Evelynn has always been a bit of a dark horse in League of Legends. At times she has risen to a brief spot in the META but in general she has stayed true to her lore and lurked in the shadows, never really making much of an appearance. Her visuals were undeniably archaic and her abilities had little to no elements of skill or counter-play built into them. As a consequence of her lack of efficiency as an assassin (in a game where there are far better assassin picks available in the jungle), she was often built as a tank/ ability power hybrid. This played into the brain-dead play style of running into the enemy team, pressing R and spamming Q and hoping and praying that your team had enough damage to win the fight. Thankfully, there’s a League of Legends champion Rework coming for Evelynn.
Previously, Evelynn had absolutely no tools for lane built into her kit. Her kit was well-suited to clearing jungle camps and roaming around the map and that’s it. Yes, she had good damage if you built her with full AP, but the issue was that there was little or no chance for an enemy to react if you just ran at them and bursted them down. Neither player had the feeling that they had really achieved anything, which left Eve players feeling unsatisfied and opponents frustrated.
Riot Games has finally dealt with this problem, and in Patch 7.20 they will be overhauling the entirety of Evelynn’s artwork, lore and (most importantly) abilities. Mercifully, the new Evelynn is one hundred percent, pure-bred, pedigree assassin. Gone are the days of brainless tank Eve gameplay! We have been given the gift of a mobile assassin with lethal crowd control, sustain and huge burst capability. Hello ADC? Goodbye ADC.
Evelynn’s new kit (as with all of Riot’s reworks), is much more closely aligned with her lore. That is, the lore of a demon-succubus who lures people to their deaths and feeds off their torment. A cheery concept, right? But the new Eve really does deliver on this idea, and the kit gives rise to a play style of beautiful moments of stillness (with a charmed enemy champion) that give way to destruction and pain on the enemy’s part. Without any further ado here is a rundown of Evelynn’s new kit:
Passive: Demon Shade
This replaces Evelynn’s old passive which granted out-of-combat movement speed and stealth. She now will only gain stealth at level six, and it works in the same way as before in that nearby enemy champion’s will reveal you as well as control wards and turrets. Now, however, from level one Demon Shade will give you hugely increased health regeneration when your health is low. Obviously this will help tremendously for sustaining through a jungle clear.
Q: Hate Spike
This ability was Evelynn bread and butter before the rework. Sustained AoE damage to clear the jungle and good for chasing down enemies. Now, instead of being a spammable, point-and-click ability, you are actually required to land a skillshot first. Following this ability landing on an enemy, your next three attacks or spells will deal bonus damage. In most cases those next three spells will be the second, third and fourth castings of Hate Spike which replicate the old Hate Spikes- dealing damage in a line through the first enemy hit. As well as this, a portion of the cooldown will be refunded when used on monsters. This will be the ability to max first to optimize a fast jungle clear and will make up the bulk of your damage for ganks in the early game. However it is by no means Eve’s only tool.
W: Lust Dust
This is an entirely new weapon in Evelynn’s arsenal and is an excellent tool for ganking. In fact I would make the cautious claim that it is verging on being overpowered. Lust Dust can be cast from a huge range and the initial casting is a point-and-click ability. The next attack or spell on the “cursed” target will consume Lust Dust, slowing them. However if you wait a few seconds for the curse to mature, the next attack or spell will charm the enemy. Just let that sink in. Evelynn can now curse you from a mile away, wait for the curse to fully develop, launch a ranged skillshot at you, charm you in and blow you up. We all know how annoying charms can be. Before the advent of Rakan, Ahri had the only on in the game, and if you got hit with it you were generally a goner. Although I lament the rise of another strong jungle assassin, and I grieve for all those ADCs losing their lives (I can already here the screams), I absolutely agree with Riot’s decision with this ability. A charm is the perfect thing to give Eve- it fits with her lore perfectly and it makes her far more relevant in the jungle and the game.
E: Whiplash and Empowered Whiplash
This is a comparatively simple ability. Basically, Evelynn damages an enemy (dealing damage based on max health, because all new reworks have to deal max health damage in order to stop the rise of another tank META *shudders*) and gains movement speed. However “Empowered” Whiplash is triggered when you cast Whiplash coming out of Demon Shade. This pulls Evelynn to the target and deals Whiplash’s damage in an area. This is obviously a great gap-closer and yet another tool for hunting down your prey and annihilating them. It will also hopefully make Evelynn much less prone to being kited, which is good news for Evelynn players, not so much for anyone else.
This is objectively the most awesome (and most annoying) element of Evelynn’s new kit. Let’s set the scene. You see a pink heart appear above your head. You feel the sense of impending doom. You are charmed out of nowhere, and half of your health is gone within a second. You desperately cling to the last half but it is slowly dwindling as you fight for your life. Just as you think you are beginning to get the upper hand your health disappears along with Evelynn. You shout at your computer screen and bash your keyboard, but no amount of anger will bring you champion back. Evelynn has disappeared into the shadows.
Not only does Evelynn now have powerful crowd control and damage, but she also has possibly the most ridiculous escape tool in the game. Simply put, Widowmaker deals damage in an area in front of Evelynn (dealing increased damage to targets low on health) and then she becomes untargetable and teleports backwards. Need I say more? She can get in, assassinate her target and now, crucially, she can get out again. This is a radical change to Evelynn who historically has had to rely on bursts of movement speed to get in and out of combat.
On the whole I love the look of the new Evelynn. There is always going to be some sense of dread when you read the specs of these new abilities (as often happens with champion reworks), but one must remember that with damage comes squishiness and a full Ability Power Evelynn (although difficult to pin down) will die quickly when caught out of position.
These new abilities offer a lot of power to the Evelynn player but also counter-play opportunities for opponents. Her Q is now a skillshot, which means it you can dodge it, and hopefully with time it will become easier to predict when an Evelynn is about to cast her ultimate so that you can flash out of it or otherwise avoid the damage. The Ultimate will be the most frustrating thing to deal with by far, but it just means that opponents will have to keep better track of when it is on cooldown in order to capitalize on Evelynn’s vulnerability at these times.
I also think taking Cleanse may end up being a good choice when playing against an Evelynn. Presumably, Lust Dust will have a fairly long cooldown, so cleansing the charm will let you avoid some of the damage and survive long enough to deal with her in other ways.
Like all jungle assassins, Evelynn will snowball very hard. Give the new Evelynn a couple of early kills and you are going to have a very difficult time in dealing with her as the game progresses. It may get to the stage that she simply cannot be pinned down and taken out due to her increased mobility and escape potential.
Lastly, the new artwork is much more fitting for a succubus that seduces her prey before killing them. There is a nice combination of bright, “charming” colors and dark, demonic energies in the particle effects on her abilities.
So Riot has given us a whole new set of things to worry about, but at least we’ll die with a smile on our face and love in our eyes.
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