Patch 2.1.0: Aphelios Expansion, Lunar Celebration, Balance Changes, and More!
The first big update of the year features Targon champion Aphelios and 13 other new cards, a Lunar Celebration mini-event, and a host of balance updates, including nerfs to Hush and The Grand Plaza. The patch will hit live servers on February 3, approx 9 AM PST.
Below are the official Patch 2.0.0 notes, originally posted at PlayRuneterra.com.
Aphelios Champion Expansion
Our most complex and adaptable Champion to date, Aphelios has made his arrival in Legends of Runeterra. The Weapon of the Faithful brings with him a small collection of new cards as part of the Aphelios Champion Expansion.
For a deeper dive into Aphelios’s design and mechanics, check out our overview video with Design Director Riot Umbrage on the Legends of Runeterra YouTube channel tomorrow!
Break out the fireworks, it’s time for the Lunar Celebration! Log in over 7 days during the Lunar Celebration event period to earn rewards (starting with a free copy of Aphelios), as well as a new Lunar Celebration Quest each day for even more rewards! Complete all seven Lunar Celebration Quests to earn the Year of the Ox Card Back.
The release of Cosmic Creation introduced Zoe, Viktor, and Riven to the game. Now that we’ve had a chance to see them in action, we know Zoe has been making portals and taking names all across Runeterra. Viktor and Riven, however, could use a little bit more attention to help them perform their best. Patch 2.1.0 comes with a collection of card updates aimed at giving these Champions a chance to shine just a bit brighter, along with some non-Champion card updates to improve the overall health of the game.
Like with Viktor and Riven in this patch, as we move forward with future card updates, you’re going to generally see more attention paid to newly-released cards to ensure they’re performing at an appropriate level compared to previously-released sets. However, that doesn’t mean cards from Foundations, Rising Tides, or Call of the Mountain won’t see adjustments. This philosophy is specifically in regards to live design & balance, and has been established to ensure that we continue to promote meta health and deck diversity as we continue to add new sets and expansions in the future. With that, let’s look at what’s changing in Patch 2.1.0!
MISS FORTUNE (LEVEL 2)
CHANGE: Removed Overwhelm after leveling up.
Miss Fortune’s level 2 lethality does not quite line up with the difficulty of her quest. We want to slightly reduce her ability to immediately end the game given she levels up.
LEVEL UP REQUIREMENT: You’ve played 8+ created cards. → You’ve played 7+ created cards.
CHANGE (LEVEL 1&2): Now creates a Hex Core Upgrade on both Play and Round Start.
Viktor’s build up is often too slow to have realistic impact on the game a Champion should have. We want to speed it up and also provide more immediate impact and potential for Augment Allies and Viktor himself when deployed later in the game.
THE GRAND PLAZA
CHANGE: When an ally is summoned, give it +1|+1 and Challenger this round. → When an ally is summoned, give it +1|+0 and Challenger this round.
Grand Plaza has been a positive new tool for Midrange Demacia decks, but it’s stat distribution on top of challenger makes it too easy to make profitable challenge-trades while adding resiliency. By removing the health buff, we want to allow more wiggle room for counterplay and soften the ability to keep your plaza units alive after challenging with them.
BASE STATS: 1|3 → 2|2
Originally, when we made this adjustment we had thought that retaining health was more powerful than attack. We were wrong about that, given the nature of Support units needing the ability to at least trade into more boardstates, so we’re making a small adjustment to War Chefs.
COST: 5 → 4
We want to add some power to Ionia’s identity as the only Region that can Recall enemies. This adjustment should provide some more texture and potential for the usable spells within Ionia.
BASE STATS: 1|1 → 3|1
Like with Homecoming, we wanted to make a few small changes directed at improving some of Ionia’s core mechanics. The Elder’s stats made it impossible to be feasible, so this adjustment should provide hand buffing decks a bit more board presence and potential while setting up.
CHANGE: When I’m summoned, create 3 Decimates in hand. → When I’m summoned, create 2 Decimates in hand.
The direct damage output provided by Captain Farron can be overbearing in many games, and can also prevent certain Region combinations from effectively executing a slower game plan. We’re providing more breathing room while playing against Farron, while keeping his shape intact.
BLADE OF THE EXILE
COST: 3 → 1
Blade of the Exile is a bit too clunky to be used effectively – and is often not used at all in games when it’s created. We generally only change spell speeds in emergencies, so we’re reducing the cost by two to both provide payoff for turbo creating it early in the game and for general ease of use.
