Set Five Reckoning’s meta has reached a mostly balanced state following B-patch changes this past week, according to Teamfight Tactics game design lead Stephen “Mortdog” Mortimer and Riot Kent in the Post Mortem Patch 11.16 rundown yesterday.
Mortdog said the TFT team’s intent with the most recent patches is to stabilize the meta and avoid what he called “meta thrashing”: a dramatic shift in a certain composition’s strength from high to low, from patch to patch.
With this idea in mind, Mortdog mentions that he is kind of glad that the dominant team in 11.16’s meta, the Tristana Hellion comp, only saw minor adjustments despite needing another nerf in the following B-patch, because it smoothens the transition of power away from the overpowered units.
Patch 11.16 introduced balance changes divided into “big” and “small.” Big adjustments were supposed to directly impact the meta, while smaller changes should not have caused major shifts. The patch also adjusted Radiant items, with Mortdog and Kent generally agreeing that they hit the mark with those changes, and only further minor tweaks would be necessary.
The changes to Cannoneer and Nightbringer and most of the other small adjustments in Patch 11.16 were successful. Mort saw issues with the power level of a trait like Ranger, which might need some kind of rework if it is to reappear in future sets, and also Gwen and Sett, who may need some small buffs to see any use before the end of the set.
In this spirit of aiming to avoid “meta thrashing” a majority of the larger changes—whether it’s the Lucian nerfs, the Galio buffs, or the Abomination or Legionnaire changes—Mortdog and Kent generally conclude that a majority of the adjustments were on the lighter side, so there is still room to push these changes further. Karma and Nocturne also received changes on this patch and will require further assistance to see any stable playtime in the meta. On the other hand, Irelia is now a little less hulkingly tanky, and Tristana is less able to 1v9 the enemy team.
With patch 11.17 on the horizon, Mort and Kent also outlined several changes that are likely to come with the update—namely some further changes to Nocturne that will take some power out of his three-star version, a mini-rework and buff to the unused premier Legionnaire carry Kayle, and giving a little bit of love to Lucian, who was hit a little bit too hard with the nerf hammer in previous patches.
The team also forecasts a potential rework of the Quicksilver item, suggesting that it may receive “some of its Radiant bonuses permanently so it doesn’t feel as bad to build it as a defensive item that will fall off in that latter part of the game.” The item rarely sees use since it doesn’t offer any valuable stats to champions.
Patch 11.17 goes live on Aug. 25, and as per usual, players can test out any upcoming TFT changes via PBE the week before the release of the patch.