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Phreak, LoL community clash again over state of ADCs in season 14 Dot Esports

Since popular League of Legends shoutcaster David “Phreak” Turley joined Riot Games’ game design team at the end of 2022, he has butted heads with the player base multiple times.

In season 14, the discussions between Phreak and the League community rage on. But this time, it’s around the current state of AD carry champions and the controversial bottom lane role in 2024.

In the latest preview for Patch 14.3, for example, the 36-year-old industry veteran broke down some of the new system changes headed to Summoner’s Rift, including tweaks to some AD critical strike items. He also explained why he did not agree with the general consensus on certain platforms, like Reddit, that the ADC role is bad.

“Some of it was the shell shock of ‘I am a sustained damage dealer, and the game is as bursty as it’s been for a really long time,’” Phreak said. “I will totally believe you, that in 14.1 that [you] cannot play Jinx because Fizz one shots her. But since that point in time, Shieldbow’s pick rate has roughly doubled and overall time-to-kill in the game has gone back to where it was in 12.10, 13.20, or 13.24, and I think being a crit marksman, as for this patch, will be completely fine.”

On the League subreddit, his comments caused a greater discussion around marksmen, where many players agreed that the role wasn’t really weak but that it simply didn’t feel fun or good to play. ADC mains who frequented crit-heavy champions were forced to build Immortal Shieldbow to counter the immense amount of burst, but this also made them less effective when scaling into the mid-to-late game.

Another player, for example, pointed out that “Riot’s obsession with making the game faster and faster paced over the years” has heavily affected ADCs since the role requires time to scale into power but the game progresses at a much faster rate. The community felt like even though ADCs have increased in power in solo queue, games feel like they’re decided before bottom laners can be relevant.

Overall, players want a sweet spot between feeling impactful while still maintaining clear weaknesses. But in its current state, many ADCs aren’t too happy about the direction in which the role is headed—whether they think the role is broken or absolutely useless.

Tyler Esguerra

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