The Chemtech Dragon and Hextech Dragon are arguably the biggest additions to League of Legends this year. However, not a lot of players are happy with the new mechanics — specifically that of the Chemtech Dragon.
League of Legends players have been asking for the new dragon to be nerfed since the preseason. Though Riot has made changes to the controversial Chemtech Dragon, some of these were done so without being officially announced in the patch notes. Now that Season 12 has officially started, all these changes don’t bode well for League of Legends’ more competitive players.
Chemtech Dragon and Rift Mechanics
When a League of Legends team defeats a Chemtech Dragon, they gain an attack buff that grants increased damage to enemy players that have more health. Should a Chemtech Dragon spawn as the third in the game, it will change the landscape of the playing field, creating the Chemtech Rift. The Chemtech Rift will fill the zones around the Murk Wolf and Red Brambleback camps with Chemtech fog and eliminate any patches of grass. Champions that enter these fogged zones are camouflaged and granted an attack buff against enemy players who have more health.
When the Chemtech Rift is active, any team that slays four dragons will be granted the Chemtech Dragon Soul effect. This makes any defeated Champion resurrect with a portion of their health, allowing them to move around and attack enemy players for a short time. During this period, the Champion’s health will slowly decay until they die again. The effect has been compared to Karthus’ passive ability — only much more powerful.
Chemtech Dragon Patches
Following the inclusion of the Chemtech Dragon, many League of Legends players voiced their problems with it. One of the most prominent issues was with the Chemtech Dragon Soul. Any team with a Chemtech Dragon Soul is likely to win in a LoL team fight because the opposing team has to kill each enemy player twice, or at least survive the zombie onslaught. This makes it difficult for the other team — often the one lagging behind — to put up a fight. That makes for unbalanced matchups, and it shows in the Chemtech Dragon Soul’s current win rate of over 95%.
Riot tried to fix this in Patch 11.24, when they lowered the amount of time Champions could play as a zombie from 5 to 4 seconds. Even so, 4 seconds is still plenty of time to hurt the enemy team, and many players are questioning whether this should be a buff at all. Aside from this, the patch reverted Chemtech and Hextech Dragons to their normal spawn rates.
Another issue that the community had was with the camouflage effect that came with the Chemtech Rift. The Chemtech fog severely reduces both teams’ vision, as ordinary wards don’t work within its radius. Champions either have to use Control Wards or Scryer’s Bloom plants. Without vision over this zone, enemy teams can camp at their opponents’ jungle, which, again, makes for an unbalanced matchup - especially for the losing team.
When Patch 12.1 came around, players were surprised to see that there were no changes to the Chemtech Dragon listed. However, Riot seems to have reworked the Chemtech Rift to include more Scryer’s Bloom plants, specifically under the Inner Turrets. Why this was not listed in the 12.1 patch notes is unclear, but it’s regarded as a welcome change.
Riot stated that it is continuing to monitor the Chemtech Dragon and its recent patches. However, the sheer number of changes — especially with those under the radar — isn’t a good sign for players looking to climb the ranks, more so for League of Legends beginners. Continuously changing the Chemtech Dragon makes it difficult for competitive gamers to gain a solid foothold on the current meta, and players hope that the developers will make the necessary adjustments to balance the game soon.
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