A new League of Legends playstyle emerged recently where players found a creative use for the support items, but Riot Games was having none of that with a new hotfix announced that removes the no-CS strategy.
Spotted in both normal games and at the professional level, players were taking a support item like Spellthief’s Edge and were using it in the top lane to amass gold without interacting with the minion wave much at all. Instead of farming minions, players would simply harass the enemy champion to gain gold from the item along with the passive accrual of gold. This led to a lane where a champion would have either a small CS score or perhaps none at all while still keeping up with an enemy laner and having the opportunity to harass them the whole time.
Taking aim at the strategy, League of Legends product lead Richard “MapleNectar” Henkel said Riot Games isn’t taking the hotfix lightly but felt it necessary to remove the tactic since it made players “ignore many of the skills learned playing League over the years” among other reasons.
We'll be shipping a hotfix tomorrow to address the 0 cs top lane strategy that's emerged in both solo queue and pro play in the past few weeks. We don't take this lightly, as we generally want to support as many unique ways to play League as possible, but the gameplay pic.twitter.com/xaJMc4LsrC— Richard Henkel (@RiotMapleNectar) February 12, 2019
wait and see approach since the risk to the quality of many games of League is too high should this strategy become optimal/widespread.
These aren't the most elegant changes, but we wanted to prioritize expediency rather than wait on finding the perfect change.
Thanks everyone— Richard Henkel (@RiotMapleNectar) February 12, 2019
Like other creative uses of the support items that had to be nerfed or removed, the hotfix was poised to hurt actual support players, so Riot Games added some compensation buffs in the form of more gold earned by using the effects of the Spellthief and Ancient Coin items. Champions who own these items must stay within a certain range of their teammates to earn gold, but supports who stay in the bottom lane with a fellow champion will find themselves earning more gold than before, so long as they stay together. Roaming supports should still be able to get more gold from it assuming their roam is successful when they try to gank another champion with their team, though a support who stays in lane while their lane partner has backed won’t be able to proc the items’ effects until the teammate returns.