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With Season 6 coming to a close on November 8th, it’s time for Season 7 to roll in. In pre-season 7, which will drop after Season 6 ends, some HUGE changes are coming to League of Legends. The update includes Ranked Queue changes, replay and sandbox modes, the new client hitting open beta, a big class update for assassins, some more jungle changes, and a slew of new items.

Ranked Queue Updates

Solo/Duo Queue – After the backlash of removing it and replacing it with Dynamic Queue, Solo/Duo Queue is back with some changes. This time, you’ll still have to select your two preferred positions, but you get to exclude your least favorite one. If you’re in Challenger tier though, you’ll have to stick to norms or Flex Queue if you want to play with your friends, because Challenger tier players are locked to solo queue.

Flex Queue – Flex Queue is the baby of the forgotten Ranked 5s and Dynamic Queue. It’s essentially like Dynamic Queue, but with it mixing Ranked 5s, it allowed the mode to be available 24/7 and allows you to climb in a more team-oriented environment.

Replay Mode

Replay mode is also coming after being promised seasons ago. It works essentially like spectator mode, and you can go into a replay from your match history or right after the match ends. Don’t fret if you can’t find that sweet Pentakill or Baron steal though because there is a annotated timeline, like when you look at the advanced details in a previous match that will lay out all the kills, dragons, barons, and towers that were taken and allows you to clip them.

Sandbox Mode

It’s essentially what we’ve all been asking for about as long as replay mode. League will also be getting a Sandbox Mode this season, under the guise of practice mode. It’ll let you do everything you’d expect to be able too. Locking your level, resetting camps and cooldowns, add gold and try builds, etc.

Client Open Beta

Finally, we are ditching the old client that most of the community hated. Riot has been building a new client from the ground up and this preseason it is finally coming out of alpha. The sleeker, faster, hextech-themed client will be going into open beta with the preseason launch. You’ll get a prompt to join it in your regular client when it is ready.

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Assassin Updates

It’s the Assassin’s turn for a giant class update and they’ll be getting it this pre-season. It mainly focuses on four champions: Talon, Rengar, Katarina, LeBlanc. Along with those main four, smaller changes are coming to Ekko, Shaco, Kha’Zix, Akali, Zed, and Fizz.

Talon – Perhaps the most exciting of the changes, Talon is getting something new or updated across the board. He has a new three hit passive that when it is proc’d, it’ll put a bleed on the enemy. His Q is now a dash or a critical strike depending on if you’re in melee range or not. He can also do parkour now. His E has been completely replaced and is now a dash over a wall. Any wall. No matter how big, he’ll be able to vault the wall, but there is a delay on walls he’s already vaulted over, so he can’t juggle vaults too much.

Rengar – Rengar has a new Q as well, instead of being an empowered strike, he slices in a cone in front of him and then dashes forward. His W can now give him a mini Olaf ult when frenzied via his passive stacks (which have been lowered to 4) and his ult now only spots the closest person to him, but guarantees a critical strike on the target, dealing tons of damage.

Katarina – Katarina has received some odd updates. Her current W has been replaced by the ability to just toss a dagger in the air, giving her movement speed. After a short delay, she can pick it up, essentially performing the AOE attack that her current W is now. The ability has also been stretched to her Q, with the dagger hitting the ground able to be picked up to perform the AOE attack after is has hit its last target.

LeBlanc – LeBlanc has pretty much stayed the same aside from an update to her ultimate, and stealing a page out of the book of Ryze. The way she used to mark people has changed and instead of being a point and click on one person, her damaging abilities will now mark everything it has done damage too. In unison, her Q has been changed to compliment this. It’s just a point-and-click damage ability, but if you hit something that has a mark from you passive, it’ll chain to the next mark, and so on and so forth. Her ultimate has gotten an update now and is not just an empowered copy of her last ability used. Instead, LeBlanc will go invisible and a mimic will be left behind to cast the empowered ability. That being said if she were to cast her ult after her ult was her last ability cast, it will spawn a mimic in a target location who will walk towards the nearest visible champion, casting a non-damaging version of her last ability cast (not Mimic again, this isn’t a house of mirrors people).

