Aatrox, Blitzcrank, and Rakan to see major changes in playstyle with Patch 9.9

Out with the old, in with the new.

Aatrox changes
Image via Riot Games

After a month of back-and-forth changes on the League of Legends Public Beta Environment, Aatrox, Blitzcrank, and Rakan are seeing some major changes with the release of Patch 9.9.

Aatrox

Aatrox tops the list with the largest number of champion changes for the upcoming patch. The Darkin Blade has excelled with his one-hit and low-risk dive potential following his initial rework last year, but these new changes now seek to redesign the top laner as a bruiser that relies on a life-draining playstyle compared to all-in combinations.

The champion’s base health regen has decreased from eight to three, and his passive, Deathbringer Stance, no longer reduces healing and shields on enemy champions. Instead, the ability heals Aatrox for bonus physical damage dealt, which is now 5-10 percent of the target’s maximum health. Deathbringer Stance’s cooldown has dropped from 25 to 15 seconds and is refunded by 2 seconds per ability or attack landed on enemy champions and large monsters or for each enemy champion Aatrox hits with the Darkin Blade (Q).

Aatrox’s Q will see a decrease in cooldown beginning after the third cast or when the initial cast window expires. The ability’s damage has been increased after level one, and its cooldown has been significantly decreased at later levels.

The slow on Infernal Chains (W) will no longer scale but will instead be a flat 25 percent at all ranks. Likewise, the ability’s cooldown has increased significantly at earlier levels.

Umbral Dash (E) no longer grants attack damage for 1.5 seconds and its heal now triggers upon any non-periodic damage against enemy champions.

The biggest change, however, comes to Aatrox’s ultimate, World Ender. The Darkin Blade will no longer automatically revive upon death if his ultimate is active unless he secures a takedown during the ability’s duration. The ultimate’s duration is now extended by five seconds, and its movement speed is refreshed upon each takedown Aatrox secures after casting the ability.

Additionally, World Ender will no longer fear nearby minions upon cast, and any healing Aatrox received during the ability’s duration will be increased. Upon reviving, Aatrox now heals for 30 percent of his maximum health at all levels, and he has been slowed by 99 percent while reviving.

Blitzcrank

Blitzcrank is set to see a few visual upgrades to each of his ability, but the Great Steam Golem will see more than just a new, updated look when Patch 9.9 goes live.

For starters, the support hero’s passive, Mana Barrier, will now activate a mana shield equal to 30 percent of his mana—down from the original 50 percent—for 10 seconds after dropping below 20 percent health.

Likewise, Blitzcrank’s ultimate, Static Field, will no longer cause lightning bolts to damage nearby enemies. Instead, it now marks enemies hit by the champion’s basic attacks when the ability is off cooldown. Marked enemies then take damage plus 0.3 ability power after a one second delay.

Rakan

Rakan’s defensive stats, including his health, armor, and magic resist, will see slight buffs with the release of Patch 9.9 to help with trading during the laning phase. Additionally, the support champion’s dash speed on Grand Entrance (W) will see an increase from 1500 to 1700 to help restrengthen his engage after the ability was gutted in Patch 9.2.

In exchange for these buffs, Rakan will no longer be able to flash or use Grand Entrance within the first 0.5 seconds after casting his ultimate ability, The Quickness.

Rakan’s strengths lie in his ability to dash in and out of fights, charming enemies along the way. These changes should help the Charmer stay alive after jumping into enemy teams without overpowering his engage potential.

Fans of the game can now check out the full list of changes for Patch 9.9, which is set to go live early tomorrow morning.