Enter the 2015 Preseason: A Patch 4.20 Run-Through

05:07 PM November 21, 2014

Last Nov. 20, 2014, Riot Games announced a massive update for League of Legends: Patch 4.20 or as the naming trend goes — the Kalista Patch. Aside from introducing the Spear of Vengeance, it also brings in the first wave of preseason changes for 2015. Both the full patch notes  and the preseason 2015 hub are accessible here and here.

It is probable that the official pages might overwhelm you with information as big changes are coming in. Here is our easy to read run-through of the upcoming preseason changes. Let’s go!



What is Preseason?

Preseason is the annual phase for League of Legends that gives opportunities for major changes in multiple aspects of the game. It is usually done after the end of rank season (usually around the end of November) until the official start of the new season. It’s like an experimental phase where massive gameplay changes are implemented and rolled out directly to players. Last year’s preseason involved a lot of changes to team vision control (introduction of trinket, lens, ward limits, etc.) and the role of support. Now, it’s overshadowed by a massive map update, jungling overhaul and what Riot Games call ” an introduction of strategic diversity”. Here is the list of changes:



The Map: An Updated Summoner’s Rift

The 5v5 map Summoner’s Rift has received a full new look, from the lane minions down to the godly fountain turrets. You can check out League of Legends Updated Summoner’s Rift Experience here!



The Old Summoner’s Rift – Purple Team vs Blue Team


The Updated Summoner’s Rift – Red Team vs Blue Team and now designed with four jungle regions


Currently, the updated Summoner’s Rift Open-Beta roll out continues and  is now available on some game modes and queues on our own servers. If you haven’t played a game on the new map yet, check out the League of Legends Summoner’s Rift Gameplay video:



“Doesn’t look like a kid’s game.”

Patch 4.20 The Kalista Patch: A Really Fast Rundown

Azir: Q & E base stats buffed. W’s shield late game nerfed.

 Amumu: Base armor nerfed. W is nerfed due to larger jungle health pools. 

Evelyn: Base armor buffed.

Fiora: Blade Waltz AOE damage is nerf but deals the same damage for single targets.

Gnar: Weaker early game, and stronger late game Mega Gnar. “Generally a nerf.”

Heimerdinger: Now has a base health regen, his health regen passive doesn’t affect him anymore.

Katarina: Death Lotus’ damage is nerfed then goes back at level 3.

Kha’Zix: Void Spikes nerf with longer cooldown, now 10sec from 8sec.

Lee Sin: Base armor and health regen is decreased. “Blind monk tears.”

 Rammus: Powerball has greatly increased cooldown. Puncturing Taunt armor shred nerfed.

Sion: Passive buff. Stays zombie a bit longer in late game.

Sona: Q Valor and W Perseverance nerfed.

Soraka: Has higher AD, longer range on W Astral and higher CD on E Equinox.

Warwick: Now has higher early game cooldown on his SS – Infinite Duress.

Kalista, The Spear of Vengeance to be released during this patch.

The Spear of Vengeance

Kalista is a high mechanical and mobility attack damage (AD) range champion, with a kit that highly focuses on synergy with your support. On his first game with the new champion, Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng scored a pentakill earning a lot of sarcastic “she’s balanced” comments from the community. Check out her official champion spotlight!



Check her out on Riot’s latest cinematic: The Pledge.


Go for the Kill: Early Game Kills and Assist

“Kill Secure” rewards now goes back to 100% value at all times whereas early game assists give less gold which scales up to 50% of kill rewards at the five-minute mark.

Introduction to Strategic Diversity

Reading the official patch and preseason changes notes, you will see that Riot Games reiterated these two words a lot. It is clear that the preseason will focus on putting a lot of elements into the game which will give players access to a wide array of choices and paths to win the game instead of just racking up gold. These changes also equip developers  with “knobs” to tweak as they continue to balance the game without resorting to nerfing or buffing champions.



Turrets are Stronk, Inhibitors are Worth

They are actually 1.5 – 2x stronger this time, as base turrets now shoot a laser that ignores armor (82.5%), slows(10%) and reduces damage dealt (15%). The laser’s damage also stacks up to 125% extra damage. turrets have a base armor and magic resist of 100 with 50% damage reduction and increases to 200 armor and magic resist with 75% damage reduction if attacked without minions present.




Fortunately, turrets also have lower health regeneration and no longer scales armor or magic resist. Inhibitor timers have also been increased to five minutes from the original four minutes.

We are Minions

Minions no longer have scaling armor and magic resist. Instead, they’ll receive a scaling health equivalent to the lost armor and magic resist.

