Fly away Adagio, Lyra is here. A slowing basic attack, area of effect (AOE) heal, AOE damage and team speed up…and that’s just her first ability! The Gythian Battlemage really brought the thunder this update and, hot fix aside, her utility controlling the field has reshaped the meta in a big way. Along with her arrival, we’ve seen plenty of burst attack and counters that try to out-control the scorned sorceress.
Being able to create a CC vortex (Bright Bulwark) that almost reaches the entire width of the lane goes a long way toward being a strong pick to protect turrets. Lyra Heroic Perk and Imperial Sigil gives her fantastic harass potential and once she hits level 6 you can forget about ganking. Vox remains a strong pick because the recent changes to the Resonance in his kit have given him plenty of breathing room in Lane control as well as being a counter to big ole’ number 3 on this list. SAW doesn’t need mobility to be effective and in this current strategic climate that is a boon.
Kestrel’s value is similar to SAW, just with a little less pressure. She will always have a bit of a escape issue to potential ganks and pokes, but her Glimmershots remain one of the best pokes on the market. You can count on Ringo to be there for you in good times and bad. He holds a respectable five with great scaling damage output whether you build him crystal or weapon.
Dropping way down, Adagio has lost viability based on his now weaker buff. Couple that with what I mentioned earlier about bursty heroes and you don’t need the high attack speed hyper carry so much anymore. Celeste has already seen her share of Evil Eight play but her usefulness is rather circumstantial. She’s a decent counter to Lyra with her range but impact heroes (ex. Taka, Krul) are the bane of her existence. Skaarf actually got a few buffs to A and B this update but the adjustment to his Fan the Flames perk has reduced his poke potential and therefore made his viability as a back line hero weaker.
Lurking in the bushes right below the lane, Krul is primed to rush up for a nice harass and farm grab. However, the sheer amount of lane control flexed by the top heroes this update proves way too much except for the most patient of Vikings. Blackfeather feels the same pain, his Melee tactics are just a bit too predictable.
A first for the Box Fox, Taka reigns supreme this update as the cries of the frustrated beckoned a hero that could delete the biggest Lane threats with conviction. He can usually land an X-Retsu before any sort of CC hampers his movement. Close on his heels is the always dangerous Skye. Use her zone to make the battlefield your own and you gain the upper hand. She also pairs really well with a strong damage dealer like SAW as enemies have a tough decision on who to focus. My favorite blossom (no thank you, Mayim Bialik) Petal achieves highest tier as her range keeps her on the fringe until that Spontaneous Combustion can remove a threat and turn the tide.
Krul’s stickiness can be your savior, especially as a gank master. His CP adjustments this update still haven’t made the blue build too strong but you can always rely on attack speed and Smite to rule the jungle. It’s to see Kestrel falling below the upper third of the field without any sort of drastic change. Her damage output is just so good and a strong player can feel that middle range where you’re a threat without putting yourself in too much danger.
Alpha and Glaive are almost two of a kind this time around. Their weapon power builds provide much needed brawl capabilities while mid and far ranged Lane carries create havoc. Glaive falls of a little late game now that he doesn’t get 20 stacks upon respawn, but rather keeps what he had when he died. Reim is a good pick when you don’t want to worry about having your dash abilities shut down. His power can be immense but he will always suffer at the hands of those that can kite.
Rona is a solid middle of the pack choice. Her brawling isn’t as strong as those above her but she’s on the cusp of greatness. It’s easy to see how too many buffs could make her a demon in the jungle once again so it’s best to keep her Fortified Health in check.
Ozo does his monkey stuff but it’s clear that his viability is reliant on some buffing and without someone like Adagio he can’t threaten enough. There are glimmers of hope if he can withstand enough punishment to distract the enemy while his teammate does the real hurting.
Blackfeather can’t dash and therefore, he can’t do much. Without his escapes he comes off as a weaker Krul with a flimsy Smite. Joule is still low rent due to how easy it is to overwhelm her.
Ask Again Later
No seriously, check back on Koshka because it sounds like SEMC has some plans for this kitty booty to slice up fools in the next update.
Color us shocked, right? Lyra has the amount of utility that had everyone complaining about Blackfeather for a while. The hotfix nerfs didn’t affect her support kit too much, so she can coordinate team fights like a master tactician. Phinn stays on top as the game needs a tank that can wade through the flood of CC Lyra sprays around and, as usual, his pull and stun combo is one of the best recipes for most pesky carries.
Pinnacle of Awesome
Lance is just barely behind the front runners as right now his kit is functioning as a Diet Phinn (now with 50% less fish cakes) but his benefit is better escape. The knight can also make early game harass much more effective with high damage output, especially when some gold is invested in weapon power.
Going to sound like a broken record here, but this is partly her fault. Ardan relies on mobility to keep his team alive and when that’s taken out he’s left with tankiness. However, that he has a lot of so there’s always room for a Dad on the Fold when you need to stay alive.
Catherine provides great support with her stun and silence but lacks quite a bit in the HP department and we are deep into a season where you have to be able to whether the onslaught.
Fortress is in his kennel still despite early game jungle aggression being a good tactic. He’s just too frail to dive in on strong early jungle carries like Alpha or Petal and can’t help the team when he’s constantly spawning.
Fragile, less “buffy” and the most dodgeable Ultimate in the game, Adagio can’t give much to his team. The real salt in the wound is how much better Lyra’s heal is right now.
Thank you to the whole Broken Myth squad, especially Keldegar, for helping with this list. Let us know what you agree and disagree with because discourse is the infusion of language.