Riot released patch 9.8 – the MSI Patch – on April 17. With the play-in stage only two weeks away, many champions are receiving buffs for MSI. While some buffs are small, others are absolutely massive. Some champions will definitely be making a comeback on the international stage.
Tank Meta On The Horizon – Buffs to Tank-Killers
This year’s MSI Patch plans to bring many old faces back to the forefront of competitive. Champions like Fiora and Trundle will be making a rise in priority again the more tanks become common in top lane.
Tiny buffs like the ones Fiora received in both her W and E will help her in laning against tanks. While she’s already strong against tanks, the lowering of mana costs on her E and stun duration increase on W will be making her laning phase that much more potent.
In regards to Trundle, the champion has seen multiple buffs in the form of shredding through tanks. Starting with 9.4 and the conqueror changes, Trundle received a buff in 9.4, 9.6 and 9.8. Starting with mana changes and attack speed increase for his W in 9.4, Patch 9.6 followed through with better early game scaling for the attack speed steroid. Finally with 9.8, Trundle received 20 more damage to his Q and a 10 second shave off his ultimate cooldown.
Despite these buffs not propelling him forward massively, the tank meta on the horizon will thrust champions like Trundle and Fiora into the limelight.
An Unlikely Challenger Arises: – Nautilus
Now that the tank meta is now on its way to pro play, the rise of Nautilus is almost inevitable. It first started with changes in 9.6 to his per-target cooldown on passive. Moving from a scaled cooldown to a flat cooldown allows for him to get multiple roots off on a target. 9.8 bring along changes to the root duration and increase the damage on his Q. These changes will give him that little oomph he needs in a fight.
Most of these changes effect his laning phase against a lot of top matchups. If popular solo queue trends mean anything however, we might see Nautilus mid hit the international stage rather quickly. Currently played in both top and support as a tank, Nautilus has been played mid quite a bit in the last week or so (with no success).
Following roughly the same build path as a Lissandra, Nautilus can deal a monstrous amount of damage while also becoming mega tanky with the use of aftershock.
The International Stage Is Set
MSI will see the debut of many off and surprising picks, just as every international tournament sees. This is the chance for many teams all around the world to show why they deserve to win the title of MSI. Tanks are on their way to push through team fights like boulders, it’s time to see what teams will use to combat them this time around.
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