Cannon minions will have no armor but more of them will spawn earlier. There will be canon minions every two waves at the 20 minute mark and a canon minion every wave at the 35 minute mark.

 “Notice us senpai.”

Baron Nashor and Dragon Update plus the Smite Rewards

Baron, Dragon and even the Red and Blue buffs also receive the updated touch in this patch. The strongest neutral monsters have now increased in experience and gold value but have also become tougher. The Red and Blue buffs that come from these large monsters have also been nerfed somewhat.

With the changes to smite, all jungle camps now give buffs if you use smite on them.

 New Baron Buff: Hand of Baron

● Gives +40 attack damage and ability power, an aura that empowers minion and an empowered recall.

● Also, Baron now spawns at a later time — 20 minute mark.

 New Dragon Buff: Dragonslayer

● Experience gained from Dragon is reduced and only the slayer will receive a small gold from killing it BUT killing the Dragon gives the team stackable buffs as follows:

Dragon’s Might: +8% attack damage and ability power. Permanent.

Dragon’s Dominance: +15% damage to minions and monsters. Permanent.

Dragon’s Flight: +5% movement speed. Permanent.

Dragon’s Wrath: 15% damage to towers and buildings. Permanent.

Aspect of the Dragon: Triples all previous bonuses and your attacks burn for 150 true damage over 5 seconds. Lasts 180 seconds.

● After killing the Dragon five times, the Dragon returns to being a cash cow and will award global gold upon kill.

 Red Brambleback: Crest of Cinders (Red Buff)

● Now gives a 1% health regen per 5 sec, has shorter duration, a higher damage over time and a nerf on its slow.

● Smite Rewards: Smiting the Red Brambleback restores 20% of max health.

 Blue Sentinel: Crest of Insight (Blue Buff)

The blue buff now has a shorter duration (120 seconds).

● Smite Rewards: Smiting the Blue Sentinel restores 25% of max mana.

 Krugs: Gift of the Heavy Hands

● Smite Rewards: Smiting the Krugs gives you a buff that stuns minions and monsters every first and fifth hit. It also gives one charge of 50+15 per level true damage to turret. Lasts 90 seconds.

● They are formerly known as the “double golems”.

 Raptors: Razor Sharp

● Smite Rewards: Smiting the Raptors gives you a buff that gives a warning when you are spotted by an enemy ward. It has one charge and lasts 90 seconds.

● They are formerly known as the “Wraith camp”.

 Murkwolves: Rift Spirit

● Smite Rewards: Smiting the Murkwolves summons a Rift Spirit that watches over the Blue jungle side. Lasts 90 seconds but decays faster when chasing enemies.

Formerly known as “wolves”.

 Gromp: Gift of the Toadstool

● Smite Rewards: Smiting the Gromp give you a buff that poisons your attacker, dealing magic damage.

● Formerly known as the “Wight camp”.

 NEW MONSTER: The Rift Scuttler

This peaceful guy is the only wandering monster in the game and has no Smite Rewards. It has high defense stats but only runs away and doesn’t fight back when attacked. *sob*

● Killing the Rift Scuttler summons a speed shrine in the river for 75 seconds which also provides vision for the surrounding area. Depending on where it is killed, the speed shrine may be located in front of the Baron or Dragon Pit. Respawns every three minutes.


Generally, the jungle has become harder not just because of the confusion brought upon by these changes but also because small jungle camps now respawn longer at 100 seconds from 50 seconds. Aside from this, here are some things to take note about the new jungle:

● Both health, attack damage, experience and gold are increased to 20% for small jungle camps.

● Blue Sentinel and Red Brambleback have more health and damage.

● A smaller gold and experience are now gained from the Red and Blue jungle camps to mitigate jungler’s loss in donating his buffs.

Very small experience gained from killing low level jungle camps to suggest junglers to gank that at the very least.

Junglers won’t lose their Red or Blue buff from that awkward, if not shameful, moment of dying to a jungle monster.


This is an Arms Race: Item Updates

First, let us have a moment of silence for the following items that will transcend to heaven.

● The following items will be removed from the Summoner’s Rift: Sword of the Divine, Atma’s Impaler, Executioner’s Calling, Spirit of the Ancient Golem, Spirit of the Elder Lizard, Spirit of the Spectral Wraith, Negatron Cloak, Elixir of Brilliance(Blue) and Elixir of Fortitude(Red).

New Jungle Items

Of course, to tackle the “harder” jungle, Riot Games has given us a new arsenal of items that will diversify our jungling options and allow us to smite a Teemo!

