Why I’m excited to watch LCS being played on this Clown Fiesta Patch

EU LCS Cast
Photograph taken by: Michal Konkol / Riot Games

There’s a lot of debate about whether the current 8.11 patch is great or absolutely awful for League of Legends as a whole. ADCs have been gutted, and more often than not you see Bruisers go Botlane, with Yasuo or Jarvan 4 being particularly popular picks. The same goes for Supports: Sure, the occasional Braum is nice, but Darius or Wukong Support? That’s where it’s at. Kasing recently argued on stream that even Teemo might have a place as a legitimate Support right now.

Times are crazy. And ADC mains left right and center are tempted to quit, with Tyler1 channeling many people’s opinion into one big request for Riot: Fix the game.

Tyler1
An artist’s rendition on the current state of the League of Legends discourse

But even as an ADC main, I can’t bring myself to agree all that much with this attitude. Sure, it sucks that all of a sudden my entire personal champion pool is seemingly rendered useless, that late-game glass cannons are irrelevant. But at the same time, I haven’t had as much fun playing League of Legends in years. Going Yasuo/Alistar used to be a reportable offense, now it’s an understandable strategy. It’s stupid. But it works. And therefore it’s not stupid. In fact, it’s a whole lot of fun to see so much freshness, so much variety in my lane for once.

I’m going to be honest with you: When it comes to competitive League of Legends, things can become stale. I should know, I had the “pleasure” of watching 90 EU LCS games last split; and while many of them were entertaining, the period when Banner of Command was broken and every game was a snoozefest until 30-40 minutes, that wasn’t fun. Seeing Sion, Ornn and/or Cho Gath every game wasn’t fun.

You know what was fun? Seeing Vander go ADC in the first week of LCS, offroling and having a great time on Varus. The idea that we’re going to see Rekkles and Hans Sama going up against each other on non-ADC Champions? That sounds like GREAT fun!

I know we all like to claim we’re Challenger level with a Galaxy-Brain-level of understanding the game in order to justify our reddit post where we ask for Sencux to be benched for Froggen. But the truth is, I don’t believe the majority of people watching competitive League watch it for the amazing rotations, and convoluted strategic outplays. I don’t care whether Xerxe stealing two raptors from Gilius is a big deal. I want to see fights. I want to see both players go down to 50hp, one of them miss their skillshot and the other coming out victorious.

Luckily for me, the first weeks of LCS will most likely deliver exactly that. Speaking to KaSing about why ADCs seem so irrelevant, and why Bruisers are now permaplayed Botlane, he replied with this:

“Basically people who play bruisers and stuff are doing it to counter the ADC meta that requires 2/3+ items in order to be useful, whereas the bruiser will spike based on their level and even at 1/1.5 items they will win so you can use that to snowball.”

What does this mean exactly? Early game fights. Lots of them. And boy, am I here for that.

LCK already provided us with a glimpse of this, with Nunu/Karthus going up against the infamous Yi/Taric combination. Surprisingly, these team comps somehow made it through Pick/Ban, and of course it was a complete slaughter with Yi stomping all over the BBQ Olivers. Although the early game skirmishes in the Botlane didn’t happen all that much as I was hoping for, it still was an absolutely crazy game to watch. I had a lot of fun. Did you?

BBQ Olivers vs MVP Taric Yi Karthus

“Learn to adapt or stop whining”

– GodGilius

But there’s one more reason as to why I’m excited to see this chaos unfold on the EU and NA LCS stage for the week: It shows which players are truly able to adapt, change, acclimate to completely different playstyles. Not just as a team, but as individuals. It’s easy to always play your favorite role the way you want it to be. But ADCs in particular always played within the same, relatively small frame. I’m guilty of this as well.

So, at least for a short while, I applaud these changes. Not only because they bring a feeling of freshness to the arena, but because this patch will show which players did their homework, which young talents we can build on in the future, given that they’ve shown prowess through this tough 8.11 Patch.

I, for one, am very excited for the start of the EU and NA LCS. Bring on the fire.

Darius Matuschak
Darius is an esports journalist trying to nurture esports culture whenever possible. He got into esports while finishing his Bachelor in Journalism, and has been a regular EU LCS attendee since January 2017.