The first two weeks of the 2020 Spring Split for both the LEC and LCS are done, but there’s still one champion that’s stayed permanently banned in both leagues: Akali. The Rogue Assassin hasn’t gotten a chance to play in a competitive game through 20 matches this year.
Shen’s former protégé has always been a strong pick in the hands of most top-tier mid laners due to her great playmaking ability. Her kit is filled to the brim with tools to help her create easy kill opportunities. Akali’s Twilight Shroud, Shuriken Flip, and ultimate give her the ability to both assassinate enemy backlines or escape a fight gone wrong.
Many pros have complained about how hard it is to lock down Akali and how her kit is simply overloaded with useful skills, though. Her impact on the pro scene was big in 2019, especially at the World Championship, where she was played or banned in 74.2 percent of games at the tournament.
Patch 10.3, however, might change up how teams draft around Akali in the future. Since Akali’s main strength is her mobility, Riot Games decided to nerf several aspects of her kit hard. Her Q now costs 20 energy more and the first part of her ultimate must be used on a target champion instead of being freecast.
“One of the biggest issues we wanted to tackle was the sheer number of options she had when approaching fights, or surviving bad situations,” Riot said in the patch notes. “She was way too flexible, being able to split push and teamfight, while also not being committed to a specific playstyle.”
It’s unclear if these changes will affect her presence in pro play. She still has plenty of options for movement, but her playstyle flexibility has been cut down by a significant amount.