New Assassin Items and Changes

To kick off the new Assassin itemization, Armor Penetration has been taken out of the game. Don’t fret though, you’ll still be able to eat through tanks because it’s been replaced by a new mechanic called Lethality. Lethality does the same thing as armor pen, but it scales based on the enemy’s level which does make less snowbally, but it allows more items with the mechanic to be added to the game.

Poacher’s Dirk – This item promotes counter jungling, it’s a simple item that just provides attack damage, but if you counter jungle enough and take a bunch of large monsters this item with transform into a Serrated Dirk, the bread and butter item for AD Assassins.

Edge of Night – This new assassin item grants you AD, Lethality, Out of Combat movement speed, and Magic Resist. The item also as an active that grants you a spell shield after a brief channel.

Item Updates – With Armor Pen taken out of the game, items such as Youmuu’s Ghostblade and Duskblade of Draktharr have been updated to have the new mechanic as well since they build out of  Serrated Dirk which is the go-to Lethality item. Maw of Malmortius has also been updated to build out of Caulfield’s Warhammer instead of Serrated Dirk so it will not have the new mechanic.

Stealth – With the new assassin update, stealth is now being revamped as well. Pink wards are being removed from the game with the new update, and Control Wards are now being introduced.

Invisibility – There are two types of stealth in the League. Invisibility is considered the quick, tactical stealth that allows you to maneuver around the fights you decide to participate in. Examples of champions with Invisibility are Shaco and Kha’Zix.

Camouflage – Evelynn has had this mechanic for a while, but it’s being extended to Rengar and Twitch. It’ll allow traversing the rift while hidden, masking your movements and inflicting global paranoia.

Control Wards – Since Pink Wards have been taken out of the game, they needed a replacement of some sort. That comes in the form of Control Wards. They can’t see stealth champions like pink wards can but they deny vision of nearby enemy wards.

Gameplay Updates

Plants – The jungle is about to come to life even more with the addition of plants. Randomly spawning around the map, three types of plants will be flourishing while you take your camps.

Blast Cone – This plant works just like non-damaging Ziggs’ Satchel Charge. Hitting it will blast you in the direction away from the plant. Use it for escapes or faster movement.

Scryer’s Bloom – This plant provides vision. Hitting it will reveal the area is a large cone in whatever direction you were looking when you hit it.

Honeyfruit – This plant will spawn a bunch of smaller plants when it is destroyed, these smaller plants heal you, but in return will slow you.

General Jungle Changes

On top of the addition of fruits, there are even more jungle changes coming to the rift with the preseason.  The smaller minions who used to accompany Blue and Red buff have left the flock now and the only one you have to face are the buffs themselves in their camp. Gromp no longer has his poison spit, but he goes berserk when you start fighting him, so prepare for the Tahm Kench treatment. Two more little ones have moved into the raptor camp, so now you have even more beaks to deal with.  Krugs also now break into smaller Krugs as you kill them.

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New Keystone Mastery – Strength of the Ages has been taken out of the game and is replaced by Courage of the Colossus. This new mastery provides a shield when you inflict any hard crowd control on an enemy, such as a stun or snare.

New Support Items and Changes – Completely out of left field, there has also been some changes to a support item, and the addition of two more. Aegis of the Legion no longer provides it’s magic resist aura, because it was deemed too strong.

Knight’s Vow is a new item coming to Summoner’s Rift stores near you. It provides Armor, Health, and Health Regen, and it has a passive that allows you to mark an allied champion as your partner. With this mark, you’ll gain armor and movement speed around your partner as well mitigating some of the damage they take to you and healing for some of the damage they deal.

Redemption is also a new item, providing Health, Health Regen, Mana, and Cooldown Eeduction, as well has having a passive that gives bonuses to any shields or heals you put out. On top of that, Redemption has a unique active that allows you to globally target an area, after a short delay, allies in that area will be healed and enemies will take damage. You can also cast this while you are dead, potentially changing team fights and spicing up your time staring at that grey scale screen while you wait to respawn.

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Many big changes are coming to League this preseason, but you still have time to prepare. Season 6 doesn’t end until November 8th, and the Season 7 doesn’t start until December 6th. In the meantime, try to grind for that Maokai skin and prepare for the assassins to strike again Summoners.

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