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Preseason 2020 Gameplay: Rise of the Elements

Creator: PsiGuard October 15, 2019 8:24pm
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Welcome to Preseason 2020: Rise of the Elements! In our high-level goals blog, we revealed that this year’s preseason would be transformative but left the details hiding in the fog of war. Then we shared a video preview during the 10th Anniversary Edition of Riot Pls. And now, the full reveal is here.
Elemental Rifts

The third drake transforms the Rift before it spawns and after that, its element will be the only one to spawn for the remainder of the game.

Infernal Rift: New pathways spawn through buff camps and their brush is burned away.
Ocean Rift: New and larger brushes. Honeyfruit plants spawn in each jungle quadrant.
Cloud Rift: Air currents spawn in the jungle and dragon pit, which speed up nearby champions.
Mountainous Rift: New walls are created around the map, including the mouth of the dragon pit.

Elemental Buffs & Dragon Souls

The Elemental Drakes themselves still grant different flavors of permanent, stacking buffs to your team when killed, but some buffs are now a little different.

Infernal Might: Gain a percentage increase of Attack Damage and Ability Power.
Oceanic Will: Regenerate a percentage of missing health every second.
Cloudbringer's Grace: Gain cooldown reduction for your Ultimate ability.
Mountainous Vigor: Gain a percentage increase of Armor and Magic Resistance.

When a team kills their fourth Elemental Drake, instead of stacking their elemental buff, they'll gain a powerful Dragon Soul from the dominant dragon. Dragon Souls persist through death and last the remainder of the game.

Infernal Dragon Soul: Every 3 seconds, your next attack or damaging spell creates a small AoE explosion, dealing adaptive damage that scales with bonus attack damage, ability power, and bonus health.
Oceanic Dragon Soul: Dealing any damage triggers strong health and resource regeneration for 3 seconds.
Damage to minions provides less regeneration.
Cloud Dragon Soul: Hitting enemies with abilities or attacks lowers the cooldowns of your base abilities.
Mountain Dragon Soul: After not taking damage for 5 seconds, gain a shield that lasts until destroyed. The shield’s magnitude scales with bonus attack damage, ability power, and bonus health.

Once one team has claimed a Dragon Soul, it becomes the Elder Dragon's turn to defend the pit—this means only one team can have a Dragon Soul.

Elder Dragon

Elder Dragon still grants a powerful, short-term combat buff, and we're retooling it to offer teams who failed to claim a Dragon Soul a teamfight-focused hope of getting back into the game. To achieve this, we're removing Elder Dragon's scaling with Elemental Drake buffs (which favors the team that's ahead) and replacing it with a new execution component. If Elder's burn damage affects a low-health enemy champion, they’ll be consumed by a searing Elder Immolation — killing them instantly!

Enemies affected by the Elder burn have a small marker on their health bar, indicating the execution threshold. The execution has a brief wind-up, so with quick reactions, Immolation victims can avoid imminent execution with the usual suite of clutch save abilities or spells (Zhonya’s Hourglass, Kindred’s Ultimate, etc). The threat of Immolation will still be there when they become vulnerable again, so if the Elder buff burn is applied a second time, it’s back to the fountain!

Side Lane Alcoves & Brush

Aside from the Elemental Rifts and other Dragon changes, we've made some renovations to other parts of Summoner’s Rift. We've created identical alcoves in top and bottom lane. Both alcoves feature three patches of brush on their outer edges and a small space in their center for champions to juke around or hide in.

We don’t expect alcoves to be used constantly throughout lane phase. But every so often, players may turn a 2v3 into a double kill, or perhaps escape certain death due to the unique layout of an alcove. We look forward to seeing how players make use of them when they hit the Rift.

Finally, there are two new patches of permanent brush opposite the Baron and Dragon pits. These open areas to the river are high traffic, but lack the map features that create playmaking possibilities. New brush opens up a lot of new strategic and tactical options.

Other Gameplay Changes

  • Jungle Path Diversity
    • Gromp Gold & XP increased. (junglers can now hit lvl 3 off Gromp + buff + third camp).
    • Krugs Gold & XP decreased.
    • Junglers can now hit lvl 3 off Gromp OR Krugs + Buff camp + any third camp.

  • Top Lane Influence
    • Minion XP increased.
    • Allied shared XP decreased.
    • Rift Herald will now spawn earlier in the game and can respawn once if killed early.

  • Support Items
    • Ancient Coin removed.
    • Support starting items now upgrade through quests rather than being purchased.
    • Support items no longer grant gold generation when fully upgraded.
    • Support starting items are a bit weaker.
    • 2 versions of Spellthief's Edge and 2 versions of Relic Shield will be available as starting items (one AD and one AP version of each item).
    • Ranged champions will now be able to proc Relic Shield's execute.
    • Spellthief's Edge no longer disables its gold generation when the user farms minions and no longer requires a nearby ally to function. Instead, any champion with a gold generation item who farms a lot of minions will gain significantly reduced minion gold.

  • Lethality Items
    • Edge of Night's active spell shield will be changed to a passive one like Banshee's Veil.
    • A new lethality item called Sanguine Blade will grant a passive boost to attack speed when the uesr is not nearby any allied champions.
    • New lethality items may show up on PBE in the future.
    • The first two lethality items will gain bonus stats. Lethality items purchased beyond the first two won't have these bonuses (making full lethality builds less of a must-buy).

