Pantheon Rework Announced, Ability Kit Details
We’ve just gotten a first glimpse at the Pantheon rework, and we were not left indifferent. Not in the slightest. Reworking an age-old champion is tricky business. It is a layered process, and it is defined by trial and error. Riot designers have to rework a champion (sometimes from the ground up) but still retain its core identity; they have to savor what millions of players across the world love about that one pick — the lore, the ability kit, the way that certain champion made them feel, and so on.
It’s so easy to make an error and get off track, but if they get it right, the reward is spectacular (for everyone involved). Before we delve deeper into the rework itself, let’s take a closer look at the official “Behind the Scenes” video.
Needless to say, we have quite the rework on our hands! Pantheon looks like a certified must-pick and there’s a certain lionhearted aura around him — and that’s evident through both his lore as well as his ability kit.
Pantheon is no longer the spam-oriented champion, in fact, there’s a lot more depth within his kit. Not only does it fall in line with his visuals, but there’s quite a fair bit of potential kit-wise. While it’s still too early to make any concrete predictions, it seems like Pantheon has what it takes in order to make a splash not just in casual but also in competitive play.
Pantheon was never a hard champion to play, but he was nuanced. There were certain aspects of his kit that you had to understand in order to be as effective as possible, and there was also quite a noticeable drop-off in power once the later stages of the game came along.
Riot wanted to make him a well-rounded, full-fledged top lane champion that wasn’t as easy to read and who had clear inherent strengths around which he could play.
Whether or not they have succeeded still remains to be seen, but judging by what we’ve seen so far, Riot seems to have done a spectacular job.
Pantheon’s biography was slightly altered but it’s still as interesting and fascinating as ever. If you’re a fan of the written word (or just want to know a bit more about the champions you’re piloting), you can click here and read through his updated lore.
Pantheon Rework: Ability Kit
We’ll do a complete ability rundown in another article (stats and numbers included), but let’s just quickly go over the refreshed kit coming in the Pantheon rework in order to see what he’s bringing to the table.
Passive: “Mortal Will”
After Pantheon throws out five basic attacks or abilities, his next ability (Q, W or E) will be empowered. Pretty basic stuff, but also perfectly acceptable. A small push in power is always welcome, especially when you know when it’s coming and when you can play around it in order to gain an advantage in the laning phase.
This means all three of his next abilities have empowered effects. More on that below.
Q: “Comet Spear:
Pantheon’s Q is getting slightly altered. You’ll now be able to either tap or hold it. By doing the former, Pantheon will strike in a direction and damage all enemies found in a line. If, on the other hand, you opt for the latter, he’ll throw his spear in a line. The second one is a skillshot.
When empowered, enemies will take extra damage from the ability and will be slowed. This is still the same-old Pantheon spear throw we all know and love, but it’s not going to be as easy to land. That said, it’s no longer one-dimensional and, well, as easy to abuse.
W: “Shield Vault”
The core of this ability remained unchanged, which is — depending on how you felt about Pantheon’s stun beforehand — either a reason to celebrate or a cause for concern.
When empowered, the ability will deal extra damage and will slow the target.
E: “Aegis Assault”
Pantheon pulls up his shield in a direction and gains invulnerability to any incoming damage (from that one direction) while dealing continuous damage himself. The last hit that Pantheon deals through his E is especially powerful and will activate even if you cancel “Aegis Assault” before its full duration comes to an end.
When empowered, the ability will last longer.
R: “Grand Starfall”
After leaping into the air, Pantheon flies towards a target location and then hurls through all enemies for a short duration. Pantheon’s unique ultimate didn’t change much. What Riot did do, however, is update it to be more in tune with the way League is played today. That means he’ll still retain the “grand entrance” side of his ultimate, but it’ll be a lot more usable and impactful this time around.
Not to mention cooler. There’s just no classier (or manlier) way to enter a teamfight.
The Pantheon rework will surely make quite the landing (excuse the pun) once he’s released on live servers. We still don’t have all the details, but expect news to come out sooner rather than later. One thing is for certain: Riot’s string of successful (or at the very least enticing) reworks is still alive and well.
The fact that they took a highly recognizable staple champion and retained his core identity is commendable and downright exciting. We’ll all get the opportunity to play the new (and much more dangerous) Pantheon in a matter of weeks.