When Aftershock was released with the rune changes before season eight, it immediately became a favorite of tanks. Notably, supports like Alistar and Leona could take it for a ton of durability in lane, giving them the ability to just run right at opposing marksman.
So Riot changed the rune in Patch 8.2, reducing its damage while mixing up its stats to reward divers who build AD or AP. That introduced a whole new can of worms, and its name was Aftershock Lissandra. After seeing the Ice Witch dominate the competitive circuit for three months, Riot finally decided to just revert most of those changes in Patch 9.9.
The new rune will still deal a lot less damage at early levels than the release version, which is a welcome change. Champions will have to level up and build a decent health pool before the shockwave really hurts. That means Aftershock Lissandra is dead.
The reasons it was good on Lissandra in the first place are numerous. She has a low-cooldown AOE CC ability on her W. When she has Aftershock up—which is about two times a minute—it’s basically impossible to win a trade against her. That gives her constant mid lane priority with extreme safety. You can’t even gank her reliably if she doesn’t use her mobility spell stupidly.
And it’s not just Lissandra. Aftershock Ryze was a thing in competitive too, and in solo queue, a whole host of mages are taking Aftershock. Riot is smart to base the resist stats based on the champions bonus resistances while scaling damage based on maximum health.
Riot seems to want this rune to work on divers like Renekton who build Titanic Hydra and can proc the rune with his stun. That build might not be bad, but alternatives like Conqueror for top laners will remain more attractive, especially in lane. That means this rune is probably headed back to the support position. Long live Aftershock Leona.