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About how Fearless went full Urgot with Sona - Does man who lacks fear also lack sense?
Opening speech(or rant if you want)
Some mechanics are interesting. Geometry of Vel'Koz Q, for example. These mechanics allow players to further master their champion and do something with them others would not like. But not all champs are skillshot based and not all of non-skill shot based champs are easy.
Take for example mechanicaly simple champion like Annie. She might be simple, but playing her is not as simple because you have to deal with fact that your range is abysmally low and any long range harasser will poke you from safety till the hell freezes.
Fact, that some mechanical things about champions are simple can be outweighted by their other weaknesses. Weaker waveclear, low range, or being simply squishy can increase other skills dependency, like map rotation knowledge, positioning, positioning or more importantly, positioning.
On the other hands, there are mechanics that simply won't do. Urgot WE(orEW)QQQ(Q) combo is compareable to change of range to 1200 with slow on each hit. While this is compensated by total lack of mobility, it still does not change fact that if E hits, its one of most annoying things that can happen to you and if Urgot slowed you with ult or shield before, he will hit that E and make your lane experience into hell.
Sona Rework however promotes new kind of mechanics, that you could only find in Zilean ult before. That is ability that can be rendered useless not by caster, but by reciever of buff. I am talking about Hymn of Valor aura, one of most tragic things my eyes had to see.
Problem with Hymn of Valor attack modifier is simple. Unlike other similar abilities, Hymn of Valor lasts only single attack. If you cast for example Nami Tidecaller's Blessing, which lasts three attacks, chances are adc notices and lands at least one of three modified attacks. And even if he does not, he still gets movement speed bonus granted. If adc does not realise you are about to buff him, he might waste your ability. And due to nerfs, Hymn of Valor is no longer effecient if at least two people dont proc it.
Sona rework hurts more than just mechanics. It hurts her identity, her power in lane and changes her teamfight presence to become completely predictable. Lets take look at her and step by step show what is rotten with new rework.
Identity of Sona
Sona is Aura support. That is probably most important and most funny things about her. Only thing in her kit, that destroys this is her ultimate, which was good as it gave her bit of split decision potential, and which ironicaly is only thing within kit that was not reworked, while it does not suit new kit at all.
Power of Sona lies in fact that she is, unlike many other supports, true support or team support. Her kit is designed to help her team, not just her adc. She was adc of supports, while not doing much in matter of second(if you don't count her ultimate), offering lot of power over time, shining especialy in prolonged teamfights. Her teamfight presence, while weak was persisting and longer teamfight went, more she actually did.
And this, ladies and gentlemen is what is support supossed to do. Support is supposed to be one of most important teammembers, amplifying power of whole team, and this is what true supports, team supports not ADC's slaves, do. Take Taric, another team support, as example - he makes whole team tanky, sustains them, can pick off overextending enemies and can give team something like baron buff via Ult aura.
Sona is teamfight miracle, when played with good composition. Her power is weak but persistent, like a water that will slowly turn rocks into sand. That is identity of live Sona and people who call that boring are people who will triple tower dive running nasus, because yolo. Yes, I am looking at you hyperactive LoL players, that make 90% throws happen, because you pursue kills instead of objectives.
Rework Sona is nothing like that. Her power is anything but persistent, her sustain is laughable(do you hear me Fearless? Laughable!!!) compared to live Sona. And what is most insane, she, Squishy sona, now no longer can position herself carefully, she has to enter frontline in order to make use of her skill enough to compensate for lack of persistent aura. And there, she will die. So she cant do that and is forced to stay by ADC, while having no impact on frontline.
Rework Sona is one more ADC's slave support, who just stays back with adc without offering anything to her other teammates, if she does not buy Aegis/Locket/Zeke's. Her Aria no longer helps team to persist in teamfight, as its higher cooldown cut its effectivity by a lot, and her shield is really not worth noting. Its weaker than locket, and 20/10 armor and MR was probably much more useful to prevent burst. Her Q no longer does damage on her bolts(really why did you nerf her bolts?).
Her reworked Song of Celerity is, while interesting by desing, absurd by numbers. I understand they wanted to turn skill into something more impactful, but Fearless, do you realise its probably only spell that, when you put point into ultimate, will become stronger than if you used that point for spell itself. Yes, if you put point in Ultimate, it will rise power of spell by 2% movement speed, while putting bonus point into Celerity will only be half as impactful? Unlike other Sona spells, like Hymn bolts, which damage is not affected by ultimate level and heal of Aria, Celerity has no part that is unaffected by Creshendo, so its NEVER worth to put point into it over putting point into ultimate, ever. Which is absurd and shows, that while putting 1st point into Celerity might be good, putting more points does not benefit you even 10% of what putting point in other abilities does.
