New League of Legends ranked season to start Jan. 7.

New League of Legends ranked season to start Jan. 7.

Connor George, Business Manager

League of Legends starts off the new year by dropping the latest patch, 12.1, on Jan. 4. The ranked season is set to start on Jan. 7, just three days later. But take a step back to preseason, and take a look at how the items, runes, and new dragons are going to affect the game.


While a majority of the runes stayed the same, a new keystone rune was added and two old keystones were reworked. 

The newest rune to many peoples rune page is First Strike, a rune that gives extra damage and gold for hitting your enemy. Arguably, the damage side of the rune is fine, 10% more damage every 20-30 seconds, but the bigger issue is that it gives gold. There are some champs that just benefit too much from taking this rune. Karthus for one, gains disgusting amounts of gold everytime he ults, because his ult is global and hits everyone on the enemy team. This is just going to be Kleptomancy all over again.

Next on the reworked side of things, Lethal Tempo was changed. In the past, the user would have to wait for about two seconds before you gained any attack speed. Now, it’s a rune that gives stupid amounts of attack speed and range. And did I mention that Yone is really good with it? Like he needs more indirect buffs. 

Lastly for runes, it’s Glacial Augment. Old Glacial was a rune that was good for a few champions. I only really remember seeing Senna use it. Now, it’s a great rune that helps players engage and stick to their targets. Other than that, I think it was a good change, I can’t say too much about it.

New Dragons

During preseason, two new dragons were added to the game, the Hextech Dragon and the Chemtech Dragon. Each with different additions to the maps, buffs and dragon souls.

Firstly, the Hextech Dragon. Every time a Hextech Dragon is killed, the team gains 5% attack speed and five ability haste. When the dragon is soul, the map gains Hex-gates that allow the player to travel across the map with ease. The Hextech Dragon soul grants a lightning chain that slows enemies. This is probably one of my favorite things about season 12, just flying around the map with the Hex-gates.

Also, there was another Dragon that was added to the game, the Chemtech Dragon. Each time a player kills one, they gain a damage buff to enemies that have more health than you. When it’s soul, the map gains fog in the jungle, stealthing allies and enemies alike. It also removes a couple bushes from the jungle. The dragon soul gives a death passive that allows you to freely move around like Sion, but also freely use abilities like Karthus. It’s worth noting that Chemtech Dragon soul has a significantly higher win rate than any of the other dragon souls.


There were many new items added to the game, including Mage, Assassin and Tank items. Here’s a rundown of what they do.

Crown of the Shattered Queen was a much needed item for Mages. Its stats are mediocre for a Mythic item, and its mythic passive is… lacking, to say the least. But its strengths are in neither of those. Its passive blocks a massive amount of damage. It’s a strong item, and finally, mages have something to counter assassins.

Shadowflame is an item that grants more magic penetration when the enemy was recently shielded. It feels like the Ability Power (AP) equivalent of Serpent’s Fang. Not much else to say except it gives a lot of AP too.

Axiom Arc is a toxic item for the game. It’s so good that many assassins, like Nocturne, almost forgot to pick up their Duskblade. Navori Quickblades refund basic ability cooldowns? No one bats an eye. Assassins refund their ultimate cooldowns? That’s a bit of a problem. 

Evenshroud is a support tank item that lets other people do 9% more damage to any enemy you Crowd Control (CC). It’s simple, yet effective.

Winter’s Approach is the new Tear of the Goddess item for tanks. Once it is fully stacked, it evolves into Fimbulwinter. I haven’t really used this item, so I can’t really tell if it’s good or not.


This season feels like it’s shaping up to be a mage meta. With new items that make mages stronger, it’s clear that mages will be good. But when mages are good, so is Kassadin, the anti-mage. With Everfrost coming from last season giving Kassadin CC and new AP items, Kassadin is shaping up to be a reliable pick this season.