The beginning of a new season, something we all love and fear deeply at the same time. It’s where everything drastically changes, new items, new masteries, new builds, new runes, new jungle, and preseason 8 is no different.
For preseason 8, Riot brought about the new updated runes and with it many many different builds and strategies (Kletpo everything on hit). The biggest of all the changes, was the removal of the old stat based runes and transformation into the new effect based runes, which made a huge impact on the early game of all champions. The new rune system that has taken over is more effect based due to its combination with the old masteries and that no rune truly provides stats alone. This has resulted in the updated runes having a more early to mid-game focus but falling off quite quickly come late game.
The new system is setup to mimic masteries (I’m assuming we all know the system and if we don’t I can do a follow-up breakdown post), where you take a primary keystone rune then select secondary runes after that. As a result this has had similar effects to the previous masteries where specific keystone runes carry a higher weight than others. This is shown in each tree but in particular the domination tree with electrocute.
The domination tree possesses Predator (activatable boots that give you a speed boost for a short period of time and bonus adaptive damage on your first attack), Electrocute (upon damaging a champion with 3 consecutive spells or attacks the enemy takes a burst of adaptive damage) and Dark Harvest (champions and large minions drop a soul upon death that can be collected and your next attack deals bonus adaptive damage equal to the total amount of souls collected). Immediately we can see the stand out here will be electrocute due to it being easy to proc, on a short cooldown and works well with majority of champions.
Now don’t let me discredit the other runes they each serve a purpose and deliver exactly what they say. Predator works okay with some specific champions (Rengar, Kha’zix, Udyr and even some odd ones Annie) and Dark Harvest is basically a Nasus Q for everyone that doesn’t scale as well. This applies the same across all the current runes, Press The Attack for Precision, Electrocute for Domination, Arcane Comet for Sorcery, Guardian for Resolve, and Kleptomancy for Inspiration.
It’s when the secondary tree comes in that things get interesting. There are the main runes inside each tree but there is a lot more customisation here to your specific playstyle or champion. A perfect example of this is in the sorcery tree between Manaflow Band and Ultimate Hat, some prefer the extra mana, others like the cooldown reduction on their ultimate, it’s all personal preference. Due to this, a considerably amount of experimentation is required to find what works best for you and your champion. So definitely get in as many games as you can now to find out how your favourite champion feels and which runes you like best.
As a result of the new runes Riot has chosen to buff every champion in the games base stats to fall in line with the old stat based runes they removed (this way our champions still “feel” the same). Preseason is always where you get to find your feet in the new system, experiment with any every combination of champions, runes and items to find out your secret OP for the new ranked season coming. So get out there, see what works and what doesn’t, don’t be afraid to try these in solo Q either because your preseason rank means nothing for season 8. This is all practice so ignore the flame and bust out your glacial augment Urgot if you feel like trying something new or hone your skills with one of the more popular picks.
Next up season 8 placements…
“It’s not an experiment if you know it’s going to work” – Jeff Bezos