Lethality Nerfs Hit League of Legends PBE, Recent Buffs Were a Mistake

Lethality nerfs are the order of the day, revealed in the latest update to the League of Legends Public Beta Environment (PBE).

It should be noted that it was only last month when Riot Games introduced major improvements for Lethality to grant larger amounts of immediate flat armor penetration value.

Since then, the developer has admitted that it went overboard with the improvements. As such, the amount of damage values creeping into the game through runes, mastery pages, and items are combining to be unhealthy.

Having done the maths, Riot Games is stripping several mastery skills and items of its Lethality values as well as other damage amplification effects. The developer has assured that the upcoming changes will not target any specific champion and are designed for the game as a whole.


  • Lethality: 1.7/3.4/5.1/6.8/8.5 ⇒ 1.2/2.4/3.6/4.8/6
  • Magic Penetration: 0.6/1.2/1.8/2.4/3 ⇒ 0.3/0.6/0.9/1.2/1.5

In addition to that, Bounty Hunter, Double Edge Sword, Battle Trance, and Merciless have also had their damage bonuses reduced. In order to balance the low offensive numbers, other mastery skills such as Fearless have been tweaked to offer reduced armor and magic resistance values.

“In regards to damage mastery nerfs, the potency of amplification effects in the mastery system has gone up over time,” explained game designer Riot Wav3break. “We are looking at tuning down more under-the-hood damage amplifiers in the mastery system for this patch.”

In the items category, the Lethality numbers on Youmuu’s Ghostblade have been reduced. Lord Dominik’s Regards has been nerfed as well.

The fall in damage values across the board is in line with the developer’s observation that every champion is building towards damage in one way or another. According to game systems designer Riot Axes, champions must adhere to their respective classes.

At present, players are combining Black Cleaver, Lethality builds, and offensive mastery trees to gain unprecedented power spikes. Tanks cannot be rushing damage items because they give larger benefits. This has also resulted in changes to the Black Cleaver, which is now only beneficial for Juggernauts.