ranged carries perfect suddenly becomes irrelevant, because melee carries need to be in the very middle of the fray.
What has been observed so far is that most ranged carries follow the same build, or one of two. It's BT-LW-Stattik or BT-LW-Triforce, third item being in most cases IE. Gold efficiency of final items forces carries to upgrade their Vampiric Scepter as soon as possible, and Last Whisper is just too damn strong in general.
- Attack damage lowered to 20
- Now grants 40% bonus attack speed
- Armor penetration increased to 50%
- Armor penetration works only on bonus armor
The last change is the most important. Right now every carry buys LW without a question. This item needs to be effective against tanks, but not against other targets. This leaves AD casters like Riven, Pantheon or Talon with a need for a new AD+arpen item. More on that later.
Similar change should be applied to, but with lower percentage (40%?) since base MR of most champions is flat at 30.
- +20% attack speed, +20% critical strike chance
- Passive: Grants attack damage equal to your critical strike chance percentage.
- Active: Become stealthed to enemy wards and minions for 15 seconds. Entering combat breaks the stealth. 90 second cooldown.
You can probably see some DotA inspiration, I guess. since true stealth in an item would be way too strong, I've made it grant Evelynn's type of stealth. This item is not as slot-efficient as it may appear... until you count in the passive. Paired with IE, it will grant 50 AD, which is huge. Doesn't stack with crit chance from champion abilities (Yasuo, Tryndamere, Ashe).
- +60 attack damage, +20 armor penetration, +10% cooldown reduction.
- Active: Your attack damage is increased by 30% for the next 5 seconds. 60 second cooldown.
New SotD would be the go-to flat armor penetration item for AD oriented champions. Active remains similar - burst of power. Probably stupidly strong on Riven.
- Ranged only
- +70% attack speed
- Passive: When basic attacking, bolts are fired at up to 2 enemies near the target, each dealing 10 (+50% of Attack Damage) physical damage. These bolts apply on-hit effects.
- Active: For the next 10 seconds you lose the passive effect, but your basic attacks gain 50 range. 90 second cooldown.
Right now Hurricane is... well... underused. It has its niche, but it's way too narrow.
Adding an active effect alternative to the passive one is a way to expand its niche.
- +70 attack damage, +10% lifesteal
- Passive: Grants +0.25% life steale per stack (max +10% life steal). Gains 1 stack per unit kill (max 40 stacks). Half of the current stacks are lost upon death.
- Toggle: Gain +1 attack damage per stack. Reduce the lifesteal granted by this item to 0.
As of now every single AD Carry rushes BT with no real drawback. I think it's a good idea to make this item a more risky but rewarding pickup. Making it impossible to use lifesteal and full AD bonus at the same time will require smarter usage of this item.
- Melee only
- +30 attack damage, +20 armor penetration, +15% critical strike chance, +10% cooldown reduction
- Active: You gain +40% attack speed and take 50% less physical damage from champions for 6 seconds. 60 second cooldown.
This is a part of the "Project Melee Carry". The reason why meelee carries such as Master Yi or Fiora are so unreliable is that they have to build damage, but can't afford durability. Damage+durability items could be too strong on fighters - the exception here is the Critical Strike Chance, a statistic very much undesired by bruisers but appreciated by carries.
This version of Ghostblade allows melee champions to withstand big chunk of physical damage and duel/ignore AD-based champions. One of the ideas is to tie the physical damage reduction ot summoner spelland make this item reduce its cooldown, to make the item cost you a summoner spell choice.
- Melee only
- +35 attack damage, +25 magic resistance, +20% critical strike chance
- Active - Lifeline: Grants a shield that absorbs 400 magic damage for 5 seconds (90 second cooldown). While the shield persists, you are immune to crowd control effects.
Long story short, this isin an item. Could be potentially OP, but there is an option to make the Lifeline proc on 30% health just like in Hexdrinker. Which in return would be a bit unreliable. I left it with an active option because raw stats the item provides aren't really high.