So, to make it short:
Identity of Sona changes from amplifier to buffer, from good healer to bad healer, from good harasser to meh harasser which can be good harasser only if you have ADC on skype(and in that case might be even better harasser than live). From teamfight friendly to average teamfight impact, from positional champ to quazipositional champ, from solo-Queue friendly (simple amplification) to Queue unfriendly (requires not you to be coordinated with team but your team to be coordinated with her).
In my ADC item changes post, I predicted Essence reaver can't live with numbers it had, because it was too slot uneffecient to be ADC item and too lategame to give mana sustain to anyone anyways. My prediction came true - Essence reaver was reworked to be more of Bloodthirster with 80 AD and 3400 cost instead of 50 ad and 2700? cost. I am not saying all my predictions will come true.
But let me make prediction. So that I can either cry, with low-voiced I said it, or I will be proven wrong.
I claim this. Sona with your kit, Fearless, will be hard to balance, as her mechanics will make her predictable. If you buff her, she will dominate pro games, if you nerf her she will disapear from scene moment afterwards. And in soloque, noone but duos will ever pick her. Her kit will be toxic in meaning that either, if numbers are too high, she will uterly destroy, or if they are too low she will be too risky to play for pro's. And you will never find middle ground, because there will be none. However, you will keep buffing her, nerfing her, buffing her, nerfing her, until you realise her mechanics are not good for support and then you will Urgot and Soraka her. That is future of Sona I predict, Fearless. Maybe I am wrong. I hope I am. But I am afraid I am not wrong this time. Her kit screams this to me.
Power in Lane
What is going to happen to Sona lane power?
I already stated in previous paragraph what is wrong, so I will get straight to points.
Harass is now much more dependant on other party and your adc. If they dont learn how to read Sona's movement patterns and your ADC will help you harass with Hymn buff, well potential is higher. But in reality, you will probably not be smurfing with your diamond friend ADC in bronze. Predictability of harass with your ADC's assistance is clear, and you don't need to be Nuclear engineer to see, when looking at numbers that nerfed power chord + aura*1 + bolt makes harassing on your own actually weaker. Well, if you are not rushing Rabadon. So harassing without assistance of second Hymned person is inferior.
Also, your Power Chord rotations are longer due to cooldowns.
So, you have realised your harass is not gonna make it. Your adc plays passive, or just mismanages your Hymn "aura", and you decide to pick sustain. Well, no, you don't. Sustain is, after looking at raw numbers, much weaker against clasical harass, until you level Aria to at least 3 or 4. And until then, you are as useful in lane as Garen support with Revive and Clarity(not Claivoirance, Clarity). Your shield might mitigate some damage, if they all in. But if they all-in, do you really want to stand that close to ADC who has leona on top of him who is about to destroy you with her splash damage. No, you don't. Because that poor shield is not worth Leona AoE damage, so its better to stay away so only one take AoE damage.
Again, design of 350 shield aura is quite cantradicting to itself. Oh, and it lasts 1,5 seconds. Cool. Is there any situation it is really useful in? To be honest, I don't know. Probably yes. And probably, people will learn that. But will it make up for armor and mr steroid. Not quite likely.
Let's be honest, most disatisfaction with new Celerity comes from high expectations of rework. Old Celerity is not much useful till lategame, while new is not much useful in any phases of game and now probably became most selfish sona spell. Because 1.5 second 20-30% speed burst is not gonna give much to anyone, not without persisting aura of 20 movement speed. Nothing changed - only its purpose, now its weak escape for you with trollface for your lane partner.
Another thing to be disatisfied is that putting any more than one point into Celerity is dissatisfying. I mean, point in Celerity does not decrease mana cost, nor cooldown, nor duration and it only increases your movement speed buff by ~4 movement speed(1% MS). For 3 +0.5 per tagged ally seconds. And same amount for allies taged for 1.5 seconds. Hell even putting point into ult gives you twice as much on celerity alone, not talking about other "aura" buffs. That is probably only thing about this rework that makes me smile. But this smile is not light hearted, its dark smile of cynic who is about to rip his hairs out .
And Ult particle change
Good buff for anyone who has not played sona about 40 times. After 40 times, you no longer care about visuals, you know what is ult gonna actually hit. Finaly one good point. Good job Fearless, you striked first point with me. Its good to atract new players to Sona, and that I like. Or it would be good to atract them, if anyone wanted to play her after rework. But that is minor thing, right Fearless?
