LoL patch 9.23 highlights as Riot makes huge preseason changes

Season 10 of League of Legends is on the way and to celebrate the game reaching double figures, Riot Games is flipping the game on its head with gigantic changes.

Most map objectives have been updated and, even more importantly, Summoner's Rift is undergoing monumental changes. There's a lot to talk about so let's get straight into the the LoL 9.23 patch highlights.

Elemental Rifts

Starting things off with the one the craziest updates the game has ever seen, the Elemental Drakes will now change the landscape of the map with different effects to terrain for Infernal, Cloud, Ocean and Mountain.


After the second Drake of the game is killed, the map will change once the third Drake spawns and the element of said drake will determine what happens to the map.

It's also worth mentioning that, after this event, any other Dragon spawns in the game will match the type of the third Drake.

All changes take place around the four jungle quadrants and the Dragon pit. Infernal creates new flanking opportunities by burning away the Blue and Red buff brushes while opening holes in the walls around said buffs. The entrance to the Dragon pit also becomes wider.

While Infernal takes away terrain, Mountain adds more. When the change activates, two walls will rise in each jungle quadrant and another wall appears directly in-front of the Dragon pit. This creates really intense choke points with excellent wombo opportunities and also creates a few more hiding spots.

The Ocean Rift also adds more hiding spots by increasing the size of most bushes in the jungle and adding new brushes in front of and inside the Drake pit. And on top of that, it also creates new Honeyfruit spawns near the buff camps.

And finally there's the Cloud Rift which adds air currents around the Blue and Red Buff camps as well as inside the Dragon pit to give a speed boost to anyone inside. These can make for fun collapse opportunities, especially if you're trying to sneak away an objective.

Side-lane alcoves

Another big change to Summoner's Rift, the bot-lane and the top-lane now feature small little alcoves on the side of the lane where champions can hide.


It's a seemingly small change on the surface but it fundamentally changes the way lane will be played.

It opens up brand new ganking opportunities for junglers and can make all the difference in a tense battle as jumping into the alcove and out of vision could be the difference between life and death.

Dragon Souls

Elemental Rifts aren't the only changes to Drakes either as Riot has added an additional buff to the first team who is able to earn four Dragon kills. The buff will be dependent on what type of Elemental Rift is active and unlike Elder or Baron, the buff will persist after death.

Infernal Soul adds a small AOE explosion to your next attack or ability every three seconds, dealing 90 (+0.25 bonus attack damage) (+0.15 ability power) (+0.03 bonus health) damage.

The Mountain Soul, on the other hand, gives champions a shield if they haven't taken damage in the last five seconds.

The Ocean Soul offers champions additional healing and mana whenever dealing damage to enemies. It will heal 180 (+0.4 bonus attack damage) (+0.25 ability power) (+0.1 bonus health) and restores 90 (+0.04 maximum mana) mana over three seconds when dealing damage though this is 30% less effective against minions and monsters.

And finally the Cloud Soul buffs champions' movement speed by 10% and gives you an additional 30% movement speed for three seconds after casting your ultimate.

Elder Dragon changes

And that brings us into yet another Dragon change, Elder Buff has been completely reworked and no longer takes into account what Drakes each team has killed. The buff now spawns six minutes after a team claims a Dragon Soul and now lasts slightly longer at 180 seconds instead of 150.


Elder does still offer burn damage however, the burn is now true damage and deals 90-270 over three seconds. But the biggest change of all is a new mechanic which will passively execute any enemy champion taken below 20% health.

Elder now serves as an excellent late-game tool for teams trying to close out the game or stage a comeback, the removal of scaling will mean this buff is equally important for both teams.

New Support items

Finally, support items have been completely changed with Ancient Coin removed entirely while Spellthief's and Relic Shield have been split into two with AD and AP variants, meaning there are now four support items in total.

Each item still has the usual three tiers but upon quest completion, will upgrade automatically with the third tier being reached by generating 1,000 gold through the passive.

However, some of the stats from these items have been taken away. Mostly with Spellthief's as its Tribute passive no-longer deals bonus damage and the item line no longer offers mana-regen or cooldown reduction.

And it is also worth noting that the third tier of Spell Thief's, the newly named Shard of True Ice, removes the Tribute passive meaning you cannot passively generate more gold later in the game. The same goes for Black Mist Scythe, the third tier of Spectral Sickle which is the AD version.

Stats have also been removed from the Relic Shield and its new version Steel Shoulderguards as the starting health has been cut down to 30 and the upgraded versions no longer offer health-regen or CDR.

And once again the gold-generating Spoils of War passive will also be disabled once the third-tier item is reached.

However, Relic Shield will give you a small amount of AP or AD if you pick Shoulderguards instead.

Supports will have more money in their pockets but that will be needed to combat the lack of stats.

Mage supports may now be a thing of the past and these new support items shouldn't work in any other position as they had done previously. Goodbye, Sona Taric bot-lane.


Pictures: Riot Games