The reason is that melee carries get chunked too easily by AoE magic damage that's not even aimed at them. This could play around that.
Last but not least, the hybrid carry items:
- +25% attack speed, +25 magic resistance, +25 attack damage, +10% [[lifesteal]
- Passive: Basic attacks reduce enemy armor and magic resistance by 5 and increase your lifesteal by 5%. This effect stacks up to 3 times.
This is basically the oldcombined with the old . Made with TF and AP Varus in mind, can probably get (ab)used by Udyr, Shyvana or Irelia.
Suggested tweaks to:
- +50 ability power, +50 attack damage
- Passive: Your critical strikes deal bonus magic damage equal to 50% of your Ability Power
- Passive: Falling below 50% health grants +10% critical strike chance, +10% lifesteal and +10% spellvamp until out of combat. 30 second cooldown.
These items would require the most tweaking, since it's difficult to predict their effect in abuse cases such as Jax, but the idea is enabling hybrid builds on Ezreal, Varus or Twisted Fate. Right now it's impossible to make use of both crit chance and AP in a build - this item could make that happen.
Here comes probably the most difficult section (better nerf Irelia). I'll trim it down to mostly fixing the build path of and making abandoned items such as or a worthwhile pickup.
Statistics and passives remain the same. Better build path increases the price by 50. In this form the item could become a viable laning item against mages and some bruisers. I doubt if the build path change would make that much a difference, but in case it does, here's a list of who could build it:
- Bruisers like Irelia looking for a way to defend from the forementioned champions or toplane mages
- Carries wanting to counter enemy
- +1000 health
- Passive - Regrowth: You gain health regeneration equal to 1% of your maximum health.
No changes to Warmog's Armor itself. The cost goes up by 70 to compensate for easier build path. Warmog's retains the unique scaling regeneration in combat - other upgrades ot Regrowth Pendant grant it only while in combat.
- +20 armor, +20 magic resistance, +20 health regeneration
- Passive - Valor: Gain armor equal to 20% of your bonus magic resistance.
- Passive - Slow Resist: Movement slowing effects are reduced by 25%.
- Passive - Regrowth: While in combat, you gain health regeneration equal to 2% of your maximum health.
This item allows the tanks to build Emblem of Valor with two different ways to finish the item. Regarding top lane, the whole Emblem route ie meant to be an alternative for the dominating. It's highly build dependant and scales with MR and health from other items. On its own, it's barely worth its price.
The passive slow reduction does not stack with. The passive % health regeneration does not stack with , but it doesn't disable Warmog's passive out of combat.
- +10 health regeneration, +10 mana regeneration, +15% cooldown reduction
- Passive - Regrowth: While in combat, you gain health regeneration equal to 1% of your maximum health and mana regeneration equal to 1@ of your maximum mana.
- Passive: If you gain 3 levels with this item, you gain all the effects permanently and this item is consumed.
So this one is all about lategame and slot efficiency. Good for tanks laning in top lane, as the regeneration will scale throughout the game. Meant to be situational, in case you don't want any other upgrade of Regrowth Pendant in your build. The CDR makes it a worthwhile purchase.
- +600 health, +10% cooldown reduction
- Passive: Gain +8% movement speed while the item is off cooldown.
- Active: You become immune to displacement effects (knockups and knockbacks) for 5 seconds. 60 second cooldown.
This item is more or less a tank version of Zephyr. It can probably replace boots as the 6th item. It is also designed to defend from displacement effects at the cost of lower movement speed. Good pickup against champions such as Vi, Gragas or Vayne, but barely gold efficient if you can't utilize the active.
- Melee Only
- +45 attack damage, +45 armor, +15 health regeneration
- Passive: Grants attack damage equal to 2% of your bonus health
- Passive - Cleave: Unique Passive – Cleave: Your attacks deal up to 60% of your Attack Damage to units around your target as physical damage (185 range), decaying down to 20% near the edge (385 range).
