Big Bad Warwick

‘League Of Legends’ Warwick Rework: 3 Great Changes To LoL’s Classic Jungler

The much anticipated rework of one of League of Legends oldest champs finally went live with the activation of patch 7.2. Warwick’s rework, while much needed to update his lacking abilities, is much less overpowered than many players originally thought.

Everything about the classic champion was touched one way or another to fit with the theme of ultimate hunter. While other champs (Rengar) may try to claim that title, Warwick deserves it. It requires massive amounts of irregular movement options like Zed, Talon, and Ezreal to stand any chance at actually escaping from the exceptional pursuit abilities Warwick now sports.

The New Standard Warwick Skin
The standard Warwick Skin [Image by League of Legends]

League of Legends gave Warwick the Tools to be a Top-tier Initiator

As of patch 7.2, each of Warwick’s abilities now focus on gap closing and gaining the upper hand in the first seconds of a fight. Whether the movement buff from Blood Hunt, the damage reduction and fear from Primal Howl, or the long leap of his ultimate, Infinite Duress, Warwick’s abilities let him pursue and engage at his leisure.

The Infinite Duress and Primal Howl combination are superb at disrupting the opposing team’s front line, shutting down the Infinite Duress victim and sending anyone nearby scrambling with the fear effect from Primal Howl. The boosted survivability Warwick enjoys will keep him alive long enough to heal off his passive, Eternal Hunger, and his Q ability, Jaws of the Beast. Jaws of the Beast also lets Warwick close gaps, potentially enabling him to reach the characters on the back line.

As an initiator, even the patch 7.2 Uncaged Wrath of Zaun still suffers from the eternal trade-off of survivability vs. damage output. If the player focuses too much on building damage items and relies heavily on Primal Howl for surviving engagements, Warwick players will be shut down in short order. Two-man initiations are where Warwick shines. Opposing teams are forced to split up single target crowd control, allowing a pair of bruiser-types (which Warwick truly is) to peel off the defenders and engage the lower health carries.

Warwick’s Abilities make him a Superb Jungler

League of Legends did well in making Warwick a beginner-friendly jungler, while remaining viable for players with higher skill levels. Warwick’s ultimate is now a skill shot, so while it has massive range, a well-timed Flash or Zhonya’s will protect the target from suppression. However, since Infinite Duress can send WW over walls, well warded jungles and rivers will reward a good Warwick with kills and gold.

Warwick is a relentless diver who excels at chasing down injured targets. He’s still your go-to pooch if you’re new to the jungle, but he’s learned some vicious new tricks,” as the League of Legends developers put it.

Another reason patch 7.2 made Warwick a good training jungler is his reduced healing capabilities. Instead of simply staying near full health during his stay in the jungle, new players are forced to balance Warwick’s health with ambush (gank) potential. While it’s much easier to stay alive with Warwick’s reworked passive, keeping sufficient health to engage hostile players is no longer as simple as pressing Q.

Blood Hunt also provides significant aid for new players. While not revealing players on the map as the old ability did, now a trail leads Warwick to his prey. This allows new junglers to get a better understanding of champion maneuvers without completely holding their hand. Blood Hunt also no longer reveals that Warwick is nearby, which was always a nuisance when trying to close the gap between hunter and prey. Most players either tried to bait Warwick into attacking disadvantageously, or simply ran somewhere safe.

Warwick's On Fire!
Nowhere is safe from Fire Fang Warwick [Image by League of Legends]

Warwick’s Rework makes him an Effective Ganker

One of the biggest issues with pre-rework Warwick was his near-total uselessness as a ganker before level six when he could get Infinite Duress. Now, with Primal Howl, Jaws of the Beast, and Blood Hunt’s activation, Warwick can successfully engage and shut down targets well before level six.

Infinite Duress’ changes in patch 7.2 also make Warwick a more effective ganker. The ability to leap unseen from the jungle into the middle of a lane means opponents must spend wards in less-common places, stay closer to the turret, or keep their own jungler close the lanes where Warwick is wandering.

For instance, in the bottom lane, if Warwick’s opponents have pushed about two-thirds of the way to the turret, that’s sufficient room for Warwick to engage with minimum reaction time. With the bush typically being warded (or supposed to be), most junglers aside from Lee Sin don’t have the closing speed to cross the vision barrier to implement an ambush. Warwick used to be the same way, but the rework has given him mobility to rival Lee Sin.

League of Legends Warwick rework did not make the wolf overpowered. There will be players like those of Zed, Yasuo, and Lee Sin who may make him seem that way due to skillful manipulation of his abilities and characteristics, but the rework itself has successfully modernized an aging, lacking champion to be a viable threat in the Season 7 jungle.

So what do you think of the League of Legends Warwick rework? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.

[Featured Image by League of Legends]

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