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Riot Games is kicking off 2019 with some much-needed changes to how jungling works in League of Legends, with the end goal being to bring all player classes back onto a level playing field. If you spend most of your LoL time avoiding the lanes, there are a handful of incoming tweaks you'll want to be aware of.
While Riot Games began its work at rebalancing jungling in League of Legends late last year, it has since been determined that those adjustments were simply too small to have the desired impact. As a result, some additional changes are being made that should offer a more significant rebalance. As for why all of this fuss is being made concerning the game's jungle ecosystem, a recent post on the Riot blogs explains that folks who like to hang out in the shrubbery have simply become too powerful.
First off, we believe that jungling's influence, in most MMR [Match Making Rating] bands, is too high. Given how much control junglers have over the early game in particular we don't believe they should [be] bringing quite as much damage as they currently are, nor that they should on average be keeping pace, or as close as they are, to solo laners in XP.
In MOBAs like League of Legends, jungling is when a player avoids the main lanes of combat and instead focuses on taking out neutral enemies and camps in order to gain extra energy, gold, buffs for teammates, etc. Hanging out in the "jungle" can be an extremely important part of team strategy but, when those activities aren't balanced properly, it can totally throw off the normal flow of combat.
So, what do these changes mean for the jungle crowd in LOL? For starters, camps, Chilling Smite and Challenging Smite are all receiving adjustments.
General Camps : Experience scales to 150% >>> Experience scales to 125%.
Buff Camps : Experience scales to 157% >>> Experience scales to 125%.
Scuttle Crab : Gold and Experience Scales to Double base value >>> Scales to 180% of base value.
Damage : 28-164 (20 + 8 Level) >>> 20-156 (12 + 8 Level).
Damage Per Tick :: 20-54 >>> 19-42.
Damage Total :: 60-162 >>> 57-125.
DoT Duration :: 3 seconds >>> 2 seconds.
No longer grants vision for the mark duration.
The update goes on to explain that, in previous years, junglers gained in-game experience at about the same rate as a team's marksman. Following changes made in 2018, jungling moved well ahead of the competition in terms of experience and gold gains. The post explains that players running through the jungle definitely needed a boost compared to previous years, but probably not as large a boost as seen in League of Legends in recent months.
For those of you who have specific questions, a handy FAQ has been added to the bottom of the update covering everything from the significance of the Scuttle Crab to powerfarming and camp respawn rates.
Based on the comments, League fans seem pretty happy with how Riot is kicking off the new year. As noted in the post, the team is trying to do less "this is what we're changing" and do more "this is what we're changing and why." While these most recent adjustments might not be a bullseye, it's clear the team is listening to player feedback and will continue to work on in-game issues to make the experience fun and fair for everyone involved.