- Active - Crescent: Deals physical damage up to 100% of your Attack Damage to units around you, decaying down to 60% near the edge. - 10 second cooldown (400 range)
That's just a draft of what can be done with the item. This version scales off bonus, not total health, so it's a bad idea to rush it (on its own it starts with about 500 gold deficit). The item becomes cost effective with health purchases (Warmogs, Frozen Mallet). It's 10 AD per 500 bonus HP, so a regular tank build with +1500 HP from items will grant 30 bonus AD.
It's meant for bruiser filling in for the tank role and aiming for passive health regeneration over lifesteal.
- +200 health, +20 attack damage, +15% critical strike chance
- Passive - Rage: Basic attacks grant 20 movement speed for 2 seconds on hit. Minion, monster, and champion kills grant 60 movement speed for 2 seconds. The movement speed bonus is halved for ranged champions.
- Active: For the next 15 seconds, your basic attacks inflict Grievous Wounds on enemy champions for 1.5 seconds. 90 second cooldown.
The problem with Executioner's Calling in its current state is that it's a carry item (AD + crit chance) with horrible slot efficiency (1900 gold). It can exist with low slot efficiency, but needs to be a bruiser item to do that. A version of Phage seems like the way to go. It's inferior to, but has its own purpose.
Stats brought by Phage are untouched in this concept to keep the slot efficiency in check - it's still potentially problametic, but manageable.
Now, an item to enable tank mana builds.
PRAISE THE HELIX
- +250 mana, +30 armor, +30 magic resistance, +8 mana regeneration
- Passive – Mana Charge: Grants +4 maximum Mana (max +750 Mana) for each spell cast and Mana expenditure (occurs up to 2 times every 8 seconds). Additionally, you passively increase your maximum mana by 1 every 5 seconds.
- Transforms into Innervating Locket at +750 mana.
- Toggle: Channel for up to 10 seconds to recover 2% of your missing health at the cost of 25 mana per second. 20 second cooldown once the channel ends.
- +1000 mana, +40 armor, +40 magic resistance, +8 mana regeneration
- Toggle: Channel for up to 10 seconds to heal nearby allies for 2% of your health at the cost of 40 mana per second. 20 second cooldown once the channel ends.
So this item is meant for mana-hungry tanks like Malphite and Maokai, but can be picked up by other champions, like Cho'Gath or Swain - or even by supports. Generally it comboes well with items like and , but requires a filled Tear to gain team-wide utility. It scales with health, mostly, so its primary purpose is tanks, but it's not that hard to stack heaps of HP on some mages either. I'm not entirely sure about this item's effectiveness, this would probably require lots of testing.
Last change I feel could make the game better would be a tweak to Banshee's Veil.
- +400 health, +250 mana, +55 magic resistance
- Passive: Grants a spell shield that blocks the next enemy ability. This shield refreshes after no damage is taken from enemy champions for 25 seconds.
- Passive: Grants 45 health regen for up to 10 seconds after taking damage from an enemy champion or when the spell shield breaks.
As of now Banshee's Veil completely shuts down some team compositions as the game progresses (double AP, for example). It's a good mechanism, but a little bit overtuned on both tanks and squishies. My solution was to slightly lower the health provided by the item and bring mana back to it. The item's cost increases by 100g, it loses 133g worth of health and gaiuns 500 g worth of mana. Overall it should still be a good pickup in the situation it's needed in, but its slot efficiency on manalaess champions should get a tiny bit down.
This change might seem unnecessary and it's really a long shot, not something that would need a fix right away.
LoL itemization could use some love. As of now, some roles have the same builds for every champion with zero deviation. This can be changed. All we need is attractive alternatives and more items to choose from. There is also a high demand for active items, especially in non-support roles. Active items mean more possible plays, more ways to act or react.
Of course most of those sketches are half wishful thinking half making stuff up on the run. But even if one of those concepts could become reality, it would surely make this game better.