Power in teamfights
What is going to happen to Sona teamfights?
I already stated in pre-previous paragraph what is wrong, so I will get straight to points.
Pseudo aura buffs instead of auras
Sona will no longer be persistent teamfight amplyfier. Now, she will grant effects that will be dependant on target's skill. No longer will your auras save teamfight if mid feeded and top got stomped. Now you need to hope your top laner and mid laner got heart attack and were in the middle of game replaced by Korean challenger players who actually know how to dance around you. Isn't that just wonderful idea? Now to win, being good is not enough. Others also have to be good in order to make your teamfight presence visible. Awesome.
Sarcasm aside, actives of your spells got nerfed, so did their cooldown, so you really have to hope your allies are not braindead. That they will not run away from you when you want to shield them. That they will not waste your hymn buff on minions. This idea is against soloque. And your "auras" will make your movement predictible. Enjoy being either useless for not applying anything or bursted in second when you do. Teamfight presence is weaker in equal situation, and requires high level of coordination to pull out more. And honestly, is snowballish. More you are ahead of your team, safely you can apply buffs. And being bit behind means you cant apply auras on almost anyone or you will get bursted.
Dat ult tho
Well pre rework Sona also had it.
Click reveal button to reveal full mathemacal explanation. !!! UNFINISHED
Sona live and PBE comparation Warning, these numbers are idealised and demonstrative and they use idealised infinite mana no cdr rotations with all three abilities from lvl1.
Hymn of Valor: (50/100/150/200/250) + 50% AP per 7 seconds. DPpS: 7/14/21/29/36 (+7,1 %AP) DPpS
Power Chord: 13/20/27/35/43/52/62/72/82/92/102/112/122/132/147/162/177/192 + 20% ap per 7 seconds Hymn of Valor amplyfier: x2 DPpS: 4/6/8/10/12/15/18/21/23/26/29/32/35/38/42/46/50,5/55 (+5,7%AP) DPpS
Total DPpS scaling: 12,8% AP
Bonus AP and AD 4/8/12/16/20 Average per second bonus from combo(taking one physical attack per 7 seconds with hymn of valor aura on) = 1,1/2,2/3,3/4,4/5,5 DpPs
Total DPpS if Hymn is leveled first (no information for lvls 1-3 when you dont have ability to do full rotation Powerchord
Hymn of Valor: (40/80/120/160/200) + 50% AP per 8 seconds. DPpS: 5/10/15/20/25 (+6,25%AP) DPpS
Hymn "pseudoaura": (20/30/40/50/60) + 25%AP per 8 seconds. DPpS: 2,5/3,75/5/6,25/7,5 (+3,125%AP) DPpS (per person)
Power Chord: 13/20/27/35/43/52/62/72/82/92/102/112/122/132/147/162/177/192 + 20% ap per ~10(technicaly 10.03) seconds Hymn of Valor amplyfier: x1.5 DPpS: 2/3/4/5/6,5/8/9/10,5/12/14/15,5/17/18,5/20/22/24/26,5/29 (+3%AP) DPpS
Bonus from ultimate 10/20/40 per 8 seconds DPpS: 1,25/2,5/5 Damage Points per Second
PBE DPpS: With counting: -/-/-/5+10+3,75/6,5+15+5/8+15+5+1,25/ 1-6 lvls /9+20+6,25+1,25/10,5+20+6,25+1,25/12+25+7,5+1,25/14+25+7,5+1,25/15,5+25+7,5+2,5/ 7-11 /17+25+7,5+2,5/18,5+25+7,5+2,5/20+25+7,5+2,5/22+25+7,5+2,5/24+25+7,5+5/ 12-16 /26,5+25+7,5+5/29+25+7,5+5 17 & 18 (+12,4%AP) Damage Points per Second
After: -/-/-/19/22/29/36,5/38/46/47/50/52/54/55/57/59/64/67 (+12,4%AP) Damage Points per Second
Rest: To be done.
Hey Fearless. You know. Maybe you are actually good guy. Maybe you are like J4, who is "helping". But this design is not really helping anyone. Its unbalanceable for competitive and too weak for soloQ. And its not Sona I know. Let me sing you song of my people. QWEQWEQWEQWEQWE. Its not QWEQWEQWQEWQEQW (pointing at 8-10-12 cooldowns).
Sona is amplifier, not buffer.