First, we start off with the jungler starting item, Hunter’s Machete, getting more expensive now at 400 gold. For 350 gold, it could be upgraded to one of four jungling items that modifies your smite to suit the kind of jungler you want to be. Here are those items:

 Counterjungling: Poacher’s Knife

● Smite Upgrade: Scavenging Smite.png Scavenging Smite. Killing a large monster in the enemy’s jungle reduces its cooldown by 30 seconds, gains 20 gold bonus and a 175% bonus move speed that decays over 2 seconds.

 Power Farming: Ranger’s Trailblazer

● Smite Upgrade:  Blasting Smite.png Blasting Smite. Smite has a cooldown of 45 seconds and 50% area-of-effect (AOE) damage to both minions and monsters that stun them for 1.5 seconds. Smiting a monster restores 15% of missing health and mana.

 Skirmishes: Skirmisher’s Sabre

● Smite Upgrade: Challenging Smite.png Challenging Smite. Smite can be used to enemy champions, marking them for 6 seconds. Marked enemies are revealed (does not reveal stealth) and deals 20% reduced damage while you deal them a (15 + 3 * level) on hit bonus true damage. Excellent for early duels in the jungle against enemies invading your neutral camps.

 Ganks: Stalker’s Blade

● Smite Upgrade: Chilling Smite.png Chilling Smite. Smite can be used to enemy champions, dealing 28 – 164 true damage and slowing their movement speed by 50% for two seconds.


The End Game Build: Enchantments

Any of the four jungle items can be enchanted to a final item depending on what your champion does. This makes itemization builds for junglers more flexible and free to pair up with other item options. Here are those enchantments:

Attack Speed: Devourer Enchantment

● Gives 50% attack speed and the Devouring passive which gives basic attack 40 bonus magic damage + Devourer stacks. Large monster kills give 1 stack whereas a champion kill or assist grants 2 stacks.

  Tankiness: Juggernaut Enchantment

● Gives +500 health and +10% cooldown reduction. Also gives Tenacity: 35% resistance to crowd control effects (stuns, silence, etc.)

 Ability Power: Magus Enchantment

● Gives +80 ability power and +20% cooldown reduction.

 Attack Damage: Warrior Enchantment

● Gives +45 attack damage, +10% cooldown reduction and +10 armor penetration.

League of Elixirs

The removal of the Elixir of Fortitude(Red) and Elixir of Brilliance(Blue) will be replaced with five new elixirs that do not simply give raw stats but open up new opportunities.

● Elixirs are non-stacking and overwrite each other. Elixirs cannot be purchased before level 9. All Elixirs last for three minutes except for Elixir of Wrath’s Bloodlust buff time bonus.

 Head on Initiation: Elixir of Iron

● Grants 25% increase in size, resistance to slow, Tenacity and Path of Iron which gives 15% movement speed to allies that walk behind you.

 Fast Push and Siege: Elixir of Ruin

● Grants +250 health, 15% bonus damage to towers and the Seige Commander Aura which gives minions 15% bonus damage to turrets and gains movement speed based on yours.

 Add Swag to Your Mage: Elixir of Sorcery

● Grants +40 ability power, +15 mana regen per 5 seconds and the Sorcery buff which gives 25 bonus true damage to champions or turrets.

 Elixir Forever: Elixir of Warth

● Grants +25 attack damage and the Bloodlust buff that gives 10% lifesteal and extends the Elixir’s effect by 30 seconds for every kill or assist.

More Item Updates: Armor, Magic Resistance and Stacking Items

Riot decided to buff basic items by making them a viable option to buy early game instead of saving immediately for big ticket items. In line with this, they have pushed the Cloth Armor as an efficient way to snowball in the early game, at the cost of saying good bye to Negatron Cloak.

Armor Updates:

● Chain Vest now builds from Cloth Armor.
● Thornmail is cheaper.
● Warden’s Mail is more expensive and is now short by 5 armor.
● Randuin’s Omen is cheaper.

Magic Resistance Updates:

● Null-Magic Mantle is more expensive and buffed by 5 magic resist.
● Abyssal Scepter is cheaper.
● Spectre’s Cowl is cheaper with magic resistance reduced by 10.
● Quicksilver Sash is cheaper with magic resistance reduced by 15.
● Mercurial Scimitar is cheaper with magic reduced by 10.


● Again, both now start with 5 stacks upon purchase.
● Has become a bit more expensive by 200 gold
● Loses more stacks upon death; now 1/2 compare to the previous 1/3
● Sword of Occult now gives bonus attack speed instead of movement speed at 20 stacks.

