League of Legends is one of those games where nothing ever really stays the same. And with every patch and hotfix out of Riot Games studios, there are buffs, nerfs, and adjustments players have to adapt to if they want to win.
For the most part, these changes help balance champions, their abilities, and the League meta in general. While some lanes receive a lot of attention, others do not.
In League Patch 13.3, there were changes to help bring traditional supports back to the bot lane, power reduction to early jungle ganks, and some much-needed buffs to mid lane mage Annie. But there were very few changes to the top lane.
And so, in a Patch 13.3 bug-catcher thread on the League subreddit, one player, _raimu, asked if there was “any new info about fixing top lane satisfaction? Feels like we were the only lane not touched on here haha (despair).”
In response to their question, League dev Riot Axes explained: “The bet was that ensuring that the winning top laner could scale throughout the game would move the needle on agency and satisfaction; in practice, we needed to push items further than we sustainably could in order to succeed that way. We need new tactics as a result.”
According to Riot Axes, the biggest finding after the devs dug into top lane was that the “bot lane 3v3 slingshot”—that is, how strong junglers and ADCs can get in the early game—is having a major impact on top lane. Resolving that snowball point, he said, should help the other side of the map have more influence in games. It’s not something that can be fixed overnight though, he warned, and said changes will be slow.
So, while top lane didn’t receive any changes during the latest February patch, League devs believe eventual bot lane nerfs will be the key to making the top lane more fun.
Right now, top laners may have to stick to K’Sante if they want to bring power into their ranked lobbies—the Pride of Shurimah is a clear power pick in Season 13.