Bard hasn’t seen much action in pro play lately, but in the solo queue, he’s jumped to the top of the standings.
To stop him from getting out of control, Riot is nerfing him in League of Legends Patch 10.5 and targeting two of his core items. It’s the first time he’s been directly nerfed since his release in 2015, but it certainly won’t be the last.
In Diamond and above, Bard has a 54.60 percent win ratio—one of the highest in his position. His sudden emergence in solo queue could be due to the change in the meta and the short nature of games. His ability to poke, roam, and catch out his targets all contribute to his strength as a support champion.
In Patch 10.5, Riot is nerfing Bard’s Traveler’s Call passive, reducing its damage per five chimes from 15 to 12. This might not look like a substantial nerf, but the later the game goes, the harder it hits Bard.
To add insult to injury, two of his core items, Boots of Mobility and Spellthief’s Edge, are also receiving nerfs.
The cost of Boots of Mobility is being increased from 900 to 1,000 gold and the effect on Spellthief’s Edge will only be triggered when a teammate is nearby. This is a byproduct of the nerf to top lane Sona and Soraka, two champions that thrive with Spellthief’s Edge.
For Bard, though, the nerf negates his ability to roam. He’s one of the most effective roaming supports due to his kit. He deals a decent amount of damage, does well in duels, and can escape with ease. The nerfs to Spellthief’s Edge mean he’ll miss out on essential gold from its passive.
League Patch 10.5 is expected to release on March 4.