Regarding Health and Mana Regeneration Items

All health and mana regeneration items are now based off base stats. That means it’s easier to tweak or change these items now as making item adjustments in the late game won’t compromise the item’s presence in the early game.

● Chalice of Harmony has become more expensive and weaker in terms of mana regeneration.

● Warmog’s Armor is now cheaper, gives lower health and has an overpowered out of combat health regeneration. Totally an anti-siege item.

Make Those Turret Plays

This update puts a lot of emphasis on sieges and tower dives against those laser buffed turrets. Ohmwrecker and Banner of Command will be taking the spotlight.

● Banner of Command now builds from Aegis of Legion and has become more expensive. It’s now a total siege item and with the promoted minion being immune to magic damage.

● Ohmwrecker has now become a tank item with under turret movement speed bonus. It also prevents enemy turrets from attacking for a longer duration at three seconds.

 New Item: Raptor Cloak

● Grants +30 armor and +100% base health regeneration

● This is what gives Ohmwrecker its 30% bonus under turret movement speed through it’s Point Runner passive.

More New Items

 Really Familiar: Crystalline Bracer

 Gives +200 health and 50% base health regeneration

 Anti-Peel and Full Chase Item: Righteous Glory

 Gives +500 health, +300 mana and 100% base health regeneration

● Has a unique activated ability that grants +60% movement speed to nearby allies when moving towards enemies  or enemy turrets for three seconds. After which, a shockwave is emitted slowing nearby enemy champion by 80% for one second. The effect could be reactivated early to release the shockwave early.

Smite and Ignite: Updated Summoner Spell Level Requirements

The changes promotes good goal setting for upcoming players especially with that classy level 10 Smite and Ignite.

Old Summoner Spells were previously unlocked at levels:
    • LEVEL 1 :: Clarity, Ghost, Heal, and Revive
    • LEVEL 2 :: Cleanse
    • LEVEL 3 :: Smite
    • LEVEL 4 :: Garrison
    • LEVEL 6 :: Barrier and Teleport
    • LEVEL 8 :: Exhaust and Ignite
    • LEVEL 10 :: Clairvoyance
    • LEVEL 12 :: Flash
New Summoner Spells are now unlocked at levels:
    • LEVEL 1 :: Clarity, Garrison, Ghost, Heal and Revive
    • LEVEL 4 :: Barrier and Exhaust
    • LEVEL 6 :: Cleanse and Teleport
    • LEVEL 8 :: Clairvoyance and Flash
    • LEVEL 10 :: Smite and Ignite

User Interface, Activated Items and Scoreboard Update

Check this screenshot from Surrenderat20 on the updated scoreboard. Notice the dragon icons on the upper part of the scoreboard. They glow up as yours or as the enemy team stacks up the Dragonslayer buffs.


Also, the user interface receives an update as active item hotkeys are now found above your summoner spells. This should provide players with more  clarity that they have an activated item and less excuse for forgetting it.

More Features: A Buffed Up Leaver Buster System and End of Game Gifting Feature

Also coming this preseason is the augmented leaver buster system which is said to be more strict. A sample scenario would be that a player who AFKs or leaves a game will receive a pop-up making him promise not to leave again lest he or she receives extended queue times. Another feature is the end of game gifting feature which allows players to send their thanks of having a good game through small tokens. You don’t have to be friends in order to send these gifts.

As we near the end of our patch rundown. Here are some bonus content for upcoming skins and what the new summoner’s rift sounds like:

Upcoming Skins this Patch 4.20

Here are the list of skins coming to this patch. Be sure to watch out for their official release in PH and get your pockets ready.

Constable Trundle and Captain Volibear


“The bad boys are back!”

Safecracker Evelynn and Pickpocket Twitch


“These two really look familiar.”

Battlecast Alpha Skarner


“Is that a Zed?!”

Battlecast Kog’Maw


“He still looks adorable.”

Blood Moon Kalista


“Hell hath no fury like a spirit woman scorned.”


That concludes our patch rundown as we did our best to compress everything in the preseason in one view. Again, preseason is a time of abrupt change for League of Legends, so expect a lot of updates, tweaks and adjustments to all of the content released at the moment. Be sure to keep up with the updates and news both locally and internationally for League of Legends. Cheers!


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TAGS: 2015, 4.20, baron, dragon, item, jungle, kalista, league of legends, lol, moba, new, patch, preseason, rift, summoner
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