Tahm Kench’s reign of top lane terror is coming to an end. In today’s update to the League of Legends Public Beta Environment, the River King received a slew of changes across the board that could potentially re-bench the Kench.
Following the release of Patch 9.9 a couple of months ago, Tahm Kench rose to power as a menace in the top lane. Players built attack speed to abuse his passive stacks’ crowd control with little repercussion. In Patch 9.12, however, the champion experienced nerfs targeting the power on his Devour (W), but the changes failed to have a stand-out impact on Kench’s lane-bully capabilities.
Today’s update to the PBE introduced more changes to to further address his damage and access to crowd control. For starters, Tahm Kench’s stacks no longer increase the damage of spells or passive damage. The ability’s base damage has increased from 1.5 percent of the champion’s max health to 2.5 percent.
Tongue Lash (Q) received an increase in cooldown past level one. The ability’s slow has been decreased back to its pre-Patch 9.9 percentages, but both its stun and slow durations have increased to two and three seconds, respectively. Tahm Kench no longer hits enemies in an arc in front of him, and Tongue Lash now consumes all stacks of the River King’s passive to limit the amount of crowd control he can dish out at one time.
Tahm Kench’s Devour is in for even more changes this PBE cycle. Enemies who have been devoured are no longer nearsighted or briefly stunned after being devoured. More importantly, however, Tahm Kench can now devour blue and red buffs, which adds value to his jungling skills—or at least his ability to snatch away buffs from the enemy jungler as a support pick.
Thick Skin (E) now stores less damage as gray health, but recasting the ability heals Tahm Kench for 100 percent of his gray health. The ability’s cooldown has changed from a flat six seconds at all levels to 11/9/7/5/3 seconds. Additionally, the cooldown now begins when the shield has expired or been broken instead of its initial cast.
The changes are currently on the PBE where they will remain for further testing.