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Discussing the new defensive mastery tree


Ahoy community,

today we're going to talk about the updated defensive mastery tree.

As someone who likes to play tanks, this was a pretty big deal for me and I was really excited for this. however, it kinda turned out, that it's now a lot less easy to decide which masteries to pick.

That's why I'll now share my opinions on them and then expect you to tell me why I'm wrong.

So let's get started

Tier 1

Swiftness mastery s4.png Swiftness:

this has replaced the Enchanted Armor mastery s4.png Enchanted Armor mastery, which is now farther up.

What does this mean? Basically it's a small nerf to Bruisers, because they don't get the ~5 bonus armor/MR anymore, but it might be a valuable investment on ADCS, or assassins if your enemy team has a lot of slows.

Personally I'm hesitant and prefer Recovery mastery s4.png Recovery, because it offers more safety to marksmen (and assassins, which I hardly play), but in case of Nunu Nunu, Nautilus Nautilus, Sejuani Sejuani, this mastery might even be better.

Tier 2

nothing changed

Tier 3

Tenacious mastery s4.png Tenacious:

this replaced Oppression mastery s4.png Oppression. It has also been slightly nerfed.

Basically this mastery is a must-have on anyone running 9/21/0, or 0/21/9, because tenacity is never not-needed (almost never), but this is not really different than before, because Oppression mastery s4.png Oppression used to be pretty important on anyone with CC as well.

Tier 4

Adaptive Armor mastery s4.png Adaptive Armor:

NOw this one bothers me the most. I'm really uncertain if it'S worth getting or not.

Basically, at no point in the game are you ever going to have exactly the same amount of armor and magic resist, thus you will get a sweet sweet bonus to the stat you're currently lacking, which is kinda helpful if you need to rack up defenses quickly.

The thing is tho...Usually, in a balanced build, you're going to ahve around 200 armor (champ-specific passives not included) and maybe 175 MR (if you slip in offensive items or a warmogs)

that means you'll get around 5~6 bonus armor/MR from the mastery. (since it only counts bonus stats)

Now that I'm writing this I'M actually realising that this mastery really isn't that good, especially if you have to sacrifice a point that you could use in Enchanted Armor mastery s4.png Enchanted Armor, which gives you way better stats.

Ergo: this one sucks, don't get it.

Reinforced Armor mastery s4.png Reinforced Armor and Evasive mastery s4.png Evasive:

I used to take these if possible...but I just can't afford that now. Now that Enchanted Armor mastery s4.png Enchanted Armor is that good, these just don't seem to make a lot of sense, unless you're running 21 points in defense on a champ who doesn't buy a lot of resistances. In that case, take them, because they offer better defense when just piling up HP.

Perseverance mastery s4.png Perseverance:

quick note, this one got nerfed heavily (down to 1% form 3%), so the only reason to get it is, if yyou also want Second Wind mastery s4.png Second Wind which is kinda essential on champs like Dr. Mundo Dr. Mundo, Olaf Olaf and Trundle Trundle

Tier 5

Here's where the good stuff moved

Enchanted Armor mastery s4.png Enchanted Armor:

now gives bonus Armor and Mr to up to 10% of your bonus stats. Which means items like Frozen Heart item.png Frozen Heart give you 10 bonus armor, while the average MR item gives you 5 bonus MR.

Compared to the Adaptive Armor mastery s4.png Adaptive Armor, that's a lot more (I wish there was a way to successfully combine those two without missing out on the other stuff)

Basically get as much of this as you can, but you're probably only able to invest 3 points if you also want Oppression mastery s4.png Oppression adn the flat defensive stats from the Tier 3 masteries

Oppression mastery s4.png Oppression:

nerfed by 1%, but imo still pretty strong on any tank with CC. Would absolutely get it.

Tier 6

Legendary Guardian mastery s4.png Legendary Guardian:

must-have, finally. basically gives you 15 bonus armor and MR if you participate in a teamfight and also +3 in a simple 1v1 situation.

Closing words

All in all I think that Riot did a good job at making the defensive tree more diverse, but I do kinda feel bad that certain masteries can't be used to their fullest now.

PLease note that these are all my personal opinions. Feel free to argue against them if you have relevant arguments, because that helps me optimize my masteries.

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