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League of Legends Patch 14.7 fails to restore Smolder to his former glory with buffs

Patch 14.7: Smolder’s Struggles Continue as Changes Fail to Make Him Dominant

Patch 14.7 for League of Legends went live on April 3 and introduced a number of tweaks to more than a dozen champions, including Smolder. The newest AD carry was slightly buffed, but so far, it hasn’t been enough to make him dominant once again.

Minimal Changes, Minimal Impact

In Patch 14.7, the developers decided to increase Smolder’s basic armor from 24 to 26 and increase his bonus physical damage based on critical chance on Q from zero-to-30 to zero-to-50 percent. While such minimal changes are enough to bring champions back to the top of the leaderboards on some occasions, that doesn’t seem to be the case with Smolder this time around.

Smolder's base splash art.
The little dragon is going through big issues in solo queue. Image via Riot Games

Win Rate and Pick/Ban Rates

At time of writing, Smolder sits on an unimpressive 49.46 percent win rate at all ranks in the ADC role, according to U.GG. This mediocre win rate puts him only 19th in terms of the best marksmen in Patch 14.7, at least in terms of win rate. But he still has solid pick and ban rates, with the former being 9.1 percent and the latter sitting on 16.1 percent.

While these stats aren’t admirable, they’re still substantially better than they were in Patch 14.6, where Smolder was the worst ADC in League. In the previous update, he had a 47.50 percent win rate, the worst among other champions in the role.

The Plight of New League Champions

It feels like Smolder has been caught in a popular dilemma for new League champions nowadays. Usually, when Riot Games adds a new character to the game, it’s originally quite strong and then gets nerfed into oblivion in an effort to balance it. After his initial release in Patch 14.2, Smolder was arguably the strongest ADC in town, being picked left and right by both casual players and pros. But at this time, it remains to be seen if the changes in Patch 14.7 will have any immediate impact on Smolder’s appearance in pro play around the world.

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