Riot changed something about Katarina again. This automatically means that she's hot topic again. People have been nagging about her constantly ever since the rework got announced. I feel like a lot of people are kind of clueless as to why it's such a "thing" though, and what's going on. Hence this post.
The pre-rework Kat
Before the rework, Katarina was a mobile assassin who had pretty much the worst early game in the game. She scaled into the laning phase pretty decently though, and had good snowball potential. After lvl 6 she would win every skirmish IF her opponent would blow all his escapes and cc AND would overextend.
There was pretty much an optimal way to play her, which involved maxing R>Q>E>W and rushing Hextech Gunblade (which was a different item back then). Her scalings were organized in a way where AP was more gold-efficiŽnt than AD for all-ins, but AD > AP for poking.
Now Katarina was globally considered to be a trash tier champion. Her win rate hovered around 40% in all ELO tiers. However, the loyal Katarina fanbase players (including players like Scarra, TiensiNoAkuma and JudyMonica) all averaged 60% win ratings on her, even at the highest ELO brackets. These players played her in that "optimal way" that I mentioned. Though for some reason this way of playing her was unique to her fanbase. Most players invested more gold into health, a 15% slow on Rylai and CDR (a stat that is completely useless on her as soon as her passive kicks in), often referring to Katarina as a champion akin to Swain or Vladimir, who's better off building tanky and relying on base damages.
I think this was the main bane of old Katarina. I know for a fact that by far most players were VERY convinced that the way to go on her was to build her like a tanky support mage, and those same players were complaining that she was a walking ult and was useless against any team with CC. The players who complained less about her were the people who actually built and played her as an assassin, a role where she didn't get overshadowed in every single way by other champions. And like I said, the difference in win ratings between both playstyles was somewhere around 20%, which whilst not saying everything does indicate that something's off.
The rework: history behind it
Riot never liked old Kat's state. First off she definately wasn't competitively viable. But more importantly, she stomped noobs. The general population of LoL considered her trash, so they wanted a rework. The Kat fans loved their champion, but a visual update was a common request, as well as some tweaks to her W, which was kind of an awkward spell sometimes. On top of that, her Q was bugged and we wanted that fixed. As far as the Kat mains' perception of Katarina went, they knew she lost almost every matchup (Karthus being a notable example) if played correctly AND could get snowballed into uselessness and thus considered her weak. What most of us didn't really take into account is that pretty much nobody knew how to play as or against Katarina, which is a big reason we'd win almost every matchup over and over again.
Riot tried adjusting her a couple of times, including an experiment where they made Shunpo put Katarina in front or behind it's target based on whether or not Killer Instincts was active. This turned out to be a nerf to an a champion that nobody considered strong to begin with, and it got reverted.
So in all, a rework was going to happen. Riot mentioned several goals for the rework, being:
I actually read it all b/c I know how to read
most people don't.
on topic, first kat game in a long time went like 18/5 with 2 quadras, one was a definite penta but our trundle was having none of it :/ very fun champ, like most reset champs.
OH, and I'd pay a few hundred for kitty kat katarina. and almost as much for red card. too bad they havnt come up with a way to buy/sell skins :/ I don't want to buy a new account, my account already has 90+ champs and 81 skins.
I'm new to the game so I don't know what old Kat was like, but I don't know what to do with the current one.
Her AP scalings besides the ult are ****, her base damages besides the ult are ****, her skill ranges are pretty short plus she's melee.
Her role seems to be to pop in and ult on a half-dead enemy team, but that's kind of a ****ty design now isn't it? Especially since Riot likes to praise itself on how they're such awesome game designers.
A champ that is designed to kill-steal, basically. Like Karthus, but ****tier and not credit to team.
Cannot agree more.
She still, thankfully, has a place in Dominion as an extremely strong hybrid Assassin/Mage, but the channel time nerf hurt her quite a bit.
Riot still doesn't understand that people can just walk out of Katarina's ulti. They could do it when it was 3 seconds long and obscenely powerful, they could do it when it was 2 seconds long and mediocre and they can still do it now that it's 2.5 seconds long.
Katarina has the most inherent counterplay out of every champion, and yet she still sees nerfs. Yes, it's a nerf regardless of what the math says. The cast time removal is meaningless considering the daggers have a travel time and come out slower. People walking away from her ult take even less damage than they did before.
Her ulti is not better than it was a few days ago; it is significantly worse except in ideal circumstances. I'll say it again, people do not stand in Kat ultis unless chain-CCed. No other champion's ultimate requires another champion's input to be effective, let alone needing multiple champions or specific ones with 2.5 second hard CCs.
Revert this ridiculous change, Riot.
Edit: I'll clarify my point about her ultimate requiring another person.
If Katarina uses her ulti point blanc against an enemy champion, and that champion is not rooted, stunned, surpressed, taunted, feared or strongly slowed--and assuming Kat herself is not interrupted--the enemy champion can walk away from Kat's ulti even without boots and they would take at most six daggers (seven before this patch). With boots 1 that drops to five and with boots two only four. That means Kat is only getting at most half of her ultimate off by herself barring Exhaust.
Walking away is fine counterplay for a skill such as Fiddlesticks' drain, but that is a base ability and he has his own CC to keep people drained. This is the main reason Kat does not win lane matchups, too; every champion has access to this counterplay from level 1, which is devastating to an assassin that by virtue of being an assassin needs to win her lane early. They don't even need a Zhonya's, though if/when they do get one it's just not possible for Kat to kill them.
Making it easier to walk away from Kat's ulti just made it that much worse, regardless of the total damage and scaling.
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