BASE STATS: 1|2 → 2|1
One of Riven’s weaknesses is having to dilute your deck with her followers which are generally weaker than other options. For Blade Squire, we want to flatly increase its viability with a better statline to give Riven decks a boost – and the card itself more satisfying play patterns.
COST: 2 → 3
Hush ultimately counteracts too many strategies, often time’s doing it in a super efficient way. While we’ve wanted to avoid overnerfing in the past, the overall play rate and amount of strategies it’s defanged, especially the champions from the Cosmic Creation’s expansion, makes it clear that a flat nerf is warranted.
CHANGE: Give an ally +2|+1 this round. Nightfall: Draw 1. → Give an ally +1|+1 this round. Nightfall: Draw 1.
While there are strong burst spells at similar costs, Pale Cascade provides all Targon decks efficient combat superiority and protection without much of the opportunity cost given it’s built in card draw. By reducing the overall damage, we’re removing some of the potential to create better trades or push damage.
New Single-Player Legends Lab: Lab of Legends
Patch 2.1.0 brings a new rotation to Multilab:
- Lab of Legends (New in 2.1.0!)
- United Front
- Quick Draw
After countless hours of experimentation, Heimerdinger is finally ready to unveil his latest and greatest achievement:
Introducing… the appropriately-named Lab of Legends – our first Legends Lab, and another foray into the world of single-player adventures! First introduced in our 2021 Roadmap Update, Legends Labs are experiences that focus on progression, customization, and adaptation.
Building off of those themes, Lab of Legends gives you a choice between 8 different Champions, each with their own premade deck, and pits you against a series of increasingly-difficult encounters. As you progress, you’ll earn new cards, passive abilities, and items that power up cards in unique ways. No two runs are the same; expect to see some crazy combo possibilities emerge as you reach later stages. Don’t be reckless though, your Nexus health carries over between rounds and is only refilled after a Boss encounter, so be sure to pace yourself!
Emerge ‘Viktorious’ at the end of a run, and you’ll earn a unique icon based on your selected Champion. Fight hard, experiment responsibly, and try to collect them all!
The year ends, but the party never stops.
Appears once a year to wreak delightful havoc on mortals.
Dislikes: Loud noises
Celebrate with a whisper.
Celebrate with a bang.
Bring the boom.
The Lunar Beast Bundle is available in patch 2.1.0 for 2394 Coins. Bundle includes:
- Club Ox Board
- Lunar Beast Guardian
- The Beast Card Back
- Exclusive Firecracker T-Hex Guardian Variant
Make the night last forever with the Night Hunters Deck Bundle, available in patch 2.1.0 for 1998 Coins (prorated for any excess card copies based on your existing collection). Bundle includes a collection of cards from Targon and Shadow Isles designed to bring out the full power of Nightfall!
Balance between the various archetypes continues to be in good shape overall, so with this patch we’re just making minor changes to a number of archetypes, as well as focusing Fishbones more around an aggressive strategy. In addition the new cards that are debuting with the patch have been added to Expeditions.
- Cards from the Aphelios expansion have been added to various archetypes, and Aphelios himself has been added to Luminous Dusk as an alternate Targon champion alongside Diana.
- Luminous Dusk will be four times as likely as normal to show up in the initial Champion Picks. This chance will be reduced again in a future patch.
- Added: Brutal Hunter
- Added: Will of Ionia
- Removed: Shadow Flare
- Added: Ballistic Bot, Veteran Investigator
- Removed: Eager Apprentice, Hexcore Foundry, Monkey Business, Monkey Idol, Scrapdash Assembly
- Removed: Pesky Specter
- Removed: Monkey Business, Strong-arm
- Removed: Monkey Business
- Added: Zaunite Urchin
- Removed: Veteran Investigator
Shadows and Dust
- Added: Shadow Flare
- Removed: Trevor Snoozebottom
- Added: Jaull Hunters, Ye Been Warned
- Removed: Pocket Aces, Yordle Grifter
- On Android devices, the ‘Back’ button can be used to navigate the app.
- Added a toggle in Options > General to allow or prevent friends from spectating your games.
- Fixed a crash related to switching your Player Icon after completing a match.
- Fixed a crash related to switching between the Home and Play menus.
- Fixed an issue where The Dancer card back would display in-game as The Rising Star.
- Fixed a bug that would sometimes prevent a unit from being silenced a second time in the same round.
- Fixed an issue where sometimes Lulu’s supported unit would not be fully buffed.
- Fixed an issue where sometimes a unit would incorrectly die if silenced multiple times.