Riot targets Kai’Sa, Kayle, and Xayah with big nerfs on League’s PBE

Hyper carries are taking a hit.

Image via Riot Games

Kai’Sa, Kayle, and Xayah have been highly prioritized at Worlds 2019. To combat their presence in competitive play, Riot has nerfed them ahead of League’s preseason.

While Worlds has seen many unorthodox picks in the bot lane, Kai’Sa and Xayah have been the go-to marksmen. Hitting an almost 80-percent pick and ban rate, the champions have had dominating performances, swinging the tides of the championship. In stark contrast, Ezreal (the third-most picked ADC) has barely broken a 30-percent pick and ban rate.

Xayah, in particular, has been one of the most consistently strong picks, with players like G2’s Luka “Perkz” Perković and Invictus Gaming’s Yu “JackeyLove” Wen-Bo using her to great effect. Leading up the semifinals, she has a 66-percent win ratio.

To provide some balance in the bot lane, Riot has tuned down Kai’Sai and Xayah on the PBE.

Kai’Sa’s Icathian Rain (Q) has had its maximum damage reduced by 10 percent unevolved and 13 percent evolved, while Xayah has taken a hit to her Deadly Plumage (W), lowering its attack speed from 40/47.5/55/62.5/70 percent to 35/40/45/50/55 percent.

All three of these changes are substantial for the champions and should help provide more variety to the ADC position. They target late-game scaling, lowering both Kai’Sa’s and Xayah’s hyper-carry potential.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the map, Kayle has been a late-game scaling menace. She’s had mixed results at Words, both winning and losing 10 games. Her pick and ban rate has been significant, however.

Teams focusing on early-game pressure and snowballing before the 15-minute mark have had some of the most success at Worlds. But late-game scaling compositions have also proven to have merit. Kayle is the perfect scaling champ, becoming almost impossible to handle after the 30-minute mark. When she’s left to her devices, her damage and her innate survivability are incredibly difficult to handle.

In response, the base damage on her Radiant Blast (Q) has been lowered from 70/115/160/205/250 to 60/100/140/180/220 and the mana cost on her Celestial Blessing (W) has been increased from 60/70/80/90/100 to 70/80/90/100/110. The new changes on the PBE should straighten her out, giving her opponents more of a fighting chance.

About the author
Jerome Heath

Associate Editor. Brit stranded thousands of miles from home on a tiny little island that looks like a sweet potato. League of Legends? He's aware of it. VALORANT? Might have heard of it. Counter-Strike? Sounds vaguely familiar.