  • Other Items
    • Spear of Shojin is being removed.
    • More item changes to come in the Preseason 10 patch.

  • Keystone Rune Changes
    • Conqueror true damage conversion removed. More power added to the stacking adaptive force.
    • Kleptomancy will grant less gold and will be focused more on early game elixir drops.
    • Aftershock will grant less flat resistances and will be stronger on tanks.

Excited for 9.23?

This is just a taste of the changes to come in the upcoming 9.23 preseason patch in November. What changes are you most excited for? Let us know in the comments below!
Thanks to Lugignaf for the sig!
Sleepininthegarden's Forum Avatar
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Jul 31st, 2019
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Change is always good as it keeps things from becoming stale and always the same thing. I love the idea of dragons having an effect on how the map appears. As for stuff regarding support, Ancient Coin being removed is one of the things I've always wanted. The new support item changes are exciting just cause as a support, not having items can feel painful as other allies or enemies have items. Not having to spend so much money on your support item will allow supports such as mages to come online earlier without sacrificing their supportive duties (delaying upgrading their support item to get other items). I also love the support items having the option of being AP or AD ( Spellthief's Edge, Relic Shield), which will allow AD champs to be able to be more viable as support (Miss Fortune/Ashe).

Kleptomancy, I don't believe is super problematic unless you are going top lane with a ranged champion versus a melee champion. I'm curious to see how the changes will affect champions such as Ezreal or Sona (Bot lane) who run the rune as their primary if only keystone set-up. Lethality Items, I'm excited to see be changed as someone who plays Miss Fortune you almost always only run Duskblade of Draktharr or Youmuu's Ghostblade when you go lethality over Edge of Night. I think my one request is having 10% cool-down reduction added to Edge of Night (probs need a compensation nerf on something else if added).

I hope to see them adding some new AP Bruiser items that don't change Rylai's Crystal Scepter and Liandry's Torment as well a change for Mikael's Crucible. Mikael's, in my opinion, is the worst choice out of the options for Enchanters as it really doesn't provide anything you wouldn't prefer elsewhere in other items such as Athene's Unholy Grail or Ardent Censer. I think for my wish is having it become an aura item that activates upon taking hard crowd control (not including knock-ups, blinds, etc), that will remove CC off you and allies in a short radius.

As for being a guide maker, I'm not looking forward to having to spend a significant amount of time changing, removing and updating information, images, etc. Especially when I discovered one of my important files is missing which means if certain areas have to be changed, it all has to be changed. However, I will admit the changes do motivate me to continue working on my guide and any future project(s) that may appear in the future. I'm excited to shake up everything I learned and continue to grow as a player and ultimately a guide author.
Katasandra's Forum Avatar
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Aug 27th, 2018
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Reads through post:
hmm drake and map changes. And new bush I can use to ambush the enemy jungler…
Elder & triple drake bonuses look powerful... Hope they are not too powerful.
More solo lane xp? Looks delicious

Super excited already, can't wait!
Sebetai's Forum Avatar
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May 18th, 2016
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This looks amazing. Happy they changed Edge of Night because even when I kept thinking of using it I sometimes still forgot. Hope it gains cooldown reduction. I like the support changes. Will that fix funneling? Cannot wait for the new season.
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Oct 19th, 2018
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Thank god they removed Spear of Shojin end the rain of when Renekton & Jax is just perma op.

As a more of a toplane player, the new map environments for the lane is really nice to me. It finally gives me the sort of outplaying potentials where I can actually use the map in order to win.

Love the changes but lets hope Drakes aren't too overpowered, they kinda seem to be at the minute but who knows. Also, finally more toplane impact, maybe now there won't be 9 out of 10 games with a coinflip botlane.
Thanks to Jovy for the sig!
Silverman43's Forum Avatar
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Nov 11th, 2017
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Some thoughts:
  • Thank God they finally removed Spear of Shojin!
  • No more true damage on Conqueror! Tanks might finally be worth picking again. Aftershock changes should be good too if it really ends up being still good on tanks.
  • This is gonna be an interesting time for jungle mains. The exp changes to Krugs and Gromp are gonna allow more creative pathing.
    The elemental rift seems really cool, but I doubt we will see it often. The dragon soul mechanic seems quite strong, but only time will tell whether it will matter that much, assuming a team should be really far ahead in order to secure those 4 drakes of the same type. The elder dragon change seems kinda OP though. Not a big fond of executes, especially if it isn't necessarily a skillshot.
    One thing is sure: there will be even more pressure upon junglers. A missed Smite might have more consequences. Nunu & Willump and Shyvana will probably be meta with these changes.
  • The toplane changes seem nice. But I don't know if the rift herald changes will be enough to get a jungler's priority over botside with the drakes.
  • If they remove the gold generation of support items after upgrading, won't that leave them with little to no gold mid-late game? I need more information to conclude, but it's not like a support will get a lot of opportunities to farm minions while there are already the top, mid and ADC.

Overall, I'm looking forward to playing it myself!
Thanks to Jovy for the signature!

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